September 20, 2013
Mr. Speaker, I rise today to present H.J.Res 59, the Continuing Resolution that will keep the government operating into the next fiscal year.
The base CR is straight-forward – it is clean, it is short-term, and it continues reductions in federal discretionary spending. Most importantly, it will prevent a government shutdown.
The legislation also includes an amendment to the base bill, which adds the text of H.R. 2682, the Defund Obamacare Act of 2013, and the text of H.R. 807, the Full Faith and Credit Act.
H.J.Res. 59 will fund the government for the first 76 days of fiscal year 2014, until December 15, 2013.
It provides $986.3 billion in funding – approximately the same rate as the current, post-sequestration level with some minor adjustments.
The base bill is extremely “clean” – additional provisions were only added in a very limited number of cases where adjustments were needed to prevent catastrophic shortfalls or unintended disruptions to critical programs or services. It simply keeps the lights on in our government to provide for the safety, security, and well-being of all Americans.
I’d like to remind my colleagues both in the House and the Senate that a government shutdown is a political game in which everyone loses. It shirks one of our most basic duties as Members of Congress, and it puts our national security at stake.
To be clear, if this legislation is not enacted and we embark on a government shutdown, the consequences are severe: our brave men and women of our military don’t get paid, our recovering economy will take a huge hit, and our most vulnerable citizens – including the elderly and veterans who rely on critical government programs and services – could be left high and dry. A government shutdown – even the illusion or threat of one – says to the American people that this Congress doesn’t have their best interests at heart.
This CR keeps this Congress moving in the right direction. It gives us time to solve the urgent fiscal issues facing our nation – finding a balanced and attainable plan that eliminates sequestration, implements careful reforms for both discretionary and mandatory spending, and keeps our economy growing.
It is my hope that the House will pass this bill today and that the Senate will act in short order, so that this matter will be wrapped up well before our deadline on the 30th.
I urge my colleagues to do their jobs as Members of the House and to do what is best for this country, and vote yes on this bill today.