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Public Statements


Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC

Mr. VARGAS. Mr. Speaker, I rise today in strong opposition to sequestration.

The word ``sequester'' derives from the Latin word ``sequi.'' It meant to follow. In late Latin, it devolved into ``sequestrar,'' which meant to surrender into the hands of a trustee. By the early 1500s, sequestrar grew to mean ``to seize, to confiscate.''

In Spanish, the word ``secuestro'' means to kidnap, to hostage, to ransom. And really, that is what the majority party is doing here today. They're holding the American people hostage, holding them ransom for these draconian spending cuts. House Republicans don't care about the harm it will cause to our working families, our seniors, our children, our military--especially our military.

We have heard now from our military leaders that military preparedness will suffer and will suffer greatly. We've already heard that an aircraft carrier has been stalled in port and is not able to be deployed to the Middle East. But there is a solution. Democrats, through the efforts of the gentleman from Maryland (Mr. Van Hollen), have proposed a fair and balanced plan that would replace these destructive and unwarranted cuts.

Mr. Speaker, I ask unanimous consent to bring up H.R. 699, a balanced bill to replace the sequester with spending cuts and revenues.

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