Fighting Back: House Democrats – 200 days of working #ForThePeople

 
 

The Weekly Democratic Party Address was delivered by Congresswoman Haley Stevens of Michigan laying out the accomplishments of House Democrats as they make good on their promises to pass bills that will improve the lives of all Americans. Never has a better case been made that the American people need to #VoteOutSenateRepublicans (and elect a Democratic president!) to make those bills into laws.

(In this week’s address, the Congresswoman Haley Stevens discussed House Democrats’ For The People legislative accomplishments in the first 200 Days of the 116th Congress.)

“In the first 200 days of the 116th Congress, the House of Representatives has taken strong action on our For The People agenda — delivering for the middle class, by passing legislation that will improve people’s lives.[…]

“It has been an incredible 200 days, but one thing is clear – we aren’t going to stop working for you and your family. Districts like mine in Michigan, home to auto suppliers and incredible public schools. We are here to serve our teachers, our students, retirees, and veterans.

“We live in a magnificent country and we are going to make this government work for you – For The People.”

(CSPAN link to Weekly Democratic Address: here)

Transcript: Congresswoman Haley Stevens Delivers Weekly Democratic Address

“Hello, I’m Congresswoman Haley Stevens, and I represent the 11th District of Michigan.

“I’ve spent my career standing up for working people, from helping save the U.S. auto industry during the greatest economic crisis of our time, to working in a manufacturing research lab focused on the future of work in the digital age.

“I ran for Congress to continue that work, to deliver for the middle class, and this week the House of Representatives did just that by passing the Butch Lewis Act.

“The Butch Lewis Act is a pragmatic, bipartisan solution to the multiemployer pension crisis that could have devastating consequences for workers, retirees, businesses and taxpayers if we do not take action.

“Over one million hard-working Americans stand to lose their hard-earned retirement benefits through no fault of their own, which is why it was so important that the House of Representatives passed Butch Lewis this week, ensuring the economic security of our middle class.

“In the first 200 days of the 116th Congress, the House of Representatives has taken strong action on our For The People agenda — delivering for the middle class, by passing legislation that will improve people’s lives.

“Let’s review what we have done to lower the cost of health care and expand economic opportunity for you and your family.

“We have passed bills to strengthen protections for people with pre-existing conditions, lower prescription drug costs, and bring down health care premiums.

“We passed the first meaningful legislation in years to prevent gun violence and address climate change.

“We went toe to toe with the culture of corruption in Washington, and we stood up to protect Dreamers, we fought for the rights of the LGBTQ community. We passed the Paycheck Fairness Act to close the gender pay gap, and we reauthorized the Violence Against Women Act to defend the freedoms of survivors.

“And earlier this month, we voted to gradually increase the minimum wage to ensure that anyone working full-time in this country earns enough to make ends meet. Passage of this legislation would allow 33 million hard-working Americans to join and stay in the middle class.

“Make no mistake about it – we have exercised our patriotic duty to hold this Administration accountable by conducting aggressive oversight and ensuring our national security by protecting the integrity of our elections.

“The Democratic House Majority has made transparency and accessibility two of our top priorities, holding town halls and listening to our constituents in communities across this great nation.

“It has been an incredible 200 days, but one thing is clear – we aren’t going to stop working for you and your family. Districts like mine in Michigan, home to auto suppliers and incredible public schools. We are here to serve our teachers, our students, retirees, and veterans.

“We live in a magnificent country and we are going to make this government work for you – For The People.

“I am so proud of what we have accomplished in this 116th Congress so far, and we will keep working to lower health care costs, rebuild our crumbling infrastructure, and expand economic opportunity.

“Thank you, and God Bless America.”

Any bolding has been added.

~

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi’s weekly news conference from Thursday:

Transcript: Transcript of Pelosi Press Conference

Speaker Pelosi. Good morning, everyone.

Well, yesterday, we had a culmination of a lot of work over a period of time to pass the caps agreement in a very strong, bipartisan way on the Floor of the House. Of course, I always want more, but it was bipartisan and it was a compromise.

It was historic. It ended sequestration. Just for what that means in the lives of the American people, sequestration is a place you go when you can’t reach agreement and you start cutting how we meet the needs of the American people in a very indiscriminate way. It’s harmful to children and other living things. It’s harmful to our national security. It’s over.

