Mr. Speaker, as the sequester’s effects continue to place our economy and national security at risk, the news that 650,000 civilian defense workers will be forced to take unpaid leave ought to alarm all Americans who are concerned about our military readiness and national security. These furloughs will affect thousands who live in my district and thousands who live in the districts of every Member here.
The automatic, arbitrary, and irrational cuts [sequestration] has imposed could have – and I think will have – serious, negative impact. It could erode our military readiness and weaken our national security. And it could reverse the gains we’ve made in our economic recovery – and see reductions in critical programs that help the poor and most vulnerable in our society.
Mr. Speaker, we are now two days away from failure-triggered, ideological-driven and irrational budget cuts called ‘sequester’… these cuts could be incredibly harmful to our national defense, our economy, and our national welfare.
Repeal it and replace it.’ For the 31st time we have a repeal with no replacement. No alternative. No protection offered by my Republican colleagues. Not one. You could of course introduce legislation that said, ‘we're going to repeal and replace with this.’ You haven't done it. You haven't done it. So the American people have no idea.
I served on the Labor and Health Committee for 23 years. Bill Natcher from Kentucky used to say this: if you take care of the health of your people and invest in the education of your young people, you’ll continue to be the strongest and best nation on the face of the Earth.
Tragically the product we will produce today is far less than the sum of the parts of this body. It is, I suggest to you, a product unworthy of the intellect that has been applied to it. It is a product that will hurt America, not help America.
The Chairman of the Budget Committee has spoken of a choice between two futures. He is correct in framing it this way. The budget he proposes would end the Medicare guarantee, cut taxes for the wealthiest, and place our economic recovery at risk.
I thank John Lewis for being my friend, and I thank John Lewis for allowing me for the ninth time to walk with him across that bridge, and as I do I will be holding the hand of John Lewis and holding in my other hand the hand of my 10-year-old granddaughter, Alexa.
I do not rise to necessarily defeat this bill. I'm going to vote against this bill. I am for almost all of this bill. What we are funding this bill with was unnecessary, unfair, and ought to be rejected.
Mr. Van Hollen and I just participated on the Floor of the House and sought to seek recognition so that we could ask unanimous consent to place on the Floor and pass legislation which would give certainty and assurance to seniors, to the unemployed, and to 160 million Americans who are at risk of losing their tax cut on January 1st.
I rise today to congratulate a talented team of students from my alma mater, the University of Maryland, who this weekend won first place at the U.S. Department of Energy’s Solar Decathlon 2011 here in Washington.
While I would prefer for us to be addressing a reauthorization of No Child Left Behind, today’s legislation reflects bipartisan support for innovation in public schools and improving educational opportunities for students who still lack access to a high-quality education.
We have missed, in my opinion, a wonderful opportunity. An opportunity to make a ‘grand bargain,’ as the Speaker wanted to do, as Leader Pelosi wanted to do, as Leader Reid wanted to do, as the president wanted to do, and as the Vice President wanted to do.
Mr. Speaker, ladies and gentlemen of this House, I am pleased to rise with my colleague and dear friend, Barbara Lee, to focus on an issue that all too frequently is ignored. I rise to speak as we are engaged in an extraordinarily important discussion, debate, and responsibility.
The American public is rightfully very distressed with the Congress of the United States. They’re distressed that a time of great challenge and great risk, we fiddle while the debt threatens to burn us, to place our country in the position of being judged un-creditworthy.
I understand the importance of cutting low-priority spending to get our budget under control. But there is nothing low-priority about the firefighters who protect our communities, our families, and our homes.
As a proud alumnus of the University of Maryland, the recent months have brought some bittersweet news. An era is coming to an end in the Terrapin athletic program, as our successful coaches of basketball and football have left the school.
In 1998, as a Republican Congress was struggling to compromise with a Democratic president on a budget bill, a Member of the House rose to speak to what he called ‘the Perfectionist Caucus’—those Members who stood against compromise under any circumstances.
Last week, former Republican Congressman Joe Scarborough said this about the hard work of getting America out of debt: 'The belief of some on the right that America can balance the budget by cutting education, infrastructure, the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, and home heating assistance to the poor is tantamount to budgetary witchcraft.'
