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Majority Leader Schumer Floor Remarks On The Senate Taking Important Steps Toward Avoiding An Unnecessary Government Shutdown

Washington, D.C. – Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) today spoke on the Senate floor on the immediate need to continue working to pass a continuing resolution to avoid a government shutdown. Below are Senator Schumer’s remarks, which can also be viewed here:

Last night, the Senate took an important step towards passing a temporary extension of government funding and avoiding an unnecessary government shutdown.

We had a strong, bipartisan vote last night, with 68 members in favor of moving forward with the CR, and that number would have been higher were it not for weather delays. It’s a clear signal that majorities in both parties in the Senate want to pass this funding extension as quickly as we can.

Now, if both sides continue working in good faith, we can have the CR passed by tomorrow.

If both sides continue working in good faith, we can avoid a shutdown without last-minute drama or needless anxiety for so many Americans.

There’s every reason in the world to make this an easy, uncomplicated, and drama free process. I urge my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to do just that: work in good faith. We’re willing to cooperate – as always – with the other side to keep this process moving, but Republican members need to be realistic and practical about how much time we have left before the shutdown deadline.

What the Senate cannot do right now is mimic the chaos in the House, where a vocal minority of hard right rabble-rousers want to bully their way into making a shutdown happen. Amazingly, the hard right thinks preventing a shutdown is somehow a “surrender,” as the House Freedom Caucus suggested a few days ago.

Only in the bizarre world of the hard right is it a surrender to keep the government open.

Only in the twisted logic of MAGA extremism is it a disaster to extend funding so that VA offices remain open, food inspectors remain on the job, nutrition funding remains in place. All of these programs would be at risk if the government shuts down on Friday. But to the hard right, a shutdown is precisely the point: they want to create pain and chaos for the American people in order to bully their way into getting what they want.

But even now, many Republicans in the House are exhausted by the hard right’s bully tactics. The Republican majority can’t get anything done over in House because the hard right keeps sabotaging things on the floor, even their own appropriations bills. The hard right – and the House Republican leadership’s all-to-often willingness to go along with them – is perhaps the biggest reason why this Republican majority is one of the least impressive, least productive, and least competent in modern history.

But for all their bullying and bluster, all their attempts at intimidation, the hard right’s efforts are going to end in failure. If the majority of senators and representatives continue working in good faith – Democrat and Republican – we are going to keep the government open. We are going to continue on the appropriations process.

So I urge my colleagues once again, let’s work together: let’s work together to pass a CR quickly, so we avoid a shutdown with time to spare.