Rep. Michael G. Grimm (R,C-NY) issued the following statement:
"Today we gather with our friends, families, and neighbors on this Independence Day to celebrate 236 years of our nation's freedom. Let us thank those who worked so hard to make our country the strong nation that it is today - from our founding fathers who signed the Declaration of Independence, to our brave men and women in uniform who have fought and continue to fight for our freedom, to you and me. We are all a part of what makes America a great nation, and I am honored to celebrate today with the people of Staten Island in the 102nd Travis Fourth of July Parade.
On Staten Island, we are fortunate to be a part of our nation's early history. The Conference House in Tottenville served as the site for the only peace talks during the Revolutionary War. On September 11, 1776, when Benjamin Franklin, John Adams, and Edward Rutledge met with General Howe, they refused his offer for amnesty in exchange for withdrawing the Declaration of Independence. They would not back down on what they believed were the unalienable rights of men, and it is because of their belief in this country, that we continue to enjoy these freedoms today.
I am proud to be an American and believe we truly live in the greatest nation on earth. As Americans, we must never take for granted our freedoms or the men and women who fought hard to maintain them. It is their sacrifices that have given us all the opportunity to pursue the American dream and make a better life for ourselves and future generations to come."