Granger Remarks on Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education FY21 Subcommittee Markup

Jul 7, 2020

Chairwoman Delauro, thank you for presenting the fiscal year 2021 Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education bill today. 

I also want to thank the Vice Ranking Member of the full committee, Mr. Cole. I appreciate his leadership on the Committee and on this subcommittee to try to find common ground on difficult issues.

As a result of your work together, this bill funds priorities and concerns of Members on both sides of the aisle and does many good things for the American people.

The bill continues to fund important programs that improve public health, and it sustains research into diseases such as cancer and Alzheimer's disease. Funds are also included to defend the nation against biological threats.

Investments in education are essential for our country to remain competitive with the rest of the world, and I appreciate the funding this bill provides for this purpose.

I also want to thank Chairwoman Delauro and Chairwoman Lowey for including long‑standing language that protects life.  

However, there are several provisions that raise concern, and unfortunately, these will make it impossible for me to support the bill in its current form.

The House passed a $3 trillion emergency package to address the coronavirus a little over a month ago, yet an additional $24 billion dollars in new emergency spending is tacked onto this annual appropriations bill.

Once again, this was done without any consultations with House Republicans. We must have bipartisan conversations if we are going to address this pandemic in a serious way. 

Although the bill maintains important protections that prevent taxpayer dollars from being used for abortions, it contains many other provisions that I cannot support.

For example, the bill forces a return to the policies of the previous administration for the Title X Family Planning Program.

The bill also ties the hands of the Administration by preventing regulations that protect deeply held religious beliefs of institutions.

We must work together on appropriations bills that meet agreed upon spending levels and avoid controversial legislative language. This is the only way to get bills through the House and the Senate and signed into law.

In closing, I would like to thank my staff – Susan Ross and Kathryn Salmon – and the Majority staff as well.

Thank you, Madam Chair, I yield back.