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Paul R.
Republican WI 1

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  • Thank You to Staff and Jo-Marie St. Martin

    by Representative Paul Ryan

    Posted on 2015-12-18

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    RYAN of Wisconsin asked and was given permission to address the House for 1 minute.) Mr. RYAN of Wisconsin. Mr. Speaker, this has been a busy month for all of us. We have passed more major legislation in a few weeks than we have in a few years. And now I want to thank all of the people who made it possible. I am talking about all the committee staff and all the people behind the scenes here in the Capitol who make this work. Thank you very, very much.

    In particular, Mr. Speaker, this includes, of course, our legislative counsel. I don't think you could find a group of people more dedicated to their jobs. These people work late nights every night. They work weekends. They are always on call.

    So I want to put into the Record a statement thanking every one of them by name. They were a part of history, and history should know their names.

    I also want to thank one person in particular, and that is Jo-Marie St. Martin. Today is Jo-Marie's last day on the Hill. She has been working for this House for over 20 years, most recently as general counsel and chief of legislative operations for the Speaker. I could not even begin to list everything that she has accomplished.

    We all know her so well. She is a legend in her own right. But as her colleagues will tell you, what is even more impressive than her career is her character. She is simply unflappable. When everyone else is on edge, she is calm. When they are flustered--and, believe it or not, some people get flustered around here from time to time--she is steady.

    And though other people might like to show off their brains and their know-how, she is the definition of kindness, of humility. I have never heard her dismiss a question, no matter how small. She is always eager to help people understand. And her enthusiasm is nothing short of infectious. You can see it when she walks into a room. She has an effect on people. Everyone feels more at ease. The word that comes to mind is Zen--except, of course, when she is at a Caps game.

    She knows the law backwards and forwards because she loves the law. She cares about the law. She cares about this House. For over 20 years, she has done her part to uphold its rights, to make sure that every voice was heard. Everyone here owes her a debt of gratitude.

    If I could use an old-fashioned word, I would say she is a true patriot. We salute her.

    So please join me one last time in thanking our friend Jo-Marie St. Martin.

    Mr. Speaker, I yield to the gentleman from Maryland (Mr. Hoyer), the distinguished minority whip.

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