Norman Yoshio Mineta Federal Building

Floor Speech

Date: Nov. 3, 2021
Location: Washington, DC


Mr. DeFAZIO. Madam Speaker, I move to suspend the rules and pass the bill (H.R. 4679) to designate the Federal building located at 1200 New Jersey Avenue Southeast in Washington, DC, as the ``Norman Yoshio Mineta Federal Building''.

The Clerk read the title of the bill.

The text of the bill is as follows: H.R. 4679

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, SECTION 1. DESIGNATION.

The Federal building located at 1200 New Jersey Avenue Southeast in Washington, DC, shall be known and designated as the ``Norman Yoshio Mineta Federal Building''. SEC. 2. REFERENCES.

Any reference in a law, map, regulation, document, paper, or other record of the United States to the Federal building referred to in section 1 shall be deemed to be a reference to the ``Norman Yoshio Mineta Federal Building''.


Mr. DeFAZIO. 4679.


Mr. DeFAZIO. Madam Speaker, I yield myself such time as I may consume.

Madam Speaker, H.R. 4679 names the Department of Transportation headquarters building in Washington, D.C., after our former colleague Norm Mineta. This recognition is long overdue.

Secretary Norm Mineta is a great American patriot. He, along with his family, suffered the grave injustice of being forcibly relocated and interned during World War II. But he was not bitter toward his country or his government. Instead, he spent his career serving his country by participating in and improving government.

For almost 30 years, Norm represented San Jose on the city council, then as mayor, and then from 1975 to 1995 as a Member of Congress. Norm served on the Committee on Transportation and Public Works throughout his two decades in Congress, and we served together for 7 years. Norm chaired the Subcommittee on Aviation, the Subcommittee on Surface Transportation, and finally the full committee.

Norm was a primary author of the Intermodal Surface Transportation Efficiency Act of 1991, ISTEA, which, as President George H.W. Bush said during the signing ceremony, was ``the most important transportation bill since President Eisenhower started the interstate system 35 years ago.''

Norm was also a cofounder of the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus and served as its first chair.

Norm's skills and accomplishments have been widely recognized by both sides of the aisle. Norm was President Bill Clinton's Secretary of Commerce and President George W. Bush's Secretary of Transportation, where he was the longest-serving Secretary of Transportation in U.S. history, January 2001 until July 2006. Norm was the first person of Asian-Pacific descent to serve as Secretary of Commerce or Secretary of Transportation, and he was the first DOT Secretary to have served in a previous Cabinet position.

Following the terrorist acts of September 11, 2001, Secretary Mineta worked closely with the then-chair of the Subcommittee on Aviation, Mr. Mica, and myself as ranking member to create the Transportation Security Administration.

Prior to that time, the security at airports was always provided by the lowest bidder. In fact, one of the companies was owned by previous felons. We professionalized aviation security in the TSA. That agency was 65,000 employees, the largest mobilization of a new Federal agency since World War II.

For his contributions to this institution, to our government, and to the field of transportation, Secretary Mineta deserves this recognition.

Mr. DeFAZIO. Madam Speaker, I recommend this legislation to my colleagues for this long-overdue honor for the longest-serving Secretary of Transportation and the only one who ever served previously as Secretary in another part of the administration.

Madam Speaker, I yield back the balance of my time.