Murray Floor Remarks on FY24 Funding and Preventing a Needless Shutdown


Washington, D.C. — Today, U.S. Senator Patty Murray (D-WA), Chair of the Senate Appropriations Committee, spoke on the Senate floor about the state of FY24 funding talks and what’s needed to pass final bills and prevent a government shutdown. 


Senator Murray’s full remarks, as delivered, are below:

“Thank you, M. President. 

“‘We have the means and just enough time this week to avoid a shutdown and to make serious headway on annual appropriations. But, as always, the task at hand will require that everyone rows in the same direction, toward clean appropriations and away from poison pills.’

“Mr. President, those aren’t my words. The Republican Leader said that yesterday—and he is absolutely right.

“And I just heard the Speaker said he doesn’t want a shutdown after meeting with the President—that’s good.

“Let’s be clear: a shutdown that hits air traffic controllers, food inspectors, and so much more, would be incredibly damaging, and it would make getting all of our funding bills done that much more chaotic and challenging.

“There is no reason for a shutdown—not if both sides, and both chambers, cooperate in a bipartisan way.

“So I am working around the clock to wrap up several spending bills by Friday.

“And if we need to pass a very short-term CR along with whatever bills we can finish this week, Democrats are ready to make it happen so we can prevent a completely unnecessary shutdown, and continue making progress on our bills.

“M. President, I’ve been here before, too many times, and I can tell you a shutdown is costly and it is harmful to our economy.

“It hurts real people, federal employees, not to mention families, seniors, anyone who depends on basic services working smoothly, and it makes absolutely no sense. It doesn’t save us money—it costs us more!

“It is no secret: the biggest obstacle right now has been far-right Republican poison pills that were never truly on the table. They were always going to be nonstarters.

“But we have made really good progress on these first few bills, and we can get them done if extreme demands are pushed aside.

“We cannot let a few far-right extremists derail the basic functioning of government. 

“There’s no reason to listen to them, and there is no way we are going to let them impose extreme policies that go against the basic values of the American people. 

“So I hope bipartisanship will prevail. Let’s show the public that Congress still understands a few very simple things: shutdowns are bad, and working together is good.

“Let’s move past the poison pills and on to the hard work of legislating.

“Thank you.”