This week, we pause the work of this House to mourn the lost lives of six of our fellow citizens—one born on that day of tragedy and carnage when thousands were slain in an equally indiscriminate, heinous act of hate—citizens shot dead on Saturday in Tucson, Arizona in pursuit of their ‘right to peaceably assemble.’
I rise in opposition to this rules package, not for small reasons, but because it authorizes trillions of dollars of new debt, without paying for it. There are two ways to create debt: you can buy things and not pay for it, or you can simply cut revenues and make yourself unable to pay for things.
This Defense Authorization bill is about securing our nation in stronger and smarter ways. It builds on our strong Democratic record of putting new and better weapons into the battlefield; increasing support for human intelligence collection, cybersecurity, and security for our skies, our ports, and our borders; and looking out for our troops, our veterans, and their families.
This May, the House approved the repeal of our Armed Forces’ policy of 'Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,' by a vote of 234-194, during consideration of the Defense Authorization bill. We voted to end an outdated policy that damages our national security—pending a comprehensive Defense Department report that would review the issues associated with implementing repeal and study our troops’ attitudes toward open service for gays and lesbians.
I understand that immigration is an issue that divides many of us in this House; it’s an issue that arouses more passion than most others. But the test of governing responsibly is whether, even in the face of those divisions, we can come together to make progress on the basis of principles that ought to be universal.
The Centers for Disease Control tell us that, over the past three decades, childhood obesity rates have tripled. Nearly one out of every five American children between the ages of six and 19 is obese. That doesn’t just mean a lifetime of health problems for those children—it means a public health crisis that we all pay for.
Today, the House has an opportunity to bring an end to two historic injustices. We can do so by approving the settlements in the Pigford and Cobell class-action lawsuits, helping to make amends to African American farmers and more than 300,000 Native Americans.
In our work to recover from the worst economic crisis of our lifetimes, small businesses play a very important role. They are our economy’s job-creating engine: over the past year, 64% of new jobs came from small businesses. Keeping small businesses growing and creating jobs is essential to our recovery.
In fewer than four months, Southern Sudan will hold a referendum on independence, which was guaranteed by the 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement. The C.P.A. ended Africa’s bloodiest civil war, a war which took almost 2 million lives and displaced 4 million—yet the risk of descending into war again seems all too real.
Saint Paul wrote: 'We fix our eyes not on things that are seen, but on things unseen; for what is seen passes away, but what is unseen endures.' As long as we live, each September we will mark an anniversary of loss: of the day we saw monuments of our power and pride turn to dust; of the day so many we loved were taken from us in an instant; a day of fear and anger that is becoming, with time, a day of remembrance and resolve.
Since inheriting the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression and an economy shedding 800,000 jobs per month, President Obama and the 111th Congress have been dedicated to standing up for the middle class, its interests, and its future.
Democrats in Congress have worked closely with President Obama to fight our enemies, promote our interests and support our troops and their families—compiling a record of securing our nation in stronger and smarter ways
We are here to conclude a day of debate, which concludes months of debate in a national conversation that began more than a century ago. But this much is beyond debate: American health care is on an unsustainable course.
House Majority Leader Steny H. Hoyer (MD) joined Blue Dog Leaders and Members today for a press conference on statutory “pay-as-you-go” (PAYGO), which will be considered on the House Floor tomorrow. Below are his remarks as prepared for delivery.
Every day, we and our families live under the blanket of protection provided by America’s firefighters—men and women who are willing to risk their lives to safeguard us, our loved ones, and our property.
A year ago this week, Barack Obama was elected president in the midst of the greatest economic crisis in a generation. Since his inauguration, and the swearing-in of the 111th Congress, Democrats have been working hard to turn our economy around and put Americans back to work.
In late 1988, when I chaired the Helsinki Commission, I listened in a dining room in Moscow filled with American and Soviet officials, as a Russian dissident named Lev Timofeyev stood and proposed a toast.
WASHINGTON, DC - Congressman Steny H. Hoyer (MD) joined a majority (246-183) in the House of Representatives to approve final legislation to create and save 3.5 million American jobs, provide a much-needed boost to the economy, and lay the foundation for long-term growth.