Floor Statements

February 12, 2013
“Mr. Speaker, tonight the President will once again walk into this chamber and lay out a vision for how to strengthen America in the years ahead.
February 6, 2013
“I think it's unfortunate that now for two and a half years the only working people - the only working people - in America who have received a freeze or decrease or have contributed to solving the debt crisis which confronts us, with which the Gentleman and I agree, are federal workers. I’m not talking about Members of Congress. I'm not talking about the President or the Vice President. The President doesn't get a COLA adjustment, obviously. But it's a cost of living adjustment, and I will say to my friend that I have worked over the last 20 years with his counterparts, either in the majority or minority to ensure we made the distinction so people understood and didn't demagogue that issue. I regret that we are doing so here again.”
February 5, 2013
“I thank the gentleman for yielding. Mr. Price of Georgia said what the American people want. What the American people don't want is games. This is a game. This is a sham. This is a shame. What the American people want is honest legislation to address the challenges that confront us.
January 23, 2013
“I want to say to the Speaker before he leaves the Floor, I believe the Speaker wants to get to a responsible agreement between our parties, between the House and the Senate and between the Congress and the President on getting to a responsible way to reduce the budget. This bill is not that vehicle. This bill, in my view, is an irresponsible waste of our time. This bill does not do what Republicans said they wanted to do over and over and over again. And that is: give a sense of certainty to our economy, to our people, and to the international community.
January 22, 2013
“I join in thanking U.S. Trade Representative Amb. Ron Kirk for his four years of dedicated service as America’s chief advocate for exports and fair trade practices.  Under his leadership, the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative oversaw the opening of new markets for our businesses and the implementation of tougher trade enforcement rules that help ensure a level playing field for American products overseas.  Throughout this tenure, Amb. Kirk has stressed that when American businesses can compete fairly, they will prosper and create new opportunities for jobs here at home.  He has been a strong supporter of American workers and their role as the engine of our economic growth, and I was glad to have had the opportunity to work with him in developing parts of House Democrats’ Make It In America jobs plan to revitalize our manufacturing sector.  I wish him all the best as he embarks on the next phase in his career.”  
January 22, 2013
“I join in marking the 40th anniversary today of the landmark Supreme Court ruling in Roe v. Wade, which affirmed every woman’s basic right to individual privacy and reproductive health choices.  As Congress continues to address the issue of access to affordable health care for all Americans, I will continue to stand firm in protecting reproductive choice and initiatives that prevent unintended pregnancies through contraception and health education.  I look forward to working hand-in-hand with women’s health groups and women’s rights advocates to stand up for the choices and privacy all American women deserve and that, according to the Court’s ruling in Roe v. Wade,  our Constitution guarantees.”  
January 21, 2013
“Today, as President Barack Obama took his second oath of office to ‘preserve, protect, and defend’ our Constitution, we reflect on the challenges our nation has faced over the past four years, as well as the ones that lie ahead. President Obama has taken action to strengthen our economy, reduce our deficits, and increase our national security. We have made significant progress over the course of his first term, but we know more needs to be done to make the promise of the American Dream more accessible to every American.
January 20, 2013
"On Monday, we will join in remembering the tireless work and the inspirational life of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.  In his thirty-nine short years walking this Earth, Dr. King preached a gospel of peace and brotherhood that continues to resonate across the country, in the hearts of millions seeking to create a more perfect union for the generations to follow. 
January 18, 2013
"Sadly, with today's proposal we see a continuation of putting politics before policy, which the Republican majority pursued with a vengeance in the last Congress. To my knowledge, no responsible Republican leader believes that default will be anything other than disastrous.
January 15, 2013
“I thank you, Madam Chair. I thank the Ranking Member, Mrs. Lowey, and I thank Mr. Rogers for his work as well bringing this bill to the Floor. I rise not only in support of the Chairman's mark at $17 billion, but also for the Frelinghuysen amendment. I think both of these together meet our responsibilities in responding to one of the most historic and damaging storms to hit the country. Not only the Northeast but to the country.
