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Norm Dicks' Statement on Release of Transportation, HUD & State, Foreign Operations Report Language


Location: Washington, DC

House Appropriations Committee Ranking Democratic Member Rep. Norm Dicks made the following statement after release of the State, Foreign Operations and Transportation, HUD FY12 Report Language:

"By posting report language without even scheduling a full committee markup, the Majority leadership has short-circuited any opportunity for Members of the full Committee to review, offer amendments, or add views. This is a significant departure from standard committee procedure and has relegated the remaining members of our committee, on both sides of the aisle, to the position of bystanders.

"Speaker Boehner noted in remarks on Sept. 15th that 'the committees have the responsibility to do the real work' of Congress, and he expressed his firm opposition to bypassing committees' responsibility. Less than two weeks after the Speaker's remarks, the committee with the ultimate responsibility for producing all of our appropriations bills has been effectively bypassed, and members who had intended to offer changes and amendments to various bills during full committee consideration will now be unable to exercise that responsibility.

"The full committee has never voted on the State, Foreign Operations or the Transportation, HUD Appropriations report language and no full committee markup has been scheduled any time in the future. Nobody should be confused: these documents were not vetted or approved by the Members of the committee. This is a bad precedent and I'm disappointed that the Majority has decided to skip over so many essential steps in making public these drafts that pretend to express committee views."

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