Miller: We Called Those People Criminals. Here We Call Them Legislators

Rep-George-Miller.jpg Rep. McKeon tried to get the word criminals stricken from the record. He was a little too late.

George Miller (D-CA): It's a devastating picture when you meet your constituents who have lost their retirement, who have lost big chunks of their retirement and they come and talk to you at the shopping center, they talk to you in the grocery store, they talk to you in a town hall and they tell you what it means to their plans.

We were all stunned as a nation when pensioners got their plans wiped out and devastated by Enron. We called those people criminals. Here we call them legislators. Because people are getting -- people are going to get a devastating hit on their pensions, and we're going to say it's the law. There we said it was a crime. We said it was a crime.

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<Rep. McKeon (R-CA) interupts Rep. Miller.>
Rep. George Miller: You have plenty of time on your side. You say it's a crime. I don't want to be called a criminal. But what are you doing to people?
You know, you control the House, you control the White House, you control the Senate, control your time. The fact of the matter it's the same thing. We're making a conscious decision to rip away these pension benefits from these workers, and the most devastating thing about this decision is it's not necessary. You can have massive pension reform to the benefit of the employees, to the benefit of the employers, to the benefit of the shareholders without devastating the older workers. Wo why don't we do it right? Why don't we do it in a humane way? Why don't we do it right in recognizing the situation that america's older workers find themselves in, people 50, 55, 60 years old?
What are they going to do, take a second job for their retirement? Maybe their spouse can go out and take a third job for their retirement. That's not the way we should treat American citizens. That's not the way we should treat taxpayers. And that's not the way we should treat hard-working american families who just simply don't have enough money to make up for this kind of devastating cut in their retirement. I urge my colleagues to vote for the motion to instruct. It will be up sometime I believe monday. And I would strongly encourage you to vote aye on this motion to instruct. I yield back the balance of my time.
The Speaker Pro Tempore: The gentleman's time has expired.
Rep. McKeon: Mr. speaker.
The Speaker Pro Tempore: The gentleman from California.
Rep. McKeon: I would like to ask that the Gentleman's words be taken down.
The Speaker Pro Tempore: Could the gentleman describe which words he is referring to?
Rep. McKeon: I would like to know for sure if he was calling us Criminals.
The Speaker Pro Tempore: That reference of legislators and Criminals was made too far back in the debate to be a timely request.
Rep. McKeon: May I reclaim, ask to reclaim my time?
The Speaker Pro Tempore: Is there objection?
Rep. Miller: I object.
The Speaker Pro Tempore: There is an objection to reclaiming your time.


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