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Murray to Senate Republicans: Return to Regular Order, Come To The Table Ready To Compromise, And Give American Families And Businesses The Certainty They Deserve

May 08 2013

Senate Democrats try to move to conference with the House for fourth time, blocked by Minority Leader McConnell

Murray calls for compromise and open process in budget conference

(Washington, D.C.) – Today, Senate Budget Committee Chairman Patty Murray (D-WA) delivered a speech on the Senate floor calling on Senate Republicans to stop blocking the Senate from moving to a budget conference with the House.  Murray urged her colleagues to begin negotiations in a formal, public conference under regular order, and work towards a bipartisan deal that would provide American families and businesses with the certainty they deserve.

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Key excerpts from Murray’s floor speech:

“It is so disappointing to me that four times now the Republicans have objected to us now taking the necessary next step.”

“…there is no doubt moving to conference is not going to be easy. Solving this problem is not going to be easy. But I want our colleagues to know what I have consistently heard from the Democratic side is we understand the word ‘compromise.’”

“…we have constituents at home who are wondering how they are going to manage their budgets whether they have a business, or whether they have a school, or whether they are delivering Meals on Wheels, or whether they are planning their military operations for the next year, whether it's the agricultural industry wondering what their plan is for the future. And what they're being told now for the fourth time in a row by the Republicans in the Senate is we're not going to give you any certainty.”

“…We’re willing to take the step to make it work and I urge our Republican colleagues to step forward and allow us to move. Do not object to us trying to solve problems. That's what's happening here and I urge our Republican colleagues and the House as well to move to conference and let's have a debate and discussion on this deeply urgent matter for our country.”

The full text of Senator Murray’s speech follows:

“I want to thank my Budget colleagues that are here with me today who spent many, many hours putting together a budget, coming to floor with all of the Senate to work over a hundred amendments, way into the middle of the night to get a budget passed.

“And we are all here ready because we came to the Senate, to this Congress, to solve problems. And we decided as a Committee, we decided as a...Democratic caucus, to show where our priorities are, and solve this problem and come back to regular order where our country knows what our priorities are, and so our businesses, our communities, everyone knows what path we're on so we can bring some certainly to this country again.

“It is so disappointing to me that four times now the Republicans have objected to us now taking the necessary next step. Which is to work together with our House colleagues, find a compromise, and move forward.

We're working for certainty here, Mr. President, and it is disappointing to me that those on the other side of the aisle who we all remember spent months, and months telling us that we hadn't passed a budget, we needed to go to regular order—are now themselves saying no regular order, no budget, no process, no certainty—and no conclusion to this really important problem that we have all come here together to work on.

“Mr. President, it is disturbing for a number of reasons and my colleagues have talked about it, but we have constituents at home who are wondering how they are going to manage their budgets whether they have a business, or whether they have a school, or whether they are delivering Meals on Wheels, or whether they are planning their military operations for the next year, whether it's the agricultural industry wondering what their plan is for the future.

“And what they're being told now for the fourth time in a row by the Republicans in the Senate is we're not going to give you any certainty. We like to live with uncertainty.

“Mr. President, there is no doubt moving to conference is not going to be easy. Solving this problem is not going to be easy but I want our colleagues to know what I have consistently heard from the Democratic side is we understand the word ‘compromise.’

“And we know that in order to solve this huge problem we have to come to a table and compromise and listen to the other side. We can't do it in the dead of night, we can't do it with a couple people sitting in a room, that's been done before and it doesn't work. We need to have regular order and we need to have this process out in the open, we need the American people to hear what the different sides say and then we're all going to have to take some tough votes.

“I can assure the American people on this side we understand tough votes and the word ‘compromise’ and the need to get our country back on track. We need to say as the Senator from Virginia said, we need to show the country democracy can work. We're willing to take the step to make it work and I urge our Republican colleagues to step forward and allow us to move. Do not object to us trying to solve problems. That's what's happening here and I urge our Republican colleagues and the House as well to move to conference and let's have a debate and discussion on this deeply urgent matter for our country.”