U.s. Delegation to the Sochi Olympicsby Senator Roger F. Wicker
Posted on 2013-12-18
WICKER. Mr. President, I rise this evening to speak briefly about
the delegation chosen by President Obama to represent the United States
at the opening and closing ceremonies of the 2014 Olympic Winter Games
in Sochi, Russia. I would also like to offer a few suggested additions
to the delegation.
As Members know, Janet Napolitano, former Secretary of Homeland Security, will lead the U.S. delegation to the opening ceremonies on February 7. Our Deputy Secretary of State, William Burns, will lead our delegation to the closing ceremonies on February 23. Our two delegations will include tennis legend Billy Jean King, gold medalist figure skater Brian Boitano, gold medalist figure skater Bonnie Blair, silver medalist hockey player Caitlin Cahow, and Olympic gold medalist speed skater Eric Heiden. These individuals are American sports figures who should be lauded for their contributions. I am confident they will represent us well.
May I suggest with all seriousness that this delegation could well be expanded. Some have asked what message the President might be trying to send to Russia in choosing this delegation. White House Press Secretary Jay Carney asserted this morning that ``in the selection of the delegation, we are [[Page S8969]] sending the message that the United States is a diverse place.'' Whether we are sending a message or simply pointing to our diversity, I submit our official delegation would be enhanced by adding the following: an American citizen of Russian parentage, perhaps a Russian orphan adopted and raised to adulthood by loving parents in the United States would be a good addition to this delegation or a Syrian American who has fled the barbaric and treacherous rule of Bashar al- Assad in Syria. In addition, an Iranian-American exile from the oppressive and murderous regime in Iran might make an outstanding addition to this delegation. I would also suggest that LTG Keith Alexander, the Director of the National Security Agency in this administration, would be an appropriate representative also of the United States of America.
So whether it is messaging that is taking place or simply diversity, I strongly suggest this outstanding delegation could be improved by these individuals and perhaps others.
I thank the Chair and I yield the floor.
The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from Delaware.