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H.J. Res. 117-The Continuing Appropriations Act for Fiscal Year 2013 and H.R. 6365--The National Security and Job Protection Act

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC

Mr. DINGELL. Mr. Speaker, I rise today in great frustration. It is a sad state of affairs when one of the few bipartisan achievements of this Congress is to delay major federal spending decisions for another six months. I will reluctantly support H.J. Res. 117, the Continuing Appropriations Act for Fiscal Year 2013, so funding for the government can continue, but I want to be clear that this is no way to run the country. We need to return to regular order and consider each of the 12 appropriations bills individually and in their entirety. A failure to do so is an abdication of the duty of Congress as enumerated by our most sacred document, the Constitution.

I oppose the next bill, H.R. 6365, which has an interesting name. In reality, it is nothing more than a disingenuous attempt to back out of the bipartisan deal struck last year in the Budget Control Act (BCA). We all agree that sequestration should be avoided, but it should be done within the framework of the BCA, instead of bypassing the deal to which we all agreed. I have long said everything should be on the table as we seek to reduce our deficit. I believe a balanced approach for doing so is the only legitimate way forward. H.R. 6365 abandons this approach by implementing deeper cuts in domestic programs so as to increase defense spending, and avoiding sequestration entirely. This is a cynical attempt at balancing our Nation's books. It does not ask the wealthiest among us to contribute a penny more to our country's needs. We must be fighting for the middle class and making smart, targeted investments to grow our economy and to create jobs, not needlessly slashing important domestic programs to protect millionaires and billionaires.

Congress has little time remaining to prevent sequestration from going into effect. I call on all members to come together and help find a serious, balanced solution to deal with our deficit, instead of engaging in political theatrics by passing H.R. 6365.

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