Representative Blumenauer: Budget Compromise a D+, Congress Must Face Realities

Washington, DC—(ENEWSPF)—December 13, 2013. Representative Blumenauer (OR-3) issued the following statement yesterday:

“I very reluctantly voted for H.J.Res 59, having been quoted accurately that it is a D+ piece of legislation.

It sadly represents what Congress has become.  It is now a victory to avoid another government shutdown.  It is a victory to temporarily prevent application of the Sustainable Growth Rate that would penalize medical providers and our senior citizens.  It is the least we could do to find a tiny bit of budget breathing room so that it may be possible for the appropriations process to resume again.

It is frustrating that, at a time when there are still many unmet needs of our citizens and while our economy is sputtering, people are celebrating legislation that doesn’t damage the economy more.  It is sad that it has come to this.

I am hopeful, however, that this might serve as a point of departure over the next three months to be able to face the realities of what America needs.

I, for one, will continue working for the big picture, on the three bills that I have introduced to help rebuild and renew America and on arguing for a grander bargain, rather than the least that we can do. I will fight to build on the platform of healthcare reform so that we get medical providers off the SGR merry-go-round, instead moving towards the promise of healthcare reform.  It is shameful that Congress is willing to cut food stamps yet give money to wealthy farmers, while ignoring the plight of the long term unemployed, illustrating the gap between what the American public expects and what we should do.  I am hopeful that the new year will be more constructive.

In the mean time, we will celebrate avoiding another damaging government shutdown and we will celebrate not having a destructive resolution on the floor muddying diplomacy with Iran. I suppose in the holiday spirit we should be thankful for what we can get and then usher this least productive session in Congressional history out of town.”