Washington, D.C. – Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) today spoke on the Senate floor after the Senate passed a resolution to avert a government shutdown. Senator Schumer previewed what the Senate would consider in the next work period, including the Women’s Health Protection Act, Postal Reform, and legislation to lower costs. Below are Senator Schumer’s remarks:
It has been a busy and productive work period in the Senate: first, the good news is that we have kept the government open. It took some work, especially when the Senate rules lend themselves to delay and obstruction. Still, I thank Senators Leahy and Shelby, as well as Leader McConnell, for helping us get this done.
To have allowed the government to close would have caused undue hardship for millions of blameless Americans.
We’ve gotten other things done too in this work period: we passed forced arbitration reform, made progress to fix our Post Office, and confirmed more of the President’s nominees. Next session we’re picking up right where we left off to pass Postal Reform so we can send it to the President’s desk.
I have also taken the first procedural step for the Senate to consider the Women’s Health Protection Act. Across the country the assault on women’s health care has intensified to levels not seen in decades—so the Senate is going to vote when we return—on February 28th—to take action.
Democrats will also continue focusing on lower costs for everyday Americans, including by taking aim at the costs of insulin.
It is just preposterous, beyond preposterous that Americans with diabetes sometimes pay more than $600 just for a 40-day supply of insulin, so my colleague, Senator Warnock has introduced legislation that will cap insulin costs to just $35 a month.
There’s enormous interest in our caucus to pursue this proposal, so it will be a priority for Democrats in the weeks ahead. This has long been a bipartisan issue: as many as 20 states across the country—many with Republican legislatures and governors—have passed state-level insulin caps. There is no reason this shouldn’t be bipartisan in this body and I invite my Republican colleagues to join us in this effort.