Hoyer: If We Are Going to Serve Our Country, We Need to Come to Agreement

For Immediate Release:

March 15, 2011

Contact:

Katie Grant, 202-225-3130

WASHINGTON, DC - Democratic Whip Steny H. Hoyer (MD) spoke on the House Floor today regarding the short-term continuing resolution and the need for Democrats and Republicans to compromise on a spending measure to fund the government for the remainder of the year. See below for a link to the video and excerpts.

Click here to watch the video.

“…we are about to make the largest single reduction in discretionary spending that we have made… in the thirty years I have been here. This is not an insubstantial cut. The problem those of us have on this side of the aisle is, it is not enough for a large number of your folks.”

“Now, the fact of the matter is this is a lousy way to run a railroad. We are trying to run the largest enterprise in the world in two-week segments. It is costly to the private sector. It is extraordinarily inefficient for the public sector, and it is demoralizing for the private sector who deals with the government and for the public employees we have asked to perform the service that is we have set forth as policy. And so I say at this juncture, this ought to be the last of this type. We need to reach agreement.”

“If we have gone $41 and we are going to go another 10 or 15 billion, what I ask of you is in light of the fact… [that] we have already done the deepest cut under Republicans, under Democrats, under any of us, it is time to hear from you. What is your alternative to make a deal? Now, compromise is a prettier word, but we need to come to agreement. If we are going to serve our country and those who serve our country, then we need to come to agreement because they elected all of us. None of us has any greater superiority. We are all the same. And we need to come to agreement.”

“I will tell you under the Constitution of the United States, we have the responsibility of initiating bills. Read the constitution. We sent H.R. 1 over [to the Senate]… and they didn't pass it. It's not their responsibility to initiate…. We can wring our hands and say the Senate is not doing its job. We are not in the Senate. We are here. Let us come to agreement. And we know the agreement is going to be someplace in between where you are and where we are. We know that. But what we don't know is what you can pass. What you don't know is what you can pass. You don't know what your caucus will do. I understand that. You're deeply divided, in my opinion. And we need to know because it's not just us here that are adversely affected.”

“Let us come to agreement. Let us stop this process of funding government in very short cycles. It is not good for our country. It's not good for the people who work for this country. It's not good for the people who are doing work around the world.”

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