Katie Grant, 202-225-3130
WASHINGTON DC - House Democratic Whip Steny H. Hoyer (MD) delivered remarks today at a press conference on committee recommendations to the Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction. Below are his remarks and a link to the video.
“Big, bold and balanced, I hope that's what the Committee is focused on, what we call the Select Committee on Deficit Reduction or, affectionately, the Super Committee. It is a Super Committee in the sense that it has been given extraordinary powers to come up with a proposal that will then be considered, and 51 members of the Senate can pass it. If a majority of the Senate agrees, it will pass. A majority of the House agrees, it will pass and go to the President.
“I am hopeful that they will be successful. Failure ought not to be an option. This is absolutely critical in my opinion for the fiscal health of America and for the economy of America and to restore America’s confidence in our ability to face tough issues successfully. It will also, in my opinion, restore the confidence of the international community in America’s ability to manage its finances and to lead, as the world surely wants us to do.
“The Joint Select Committee has the responsibility to set us on a course that will both make significant progress on our debt and speed our economic recovery. In the Bowles-Simpson report, the Domenici-Rivlin report and the Gang of Six proposal, they all spoke to the necessity to grow the economy and to balance the budget. Not one or the other. They recognize that one without the other will not work. We need to create jobs now. We need to increase revenue stream because we have people working, not because we raise taxes, but because we have people working.
“Its immediate focus may be reining in the deficit, it being the Committee, but the effects on the Committee's recommendations will be felt across the economy. The most important thing, I believe, is the Committee has a real chance to succeed and to reach compromise. We're all working towards that end. That's why the letters from our Ranking Members to the Committee reflect the need to help to reduce the deficit over the longer term.
“House Democrats wants the Committee's recommendations for, again as our Leader said, big and bold and balanced, and we want to make sure they are balanced with the investments we need to grow jobs and strengthen our competitiveness. Our Make It In America plan includes many such investments that can help create jobs right away and lay the groundwork for future growth.
“I believe it's important for the Committee's recommendations to guarantee that all Americans, each and every one of us, are paying our fair share and contributing together. We cannot afford to place the burden of deficit reduction only on the backs of working families and certainly not on the most vulnerable in our country.
“I join Leader Pelosi in congratulating our Ranking Members and, yes, those who are working in a bipartisan way to say that we can address our deficits and our debt and grow jobs in our economy at the same time. Indeed, if we don't do both we will not succeed.”