Stephanie Young, 202-225-3130
WASHINGTON, DC - House Democratic Whip Steny H. Hoyer (MD) released the following statement today after President Obama's speech on ways to grow the economy and fight income inequality:
“In his remarks today, President Obama highlighted the challenge of growing income inequality, which poses a danger not only to our long-term economic competitiveness and prosperity but to the very nature of our country as a beacon of equal opportunity for all. For minorities that have suffered discrimination and women who have earned less than men in the same jobs, the promise of equal opportunity has often gone unfulfilled. I agree with the President that we must do more to address this problem by working to close the gaps in education that contribute to income inequality and by taking steps to help increase upward mobility in our society through access to jobs and opportunities.
“Democrats continue to offer innovative, bipartisan solutions to help expand the opportunities that open pathways to the middle class and help all Americans share in our nation’s economic successes. The number one way we can grow opportunities is by helping the private sector create jobs that won’t be shipped overseas. That’s what our Make It In America plan is all about, and it will help connect our workers with the skills they need to compete for jobs that pay well. While doing so, we ought to pass the Paycheck Fairness Act, the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, and legislation to raise the minimum wage – all of which will help ensure that those who work hard can enjoy the security and wages that can sustain a middle-class standard of living. At the same time, we need to achieve a balanced, long-term fiscal agreement that does not harm the most vulnerable and ends the irrational sequester cuts that have threatened to stall our economic recovery and have hurt the most vulnerable. Only by taking proactive steps to empower American workers to succeed and make sure that their hard work leads to good pay and opportunities can Congress secure a future where all of our people have an equal shot at making it in America.”