I just found out that C-Span has placed almost their entire archive online. You can now visit the C-Span Video Library.
160,000 hours and 23 years of video documentation. We now have an accessible video historical record of what was said in the U.S. House and Senate.
You can obtain the full text and context of what a Senator or Representative said, not just the sound bites that you might have heard on the news.
From the About C-Span Video Library page:
Programs are indexed by subject, speaker names, titles, affiliations, sponsors, committees, categories, formats, policy groups, keywords, and location. The congressional sessions and committee hearings are indexed by person with full-text. The video collection can be searched through the online Video Library.It gets better. There is a caption transcript of what was said on the floor. You can also read the Congressional Record version of the remarks.
And for those of you who like to share but wish to keep it on the ethical side of the fence I have something for you too. There is a section of C-Span called Congressional Chronicles. In this section you can share the video link, embed the videos on your web site or blog. The videos in this specific section are in the Public Domain.
Other videos outside of the Congressional Chronicles pages may have other copyright or other restrictions.
So if you have a need to prove that so-and-so said whatzit and they were standing on the floor of the House or Senate you can present the ocular proof.
History buffs are fanning themselves in joy.