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Majority Leader Schumer Floor Remarks On Government Funding Legislation

Washington, D.C.   Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) today spoke on the Senate floor on the need to pass the Continuing Resolution. Below are Senator Schumer’s remarks:

Last night, by a vote of 72-23, the Senate agreed to advance a shell for a Continuing Resolution, to keep the government open until December 16th and avoid a needless government shutdown.

As my colleagues know, government funding runs out Friday at midnight, whereupon a partial shutdown would begin if we do not act. We must work fast to finish the process here on the floor, send a CR to the House, and then send it to the President’s desk before the clock runs out.

With cooperation from our Republican colleagues, the Senate can finish its work of keeping the government open as soon as tomorrow. There is every reason in the world to get to yes, and I look forward to working with Leader McConnell to make sure we can do that and not bump up into the Friday midnight deadline.

I urge my colleagues on both sides to work with us together to speed this process as quickly as we can through the floor, especially since the CR contains many things both parties support.

I’m talking about billions in disaster aid to help communities in Kentucky, Louisiana, Alabama, Texas, Alaska and Puerto Rico battered by floods and disasters over the past year, as well as help for New Mexico to recover from its worst wildfire in state history.

We must also renew the FDA user fees for the next five years, to prevent the slowdown of the review of innovative drugs and medical devices so needed by our people and prevent thousands of workers – good, hardworking workers who help approve these drugs and make sure they’re safe – from being furloughed.

And crucially, we must also approve critical emergency aid for the people of Ukraine. Over the past few weeks it’s become clear that U.S. assistance has made an enormous difference in helping Ukraine defend itself. I want to salute President Biden. He’s done a masterful job in helping the Ukrainians and leading us. But the Congress, in a bipartisan way, has enthusiastically supported help for Ukraine. I certainly enthusiastically support it and we have to continue. The conflict in Ukraine is far from over, and our obligation remains to help them however we can beat the brutal, nasty, vicious Putin.

I want to thank my colleagues on both sides of the aisle who have worked day and night to put this CR together, especially my friend Senator Leahy, Chairman of the Appropriations Committee, and Ranking Member Shelby for his good work. They’re both retiring; let’s hope this is the last CR they do so we get an omnibus done in December. I also want to recognize all of my other colleagues on the Appropriations Committee and in the Senate, and all their great staffs who’ve worked hard to make sure we don’t have a needless shutdown.