Stephanie Young, 202-225-3130
WASHINGTON, DC - House Democratic Whip Steny H. Hoyer (MD) spoke on the House Floor this afternoon in support of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act, part of House Democrats' Make It In America jobs plan. Below are his remarks and a link to the video:
Click here for the video.
“Before he leaves the Floor, I want to say to the Majority Leader, I thank him as well for his leadership. The Majority Leader and I have discussed this SKILLS Act for a number of months – perhaps as long ago as when this bill passed the House.
“This bill passed the House on a partisan vote. The Majority Leader observed numerous times, and I agreed with him, that this should not be a partisan issue. The good news today is that it will pass on a bipartisan vote. The system works today, and the American people are going to be advantaged. All those whom the Majority Leader spoke of will be advantaged as well. The fact of the matter is we passed a bill through this House, the Senate passed a bill [out of committee], …. we worked out an agreement, and we are now going to support that in a bipartisan fashion. That will be a positive for our country.
“So I am pleased to rise, Mr. Speaker, in support of this bill, an example of how Democrats and Republicans can work together to reauthorize important programs that support a strong economy and a growing middle class. We have an agenda on our side we call Make It In America. Everybody in this House is for Americans making it in this country – succeeding. This bill will provide job seekers with the in-demand skills and training they need to get hired for the jobs that pay well and provide access to opportunities. In short, it will help more of our people make it in America.
“While House Democrats were disappointed that Republicans passed a partisan bill last year, I'm glad that the spirit of compromise has now prevailed, and Republicans agreed to work with us and the Senate to craft a bipartisan bill that incorporates key provisions of the Democratic alternative to last year's bill, which was part of House Democrats' Make It In America plan for jobs and competitiveness.
“This bipartisan legislation will continue to ensure that adults, youth, and dislocated workers can receive the assistance they need to succeed in the job market. It will focus resources on essential programs that most effectively serve job seekers while eliminating less effective ones. This is the kind of legislation we ought to be passing.
“I applaud the Ranking Member. I applaud the Chairman of the Committee for bringing this bill to the Floor, and I urge my colleagues to support it and yield back the balance of my time.”