Shelby Urges Democrats to Pass a Bipartisan CR Package
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Senate Appropriations Committee Vice Chairman Richard Shelby (R-Ala.) today spoke on the Senate floor regarding the urgency of passing a bipartisan continuing resolution (CR). During his remarks, the Vice Chairman urged his Democratic colleagues to adopt S.2789, a clean CR that maintains government operations through December 3, 2021, and includes resources for disaster aid and assistance for Afghan allies. The package, introduced last week by Shelby and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), also contains funding for the Iron Dome to bolster Israel’s defense capacity and does not include language to increase the debt limit to cover Democrats’ spending spree.
Vice Chairman Shelby stated, “The Republican Leader has been very clear. We will not support any effort to increase the debt limit. … This is not complicated. There is a simple solution – take up and pass a bill that was negotiated on a bipartisan, bicameral basis which has support on both sides of the aisle. A bill that keeps the government open, provides much needed disaster assistance to storm-ravaged areas of our country, and delivers the aid necessary to address the Afghanistan withdrawal crisis. That bill is S.2789, the Shelby-McConnell bill.”
Shelby’s full remarks, as prepared, are as follows:
“Thank you Madam President. I had hoped to be standing here today making a statement in support of the bill before us.
“For weeks, Chairman Leahy and I, along with the Chairs and Ranking Members of the subcommittees, worked cooperatively to produce a bipartisan package.
“A package that includes a continuing resolution to keep the government operating, as well as emergency supplemental funding for disaster relief and support for those who needed rescuing following the President’s hasty withdrawal from Afghanistan.
“Bipartisan support for anything is a rare commodity around here and it is something that should be embraced and emulated.
“We nearly got our work done, as appropriators so often do, but larger forces intervened.
“Leadership on the other side of the aisle intervened to pursue partisanship over comity; sabotage over constructive engagement by unnecessarily forcing a debt limit increase into what would otherwise be a bipartisan package.
“The Republican Leader has been very clear. We will not support any effort to increase the debt limit.
“Madam President, the road to success was clearly marked. Nevertheless, my democratic colleagues chose to drive this package right into a ditch rather than embrace a bipartisan path forward.
“Madam President, this is not complicated. There is a simple solution – take up and pass a bill that was negotiated on a bipartisan, bicameral basis which has support on both sides of the aisle.
“A bill that keeps the government open, provides much needed disaster assistance to storm-ravaged areas of our country, and delivers the aid necessary to address the Afghanistan withdrawal crisis.
“That bill is S.2789, the Shelby-McConnell bill.
“Madam President, if we don’t take that path, I believe my colleagues on the other side of the aisle owe the American people answers.
“Why did they choose to undermine a bipartisan effort to provide the American people with desperately-needed disaster relief?
“Why did they choose to ignore the immediate resource needs of Afghans who deserve our support?
“And why are they threatening to shut the government down when we have an alternative that would avoid that outcome? Madam President, this does not have to happen.
“Instead of accepting victory, my Democrat colleagues are embracing defeat and creating a new crisis.
“It is a perilous path they are putting the country on. But it is not too late.
“The majority can reverse course and put us back on track by immediately passing the Shelby-McConnell bill. It will keep the government open and provide much-needed emergency funding.
“That is the bill we should be considering. I urge the majority to do so.
“Madam President, I yield the floor and note the absence of a quorum.”
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