We avoided a shutdown, for the moment. We still have to go through the appropriations process. But the way that the legislation was written for bipartisan agreement on any – for us to proceed on any extraordinary measures, I think we have forestalled any prospect of a shutdown.

Offsets, they wanted overwhelming offsets. We have less than, we have half of what they wanted, and they even wanted more than that, but it was, it was good. Because what we were – they want to offset our investments that we make in people, and we just weren’t going to go to that place.

Parity, I’m always fighting for parity. To the extent that you increase the defense budget, you have to increase the domestic budget. Except, this time, we got ten billion dollars more than parity.

Our fight was to get more funding for our veterans. That was a constant fight for us because the needs keep growing. And, also, this time, in a one‑time situation, for the Census, so that we can have, as the Constitution requires, an accurate count of who lives in America.

And, of course, one of the issues of interest to the Secretary of the Treasury was lifting the debt ceiling. Well, that’s of interest to all of us. The full faith and credit of the United States of America should never be in doubt. The Constitution says that. And now we removed all doubt, at least until July 31, 2021. This is a very long debt limit lifting or, they call it, suspension of the debt limit.

You saw on Wednesday the testimony of – I guess we don’t call him Special Counsel anymore – Mr. Robert Mueller. We can go more into that if you wish. But one focus, I want to make is, in his testimony, he said that, ‘The Russians are attacking our elections in a sweeping and systemic fashion,’ and that, ‘They are doing it as we sit here.’ Disruption of our election that happened in 2016, and now they are doing it again. That was Wednesday, when Mr. Mueller testified in person on that.

Yesterday, the Senate Intelligence Committee released a bipartisan report showing that the election systems in all 50 states were targeted by Russia. And yet the President calls this a hoax, and Senator McConnell refuses to act. Just the other day in the Senate, there were a number of bills, one of ours, the SAFE Act, [Securing America’s] Federal Elections Act, that the Republicans objected to bringing to the Floor.

This is about patriotism for our country. Our electoral system is the heart of the matter of our democracy. And yet the Republicans still continue to say, ‘No need to protect that.’

The path that we have is one that respects that the states manage our elections, but when it comes to federal elections, we want them to have the resources to do their job well. So, we will continue to legislate on that score, legislate, investigate, and litigate on that, on other issues that Mr. Mueller testified to as well.

Yesterday, on the steps of the Capitol, perhaps you were there, we celebrated the 200 days of progress, the ongoing progress, that we’re making for the American people, building on our promise to the American people, For The People, in the election.

Lower health care costs by lowering the cost of prescription drugs. We sent the Senate ten bills to lower health care costs and prescription drug prices, reverse the GOP’s sabotage of the health care, and strengthen pre-existing conditions benefits. Lower health care costs.

Bigger paychecks by building the infrastructure of America in a green and modern way. We secured paycheck fairness by equal pay for equal work, which we passed in the House, raising the minimum wage to $15 an hour. Over 30 million people will get a raise in our country, over 20 million of them are women. And as we pass other initiatives in our appropriations process and the rest to build the infrastructure of America.

Lower health care costs, bigger paychecks, cleaner government. Cleaner government. Clean up corruption and reduce the role of big, dark money in Washington. We passed H.R. 1, For the People. We will be passing the Voting Rights Act, and that is part of that as well, as we did pass the SAFE Act. And we really do call upon the Senate to pass a version of the SAFE Act to protect our elections.

We go out now for our district work period. Democrats intend to own August, to make so many of the bills that we passed too hot to handle for the Republicans in the Senate not to raise the minimum wage or end gun violence by commonsense gun violence prevention measures. The list, equal pay for equal work, the list goes on and on.

But we’re very, very proud of the work that our Members have done. We will be across the country, a drumbeat across America: lower health care costs, bigger paychecks, cleaner government.

And, with that, I’ll be pleased to take any questions.

Press questioning followed (see transcript)

~

Pelosi Remarks at Press Event Highlighting Democrats’ Progress in the First 200 Days of the 116th Congress

July 25, 2019

Washington, D.C. – Speaker Pelosi joined House Democrats for a press event celebrating the progress the House has made #ForThePeople in the first 200 days of the 116th Congress. Below are the Speaker’s remarks:

Speaker Pelosi. Two hundred days ago, the most dynamic and diverse House Majority in history took the oath of office and then got to work.

