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Public Statements

Sequester Replacement Reconciliation Act of 2012

Floor Speech

By:
Date:
Location: Washington, DC

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Ms. CASTOR of Florida. I thank the ranking member.

Mr. Speaker, two of the most prominent independent scholars on Congress, Thomas Mann and Norm Ornstein, recently completed a detailed research initiative. They've never been shy in criticizing either side of the aisle. But their latest research concluded that the Republican Party has become ``ideologically extreme; scornful of compromise; unpersuaded by conventional understanding of facts, evidence, and science.'' And they said:

When one party moves this far from the mainstream, it makes it nearly impossible for the political system to deal constructively with the Nation's challenges.

The Republican budget is a perfect example of that. The Republican budget shields special interests from participating in deficit reduction, and instead says, We want to end Medicare as we know it. We target children and our older neighbors and middle class families for the overwhelming burden of deficit reduction.

If a political party wanted to undermine the health and economic security of millions of American families, well, then, this is the way to do it. And it's too bad, because I believe Democrats and Republicans agree on the need for deficit reduction, but we have starkly different visions on how to get there. Others have called this Republican budget extreme, reverse Robin Hood, destructive, and a threat to middle class security.

And here's an example. In the Budget Committee, I offered an amendment to say, It's time. We don't have the luxury to be giving big oil companies tax breaks any longer. Instead, let's make sure that children across America can see a doctor, can get the immunizations that they need. But what was the vote? The Republicans rejected that commonsense amendment. It was paid for by eliminating these Big Oil subsidies.

This is what Thomas Mann and Norm Ornstein mean by they are ``ideologically extreme.'' It's not in keeping with our values, as Americans. And I urge my colleagues to vote ``no'' on the Republican budget and sequestration plan.

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