Hoyer Floor Statement on the Republican Rules Package

For Immediate Release:

January 5, 2011

Contact:

Katie Grant,  202-225-3130

WASHINGTON, DC – Democratic Whip Steny H. Hoyer (MD) spoke on the House Floor today in opposition of the Republican Rules package:

“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. If you don’t cut spending or maintain revenues consistent with your spending, then you will inevitably create new debt.

“All of you have heard about my three children, my three grandchildren, and my one great-granddaughter. They will all have to deal with a debt that was created because we cut revenues, but didn't cut spending—that is what happened in the 2000s and in the 1980s. During the Clinton Administration, by contrast, we paid for what we bought, and we created a record surplus. I oppose this rule because of the trillions of dollars that it will authorize to be incurred in new debt.

“Secondly, I oppose this rule because it removes the vote of the vote in the Committee of the Whole House from the Delegates and the Resident Commissioner of Puerto Rico, who together represent some 5 million American citizens. We talked during the course of the campaign about listening to people. How do we listen to them? We listen to them when their representatives cast a vote in this House. But our Republican colleagues would not even consider an amendment to restore their vote—a symbol of respect and inclusion—in a constitutionally appropriate way. Tomorrow, I will introduce an amendment that will allow Delegates and the Resident Commissioner to cast votes in the Committee of the Whole House, as they have for the past four years. I hope there will be hearings on this proposal, and I would like to testify in favor of it.

“This rules package shows Republicans already going back on their promises of fiscal responsibility and of a transparent, open Congress. I urge my colleagues to oppose it.”

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