Transcript: Sen. Patty Murray’s (D-Washington) remarks on the Senate’s passage of H.R. 2775 to re-open the government and raise the debt ceiling – Oct. 16, 2013

Partial transcript of Sen. Patty Murray’s (D-Washington) remarks on the Senate’s passage of H.R. 2775 to re-open the government and raise the debt ceiling – Oct. 16, 2013:

Well, tonight, I am delighted to join this leadership team who has worked so hard, and my hat’s off to Sen. [Harry] Reid for his tremendous work and passion as well as my colleagues Sen. [Chuck] Schumer and [Dick] Durbin, who never gave up, who stood up for our families and our communities that are hurting, and tonight we join with all of them breathing a sigh of relief.

It took far too long. Far too many families were hurt while we worked to end this crisis. But there’s finally a light at the end of the tunnel.

Here in the Senate, as you saw tonight, Democrats and Republicans worked together on a path out of this crisis. Doesn’t solve every problem today but the path we are on will now open the government, take the threat of default off the table, and allow Democrats and Republicans to now get in a room and negotiate without asking the American people to pay the price.

I’m very glad personally that after 6 months of going out on the floor time and time again and asking to go to budget conference – 21 times before this – we are finally now in an agreement to work towards a bipartisan budget negotiation.

The budgets that passed the House and Senate 6 months ago are very different – there’s no doubt about it. Nobody thinks it’s going to be easy to get to a deal. But I would tell you that I would not have fought so hard for so long to get in a room with Chairman [Paul] Ryan if I didn’t think we could find common ground and work something out.

I know that Democrats are willing to compromise to get a deal and I’m hopeful Republicans will as well.

Now that Republicans have seen the consequences of a government shutdown, I don’t think they’re going to be anxious to repeat this again. And now that it’s clear that the debt limit is going to be raised and can’t be used to extract political concessions, any future threats will ring hollow.

So we now head into the next phase – the budget conference – to have an actual negotiation, we will have a negotiation, not a hostage situation.

I know there are budget changes Republicans want and there are budget changes that we want, and I think we can now work together towards a deal that solves these problems from both sides, and I think all of us, most importantly, stop lurching from crisis to crisis.

So I’m very proud of the Senate tonight for working together and stand up to end the pain of the American people and go to work on the bipartisan negotiations and that we’re finally going to do exactly what we said all along: We’re going to open the government; we’re going to pay our bills; and then we’re going to sit down and we are going to negotiate.


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