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Entries in John Kerry (24)

Thursday
Feb032011

Senate Resolution Urges Peaceful Transition in Egypt

Photo Courtesy - Brendan Smialowski/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- Senators John McCain, R-Ariz., and John Kerry, D-Mass., stepped forward on Thursday to introduce a resolution calling for Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak to begin a transfer of power to an interim government. The bipartisan nature of the resolution reflects the significance of the situation in Egypt.

The cooperation by the two senators, along with others, was notable considering the past between both men. In 2008, Kerry criticized McCain's decision-making history, saying that he would not be fit to gain the Republican nomination for president. During that run, one of McCain's advisers was Senator Lindsey Graham, R-S.C. On Thursday, Graham tagged his name onto the resolution, along with Senator Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn.

“This is a resolution which expresses the deep concern of the United States Senate over the events that are taking place in Egypt at this time,” Kerry said.

“Senator Kerry's and my resolution urges the Egyptian military to demonstrate maximum professionalism and restraint and emphasizes the importance of working to peacefully restore calm and order, while allowing for free and nonviolent freedom of expression,” McCain said on the Senate floor. “We do not want the Egyptian military to encourage thugs. We do not want the Egyptian military to be a party to increased violence.”
 
Heavily criticized Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak issued similar sentiments in a global exclusive interview with ABC News correspondent Christiane Amanpour on Thursday. The embattled president said, "I was very unhappy about yesterday. I do not want to see Egyptians fighting each other."

"I don't care what people say about me. Right now I care about my country, I care about Egypt," Mubarak said.

He said he does not intend to run for re-election. However, he also stated his intentions to serve his term, which runs until September.

The continuing force behind the protests is an urge by Egyptian citizens for Mubarak to resign immediately, and the protests have gone on for over a week.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Tuesday
Dec212010

Holiday Rush: Senate Advances to Final Vote on START, Plans to Take Up 9/11 Bill Before Christmas

Photo Courtesy - Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- Congress is inching ever closer to that Christmas break as lawmakers continue a flurry of last-minute work before the holiday.

The Senate Tuesday afternoon voted to move forward to a final vote on the START nuclear treaty with Russia. The pact overcame the Senate's 60-vote procedural hurdle with ease, advancing by a count of 67-28.

That "67" number is key, since the pact needs the support of two-thirds of the Senate for ratification -- 67 votes would get the job done. And it appears a near-certainty that it will get those votes, since 11 Republicans support the treaty: Lamar Alexander of Tennessee, Bob Bennett of Utah, Scott Brown of Massachusetts, Thad Cochran of Mississippi, Susan Collins of Maine, Bob Corker of Tennessee, Johnny Isakson of Georgia, Dick Lugar of Indiana, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, Olympia Snowe of Maine, and George Voinovich of Ohio.

A final vote could come late Tuesday, but more likely sometime on Wednesday.

"If in the end, the Senate in its wisdom ratifies this treaty, it's a victory for the country, not a victory for anybody else -- a victory for the country and that's what we're looking for," said Senate Foreign Relations Chairman John Kerry.

Once START is out of the way, the Senate is set to take another shot at passing a $6.2 billion measure to provide health care benefits and compensation first responders sickened during the clean-up after the 9/11 attacks.

Copyright 2010 ABC News Radio

Sunday
Dec192010

Top Senators on START: 'Believe it Will Pass,' 'Votes Are There'

Sens. John Kerry, D-Mass., (L) and Richard Lugar, R-Ind. appear on ABC's "This Week." Photo Courtesy - ABC News(WASHINGTON) -- The Senate has turned its attention to remaining legislative priorities for the lame-duck session, including continuing debate on ratifying a new arms control treaty with Russia, known as New START.

"I believe it will pass, and I believe there will be a vote," Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass., chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee, told ABC’s This Week with Christiane Amanpour in a joint appearance with Sen. Richard Lugar, R-Ind.

Lugar, a ranking member of the Foreign Relations Committee, has supported the treaty as well, working with Democrats to get the two-thirds majority of Senate votes required.

"Several Republicans will support it, and I join the chairman in believing that there are the votes there," Lugar said. "The problem is really getting to that final vote."

The Senate rejected an amendment Saturday seeking to remove language from the treaty's preamble, introduced by Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., who argued the language would restrict the United States' abilities on missile defense.

"There is no restraint, zero, none, no restraint whatsoever on our missile defense capacity," Kerry responded. "Secretary Gates says it. Secretary Clinton says it. The intelligence community says it. All of our military leaders want this treaty." 

Copyright 2010 ABC News Radio

Sunday
Dec192010

John Kerry: Gays in US Military 'No Longer Have to Live a Lie'

File photo. Photo Courtesy - ABC News(WASHINGTON) -- Senator John Kerry, D-Mass., on Sunday touted the Senate vote to repeal the ban on gays serving openly in the military, calling it a "historic day" for the country.

"It means that our citizens will no longer have to lie and live a lie on a daily basis or be denied the opportunity to serve their country," Kerry told ABC’s This Week with Christiane Amanpour.

The Senate repealed the 17-year-old "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy Saturday by a vote of 65-31, with eight Republicans joining Democrats to overturn the Clinton-era policy that forced gay service members to conceal their sexual orientation in order to serve in the U.S. military.

A Pentagon review released last month found that the policy could be changed with minimal disruption to the military, and Pentagon officials pushed for Congressional action instead of allowing court-mandated change to the policy.

Copyright 2010 ABC News Radio

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