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Public Statements

Legislative Branch Appropriations Act, 2013

Floor Speech

By:
Date:
Location: Washington, DC

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Mr. BOREN. Mr. Chairman, I rise today in support of H. Res. 397, to reinstate the House Page Program, which was terminated in August of 2011.

This is in the context of the Legislative Branch appropriations. Unfortunately, this amendment was not made in order, but we're going to work with the committee as we go forward.

The House Page Program was an institution older than Congress, itself. Dating back to the first Continental Congress in 1774, House pages supported Congress by delivering messages, answering phones in the cloakrooms, and serving on the House floor. Young people who served as House pages had the chance to see the inner workings of our government from a perspective many people did not. I had the opportunity to serve as a page for Senator Robert Byrd in 1988, and it is a summer I will never forget. The experience was instrumental in my motivation to become a public servant.

The House Page Program was not only a great opportunity for young people to learn about our government, but the enthusiasm of these young people also reminded us every day of why we are here.

In a time when we are trying to come together and find bipartisan solutions to our Nation's problems, pages serve as a reminder of our future. As we legislate on the House floor, pages served as witnesses to lawmaking that will affect their generation. They remind us to consider viable long-term solutions to the problems facing America.

In September of 2011, Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi proposed a new intern initiative to replace the House Page program. While this is a step in the right direction, I believe it is necessary to restore the tradition of young people serving Congress, even before they attend college.

I look forward to working with my colleagues to bring pages back to our Halls.

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