Mr. BARTON of Texas. I rise for two reasons. One is to support this
bill. I actually thought it had passed and become law because we pass it
every Congress, and it goes to the other body and falls in the black
hole over there. So it is good to know they are bringing it [Page:
back. I am told there is a two-word difference between the bill we sent
to them and the bill they sent back to us. I guess we can accept a
two-word difference. It is long overdue. I want
to compliment Mr. Engel for his hard work and perseverance. And Mr.
Stearns, Mr. Murphy, and others on our side, and of course Mr. Boucher
for this bill.
The primary reason I am speaking, though, is I want to say some
heartfelt words about Mr. Boucher. Sooner or later this Congress is
going to mercifully adjourn–and I hope sooner rather than later–and so
I don’t know how many more times we are going to be on the floor, but I
wanted to say in his presence what an honor it has been to serve with
him. He is a workhorse Member; he is not a show horse. He doesn’t get
involved in many, many issues, but when he does get involved, he is
in his preparation and understanding of the issue and his detail. His
word is gold. It is always good.
On the rare occasions when I have disagreed with him, I have always
been impressed with the merit of his argument. He will be missed. He is
one of the Members who makes the institution work. He does it behind the
scenes. He is always thoughtful and prepared and just a joy to work
I had the privilege to work with him when I was the subcommittee
chairman and he was my ranking member, and I have had the privilege to
work with him while he has been in the majority as a subcommittee
chairman. The work he and Congressman Stearns have done on privacy is
work that will bear fruit in the coming Congress I hope. The work he has
done on energy issues and telecommunications issues, his work will
stand the test of time.
I do want to support the pending legislation, but I also wanted to
give the gentleman from Virginia my very best wishes. I look forward to
working with him in whatever endeavors he pursues in the future. It has
really been an honor to serve with you in the House of Representatives.