U.S. Senator Ben Cardin (D-MD), a member of the Senate Finance and Budget Committees, released the following statement as he prepared to continue his work on behalf of the people of Maryland in the U.S. Senate.
"I am honored to be back at work, fighting for all Marylanders and will continue to seek common ground to get things done for Maryland and for our nation. Now that the election is over, we must face reality and tackle the fiscal challenges facing our country together. We need to come together as Americans - not Democrats and not Republicans - to make the tough decisions that should have been made earlier. We need to set partisanship aside to develop a balanced approach that considers reasonable cuts in spending with fair tax reform and invests in our future. We cannot leave our children a pile of crippling debt any more than we can leave them polluted air or contaminated water or deny them quality education. And, I will fight to ensure that no one, especially the middle class or federal employees, will bear this burden alone.
"I am especially proud that Maryland is re-writing the history books with passage of the first referendum for marriage equality. The Free State has again led the country by affirming that there is no place for discrimination in American society. It is time for Congress to make progress in repealing the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA).
"Marylanders should be equally proud of standing up for fairness and justice for future generations with passage of the DREAM Act. It is only right that students who came to this country as children are not held accountable for the wrongdoing of their parents. In Maryland, they now will be allowed to continue their education with in-state tuition, putting a college degree within reach. America's immigration system is broken and must be fixed through comprehensive immigration reform. But through our vote, Maryland has renewed hope that our system can be fair and compassionate while still respecting a legal and orderly process. I urge Congress to take up and pass the federal DREAM Act, extending these rights to innocent children nationwide."