Patty in the News

Finding a job can be a major hurdle for transitioning veterans. Without civilian certifications, such as a commercial driver's license or a nursing certificate, it can be nearly impossible for veterans to find jobs in a field in which they are already versed. "Military training doesn't transfer to the civilian sector," said Ben Wiselogle, veterans program coordinator at the University of Washington Bothell. "These women and men have been trained by the federal government, on the federal dollar, then they are required to get these certifications again to gain concepts and skills they've already practiced." A medic who has triage experience on the battlefield would need to get recertified to practice as a civilian, for example.

- Everett Herald
U.S. Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA) was recognized Tuesday in the Alder Hall Commons Auditorium for championing legislation that increases financial literacy efforts for the general public and opens career pathways for students, and her support for programs such as Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs (GEAR UP). Murray became the 19th recipient of the National Council for Community and Education Partnerships’ (NCCEP) Champions for Student Success Award. NCCEP is a nonpartisan nonprofit that is based in Washington, D.C., that strives to increase access to higher education for economically disadvantaged students. The organization gives the Champions for Student Success Award to outstanding congressional leaders who promote student success by advocating for public policies that work toward improved public education for all students. Growing up in Bothell, Murray was one of seven kids in a happy family. However, when she turned 15, her father was diagnosed with multiple-sclerosis and lost his job.

- The Daily
”: John F. Kennedy once said, “Let us not seek the Republican answer or the Democratic answer, but the right answer.” Here in Washington state, Republicans and Democrats recently passed a budget that neither side views as perfect, but which garnered overwhelm-ing support from both parties. Both sides knew that compromise and negotiation were necessary to avoid a shutdown of state government. Now consider the vastly different situation in Washington, D.C. — one we witnessed firsthand July 17 as we met with members of Congress. As our debt continues to mount and our economy remains sluggish, Congress has not passed a budget since 1997. And now some members of the Senate are blocking the two parties from forming a committee to consider a budget.

- The News Tribune
Here's how it went: In Senator Murray's office, instead of being handed a free pen and shown the door, which was what we expected, the person at the desk went to grab Murray herself and bring her out to say hi. At 9 or 10 years old, I was already noticeably taller than her. We shook hands, she thanked us for coming, and then, right off the bat, instead of patronizingly asking me what my favorite subject was or if I played a sport or how I liked DC, she asked me: "Have you thought about going into politics?"

- The Stranger
Imagine driving down a road and seeing a fallen tree up ahead, right in your path. You could turn immediately to avoid even the possibility of a crisis. Or, you could wait until the tree is right in front of you and hope that a last-minute swerve will work. Any sensible person would choose the first option. But if you had to ask today’s Republican Party for permission before turning the wheel, you and your passengers would be in for a dangerous ride. Unfortunately, we’ve been swerving around trees for the past two years when it comes to the federal budget, with serious consequences for families and our economic recovery. We have had a few months of economic growth, and there was optimism that we could go back to an orderly, responsible budget process. But now, if we can’t get a budget deal in the next three weeks, we are almost certain to hurtle toward the next completely avoidable crisis/

- Politico
Women have reached unparalleled numbers and levels of power in the U.S. Senate this year, exemplified by Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash., a low-key former educator who is the first woman to take over the helm of the Senate Budget Committee. In her first three months in that job, Murray led the effort to pass the first Senate budget in nearly four years, uniting Democrats behind a fiscal road map that serves as the party's agenda for the fiscal wars. Those battles will resume this year when Washington will again battle over spending cuts, federal funding levels and raising the nation's borrowing limit. She did it without appearing on any Sunday news programs, underscoring Murray's willingness to defer the media spotlight to colleagues such as Majority Whip Dick Durbin, D-Ill., and Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., who have appeared a dozen times each on Sunday shows this year.

- USA Today
The rate on federal subsidized loans rose Monday from 3.4 percent to 6.8 percent, after Congress was unable to come up with a compromise to retain the lower rate.

“The cost of a college education has never been higher,” said U.S. Sen. Patty Murray. “Many students and their families are forced to take on mountains of debt to pay for a degree. ... Because Congress can’t agree on a lot these days, interest rates are going to go up starting today.”

- Seattle Times
SEATTLE — It’s a tough day to be a college student.

Loan interest rates doubled Monday, July 1, because Congress was unable to come up with a plan to avoid the increase. Sen. Patty Murray and other Democratic members of Washington’s congressional delegation joined students at the University of Washington to urge their colleagues to act.

- Q13 News
The vote was a robust endorsement of a 1,200-page bill painstakingly crafted by the “Gang of Eight” senators from both parties and amended this week to bring in some skeptics. Fourteen Republicans joined 52 Democrats and two independents in voting yes Thursday, while 32 Republicans voted no. Washington’s senators, Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell, both voted for the measure.

- Seattle Times
The duty of the U.S. Supreme Court is to read the law, but its decision overturning the federal Defense of Marriage Act demonstrates how high court justices have two other areas of close study. The Supreme Court follows election returns, and the nation’s social trends.

“They live in this country: They swim in the oceans of culture,” Pam Karlan, co-director of Stanford University’s Supreme Court litigation workshop, and herself a former clerk at the court, told a workshop in California last weekend.

- Seattle PI