Continuing Appropriations Resolution, 2014by Representative Steve Womack
Posted on 2013-12-12
WOMACK. Mr. Speaker, I thank Chairman Ryan for his great
leadership in forging this particular agreement and putting us in a
position to end on a positive note here as we approach the Christmas
and holiday season.
Mr. Speaker, I am going to bring a couple of different perspectives to the floor as I analyze this budget deal. The first perspective I have is that of being a former mayor for 12 years in a great city in northwest Arkansas where there was an enormous amount of economic development and we did a lot of great things. I sat at the table many times talking about issues and trying to balance the needs of our community against what the wants of our community were. I have to tell you that I never ended any of those negotiations getting everything that I wanted, but I always looked for an opportunity to find the common ground and to advance the economic development issues of our city where we could find that type of consensus.
Mr. Speaker, I also bring the perspective of an appropriator. As somebody who came to Congress in 2011, I was immediately assigned to the Appropriations Committee. And, quite frankly, I have been frustrated through this entire process, living from CR to CR and never having the opportunity to do what appropriators are purposed in doing.
This agreement, while not perfect, as has already been mentioned by most every speaker, gives us an opportunity to take government shutdowns off the table and to restore some much-needed funding to something very important to all of us, our national defense. As an appropriator, it gives us an opportunity to actually do our jobs and quit ceding the authority for the power of the purse to the administration down the street. From that perspective, Mr. Speaker, I think this is the right deal at the right time. It gives us an opportunity to give some certainty to the American public who is looking to this Congress to be able to work together to try to find the solutions that move America forward.
I urge support.
Mr. VAN HOLLEN. Mr. Speaker, I yield 4 minutes to the gentleman from Maryland (Mr. Hoyer), our distinguished whip and somebody who has been working very hard on these budget issues and working with us also to make sure that this is done in as fair and equitable a manner as possible. He has worked with us very closely to make sure that Federal employees do not take a disproportionate share of the burden. And as a result of those efforts, current Federal employees will not be asked to bear additional burdens after having already borne so much of the burden.