Merkley Statement on CR Vote

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Oregon’s Senator Jeff Merkley released the following statement after the Senate voted on a Continuing Resolution to re-open the government through February 8:

“While spending the past year jamming through a legislative wish-list for the privileged and powerful, President Trump and his congressional allies have time and time again neglected the priorities of the American people. Funding for children’s health care and community health centers has lapsed; the opioid crisis has gone unaddressed; and hundreds of thousands of DREAMers have been left to live in limbo. This unwillingness to govern reached a peak on Friday, when Trump and Republicans brought us the Trump Shutdown rather than reach a deal on these critical, bipartisan priorities.

“I persistently argued that we should keep the government open while we negotiate, but that we need a shorter timeframe – one- to three-day increments – to hold Trump’s and McConnell’s feet to the fire. Unfortunately, the Senate Majority Leader struck down the continuing resolutions that would have accomplished this.

“My concern with the three-week extension adopted today is that the Republican leadership will fail to negotiate for 15 of the next 17 days. Furthermore, Leader McConnell’s track record of keeping his ‘commitments’ is thin at best. For that reason, I voted no today.

“I stand ready to work with all of my colleagues to make urgently-needed progress on these critical issues facing the American people. It’s past time that we governed ‘of, by and for the people,’ not just for the privileged and powerful.”