Government Funding Process Needs to Get Back on a Bipartisan Track
‘I want the Senate to secure bipartisan appropriations through the regular process. I want us to fund the government in an orderly fashion. Just like the successful Appropriations Committee work we saw throughout Republicans’ recent years in the majority. We accomplished that because we built a truly bipartisan process.’
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) delivered the following remarks today on the Senate floor regarding government funding:
“This morning, the Appropriations Committee considered a first partial batch of government funding bills for next year.
“I want the Senate to secure bipartisan appropriations through the regular process. I want us to fund the government in an orderly fashion. Just like the successful Appropriations Committee work we saw throughout Republicans’ recent years in the majority.
“We accomplished that because we built a truly bipartisan process. Importantly, it began at the beginning.
“Early in the calendar year, we convened bipartisan talks to produce topline numbers so the appropriators would have actual targets. That let good-faith bipartisan conversations happen at the subcommittee and committee levels throughout the spring and summer. And we got results on a bipartisan basis.
“Unfortunately, this year, our Democratic colleagues haven’t done anything like that.
“Either our colleagues don’t have any big-picture plan… or they are privately working off the President’s partisan budget request. There has been no big-picture bipartisan conversation. Democrats didn’t even let the committee vote on top-line allocations, which normally happens at the start of the markup.
“Our colleagues’ fixation on far-left shiny objects is distracting them from basic governance. They are more focused on ramming through another reckless, inflationary taxing and spending spree than ensuring we avoid a stalemate over government funding.
“I understand and I appreciate that Senators on both sides have worked hard to develop appropriations titles with a lot of good content.
“The problem is bigger-picture. When it comes to floor consideration, we cannot and will not start planting individual trees before we have bipartisan consensus on the shape of the forest.
“Here’s what it will take to get a Senate appropriations process back on track. Two simple things.
“Number one: Democrats will need to honor the longstanding bipartisan truce that provides parity for defense and nondefense spending growth — and at a responsible overall number that we can all accept.
“Our men and women in uniform, and the nation they defend, deserve better than a budget that cuts our national defense after inflation and allows adversaries to get an edge.
“And number two: We must have agreement that we’re going to keep longstanding bipartisan policy riders in… and new poison pill riders out.
“We need to keep foundational mainstays like the Hyde Amendment right where they are, and neither side should throw new wrenches into the process.
“Parity for national and border security, and a bipartisan deal on policy riders.
“It’s not rocket science. It’s a roadmap we all know very well.
“That’s what it will take to move bipartisan appropriations bills across this floor. But the majority is behind on their homework.”
Related Issues: Appropriations