Today, on the steps of the Capitol, we celebrate the extraordinary progress that our historic Majority, led by so many outstanding Freshmen, has advanced.

The American people elected a House Majority that would be For The People, ensuring government works for the people’s interest, not the special interest.

We promised to lower health care costs and have sent ten bills to the Senate to reduce prescription drug prices, protect the pre-existing conditions, and reverse the GOP sabotage of health care.

We promised lower health care costs, increase workers’ paychecks, and we gave 33 million workers a pay raise by raising the minimum wage, passed paycheck fairness, equal pay for equal work and passed key investments in job creating infrastructure as well as protecting the pensions of our workers.

Lower health care costs, bigger paychecks, cleaner government. We promised to clean up corruption and, in March, we passed H.R. 1, the For The People Act to reduce big, dark money in politics, advance fair and secure elections and restore ethics to government. And, at the same time, fight against any foreign intervention into our elections.

Our Members are – will – in the month of August, our Members will accelerate a drumbeat across the nation. We will own August For The People. We will own August and make it too hot to handle for the Senate not to take up our bills.

Lower health care cost, bigger paychecks, cleaner government – For The People; too hot to handle. We are going to own August!

Bolding added.

CSPAN video on the event is here: 200 Days Fighting for the People.

~

Pelosi Statement on the 29th Anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act

July 26, 2019

Washington, D.C. – Speaker Nancy Pelosi released the following statement today commemorating the 29th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), which was signed into law on July 26, 1990:

“For 29 years, the Americans with Disabilities Act has stood as a landmark civil rights victory, rooted in the bedrock belief that every American has the right to live with dignity and respect. Since its passage, the ADA has delivered transformative progress in the fight against discrimination and exclusion, ensuring that the 55 million Americans living with a disability have access to the equal opportunity that is their right.

As we celebrate this historic achievement, we recommit to strong action against cruel and discriminatory attacks from the Trump Administration, which continues to work to undermine this cornerstone of our civil rights law and sabotage the affordable, quality health care that millions rely on. Our Democratic Majority is working to advance a bold agenda to ensure that people with disabilities have the resources and protections they need to thrive, and are supported by independent living initiatives and access to home and community-based long-term care as an alternative to institutionalization. And last week, we took decisive action to honor the contributions that people with disabilities make to our communities and our economy by passing the Raise The Wage Act to eliminate the outrageous subminimum wage and give millions of hard-working families a long-overdue raise.

“Democrats will continue to work tirelessly to remove barriers and expand possibilities to ensure people with disabilities can fully participate in our society and in our democracy. As House Democrats fight For The People, we reaffirm our lasting commitment to uphold the promise of the ADA and empower people with disabilities and all Americans to strive to build a brighter future and stronger America.”

Bolding added.

~

H.R. 3239 is making its way through the House: Pelosi Floor Speech in Support of the Humanitarian Standards For Individuals In Customs And Border Protection Custody Act

July 25, 2019

Washington, D.C. – Speaker Nancy Pelosi delivered remarks on the Floor of the House of Representatives in support of H.R. 3239, the Humanitarian Standards For Individuals In Customs And Border Protection Custody Act. Below are the Speaker’s remarks:

Speaker Pelosi. Mr. Speaker, let us salute Congressman Ruiz, Chairman Nadler, Chairwoman Lofgren, Chairwoman Underwood, Chairwoman Slotkin, and Members and thank you, my colleague, Congresswoman Kuster, for the recognition. These Members are — followed facts, gone to the border and raised a drumbeat on behalf of the children. I want to add to that, Congresswoman Escobar who has been so great on all of this.

The humanitarian situation at the border challenges the conscience of our [country], yet the Trump Administration has chosen to approach the situation with cruelty instead of compassion. Children sleeping on concrete floors, children eating frozen and inedible food, children being denied basic sanitation.

As the Gospel of Matthew says, ‘When the Son of Man comes in all his glory,’ he will speak to the nations gathered before him. You all know the Gospel of Matthew: ‘When I was hungry.’

As the American Medical Association writes: ‘Conditions in CBP facilities, including’ – whatever, I’ll put it in the record, you’ve heard about the open toilets and the rest.

