Press Releases

April 6, 2011
Today’s development on issues of worker rights and violence against workers is a positive and important step towards passage of the Colombia FTA. These issues needed to be addressed, and I am pleased the Administration and Colombian government have agreed to a concrete action plan. Colombia is a key ally in South America, and it is in our economic and national security interests to further strengthen that relationship. I look forward to working with the Administration to advance the Colombia FTA, which I continue to support. As we work to enact the three pending trade agreements, we must also extend expired provisions of the Trade Adjustment Assistance program that help American workers who have lost their jobs as a result of trade.
April 6, 2011
There's so many Republicans taking the position that you either take what we passed, we'll not compromise, or we're going to shut down the government. That won't work. I think we're close and I think frankly if Mr. Boehner would put on the Floor a bill, which goes almost three quarters of the way toward where he wanted to go, three quarters of the way to where they wanted to go between their zero and 100, I think we could pass it.
April 5, 2011
Democrats believe that tackling our debt deserves serious action and shared sacrifice from all Americans—but the Republican budget shows they have the wrong priorities. It would severely damage America’s ability to out-innovate, out-educate, and out-build its competitors, and would harm job creation at a critical point in our recovery. It would end Medicare as we know it, shifting health care costs onto seniors. And it would dismantle Medicaid, restricting access to care for the most vulnerable Americans. But then Republicans find the money to give trillions of dollars in tax cuts to the wealthiest Americans.
April 4, 2011
 I am deeply saddened by the death of former Congressman John Adler of New Jersey. Like all those who were privileged to know John, I admired and respected him as a dedicated and passionate public servant. From local government to the U.S. Capitol, John was a principled advocate of high ethical standards, a clean environment, and the economic security of all Americans. A life of service to his community and his nation was cut off far too soon—but in the time he was with us, John made a real and lasting difference. My sincere condolences are with his wife, Shelley, their four sons, and all those touched by this untimely loss.
April 1, 2011
Today’s employment numbers are encouraging news for Americans. Our economy added 216,000 jobs in March, and our private sector grew for the 15th straight month. The unemployment rate dropped to 8.8%, its lowest level in two years. Nevertheless, that unemployment rate represents millions of Americans still feeling the effects of the worst economic crisis of our lifetimes. Americans need to be confident that their government is building on our economic recovery, not undermining it.
March 31, 2011
Today, America honors the pioneering labor leader César Chávez on what would have been his 84th birthday. Chávez spent his life fighting for the rights and dignity of Latino farmworkers and the underprivileged. He is rightly remembered as one of the greatest civil rights leaders of the 20th century. We can honor his legacy by carrying forward the principles for which he worked so hard: workers’ right to organize, fair and safe labor conditions, freedom from racial discrimination, and opportunity for all Americans.
March 31, 2011
Tomorrow, the report on March's job creation numbers will be released. We don't yet know what the report will tell us--but we do know that if the report is positive, Republicans will claim credit for it. But those claims will have little basis in reality. In fact, Republicans have done nothing to spark job creation: after 13 weeks in the House majority, they have yet to even consider a single job-creating bill. Instead, House Republicans have passed a spending bill full of reckless cuts to investments in our growth--a bill that nonpartisan observers agree will cost hundreds of thousands of jobs. Republicans have been working to destroy jobs, not create them; any Republican attempts to ignore that record and claim credit for job growth should be met with deep skepticism.
March 30, 2011
I congratulate the Congressional Black Caucus on 40 proud and successful years and I honor their service to our nation. The principles of the CBC— equal rights, social justice, and security and opportunity for all Americans—have guided us in some of our most important work here in Congress. And I am proud to have partnered with the CBC to advocate for health care for every American; for fairer drug sentencing; for action to protect human rights in Darfur and ensure the birth of a secure and stable Southern Sudan; and for aid to our disaster-struck neighbor, Haiti, among other important issues.
March 30, 2011
I applaud President Obama for announcing an ambitious goal of reducing oil imports by one-third by 2025. Reducing our dependence on foreign oil is an economic imperative—and a national security imperative. The continuing unrest in the Middle East and the rise of gas prices is a wake-up call that we must become more energy independent. Democrats are committed to increasing energy independence and security; in fact, we enacted the first new fuel efficiency standards for cars in 32 years.
March 28, 2011
Tonight, President Obama spoke to the American people about the ongoing international military effort to prevent the Gadhafi regime’s brutal attacks on Libyan civilians. I support this lifesaving effort, which has been authorized by the United Nations and backed by our European allies and the Arab League. I also applaud the service and courage of the American troops who are helping to carry it out. It is essential, however, that the president continue to inform and consult with Congress as long as American troops remain part of this mission. Finally, I am pleased that NATO is set to take over leadership of this mission on Wednesday; as I have urged the president, our European allies and the members of the Arab League must assume the leading role.
March 26, 2011
I'm deeply saddened by Geraldine Ferraro's passing today. Not only was she a trailblazer, she was a good friend and someone I'm proud to have worked with over the years. She opened doors for generations of women to come by being the first woman nominated as a Vice Presidential candidate.
March 24, 2011
As a lead co-sponsor of the ADA Amendments Act, I am pleased that the EEOC has issued final regulations today that will ensure all Americans with disabilities will be able to invoke the full protections provided under the ADA,” said Democratic Whip Hoyer. “The ADA Amendments Act restored the intent of the original ADA law to protect anyone with a disability, even if they take steps to mitigate their condition. The regulations issued today uphold the law and open the doors of opportunity to everyone."
