Members of Indiana and Michigan's congressional delegation issued statements after Senate and House approval Wednesday night to end the federal government shutdown and raise the debt ceiling.
Rep. Jackie Walorski (R-Ind.) was among those in the House who voted against the plan and said this:
“As I have said before, I do not support defaulting on our nation’s debt. Tonight, I am glad that a deal was reached to temporarily avoid default and reopen the government, allowing more time for the House and Senate to reach a long-term compromise. However, without any spending cuts or budget reforms aimed at getting our fiscal house in order, I could not support this plan.
“Moving forward, I will continue to work across the aisle on bipartisan solutions to balance the budget, cut spending, and get our national debt under control. I remain committed to participating in these important discussions until we agree on commonsense policies that properly support our hardworking families, seniors, veterans, and servicemembers.”
Senator Joe Donnelly spoke with members of the Indiana media to discuss the Senate’s bipartisan agreement that would reopen the federal government and ensure the country continues to pay its bills. He also discussed his role as one of 14 senators from both parties who worked on a bipartisan framework that helped break the gridlock.
When asked about what he heard from Hoosiers about the shutdown, Senator Donnelly said they were asking Congress to get back to work. He said, “Every day we spent working on this was one day we couldn’t be working on putting more Hoosiers into additional employment. This country works best when every mom and dad is working and has a chance to take care of their kids and their families. And that’s my focus, and I think that’s what everybody back home wants. Look: run the shop, run it right, keep the spending down, create more jobs.”
Additional comments from the call follow.
“I approach this job that I have been given the honor of having with the common sense we have as Hoosiers, the common sense that I pledged to bring to the U.S. Senate if I was elected last year. And that means working with both parties to get things done, it means working to be a constructive part of the process. This is what people of Indiana expect from me and what I try to do every day.
“I have for the past few weeks been a part of a group of now 14 senators…6 Democrats, 1 Independent, and 7 Republicans who have met several times over the past couple of weeks to putting together a bipartisan framework to get the government operating and ensure we continue to pay our bills. This is about the jobs in Indiana, making sure we don’t have any interruptions in creating more jobs, about our families making ends meet. It’s about our economy. It’s about our nation’s reputation.
“I think we need more people focused on what’s best for Indiana, what’s best for our nation, and less about what’s best in politics. This is not about Democrat, this is not about Republican, it’s about America. That’s what Hoosiers sent me here to do, and that’s what I have tried to do the past few weeks and since my first day in office.”
U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.) released the following statement after tonight’s bipartisan 81-18 Senate vote to end the government shutdown and prevent the economic damage of a national default:
“I am relieved and pleased that the Senate finally came together in a bipartisan, responsible way to end the shutdown and avert more hardship for families and our economy. Now Congress needs to get back to what it should have been focusing on all along--working together to help businesses create jobs and developing a budget that continues to invest in the future while reducing the deficit.
“It is unacceptable that a small group of Tea Party Republicans shut down the government and once again endangered our nation’s credit rating because they were unwilling to work in a bipartisan way to solve problems. Creating manufactured crises like this disrupts economic growth and creates tremendous uncertainty for businesses and families. These harmful tactics must come to an end.
“Bipartisan cooperation to solve problems is possible. We brought Democrats and Republicans together to pass a bipartisan Farm Bill in the Senate that helps create jobs and cuts spending. Now that the shutdown is over, Congress needs to work across the aisle to strengthen our economy and reduce the deficit. Passing a bipartisan Farm Bill would be a great first step.”
Congressman Fred Upton, R-St. Joseph, issued the following statement in anticipation of this evening’s vote to reopen the federal government and fund federal agencies through January 15, 2014, as well as prevent a default on the nation’s debt obligations by temporarily extending the debt limit until February 7, 2014.
Upton says the bipartisan agreement will give both sides time to work out a long-term solution to address the national debt and deficits. He plans to vote in favor of the agreement, which is expected to be approved this evening by both the House of Representatives and Senate.
“Now it is time to put Humpty Dumpty back together again and turn away from the government dysfunction that has crippled our country. I stand committed to working in a bipartisan manner to seek common-sense reforms that can help our still struggling economy. No question that we had to avoid default and pay our bills, but we are long overdue to cut reckless spending and reduce the deficit. There are plenty of issues like the Farm Bill, immigration, energy independence, and the new health care law that need constructive attention rather than inaction.”