Katie Grant, 202-225-3130
WASHINGTON, DC - House Democratic Whip Steny H. Hoyer (MD) joined Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi (CA), the House Democratic leadership, and House Democrats at a press conference this morning to call on House Republicans to cancel their recess and stay in session to finish work on critical legislation. Below is a copy of his remarks:
"What we are seeing this week is a convulsing end to a dismal Congress. Two distinguished political scientists [Tom Mann and Norman Ornstein] in our country said this: 'The GOP has become an insurgent outlier in American politics. It is ideologically extreme; scornful of compromise; unmoved by conventional understanding of facts, evidence and science; and dismissive of the legitimacy of its political opposition.'
“Republicans are leaving town with a stack of unfinished business the public expects us to get done. Chief among them are the need to create jobs and avert the fiscal cliff set to hit in January if Congress fails to act.
“Democrats have been ready to work with Republicans to replace the sequester they imposed last year by reaching a big and balanced solution to deficits. However, Republicans’ have walked away from compromise every time as those two political scientists said, insisting on putting tax breaks for millionaires ahead of a balanced solution. They have also held tax cuts for the middle class hostage to that same cause.
“Instead of wasting time on partisan messaging bills, as we've done this week, Republicans ought to have used it to consider the Senate’s bipartisan farm bill. Farmers across the country are facing the worst drought in decades, and Republicans refuse to act. This is simply irresponsible, and Republicans ought to come back and finish their work, not cut and run and walk away from the American people.
“Shame on them for abandoning our farmers, our economy, and families who need us to act.
“Now, let me turn the microphone over to my friend, the Assistant Leader, Mr. Clyburn.
“But let me say this about our Caucus: We are ‘Fired Up and Ready to…Stay!’ We're fired up and ready to stay here and do the work for the American people."