January 4, 2013
“I want to congratulate all of the Members who represent New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, and other jurisdictions who have been united in a bipartisan way to say: let us reach out, let us act now to help those who have been savaged by [Hurricane] Sandy.
January 3, 2013
“I thank the Ranking Member, Ms. Slaughter, and thank her for the work that she is doing and has been doing over the years, as our representative and leader on the Rule Committee.
January 2, 2013
“Mr. Speaker, it was to my profound disappointment that I learned last night that the House would adjourn the 112th Congress without providing assistance to the victims of Superstorm Sandy.
January 1, 2013
“I have just been informed that we will be having perhaps no further votes in this Congress. I am deeply disappointed at that information. We have millions of our fellow citizens who have been badly damaged by a storm called Sandy.
January 1, 2013
“There is, of course, a time for partisanship. There is a time for making our political points, and that time has been and it will be again. That time is not tonight.
December 27, 2012
“We are in Pro Forma session. Pro Forma session is a session without substance or solutions.
December 20, 2012
I thank my friend, Mr. Smith, the Ranking Member [of the House Armed Services Committee]. I thank Mr. McKeon for the work they've done. I want to thank my friend [Congressman] Barney Frank for the thoughtful perspective he brings to the consideration of this bill.
December 19, 2012
Mr. Speaker, for over 40 years, the Congressional Black Caucus has strengthened and enhanced the work of The People’s House. It does so by carrying into this chamber the voices of millions of Americans who for too long in our history were voiceless. It represents millions of our citizens who contribute greatly to building our economy, defending our hard won freedoms and fighting for equal justice and equal opportunity for all of our citizens.
December 12, 2012
Thank you very much Mr. Speaker. I thank my friend for yielding. I want to thank the Chairman of the Rules Committee for his efforts as well. Ladies and gentlemen of this House, we talk a lot, correctly, about creating certainty, alleviating uncertainty – alleviating angst among our people and among our economy. We have an opportunity to bring certainty to a large segment of America that they will not receive a tax increase on January 1.
November 29, 2012
We are deeply disappointed by Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas' decision to seek symbolic non-member observer status through the General Assembly of the United Nations.   We have long believed the only way to achieve a two-state solution is through direct negotiations leading to a peace treaty fully accepted by both governments and both peoples.   We are concerned that today’s unilateral action by President Abbas represents a repudiation of the Oslo Accords and a setback for the peace process.  To be clear, non-member observer status puts the Palestinian people no closer to achieving statehood, and may in fact set back this goal by inflaming tensions and making already difficult negotiations even harder.
November 16, 2012
“Mr. Speaker, I join my colleagues today from both sides of the aisle to stand with the people of Israel in support of their sovereign right to defend themselves against Hamas terror.
October 20, 2012
"It is shameful that House Republicans have continued to politicize the attack that killed four Americans in Libya. Our focus should be on working together to bring the perpetrators to justice, and we must ensure that those who are on our side in Libya are not hurt by the irresponsible disclosure of their names."
October 14, 2012
"I was saddened to hear about the passing of Arlen Specter. For thirty years, he served the people of Pennsylvania in the U.S. Senate well, often working across the aisle to get things done. He was a moderate who put the needs of his constituents and country before politics - something seen all too rarely now. My thoughts and prayers are with his family."
October 2, 2012
“I appreciate this opportunity to discuss the dangerous impact of the Ryan-Romney-Republican House budget on Medicare and the positive impact of the Affordable Care Act Democrats passed in 2010.
September 21, 2012
“Our Republican colleagues are leaving without getting their work done. I say their work done. Without getting our work done. The work of the American people. Comprehensive jobs bills, middle-class tax cuts have not been extended, farmers are left on their own to face the worst drought in decades, … and a Farm bill reported out of the Republican committee lays unconsidered by this Floor. Reported out of their committee from their majority and they haven't brought it to the Floor while farmers remain in trouble. We've not re-authorized the Violence Against Women Act, and we have not passed a postal reform bill. I am glad to take this special order, Mr. Speaker, to say to the American people that we're prepared to stay. we're prepared to stay and work on these bills.”