Washington, D.C. – Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi took to the House floor today calling on House Republicans to end their assault on women’s health and act to create jobs. Below are her remarks:
“Thank you Madam Speaker. Madam Speaker, do you ever wonder what the American people think when they tune into CSPAN to see what business is being attended to on the floor of the House? Do you ever wonder what the American people think when they’re saying: ‘What is happening to create jobs, what is happening to agree to a budget that will promote growth, reduce the deficit for our country? What is happening to make progress for the American people?’ Do you ever wonder about that when they tune in and see debate on bills that are going no place? Do they think: ‘Well here it is, just another day in the life of the majority Republican controlled Congress, another day without a jobs bill, another day without a budget agreement, another day ignoring the top priorities of the American people by the Republican majority?”
“Our constituents have made it clear time and time again: we must work together to create jobs, to strengthen the middle class, and to grow the economy. Yet, once again, Republicans refuse to listen. Instead, we are debating legislation that endangers women’s health and that disrespects the judgment of the American women and their doctors on how to make judgments about women’s health. This bill would deny care to women in the most desperate circumstances, sad and desperate circumstances. It is yet another Republican attempt to endanger women. It is disrespectful to women. It is unsafe for families and it is unconstitutional.
“At the start of the Congress, the Republicans take great pride, and we join them in that pride in reading the Constitution from start to finish. It’s a great day, it’s a great document. But, then the Republicans proceed to ignore it. One example; this clearly unconstitutional bill.
“Each day Republicans claim they want to reduce the role of government except when it comes to women’s most personal decisions about their reproductive health. Leading groups of medical professionals and experts across the country believe that this legislation is dangerous and wrong. That is the message we have seen from doctors and health care providers who have pointed out that this legislation would put medical professionals in an untenable position when treating women in need, women in need.
“That is the same message we have heard from national religious organizations who have called on us to offer compassion, support, and respect for a woman and her family facing these difficult circumstances. I have a copy of a letter from 16 national religious groups that was sent to Speaker Boehner and to me as Democratic Leader, which I wish to submit for the record.
Speaker Pro Tempore. Without objection.
“Thank you Madam Speaker. Just another day in the Republican Congress, more extremism, more dead-end bills and less progress on the real challenges facing all Americans. The American people want bipartisanship. They want progress, they don’t want obstruction and delaying tactics.
“Enough is enough. Let’s vote ‘no’ on this dangerous bill. Instead, let’s get to work together to work on a fair budget that replaces the across-the-board cuts of the sequester, and with a plan to create jobs, grow the economy, and strengthen the middle class as we reduce the deficit. Let us act now to put people to work and strengthen the middle class. I say it over and over. Let’s discard this assault on women’s health and work together to make real progress for the American people. I urge my colleagues to vote ‘no.’
“I yield back the balance of my time.”