March 23, 2011
My thoughts are with all those injured or killed in today’s bombing in Jerusalem. In the wake of this terrorist act, it is vital to reassert our commitment to the security of our ally Israel, as well as our condemnation of those who attack civilians and those who inspire such attacks by inciting hatred against Israel. As Israelis face cowardly attacks like today’s, as well as an ongoing barrage of rockets from Gaza, Americans must stand united behind Israel’s right to defend itself, and the right of civilians everywhere to live in peace.
March 22, 2011
A year ago this week, President Obama signed the Affordable Care Act into law, giving families—not insurance companies—the freedom to control their own health care choices. Just a year after it became law, the Affordable Care Act is making it easier for small businesses to cover their employees, reforms in the law are taking important steps to slow the growth of health care costs, and the law is stopping the worst insurance company abuses, including making it illegal to deny care to children because of a pre-existing condition.
March 18, 2011
I am pleased the UN Security Council has taken action in the face of broad and lethal attacks on civilians by Gadhafi. The UN has rightfully authorized international action to preclude further bloodshed, and the Arab League has also called for action in light of Gadhafi’s threats and actions. The President has indicated that the U.S. will assist international efforts to protect civilians and end the violence. I support this action and have urged the Administration to take a supportive role in this effort. I firmly believe that our European allies and the members of the Arab League must take the leading role.
March 17, 2011
Over the course of the next three weeks, Democrats and Republicans must work together to fund the government for the remainder of the fiscal year. Democrats have shown that we are willing to cut spending as long as it does not hurt our economy or cost jobs. I hope Republicans show a similar willingness to compromise and work with us. They cannot insist on extreme social policy riders that have no place in a debate on spending cuts, and they must come down from their reckless and economically damaging demand for $100 billion in spending cuts. After this week’s vote in the House, it is clear that if Republicans do not insist on inflammatory riders and make targeted and smart spending cuts, we will be able to reach a compromise.
March 15, 2011
I am proud to introduce the Full-Service Community Schools Act today. Full-service community schools are part of re-imagining how we can make sure our children get the education they deserve. These schools tap into community resources to ensure that when children go to school, they are ready to learn and their families are prepared to support learning. Students and their families are able to access a wide range of services – from early childhood programs, to health clinics and dental care, to English lessons and career advice for parents. These services remove serious obstacles that would prevent children from succeeding.
March 11, 2011
We cannot continue funding government week by week. It is disruptive and wastes taxpayer money, and it causes significant uncertainty for the private sector. That is why it is imperative for Republicans to put forward a new long-term measure and tell us where they are willing to compromise. They don’t have any excuses left: the Senate rejected House Republicans’ reckless and arbitrary spending cuts, which would have cost thousands of jobs and harmed our economy. And using their own measure - $100 billion in cuts – Democrats have already offered to meet them more than halfway. So it’s time for Republicans to step up and put something new on the table.
March 11, 2011
Our thoughts are with the people of Japan in the wake of today’s devastating earthquake and tsuanmi. Though the full extent of the damage is not yet clear, we do know that Japan has suffered widespread loss of life and destruction of property—and those who have suffered from this horrific natural disaster should know that they have the world’s sympathy, and that we continue to hold them in our prayers. As President Obama made clear, the United States stands ready to assist Japan as it begins its recovery efforts.
March 11, 2011
Democrats are committed to restoring fiscal discipline and cutting spending, and the bill introduced today will provide another tool for us to do that. Under expedited rescission, Congress and the President can work together to cut wasteful, duplicative spending. I hope my Republican colleagues back up their calls for reduced spending with action and join us in moving this bill forward.  
March 10, 2011
We need to do more to address the foreclosure crisis in this country, but the Republican housing bills on the floor this week are not the answer. By only proposing to terminate housing programs and not offering any solutions of their own to help responsible middle class American families stay in their homes, these bills are not the way forward. So far, Republicans have not put forth a jobs plan, have not put forth a real health care reform plan and today, it is clear they have no plan to help middle class families stay in their homes.
March 9, 2011
I believe this hearing would have been more useful had it taken a broader look at domestic terror and radicalization. As currently structured, however, I believe it sends the wrong message to the Muslim-American community. We need them to work with law enforcement to identify terrorist threats, not be afraid of them. We all need to work together to keep our nation and Americans safe, and we need everyone’s cooperation to do so. Targeting one segment of our population is not helpful to that objective.
March 9, 2011
Now that the Senate has failed to pass either the Republican spending bill or the Democrats’ compromise measure, it is time for negotiations on a long-term solution to continue. Democrats have come more than halfway to Republicans' demand of 100 billion in spending cuts, and yet Republicans have so far refused to move an inch from their one and only proposal. Since their proposal has failed in the Senate, Republicans must now put forward a real compromise measure that backs away from their reckless and arbitrary spending cuts that would cost thousands of jobs. We need to make smart spending cuts while protecting investments in our nation’s future.
March 9, 2011
Today, I attended a meeting of the House Bipartisan Legal Advisory Group, which voted to intervene in litigation pertaining to the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) in court. I voted against this decision. I believe that the Administration is correct in concluding that DOMA is unconstitutional and discriminatory. There is ample precedent for the Justice Department’s decision not to defend this statute: since 1979, both Democratic and Republican Administrations have declined to defend acts of Congress on more than 50 occasions. In fact, it is rare for the House to intervene in defense of statutes that the Justice Department has declined to defend. I am disappointed in Republicans’ decision today.
March 9, 2011
I am saddened by the death of esteemed journalist David Broder. For decades, David brought our country a wealth of fair and evenhanded reporting, analysis, and commentary—work that was valued for its insights on both sides of the aisle. The respect that David garnered as ‘Dean’ of the Washington press corps was well-earned. His tireless work to keep the public informed, and his contributions to American journalism, will be sorely missed.