Press Releases

December 1, 2011
I oppose the Senate Republicans’ payroll tax proposal because it will further strip federal employees of wages and benefits. Federal employees have already stepped up to the plate and are helping to put our nation on a sounder fiscal footing, accepting a 2-year pay freeze which reduces the benefits they would have received by $60 billion over ten years. It is not appropriate to once again call on federal employees to contribute while not asking everyone else to contribute their fair share. It is also ironic that at a time when we need to grow jobs, Republicans are proposing to reduce them, taking our economy in the wrong direction.
December 1, 2011
Before we adjourn for the year, there are a number of important items we must address. The most pressing is the expiration of unemployment benefits at the end of December. Should Congress fail to act, millions of Americans who rely on emergency unemployment compensation will begin to see their payments disappear in starting in January. 2.1 million will have lost their benefits by the middle of February and over 6 million by the end of 2012.
November 30, 2011
I rise in strong opposition to this misnamed bill, which would promote neither democracy nor fairness in the workplace. The right of workers to organize and bargain collectively for better and fairer conditions has been protected by our laws since the era of the New Deal.
November 30, 2011
All of us who serve in this House know that we could not do the work we do without the help of our extraordinarily able and motivated staffs. They work long hours with pay below their counterparts in the executive branch and in the private sector. Many are young, in their twenties and thirties, with an energy and passion for public service that gives all of us great hope for the future.
November 28, 2011
“America, and the principles for which it stands, have been well-served by Congressman Barney Frank during his over three decades of service in the Congress. He has brought an exceptional intellect, political courage, common sense, a wonderful wit, and a love of country and of the People’s House to his service. He will be greatly missed...
November 26, 2011
"It has been a honor to serve with my good friend Charlie Gonzalez for over a decade and I am saddened by his retirement. The U.S. Congress and the Congressional Hispanic Caucus will be losing a dedicated public servant who has been a leader on voting rights issues...
November 21, 2011
I am extremely disappointed at the Joint Select Committee’s announcement that they have failed to reach an agreement. There is no alternative, in my view, except to keep working toward the objective of a big, balanced deal. It is my intention to continue working toward that goal, and I urge both the members of the Committee – who have worked hard on this issue – and all members of the House and Senate to join that effort.
November 17, 2011
After nearly eleven months in control of the House, Speaker Boehner and his fellow Republicans have proposed a surface transportation bill that purports to create jobs. Unfortunately, they have not been clear about the investments they propose or how to pay for them. Democrats have had a jobs plan on the table for over a year – the Make It In America plan contains a number of investments in our roads, rails, airports, and seaports that will create jobs right away and boost our economic competitiveness over the long term. President Obama’s American Jobs Act also contains specific infrastructure proposals to create jobs—yet Senate Republicans blocked consideration of that measure.
November 17, 2011
In 1995 I spoke on the floor in support of a balanced budget amendment. That was sixteen years ago. There's a lot of water over the bridge since that time. I said then, and I quote: 'I do so because I believe that this country confronts a critical threat caused by the continuation of large annual deficits.
November 17, 2011
Today, the House passed a conference report that adheres to the Budget Control Act and still contains a number of good investments. It demonstrates that responsible Republicans and Democrats can work together to pass legislation to fund the government in line with past agreements and meet our shared responsibility to the American people.
November 16, 2011
I am pleased that Republicans and Democrats in the House and Senate were able to work together to pass this provision of President Obama’s American Jobs Act that will encourage businesses to hire veterans and help veterans find work. Those who fought so hard for our nation overseas shouldn’t have to do so here at home just to find a job. The American Jobs Act, along with House Democrats’ Make It In America plan, contain bipartisan ideas that will get more Americans back to work right away and increase our economic competitiveness in the long run. I urge Republicans in both chambers to follow the passage of this legislation by working with us on passing the remainder of the American Jobs Act and the Make It In America plan. Congress must act now to help the millions of Americans who are unemployed. They cannot wait, and neither can we.
November 16, 2011
With the myriad of problems facing our nation, I find it inconceivable that the Republican leadership has chosen to prioritize this bill. I strongly urge its defeat for two important reasons.
November 14, 2011
Thank you, Rep. Conyers, for holding this important hearing. With the federal election just under a year away, the Committee is right to look into possible voter suppression taking place. The right to vote is fundamental to our entire system of government and the ability of every American to have his or her voice heard in Washington, in their statehouses, and in their local communities. That right is under threat today. Nationwide, state legislatures have been erecting barriers that deter or inhibit eligible voters from casting ballots. They are making it harder to vote by mandating certain forms of photo identification, which many current voters do not have and are time-consuming and expensive to obtain.
November 14, 2011
I welcome the Supreme Court’s decision to consider legal challenges to the Affordable Care Act and have every confidence that the Court will uphold the constitutionality of this law. The Affordable Care Act continues to provide benefits to millions of Americans; from children with pre-existing conditions to seniors who are now saving money on prescription drug costs. I am confident Americans of all ages will continue to benefit from the health care law, as it will be upheld.
