Mr. MAFFEI. Madam Speaker, I wanted to take a moment to reflect on this 111th Congress and to say how proud I am to have been a part of it. Some may look at the recent election and say we were off track. But while those showing up to vote may have changed from 2008 to 2010, I and so many of my colleagues stayed true to the people who elected us to change the direction of this country, and we did just that.
From health care to financial reform, the Fair Pay Act to the repeal of Don't Ask, Don't Tell, I do not apologize for our accomplishments. I embrace them.
On a personal note, I have worked on Capitol Hill nearly 12 years, starting as a junior staffer for a Senator and eventually becoming an elected Member of this House. Despite the cynicism about Congress, I have been privileged to work alongside staff and Members dedicated to the public good and furthering this great Republic, often at great personal expense. I thank them, and I will forever be grateful that a shy public school student of modest means from Syracuse, New York, could come here as a Member of this great Congress in this great country.