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Mitch M.
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  • Accomplishments of the New Senate

    by Senator Mitch McConnell

    Posted on 2015-12-03

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    McCONNELL. Now, Mr. President, on another matter, every day this week I have mentioned some of the significant accomplishments of a Senate under new management--a Senate that has put its focus back on the American people.



    After years of inaction, this Senate took bipartisan action to help the victims of modern day slavery. Many said the Justice for Victims of Trafficking Act would never pass the Senate, but we proved them wrong. We proved it could actually pass by a wide bipartisan margin. In a new and more open Senate, Senator Cornyn was able to work with Democratic partners to ensure it ultimately did.

    After years of inaction, the Senate took bipartisan action to protect the privacy of Americans. Many said the Cybersecurity Information Sharing Act would never pass the Senate, but we proved them wrong. We proved it could actually pass by a wide bipartisan margin. In a new and more open Senate, Senator Burr, a Republican, and Senator Feinstein, a Democrat, were able to ensure that it ultimately did.

    After years of inaction, the Senate took bipartisan action to lift children up with better educational opportunities. Many said the Every Child Achieves Act would never pass the Senate, but we proved them wrong. We proved it could actually pass by a wide bipartisan margin. In a new and more open Senate, Senator Alexander, a Republican, and Senator Murray, a Democrat, were able to ensure that it ultimately did.

    And after years of inaction, the Senate took bipartisan action to meaningfully improve our roads and infrastructure over the coming years. Many said that the long-term Highway and Transportation Funding Act would never pass the Senate, but we proved them wrong. We proved it could actually pass by a wide bipartisan margin. In a new and more open Senate, Senator Inhofe, a Republican, and Senator Boxer, a Democrat, were able to ensure that it ultimately did.

    Today, we are on the verge of passing that bill again. We are on the verge of passing it into law. The revised legislation we will consider provides 5 full years of highway funding. It would be the longest term bill to pass Congress in almost two decades, and it would provide long- term certainty in a fiscally responsible way. In other words, this bill will finally provide State and local governments with the kind of certainty they need to focus on longer term road and bridge projects. This is a significant departure from years--years--of short-term extensions.

    There is a lot more to say about what the new Congress has been able to achieve on behalf of the American people. I look forward to continuing to share these successes here on the floor.

    Tuesday's announcement on the highway bill is just the latest reminder of what is possible in a new and more open Senate. It builds the basis for more wins into the future. And most importantly, it is an achievement for the American people--an achievement that only a new Congress has been able to deliver.

    The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Democratic leader.

    ____________________

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