November 11, 2011
For more than two centuries, Americans from every background and every community have donned our nation’s uniform and marched off to defend the freedoms enshrined in our Constitution and our way of life. Too many never returned. Today, on Veterans Day, we honor those who did and recommit ourselves to standing up for them and the benefits they have earned through their service. We must never forget our duty to our veterans, especially to those now returning from Iraq and Afghanistan. They deserve quality, affordable health care to help heal their wounds – both physical and psychological – as well as opportunities for higher education and assistance transitioning to civilian jobs. Congress coming together to act in meeting our responsibility to them has never been more important than it is today, with a disturbingly high level of unemployment among young veterans. In this spirit, the 110th Congress passed the 21st Century G.I. Bill and worked to improve the VA health system, and it is this same spirit that I hope will lead the current Congress to put veterans’ needs ahead of politics once again and take action to help them find work.
November 10, 2011
Today’s Senate vote shows that, when Republicans work together with Democrats, we can make real progress on job creation. This legislation, which passed by a strong bipartisan vote of 95-0, is particularly important because it will increase opportunities for our returning veterans to find work and make it easier for businesses to tap into their experience and skills. I call on Republican leaders in the House to join with Democrats in this same spirit of unity and allow us to send this legislation to the President for his signature. When we mark Veterans Day tomorrow, let us offer our wounded warriors and returning heroes more than gratitude – let us show them Congress is ready to take action to help them transition into civilian jobs.
November 9, 2011
Hal made a real difference in people’s lives, both by keeping them informed about their world and by standing up for our first responders and their families. I was deeply saddened to learn of his passing.
November 7, 2011
I join with the President in calling on Congressional Republicans to set politics aside and work together with Democrats on helping our veterans find work. The Returning Heroes Tax Credit and Wounded Warriors Tax Credit will provide financial assistance for businesses to hire veterans and remove a hurdle for those finding it difficult to transition to civilian jobs. The President’s American Jobs Act and House Democrats’ Make It In America proposal will help create jobs right away for veterans and all who seek work – but only if Republicans will work with us to do so. The American people – and the brave men and women who have served our nation in uniform – cannot wait any longer for Congress to act. When the Senate brings this bill to the Floor later this week, I hope Republicans will support it.
November 4, 2011
I am honored to receive this award and proud to share the honor with my good friend Senator Blunt. The mission of the Faith and Politics Institute is to remind members of both parties of the role we share in common as public servants and our duty to be instruments of good. I commend the Institute for its leadership and thank founders John Lewis and Amo Houghton, for whom this award is named, for the example of civility, collaboration, and shared experience they have set for myself and my colleagues.
November 4, 2011
While I am encouraged that the number of private sector jobs grew by 104,000 over the past month, representing the twentieth straight month of increase and bringing our unemployment rate down to 9.0%, there is still much left for us to do. Too many Americans remain out of work, and Congress ought not waste any more time and consider legislation that will help businesses create jobs right away.
November 3, 2011
I am disappointed that Republicans continue their refusal to work with Democrats on jobs legislation. This is the third time in the past few weeks that Senate Republicans have voted to block even the consideration of a jobs bill. At the same time, House Republican leaders have not brought any of the Democrats' Make It In America proposals onto the floor or put forth a comprehensive jobs plan of their own. The American people deserve a Congress that works, that is focused on creating jobs, and it is increasingly clear the Republicans will not deliver.
November 3, 2011
A year from now, millions of Americans will head to the polls to exercise their most fundamental right – the right to vote. Unfortunately, in states across the country, partisan measures have been adopted that would make it more difficult for nearly five million voters, particularly the poor, young people, the elderly, and minorities, to register and vote,” said Whip Hoyer. “Voter suppression has no place in our country. That’s why Democrats are sending a letter to Secretaries of State urging them to oppose these partisan efforts to hinder access to the ballot and urging them to work in a bipartisan way to ensure all Americans can exercise their constitutional right to be heard.
November 3, 2011
We are just about a year away from a pivotal election. Just as important as the choice we will make is ensuring that all who are eligible can participate in making that choice. The right to vote is fundamental to our entire system of government and the ability of every American to have his or her voice heard in Washington and in their statehouses and city halls.
November 3, 2011
Yesterday we had a press conference… twenty Republicans and Democrats, equal number. Mike Simpson, myself and others made it very clear that over 100 members of the House of Representatives signed the letter saying to the Super Committee, look, everything needs to be on the table – mandatory expenditures and revenues – and we need to reach a $4 trillion give or take deal to put this country on a sound fiscal path. So we sent a letter to the Committee yesterday urging them to come to an agreement on that kind of package. Erskine Bowles and Senator Simpson testified, Alice Rivlin and Pete Domenici testified on Tuesday to the same objective. I am hopeful given the weight of responsibility that we placed on their shoulders and given the critical nature of achieving the objective of a big deal and doing it within a near term that they will come to agreement. It's obviously been tough. Obviously both sides have sort of hardened positions. But it is absolutely essential in the opinion of a lot of people around this country and a large number of members of the House and Senate that we come to agreement.
November 2, 2011
We are standing together today, Democrats and Republicans united in our deep concern over the size of our deficits, their contribution to our staggering debt, and their negative effect on our economy. We are here to send a message of urgency and support to the members of the Joint Select Committee.