MESSAGE FROM THE DEMOCRATIC WHIP
This week, Congress reached an agreement to extend middle class tax cuts and unemployment insurance, and fix the Medicare physician payment rate. As I stated on the House Floor today, while I support the extension of these provisions, I did not support the bill because part of it is paid for by targeting federal workers with increased retirement contributions made by new employees. Federal workers have already contributed $60 billion to deficit reduction over the next decade, and I do not think it is acceptable to continue asking these workers to contribute without asking others to pay their fair share. Targeting these hardworking, middle-class Americans significantly undermines our ability to recruit and retain the quality of people we need to carry out duties to keep our country safe, efficient, and competitive.
I was also disappointed that Republicans began consideration of a partisan highway bill that destroys jobs, rolls back important safety and environmental standards, and does not meet our country’s infrastructure needs. Transportation bills are a traditionally bipartisan issue, and the Senate has shown there is a bipartisan path forward on the highway bill. But instead of working with Democrats, House Republican leaders insist on moving forward with a partisan bill that lacks support among their own Members.
On Monday, President Obama unveiled his budget for fiscal year 2013, which builds on the Blueprint for an America Built to Last that he laid out in his State of the Union address. This Blueprint focuses on boosting the manufacturing sector, and I was very pleased that many of its’ proposals overlap with House Democrats’ Make It In America plan – a plan to create jobs by cultivating an encouraging environment for businesses to innovate and make products here in the U.S. I hope Republicans will abandon their partisan stance over the coming year and work with us on these proposals so that we can create jobs, grow the economy, and ensure more families can make it in America.Sincerely yours,
STENY H. HOYER
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DEMOCRATIC NEWS UPDATE
On the Conference Report Targeting Federal Workers