McConnell, Reid

Opening Remarks

Today –

  • Following leader remarks, the Senate will be in morning business for one hour, with Republicans controlling the first 30 minutes and Democrats controlling the second 30 minutes.
  • Following morning business, the Senate will resume consideration of H.R. 1735, the Nation Defense Authorization Act.
  • At 12:30 PM, the Senate will recess until 2:15 PM for the weekly caucus luncheons.
  • At 3:00 PM, the Senate will VOTE on Reed Amendment #1521 (overseas operation contingency funding) to H.R. 1735. 


Senator McConnell: (10:05 AM)

  • Spoke on ObamaCare.
    • "Only 11% of Americans say that ObamaCare is a success. Perhaps he'll keep realties facing the middle class in mind. Instead of jousting with reality again, perhaps he'll address the concerns constituents who write in every day who tell them how the law is hurting them. Maybe he'll address the Kentuckian who wrote to tell me this, "I cried myself to sleep." I cried myself to sleep, said this Kentuckian who wrote me about this law. That's how she felt after losing health coverage with her employer and then being forced - forced - into an exchange plan she called subpar with a nearly $5,000 deductible. Now, how helpful to most middle-class people is a health insurance policy with a $5,000 deductible? She said "I work hard for every penny I earn, and this is completely unacceptable." It's also another example of a law that's failed. And the sooner President Obama can come to grips with that reality, the sooner we can work together to replace the fear and anguish of ObamaCare with the hope and promise of true health care reform."
  • Spoke on the National Defense Authorization Act.
    • "It's the first duty of the federal government to protect the nation. Senator McCain wrote in his piece. And with global threats rising, it simply makes no sense - no sense - to oppose a defense policy full of vital authorities that our troops need. And for a reason, he said, that has nothing to do with national defense spending. He's right. Here's what I'm asking today. I'm asking every sensible Democratic colleague to keep on side with the American people and pull these party leaders back from the edge. I'm asking my friends across the aisle to join us to support wounded warriors instead of more partisan brinkmanship, to give our troops a raise instead of giving gridlock a boost. And I'm asking them to work with us to defeat the contingency funding amendment offered by the senior senator from Rhode Island so that we can keep this bill intact and consistent with the budget resolution. The new Congress has been on a roll in recent months, getting things done for the American people in a spirit of greater openness and cooperation."


Senator Reid: (10:12 AM)

  • Spoke on ObamaCare.
    • "Understand 80% of every dollar that's charged by an insurance company of premiums, 80% of it has to go toward caring for people. If it doesn't, there are rebates, and hundreds of thousands of Americans during the last few years have gotten rebates as a result of insurance companies not spending 80% of the money that they get in premiums for health care. The sad commentary is that insurance companies took advantage. They took advantage by not insuring the people who had preexisting disabilities, and these are people who had some of the disabilities they said were preexisting was the fact that you are a woman. Some insurance companies charge more for the same care if you are a woman and not a man."
  • Spoke on the National Defense Authorization Act.
    • "Unless we deal with the impact of sequestration more broadly, middle-class America will suffer drastic cuts in things that matter to them the most. Cuts in priorities like education, job creation, life-saving research. Sequestration nondefense programs is also an attack on military families. For example, sequestration threatens to cut V.A. Spending, health care spending for military, job training for returning veterans, schools that teach children in military families and heating assistance for veterans who are struggling. We're going to be fair to military families just as millions of other working Americans, we need to fix sequestration for more than just the Pentagon. We need to fix it for defense and nondefense programs jointly. Defense and nondefense are certainly things we cannot separate. That's what the reed amendment is designed to achieve through bipartisan negotiations."