Washington, D.C. – Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) today spoke at the White House signing ceremony for the Inflation Reduction Act. Below are Senator Schumer’s remarks:
Thank you, Rep. Clyburn, for that introduction. And I want to thank you, President Biden, for inviting us to the White House!
Thanks to my colleagues here today. This has been one of the most productive stretches in recent Senate history: from the first gun safety bill in decades, to strengthening NATO, to out-competing the Chinese Communist Party, to taking care of our veterans, and to top it all off, today we celebrate a groundbreaking achievement, the most important bill we have passed in a long time: President Biden will sign the Inflation Reduction Act into law today!
I am confident this bill will endure as one of the greatest legislative feats in decades: it will lower costs, create millions of good-paying jobs, and is the boldest climate bill ever!
Now in normal times, getting these bills done would be a huge achievement, but to do it now, with only fifty Democratic votes in the Senate, over an intransigent Republican minority, is nothing short of amazing. It shows how dedicated and persistent our caucus is. I want to give all fifty of my colleagues—a wonderful, diverse and dedicated group of fifty—huge credit for getting this bill over the finish line, huge credit.
I also want to thank Speaker Pelosi, all the Chairs of the Committees, Joe Manchin for working so hard to get this bill done, and of course the incredible, immensely dedicated staff who gave it their all to finishing this bill. Let’s have a round of applause for the great staff, White House, and House and Senate.
For years, the naysayers said we could never take on the big drug companies and lower the cost of prescription drugs, but now we have.
They said we could never take on entrenched big oil interests and get tough on climate change, but we have succeeded.
They said we’d never close tax loopholes for the wealthy and make the ultra-rich pay their fair share.
But we’ve gotten all these things done in one single bill!
For anyone who thought Washington was broken and couldn’t do big things, Democrats have shown real change is possible.
If the last two months could be summed up in a word, it would be persistence.
My dad, who died in November and would have been 99 on Flag Day, taught me a lesson: if you try to do the right thing, and if you persist and never give up, you can make the world a better place.
Well, that’s what has happened here today: we persisted and persisted and persisted and never gave up, and today it pays off. I know my dad is looking down and smiling.
Finally—and most importantly—thank you President Biden for your leadership. This has been a long and grueling process. We would not be here without you.
A year and a half ago, you laid the groundwork for this bill, and like us, you persisted every single day, working closely with my team and our caucus for more than a year to get this bill done.
The President deserves tremendous credit for this moment: he knew precisely when to step in and when to let negotiations play out.
He knew when to use the bully pulpit and when to bring people together, away from the spotlight. He made sure we never lost our focus on climate. The President’s vision, his dedication to our country, and his experience, made this moment possible. Thank you, President Biden.
After four years of a President who relished creating chaos, Americans are seeing what it looks like to have a President—and a Congress—that’s focused on delivering results that make their lives better.
Mr. President, you’ve restored dignity, respect and a sense of action back to the Oval Office. Thank you, thank you, thank you. It is my honor to turn it over now to you!