The Leader Board

'Never Before Have A President And A Senate Majority Done So Little When Our Challenges Have Been So Great'



WASHINGTON, D.C. Senate Republicans delivered a coordinated round of speeches on the Senate floor today regarding the do-nothing approach by Senate Democrats and the President's refusal to lead while blaming others for his policy failures. The following are excerpts from their remarks:


SEN. MITCH McCONNELL (R-KY): "In these very challenging times, Americans deserve leadership. Never before have a President and a Senate majority party done so little when our challenges have been so great." (Sen. McConnell, Floor Remarks, 9/20/12)


On Jobs And The Economy

SEN. JOHN THUNE (R-SD): "For the past three and a half years, the President and the Democrats here in the Senate have failed to provide the leadership that America needs to make a stronger middle class.  Middle class Americans continue to face a bleak economic picture on this President's watch." (Sen. Thune, Floor Remarks, 9/20)

SEN. MIKE ENZI (R-WY): "The President, the administration and the Senate majority have failed to govern during a crucial time for our nation. There is a willingness to kick our problems down the road with the hopes that the next election will suddenly inspire action. Rome burned while Nero fiddled. We have had enough fiddling." (Sen. Enzi, Floor Remarks, 9/20/12)

SEN. SUSAN COLLINS (R-ME): "Right now, federal agencies are at work on 2,700 new rules. These rules will go on top of a pile of regulations measuring millions of pages. Mr. President, if we want to put people back to work, we have to cut the red tape that is strangling our job creators." (Sen. Collins, Floor Remarks, 9/20/12)

SEN. JOHN BOOZMAN (R-AR): "The administration's policies have led to the worst recovery since World War II. Over 23 million people are unemployed, underemployed. One of the main reasons that we can't find work in this is the economic uncertainty Washington has created, stopping the hiring process. Our businesses are frozen." (Sen. John Boozman, Floor Remarks, 9/20/12)

SEN. ROY BLUNT (R-MO): "The number-one job of this Congress domestically should have been more private sector jobs. The President's long-held view of redistribution as a goal for the government is not going to accomplish that. What's going to accomplish that is more opportunity." (Sen. Blunt, Floor Remarks, 9/20/12)

SEN. JIM DeMINT (R-SC): "Yesterday, a businessman from South Carolina came to Washington to present a very simple proposition. He built his business from his garage to 150 workers, putting every dime he could back into his business. His plan was to add 25 workers next year if we keep taxes the same, but to do nothing if we follow [Democrats'] plan to raise taxes. Mr. President, if you really want to create jobs, help our economy and reduce our deficit, stop threatening to raise taxes." (Sen. DeMint, Floor Remarks, 9/20/12)

SEN. ROB PORTMAN (R-OH): "We've learned again, a lesson we've learned time and time again in America, you can't tax, regulate your way to prosperity. And Republicans in the Senate have provided an alternative. This is the Republican Senate Jobs Plan. All 47 Republican Senators have supported it. We have introduced legislation that incorporates these ideas. And yet we haven't gotten a hearing on the Senate floor. Pretty simple." (Sen. Portman, Floor Remarks, 9/20/12)

SEN. ORRIN HATCH (R-UT): "Our country is at a moment of deep economic uncertainty, and America's citizens and taxpayers deserve more than the President's decision to prioritize electoral politics over sound fiscal policy." (Sen. Hatch, Floor Remarks, 9/20/12)

SEN. THAD COCHRAN (R-MS): "In most states unemployment has remained over 8% for more than three years despite spending nearly $1 trillion with the President's 2009 stimulus package. Investments in small business growth have languished, and they've done this in a state of the economy, tax policy, federal regulations that seem to have made matters worse. The course we're on is simply not good enough." (Sen. Cochran, Floor Remarks, 9/20/12)


On The Budget

SEN. JEFF SESSIONS (R-AL): "This nation has never faced a more difficult financial challenge. We have deep systemic demographic problems. They need to be addressed yet today marks the 1,240th day since the Democratic Leadership in the Senate adopted a budget." (Sen. Sessions, Floor Remarks, 9/20/12)

SEN. JOHN CORNYN (R-TX): "When Republicans regain the majority in the Senate, we will pass a budget, we will reduce the deficit, we will tackle our long-term debt and we will help grow the American economy by getting our boot off the neck of the small businesses and job creators in our country." (Sen. Cornyn, Floor Remarks, 9/20/12)

