House Democratic Whip Steny H. Hoyer (MD) delivered remarks this morning at The Atlantic's "Manufacturing's Next Chaper" conference. Below are his remarks as prepared for delivery:
"Good morning, and thank you for this opportunity to kick off what promises to be an interesting and informative day of discussions about the future of manufacturing in our country.
"For a long time, we watched as manufacturing jobs moved overseas. However, over the past few years, manufacturing -- and especially advanced manufacturing -- has seen strong gains that prove it has a bright future ahead in America.
"Manufacturing jobs have traditionally been high-wage, high-skilled positions that bring middle-class opportunities to those who fill them -- which is why I have been leading an effort by House Democrats to help our manufacturing sector expand.
"Our plan, called 'Make It In America,' is focused on making our economy more competitive, and ensuring that businesses are able to expand here, create jobs here, and invest here. We introduced our Make It In America plan two years ago, and in the coming weeks we will be re-launching it in the 113th Congress with new proposals.
"The discussions here today may very well produce some of the new policy ideas for our Make It In America plan, and I will be very interested to see what emerges. The conversations you have over the course of the day will be important to understanding what businesses need to expand and create new jobs.
"I believe -- and Democrats believe -- that manufacturing has the potential to carry our economic recovery forward into long-term prosperity by creating opportunities that grow our middle class and improve Americans' quality of life. Congress has a responsibility to act to help our manufacturing sector grow, and that is what Make It In America is all about.
"Also of paramount importance to manufacturing is ending the uncertainty so many businesses are facing as a result of Congress's failure to address deficits in a big and balanced way. We must reduce this uncertainty by achieving a long-term deficit reduction solution that is balanced and can avert the sequester set to take place at the end of this month. Along with investing in our manufacturing competitiveness, Congress must act quickly to put America back on a responsible fiscal path.
"I hope whatever ideas emerge today will soon find their way up to Capitol Hill in the form of policy recommendations. Ultimately, 'manufacturing's next chapter' is intricately tied to America's next chapter -- and whether we can extend the promise of the American dream for another generation. Thank you."