Fiscal Agreement Includes Social Security Reform, More Funding for Troops and Doesn’t Hike Taxes
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell made the following remarks on the Senate floor today regarding the two year fiscal agreement:
“Yesterday the Senate voted overwhelmingly to pass another important piece of legislation for our country.
“By a vote of 74 to 21, the Senate said yes to protecting the private information of every American. The significant bill we passed would do so through the sharing of threat information from cyberattacks.
“It wouldn’t have passed without the hard work of Senators from both sides of the aisle.
“I’d like to thank the Senators from Arizona, from Wisconsin, and from Delaware who worked hard to move this bill forward.
“I appreciate in particular the good work of the Senior Senators from North Carolina and from California – the Republican Chair and Democratic Vice-Chair, respectively, of the Senate Intelligence Committee.
“I think it’s worth noting something the Vice-Chair recently said:
One of the things I’ve learned from two prior bills of this type is that if you really want to get a bill done, it’s got to be bipartisan — particularly a bill that’s technical and difficult and hard to put together.
“After watching the Senate fail to act on cyberthreat information-sharing for years, the new Senate majority resolved to move forward instead. As our Democratic colleague from California put it: ‘We stood shoulder to shoulder and the right things happened.’
“Yesterday’s bipartisan vote was an important step forward for our country.
“It represents the new Senate’s latest notable accomplishment on behalf of the American people.
“We remain determined to keep pushing ahead as Congress continues its work to send a strong cybersecurity bill to the President’s desk.
“The House will soon consider the fiscal agreement. After the House acts, the Senate will take the measure up.
“Republicans approached the recent fiscal negotiations with several goals.
“Reject the tax increases proposed by Democrats.
“Secure long-term savings via structural entitlement reforms.
“Protect our troops and strengthen national security .
“The agreement pending before the House meets these goals.
“It’s not perfect. Far from it.
“But here’s what we know.
“It’s offset with other cuts and savings.
“It would enact the most significant reform to Social Security since 1983, resulting in $168 billion in long-term savings.
“It would repeal more of Obamacare.
“It would provide greater certainty to our military planners to help ensure readiness and preparedness for our troops.
“At a time of diverse and challenging global threats — when we see ISIL consolidating gains in Iraq and Syria and Russian aircraft flying over Syria as the forces of Assad march alongside Iranian soldiers and Hezbollah militias — the importance of this cannot be overstated.
“Our all-volunteer force loyally goes into harm’s way, and our commanders tells us that additional resources are required to ensure their safety and preparedness.
“I urge colleagues to consider these important issues as they continue to examine the agreement.
“We plan to consider it after the House acts.”
Related Issues: Budget, Cybersecurity, Entitlement Reform, National Security, Taxes