Stabenow, Coons, Hatch, Durbin

Morning Business

Senator Stabenow: (1:32 PM)

  • Spoke on ObamaCare.
    • " I hope that instead we'll get about the business of making sure it works as well as possible and that we are strengthening the quality measures, the opportunity for competition and continue to bring rates down. We know if in fact health reform is repealed, it will increase deficits by hundreds of billions of dollars, cause 19 million Americans to lose their health insurance just next year, according to the budget office. 19 million people, 24 million people in the next few years. And under the Congressional Budget Office repeal would result in $353 billion increase in the budget. I want to congratulate the Supreme Court for common sense today, understanding what we meant, what legislative intent was all about, and urge that we now decide that we're going to work together on health care moving forward."
  • Spoke on the highway trust fund.
    • "We have 36 days left to act. Now, when we want to, we can act pretty quickly. I commend colleagues from the E.P.W. Committee who have come forward with a six-year bill. We have in front of us a policy passed by the committee. I want to congratulate Senator Inhofe, Senator Boxer for coming forward with a proposal that will increase the funding over time and I believe and hope we will do it in an even more robust way. And they've put forth policies that will long term create the economic stability for our businesses and the jobs for our workers and our families that they need. The Drive Act, as we call it, is an important step forward. I want to commend the chairman of the Finance Committee for holding hearings on how we finance that because that's our responsibility."


Senator Coons: (1:52 PM)

  • Spoke on Alan Levin.
    • "I rise today to honor someone I've had the privilege of calling a friend for many years and who is retiring after serving the state of Delaware for the past six years, Alan Levin. Alan and I both had our first tours of duty working for the same Republican senator. I was an intern for senator Bill Roth in the early 1980's and Alan was his counsel in the mid-1980's. Alan a wide and well-respected leader in Delaware's Republican leader has since 2009 served as director of the Delaware Economic Development office where he's worked every day to attract businesses to Delaware and help them create good jobs in our communities."


Senator Hatch: (1:55 PM)

  • Spoke on the highway trust fund.
    • "I've been interested in how the Democrats are constantly pushing to get moneys for the highway system. All of us are. Every one of us in this body wants to do everything we can for the highway system. However, they're talking in such big terms that the only way you could possibly reach those kind of moneys would be with further tax increases. Now, my experience here as -- when our friends on the other side of the aisle call for tax increases -- it's so they could spend. If we raised the amount of money they're asking in tax increases, you can see I can just tell you all the projects that are going to be done that many of which are not the crucial projects in this country. All I can say is that we're going to try and find the moneys, but we don't want to raise taxes."
  • Spoke on the Senate.
    • "In other words, the Senate has taken more than seven times -- let's be more accurate - roll call votes in the first six months of this year than the current minority leader allowed in all of last year. It is worth noting that a majority of the roll call votes taken this year have been on amendments introduced by Democrats. A majority of the roll call votes taken this year have been on amendments by our friends on the other side. They haven't been blocked. This is powerful evidence of the Republican-led Senate is committed to working in a manner respectful of the minority's voice. Additionally we have considered and agreed to 183 amendments this year. That means we've agreed to nearly four times as many amendments in the first six months of this year than we did in the first six months of the last Congress."


Senator Durbin: (2:19 PM)

  • Spoke on ObamaCare.
    • "They said it will never last, it will never stay. And then eventually public sentiment changed and people realized that Social Security was critically important for America. The same thing was true for Medicare. There were those who said socialized medicine, we've got to get rid of it and now 60 years later, 50 years later, they understand it is part of America for millions of Americans, it's critically important. Medicaid, same thing. Well, I hope today will be that turning point on the Affordable Care Act. Where we decide on a bipartisan basis this is part of our future, providing insurance for uninsured Americans, doing it in a fair way particularly for those in lower income situations. This was an historic decision, at the Supreme Court, 6-3, decisive majority opinion said the Affordable Care Act is legal, constitutional and should move forward. I hope that message makes it across the street over to the halls of Congress."