Transcript: Press briefing remarks by Sen. Patty Murray on the government shutdown – Oct. 2, 2013

Partial transcript of press briefing remarks by Sen. Patty Murray (D-Wash.) on the government shutdown on Oct. 2, 2013:

…Our message to Speaker Boehner today is pretty simple: End the shutdown. Let the government open. And once you do, we will be waiting at the table, ready and willing, to engage in a long-term budget negotiation that the American people – the families we represent – expect and that we’ve been trying to start for months.

You know, I’ve been working on this for a while so I was pretty surprised to hear right as the government was shutting down on Monday night House Republicans said they wanted a conference to resolve our differences.

Well, we’ve been talking about that for months. We told Republicans, “If you don’t join us in conference and give us time to work towards a deal, you’re going to be pushing us towards a crisis.” They didn’t listen. They said no to a conference. They didn’t want to negotiate. They thought they would have more leverage in a crisis and they were doing everything they could to push us to this moment where there is a crisis.

Well, we were right. They did it and here we are.

You know, I met with some families today from Washington state who flew all the way out here. One was a mom in Head Start who told me that two years ago she was homeless on the street. She’s been abused by her spouse and had a brand new baby. She found early Head Start program. They helped her get a place to live. They put the security back into her life, helped her with her child and her child-rearing skills, and today she is in college working to get a degree. But because of sequestration and because of this shutdown, thousands of parents like her across this country are being denied that opportunity.

Now, as many of you know, I taught pre-school and I will tell you that one of the things I tried to teach my young kids is when you have a difference, you don’t yell at each other; you sit down and you talk to each other.

That’s all we’re asking the Republicans to do. Don’t hold our families hostage. Don’t hold these Head Start moms and dads hostage. Don’t hold our veterans hostage or government employees. Don’t hold anyone hostage while you do this. Open up our country, let it work again and then let’s sit down and work out our agreements.

That’s what we’re asking Speaker Boehner to do. It’s a lesson that we need to show our kids that we’re able to do it.


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