WASHINGTON, DC – House Majority Leader Steny H. Hoyer (MD) spoke at a press conference today following the House Democratic Caucus forum on economic security and national security, at which he introduced the economic security panel. Below are his remarks as prepared for delivery:
“Today we heard from some of the best minds in America on the profound economic and security challenges facing our nation.
“We are currently confronting a recession that is endangering retirement security, healthcare, and jobs for millions. But we are also dealing with the legacy of eight years of unprecedented fiscal recklessness from President Bush. Our nation has never been more indebted. Its budget deficits have never gone further into the red. At the same time, investments in our future, from education to healthcare, have been underfunded.
“Recovery will not be instant, but it can begin with the passage of a job-creating economic recovery package. Because President Bush continues to block such a package, we will have it ready for a signature from President-elect Obama soon after he takes office. While that will mean more spending in the short term, a wide consensus of economists agree that this is the way out of a recession like this one. In the long term, though, restoring fiscal responsibility must be one of the top priorities of the Congress.
“We also spoke with national security experts, who gave us their assessment of the greatest foreign policy challenges we will face in the New Year. In the midst of two wars we also face the ongoing threats of international terrorism and nuclear proliferation. But it is an excellent sign that the President-elect has chosen such a tough, experienced, independent-minded national security team.”