Speaking on the Senate floor today, U.S. Senator Tim Kaine applauded leaders in the Senate for reaching a bipartisan agreement to re-open government, pay our nation's bills and avert default, and begin long-term budget talks between the House and Senate. The Senate is expected to vote on this proposal later today.
"This is what America wants us to do," Kaine said. "They want us to work together in the Senate - Democrat and Republican. They want us to work together - Senate and House - to stop the foolish shutdown that has needlessly hurt individuals, communities and our prestige."
Describing the bipartisan deal, Kaine stressed that with a divided Congress, the only way to find agreement and move forward is to listen to each other and find bipartisan compromise, rather than having one side dictate the terms.
"Those who thought they could dictate terms were wrong," Kaine said. "Those who thought they could threaten default were wrong."
Kaine, a member of the Senate Budget Committee who has consistently called for a return to normal budgeting since taking office, also hailed the opportunity to enter a budget conference and finally negotiate the House and Senate budgets passed over seven months ago.
"I'm very proud of the Senate budget and I look forward to having an intense dialogue between Senate and House members where we put the two budgets on the table, when finally a conference can begin where the American people can see the different choices that the House and Senate have made," Kaine continued. "But also we enter it fully realizing that just as this short-term deal was not going to be solved by a House or Senate plan that just had the support of one party we will have to -- in order to find a long-term budget solution -- be willing to bring that same spirit to the table."