Press Releases

December 9, 2010
I am extremely disappointed that the Senate failed to move the Defense Authorization measure containing a repeal of ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ forward. 
December 9, 2010
I am pleased that today the House passed a year-long extension of the current Medicare physician payment rates and will now send the bill to the President’s desk for his signature. While this legislation will provide seniors with the security of continued access to the physician of their choice and our physicians with at least one full year of SGR relief, this remains a long-term problem that requires a permanent solution. It is my hope that we will revisit this problem in the coming months and that Republicans will join our efforts to secure a long-term solution.
December 8, 2010
Today, the House again passed legislation to give the Food and Drug Administration new authorities to protect our food supply and ensure that all Americans can have confidence that the food they provide their families is free of contamination. Action today, while critically important, is also long overdue. The House overwhelmingly supported similar legislation in July 2009, and since then, we have continued to hear about food safety scares and their dramatic impact on our way of life. Unsafe food does not only put the health and lives of Americans at risk; it undermines confidence and poses a real threat to Americans’ faith in our food supply. This lack of trust is harmful to both consumers’ peace of mind and our economic future.
December 8, 2010
Today Republican Leaders released the 2011 House voting schedule. Our nation will still be facing a number of critical challenges that we must confront together next year. We will work to address the top concerns of the American people during the next Congress, including creating jobs, growing the economy, and balancing the budget in the long-term. We hope Republicans will work with us on those issues.
December 3, 2010
I am encouraged by the fact that a bipartisan majority – nearly two-thirds – of the president’s bipartisan fiscal commission supported the report put forward. Though the commission has ended its work, our national conversation about returning America to fiscal balance has been energized by the commission’s efforts and I expect that conversation to proceed. A bipartisan consensus is forming around a balanced approach to deficit reduction that makes hard choices on both the revenue and spending sides—an approach that includes putting our entitlements on more stable footing; responsible spending cuts that take all parts of our budget into account, both non-defense discretionary and defense; and fair tax simplification that also raises revenue.
December 3, 2010
Today we learned that America’s economy added 39,000 jobs last month. Just as importantly, our private sector expanded again, adding jobs for the 11th straight month. Nevertheless, with millions still out of work and an unemployment rate still near 10%, these numbers are discouraging and show that we have a long way to go before our economy has returned to health. Congress has much more work to do to foster job growth, a responsibility that is clearly shared by both parties. For Americans in every district we represent, the stakes are too high to fail to cooperate on consensus, job-creating solutions, such as the Make It In America agenda, a plan to rebuild manufacturing jobs.  
December 2, 2010
I am very pleased the House has passed this bill, which is needed to prevent a tax increase on middle class families. If we fail to resolve this issue, starting on New Year’s Day families across America will see their taxes go up. That won’t just mean less money in Americans’ paychecks—it will reduce spending, which will harm job-creation and our entire economic recovery. This bill prevents a tax increase on our middle class and will help create jobs.
December 2, 2010
I am pleased to announce that Rep. Jim Matheson will join the Democratic Whip team in the next Congress. He will join the current Whip team that is staying in place. Rep. John Lewis will serve as our Senior Chief Deputy Whip, and our Chief Deputy Whips will continue to serve our caucus: Rep. G.K. Butterfield, Rep. Joe Crowley, Rep. Diana DeGette, Rep. Ed Pastor, Rep. Jan Schakowsky, Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, and Rep. Maxine Waters.
December 1, 2010
The report released today by the President’s bipartisan commission is a positive contribution as we work to address the deep deficits and debt confronting our nation. While job creation and growing the economy remain our top priorities in the near-term, we must balance that with a long-term plan to reduce the deficit. The threat posed by the deficit to our economy and hard-working families is real, and the solutions will not be easy. But Members of Congress and the American public must have the courage to take the tough actions necessary to move the budget toward balance. While I may not endorse every single specific proposal in today’s report, putting these options on the table is an essential step before we can have an honest discussion about how to return to a fiscally sustainable path.
December 1, 2010
I am disappointed Republicans chose to play politics with a bill that enjoys strong bipartisan support and would increase access to school meal programs, improve the standards of food provided, and help reduce childhood obesity. The real purpose of this motion to recommit was to delay this bill from being signed into law.
December 1, 2010
Today, the House passed the Help HAITI Act, an important piece of humanitarian legislation that continues America’s constructive response to the devastating earthquake that struck Haiti early this year. Following the earthquake, more than 1,000 Haitian orphans were brought to the United States by adoptive American families; the bill we passed today ensures that those children, just like all other children adopted from abroad, will have permanent resident status. For the adoptive parents who generously took Haitian orphans into their homes, the guarantee of permanent resident status means that their children will enjoy a full range of legal protections and will no longer be stuck in legal limbo.
