WASHINGTON, DC – House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (MD) today joined with Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and a group of citizens to discuss how Republican obstructionism and failed policies have weakened our economy, contributed to the turmoil on Wall Street, and neglected the real needs of the American people. Below are his remarks as prepared for delivery:
“Senator Moynihan once said: ‘You are entitled to your own opinions—but you are not entitled to your own facts.’
“After eight years in the White House and six years at all the levers of power, the fact is that Republicans are leaving behind a legacy of comprehensive failure.
“In power, they took the referee off the field – failing to carefully oversee our toys, food and medicine. And they were grossly negligent in failing to regulate Wall Street – plunging us into a massive economic crisis. They failed to enact an energy policy that would bring down gas prices and break our dependence on foreign oil. They racked up record debt. They were wrong on Iraq and neglected Afghanistan. Their policies have left our nation less secure and our economy weaker.
“Now that Congressional Republicans are in the minority, they have failed to work constructively so that we can solve this nation’s challenges together. They have tried to obstruct every attempt to get our country back on track. Thanks to Republican obstruction, 4 million children missed out on health care coverage. Families have missed out on help to heat and cool their homes. Seniors have missed out on lower costs for prescription drugs. At the same time, Republicans voted against bill after bill after bill to move us toward energy independence.
“During a time of incredible economic upheaval, Bush-McCain Republicans have a simple answer for middle-class families: ‘The fundamentals are strong. Fend for yourselves.’
“For the past two years, Democrats have fought to reverse the Republican record of failure, overcome Republican obstruction and bring help to the millions of families struggling under the Bush economy. We have made real progress—but it is clear that real change will only come with a new President and more Democrats in Congress.
“With Democrats in charge at both ends of Pennsylvania Avenue, obstruction and failure will give way to progress and change.”