SEN. BOB CORKER (R-TN): "This year we will spend over $3.5 trillion, 60% of which is taxpayer money, 40% is borrowed. Over the next 10 years, we will spend $45 trillion. We haven't had a budget in this body for 1,240 days. Not only is this dysfunctional and America looks at us as a dysfunctional body, it is an embarrassment." (Sen. Corker, Floor Remarks, 9/20/12)

SEN. JOHNNY ISAKSON (R-GA): "We spent $10.6 trillion, increased our debt over $4 trillion while the American people have cut their debt, cut their spending and got their house in order during our worst recession since the Great Depression. It's time the leadership of the Senate took a lesson from the American people." (Sen. Isakson, Floor Remarks, 9/20/12)

SEN. MIKE JOHANNS (R-NE): "Mr. President, think about it, $5 trillion of new debt under this President. So when he submits a budget plan, what happens to it? On the floor of this Senate, the President's budget plan did not get a single vote. No Republican, no Democrat, no Independent supported the President." (Sen. Johanns, Floor Remarks, 9/20/12)

SEN. RON JOHNSON (R-WI): "We're facing the most predictable financial crisis in our nation, and our President refuses to lead, this Senate refuses to lead. America hungers for leadership." (Sen. Ron Johnson, Floor Remarks, 9/20/12)

SEN. MIKE LEE (R-UT): "It's bad enough that this Senate Leadership, led by the Democrats, has not passed a budget in three and a half years. What's even worse than that is the fact that they haven't offered a budget this Congress. They haven't voted for or supported a single budget in this Congress." (Sen. Lee, Floor Remarks, 9/20/12)


On The Fiscal Cliff

SEN. JON KYL (R-AZ): "Senate Democrats and the Obama administration are too afraid to tackle, let alone vote on, the tough issues in an election year. For Americans outside the Beltway, the consequences are very serious." (Sen. Kyl, Floor Remarks, 9/20/12)

SEN. OLYMPIA SNOWE (R-ME): "We're facing another manufactured crisis this year with a fiscal cliff that never would have existed if the Senate had remained in session, had fewer recesses, and maximized every legislative day based on the job we were elected to do as I have argued virtually throughout this entire Congress." (Sen. Snowe, Floor Remarks, 9/20/12)

SEN. TOM COBURN (R-OK): "We find ourselves at a point in time where the greatest threat to our nation is our debt and our economy. We're risking our future, not only our future economically but our future of liberty. What we have had, I would remind my colleagues, is a history in the Senate of doing hard things, under the leadership of Senator Reid, the Senate has not attempted to do hard things." (Sen. Coburn, Floor Remarks, 9/20/12)

SEN. PAT TOOMEY (R-PA): "As long as everybody who might even contemplate launching a new business or expanding an existing business knows that this government is running trillion-dollar deficits as far as the eye can see with no willingness to address this, then people won't make that investment, they won't expand their business, they won't hire that next worker. Mr. President, it's long past time that the Democratic Leadership in this body accept its responsibility to address this problem…" (Sen. Toomey, Floor Remarks, 9/20/12)

SEN. RICHARD BURR (R-NC): "We've known about the fiscal cliff for a long time, and there's been no shortage of warnings about the dire economic consequences of doing nothing, but that's in fact what this body has done. Nothing. So let me just say this. There's a reason that President Obama and my colleagues on the other side of the aisle are targeting the Romney plan and the Ryan plan and the Republican plan. It's because they don't have a plan." (Sen. Burr, Floor Remarks, 9/20/12)

SEN. JERRY MORAN (R-KS): "This is a softball: what's the estate tax rate going to be next year? It's embarrassing not to be able to answer the simple questions about what is going to happen in people's lives... We're facing a point in time in which we have no opportunity to tell somebody what the tax code is going to be in three months. That's embarrassing." (Sen. Moran, Floor Remarks, 9/20/12)


On National Security

SEN. KELLY AYOTTE (R-NH): "Our troops are fighting and being attacked in Afghanistan. Iran marches toward the capability of having a nuclear weapon, terrorists have murdered our diplomats. Innocent civilians are being murdered in Syria by a despotic regime. Mr. President, the world is a dangerous place. President Obama, stop leading from behind." (Sen. Ayotte, Floor Remarks, 9/20/12)

SEN. LINDSEY GRAHAM (R-SC): "There is no coherent foreign policy at a time when we need one. Four years later, after a charm offensive and an apology tour that has not worked, our enemies are on steroids and our friends are unsure about who we are. I'll make a prediction. If this continues, the world is going to devolve into chaos…" (Sen. Graham, Floor Remarks, 9/20/12)