November 30, 2010
“Tomorrow, the House will take up the Help HAITI Act. This important legislation will help Haitian orphans become permanent residents of the United States in the wake of the tragic earthquake earlier this year..
November 30, 2010
I congratulate Gov. Martin O’Malley on being selected to serve as the next chairman of the Democratic Governors Association. He is an excellent choice, and I am confident that in this new role, he will exhibit the strong leadership that has made him extremely effective here in Maryland.
November 30, 2010
Today, 17 years after Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell was signed into law, the Department of Defense has released a comprehensive report reviewing the issues associated with implementing repeal and making recommendations for a smooth transition to open service. After receiving the views of more than 115,000 service members, consulting with tens of thousands of military spouses, listening to troops at 51 bases and installations around the world, and consulting with many other stakeholders, the report’s conclusion is unambiguous: "The risk of repeal to overall military effectiveness is low."
November 29, 2010
I am pleased that today the House passed a one-month extension of the current Medicare physician payment rates and will now send the bill to the President’s desk for his signature.
November 29, 2010
Millions of Americans are out of work, and many are tightening their belts; Federal employees must be no different. While I appreciate that the President reduced the length of his proposed pay freeze from three to two years, it would have produced significantly more savings had that sacrifice been shared between Federal civilian and military personnel--with a strong exception for the members of our military and civilian employees risking their lives on our behalf in Afghanistan, Iraq, and anywhere else they are serving in harm's way. It would have also added an element of fairness: there has been parity between civilian and military pay raises for 22 of the past 28 years in which raises were authorized, and hundreds of thousands of Federal civilian employees work alongside military employees in the Department of Defense and other agencies. In fact, the first American casualty in Afghanistan was a CIA agent--a federal civilian employee.
November 22, 2010
Today’s action represents a significant step forward in our work to ensure that Americans’ receive better value for their health insurance dollar.  Insurance companies must spend a minimum of 80 cents of each premium dollar on quality care or issue a rebate to their consumers, increasing the value of health insurance and making the insurance marketplace more transparent and consumer-friendly.
November 19, 2010
I am pleased that the Senate passed legislation today that would provide funding for settlement of both the Pigford and Cobell class action lawsuits – an important step toward finally correcting these blights on our Nation’s history...
November 18, 2010
Tonight, the Senate passed a one month extension of the current Medicare physician payment rates. It is my intention to schedule this bill for consideration when the House reconvenes on November 29th, so we can send it to the President's desk prior to the November 30th expiration date of current SGR relief.
November 18, 2010
The House will vote on an extension of middle class tax cuts before they expire. Democrats are firmly committed to continuing tax cuts for middle class families on income up to $250,000. We cannot afford to add $700 billion to the deficit to benefit the wealthiest Americans with almost no economic benefit as Republicans want to do.  
November 18, 2010
Today, Republicans blocked an extension of unemployment insurance for thousands of families who have lost jobs through no fault of their own. As a result, they can expect their insurance to begin to run out just after Thanksgiving weekend. Republicans’ opposition to this bill was bad for families across their own districts, and worse for our economy as a whole.
November 13, 2010
Since the election last week, I have made clear my belief that it was important for my friend Jim Clyburn to continue serving our Caucus as the third ranking Member of our Leadership.  It is my hope that happens when elections are held on Wednesday. 
November 10, 2010
Tomorrow, on Veterans Day, we honor and thank the generations of men and women whose sacrifices have made our freedom possible. We celebrate those veterans fortunate enough to return home to their families and neighbors—and we gratefully remember all those who cannot be with us, whether they are standing guard around the world, or whether they lost their lives in our nation’s service...
November 8, 2010
Over the past several days, I have talked to most of my Democratic colleagues in the House. I have received support from across the breadth of our Caucus to remain in the second ranking position of our Democratic leadership team. In order to defend and build on our Democratic accomplishments, unify our Caucus, and immediately begin the hard work of winning back the majority, I will be running for Democratic Whip.
November 5, 2010
Speaker Pelosi has announced that she will be running for Democratic Leader in the next Congress. In the days since the election, I have received an outpouring of support from Democratic colleagues who have told me that I should remain in our party’s leadership, so that our Caucus can hit the ground running with a strong, tested leadership team.