MESSAGE FROM THE DEMOCRATIC WHIP
This week the Republican-led House voted for the 48th time to repeal or undermine the Affordable Care Act, instead of acting to renew emergency unemployment insurance, which expired on December 28thfor more than 1.3 million Americans. Every week Congress fails to act, an additional 72,000 Americans struggling to find work will lose this emergency insurance. Instead of continuing their obsessive focus on repealing the Affordable Care Act, I hope Republicans will work with us to strengthen our economy and growing the middle class by renewing emergency unemployment insurance, raising the minimum wage, and passing comprehensive immigration reform.
Also this week, Congress passed a bill to fund the government for fiscal year 2014. While the bill did not fully reflect Democrats’ budget priorities, it was a step in the right direction and an important compromise. Now that we have acted to avert a government shutdown, it is imperative that Republicans provide certainty to businesses and our economy by acting to ensure America can pay its bills.
Finally, I was proud to cosponsor the Voting Rights Amendment Act, which was introduced yesterday. This bipartisan bill will serve as an important first step toward restoring critical protections of the Voting Rights Act that were struck down by the Supreme Court last Summer. Congress has a responsibility to safeguard Americans’ most basic and fundamental right – the right to vote – and I urge the Republican leadership to schedule consideration of this bill as soon as possible to ensure that every American’s vote is protected this November and beyond.
STENY H. HOYER
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DEMOCRATIC NEWS UPDATE