‘It is well known that childhood trauma and adverse childhood experiences created an inhumane treatment often create negative health impacts that can last an individual’s entire lifespan.’

The American Academy of Pediatrics led a joint letter: ‘The tragic deaths of children in CBP custody are evidence for why timely, appropriate medical and mental health screening are so crucial.’

Today, with Congressman Ruiz’s Humanitarian Standards for Individuals in Customs and Border Protection Custody Act, we are taking a strong step with that to safeguard children and respect their families.

It’s no use talking. We have to act. We’ve sent the money, we’ve paid attention, now we have to set the standards that must be met for humanitarian — hygiene, health care and the rest.

~

Post-Mueller hearing news conference:

Excerpt from Pelosi remarks

It’s been a pretty interesting day. An historic one as a matter of fact. A day in which the former Special Counsel affirmed, in public, what the Mueller report put forth.

It is a crossing of a threshold in terms of the public awareness of what happened and how it confirms to the law, or not.

The President likes to have his poster that says the Mueller report took this many days, cost this much money – this, that and the other. Well, we have a corresponding, contradictory chart: Mueller investigation by the numbers. $40 million dollars recovered for the U.S. government. Remember how much he said it would cost – less than that. Thirty-seven people and entities charged with crimes. Twenty-five ongoing criminal cases referred. Seven convicted, including five top Trump campaign officials. And then he has no collusion or this and that – ten instances of obstruction, yes. No exoneration. That’s some of what we heard today.[…]

As we legislate, for the good of the American people, we are also investigating, so that we have the grist for the mill to litigate in court. And, those cases we have won in lower courts, they have, of course, appealed.

We feel very strongly about our position – about the position of Article I, the Legislative branch, having oversight over every other branch of government. But, that is important because it means we can get the information to show the American people what the obstruction was further all about.

More at the link.

~

  4 comments for “Fighting Back: House Democrats – 200 days of working #ForThePeople

  1. JanF
    July 27, 2019 at 8:09 am

    From Speaker Nancy Pelosi: Dear Colleague on Owning August

    July 26, 2019

    Dear Democratic Colleague,

    Yesterday, the House overwhelmingly passed a bipartisan agreement that will invest in middle class priorities that advance the health, financial security and well-being of the American people, and enhance our national security.

    Thanks to the leadership and courage of House Democrats, we have ended sequestration and headed off a government shutdown. A special thanks to Appropriations Chairwoman Nita Lowey and Budget Chairman John Yarmuth for their leadership in passing this agreement.

    As we go forward into the August work period, House Democrats can take pride in more than 200 days of extraordinary productivity For The People. Our transformational Majority has passed bold legislation to lower health costs, raise workers’ wages, clean up government, and more.

    Now, we must OWN AUGUST on the ground and on social media, to make our issues too hot to handle for Senate Republicans to block. We must create a drumbeat across America For The People.

    The DPCC is organizing themed weeks and urging Members to hold events around the three main pillars of the For The People agenda.

    FOR THE PEOPLE

    August 5th: lowering health care and prescription drug costs
    August 12th: increasing paychecks by rebuilding America
    August 19th: cleaning up corruption in Washington

    We will be engaged in a series of Caucus conference calls throughout the work period to discuss what Members are hearing from their districts. Our first conference call will be Monday, August 5th at Noon Eastern.

    I hope you will be taking time to relax with family and friends. We will return to Washington informed, energized and inspired to continue our fight For The People.

    Thank you for your leadership.

    Own August, Democrats! Then Own 2020!!

  2. July 27, 2019 at 9:04 am

    Wow, I like this! Good for Pelosi!

    Thanks, Jan, for bringing this to us.

  3. bfitzinAR
    July 27, 2019 at 10:41 am

    I hope folks can make it ‘too hot’ for the Senate to continue blocking & not bringing bills to the floor. But I doubt it. As long as there’s no vote, there are also no anti-R campaign ads that write themselves based on R votes.

  4. JanF
    July 27, 2019 at 6:31 pm

    Interesting how the House leadership speaking after the Mueller hearing was Nancy Pelosi, Jerry Nadler, Adam Schiff and Elijah Cummings. And Cummings is the one singled out. 🤔

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