SEN. SAXBY CHAMBLISS (R-GA): "The Senate's lack of leadership in addressing sequestration will have long-term effects on our nation's robust intelligence community which had to be rebuilt after 9/11. These budget cuts will make it very difficult for the intelligence community to keep Americans safe in future years." (Sen. Chambliss, Floor Remarks, 9/20/12)

SEN. PAT ROBERTS (R-KS): "Americans are watching a conflagration of an estimated half million jihadists and over 30 countries burning portraits of our President, American flags and threatening attacks upon our consulates and embassies while shouting death to America. No, Mr. President, my colleagues, the war against terrorism is not over. … We are on a merry-go-round with this administration of excuses. There is no strong horse or weak horse. It's a merry-go-round that has to stop." (Sen. Roberts, Floor Remarks, 9/20/12)

SEN. JAMES RISCH (R-ID): "This is a foreign policy that is in shambles. In the Middle East, it is a foreign policy of apology, it is a foreign policy of appeasement, it is a foreign policy of dithering and looking the other way. This cannot go on." (Sen. Risch, Floor Remarks, 9/20/12)    


On Energy

SEN. LISA MURKOWSKI (R-AK): "I will remind my colleagues, this is our choice here. It is within our power to free ourselves from reliance on OPEC oil. … Our problems result from a federal government that has actions and inactions that indefinitely delay if not prohibit in many cases access to our energy resources. Mr. President, we are not running out of energy. What we're running out of are excuses for continued reliance on OPEC." (Sen. Murkowski, Floor Remarks, 9/20/12)

SEN. JOHN BARRASSO (R-WY): "Just yesterday, the White House went out and applauded the fact that Saudi Arabia is creating more, producing more oil. The President goes to Brazil and he tells the President of Brazil, we want to be your number-one customer. This is at the same time that this White House is blocking American energy projects and American energy jobs. Held hostage by environmental extremists, this President continues to block and cause people to lose jobs in the United States." (Sen. Barrasso, Floor Remarks, 9/20/12)

SEN. DAVID VITTER (R-LA): "Today the price of gasoline at the pump is double what it was four years ago. The majority in this Senate has done nothing to address that problem, and this administration has done nothing to address that problem. In fact, we are moving in the wrong direction. … We are the most energy-rich country in the world, but this Senate majority, this administration won't allow us to access our own resources for our own good." (Sen. Vitter, Floor Remarks, 9/20/12)

SEN. JOHN HOEVEN (R-ND): "Why do veterans have to come back from the Middle East and go to Canada to get a job to work on something like the Keystone pipeline? Because the Administration is blocking it in this country. The question I have is, 'Why?'" (Sen. Hoeven, Floor Remarks, 9/20/12)


On The Broken Senate

SEN. LAMAR ALEXANDER (R-TN): "The committee did its work. Eleven of the 12 [appropriations bills] have been reported to the floor. … But the Majority Leader said we're not going to consider any appropriations bills. No appropriations bills. Mr. President, being elected to the Senate and not being allowed to vote on appropriations bills is like being invited to join the Grand Ole Opry and not be allowed to sing." (Sen. Alexander, Floor Remarks, 9/20/12)

SEN. JOHN McCAIN (R-AZ): "The Majority Leader of the United States Senate said the day of amendments in this body are over. Is there a more telling description of how this body has deteriorated and degenerated over the years?" (Sen. McCain, Floor Remarks, 9/20/12)

SEN. DAN COATS (R-IN): "Twenty-three million Americans are either unemployed or underemployed and millions more have simply given up finding a job. And what is the President's response in the face of all this? Reject every plan presented by Republicans and instead spend $5 trillion of borrowed money leading, so-called leading, our country into decline and ultimately into bankruptcy." (Sen. Coats, Floor Remarks, 9/20/12)

SEN. ROGER WICKER (R-MS): "Yesterday The New York Times said this: the 112th Congress is set to enter the congressional record books as the least productive body in a generation. This is true, and the responsibility falls squarely at the feet of the Democratic Senate leadership. … The Majority Leader has shut off the right to amend a record number of times. The Majority Leader has filled the amendment tree a record 66 times, more than his six predecessors in the Senate …" (Sen. Wicker, Floor Remarks, 9/20/12)

SEN. MITCH McCONNELL (R-KY): "The fact that we have an election coming up is not an excuse for not tackling the tough problems." (Sen. McConnell, Floor Remarks, 9/20/12)