Senator Lamar Alexander (R - TN)
“Tennesseans elected me to make the government work for taxpayers, not to shut it down. We are close to agreement on legislation to increase military spending, extend the children’s health insurance program, lower insurance rates for self-employed people, provide disaster relief and begin to deal with immigration issues. Democrats are voting to shut down the government; I’m voting to keep it open and solve problems. There is no excuse whatsoever for shutting down the government."
Senator John Barrasso - (R - WY)
“Nobody benefits from shutting down the government, especially when there are ongoing threats to the security and safety of Americans. I voted today to fund our military and extend for six years the Children’s Health Insurance Program for needy families. It is irresponsible that some sought this shutdown over their agenda on illegal immigration.”
Senator Michael F. Bennet - (D - CO)
"This is no way to run our government. In the last 10 years I've been in the Senate, we have passed 36 temporary budget extensions. Tonight's would have been the 37th such half measure. Another four-week continuing resolution would put us right back in the same position. Our own Department of Defense has made it abundantly clear how damaging these resolutions are to our military's ability to train and maintain its readiness to fight and protect our nation.
"Without a strategy, the President chose to end the DACA protections and urged Congress to legislate a solution. In response, a bipartisan group of senators worked for months and reached an agreement to protect the Dreamers. This should be part of any long-term budget package.
"In addition to this issue, we had substantial bipartisan support to fix how we fund the Forest Service and fight our wildfires, and to provide long-term funding for our children's health insurance program and emergency relief to help us recover from recent disasters. These should have been included as well.
"I am convinced that there are people of goodwill in this chamber who want to reach a resolution on behalf of the American people, and we should continue working until we do so."
Senator Shelley Moore Capito - (R-WV)
(With U.S. Representatives Evan Jenkins (R-W.Va.) and David McKinley (R-W.Va.) )
“We proudly cast a vote to do right by West Virginians—to keep the government open, to fund our nation’s military, and to reauthorize CHIP for six years. Sadly, Senate Democrats chose to play politics instead of work with us to get to the 60 votes needed in the Senate to prevent a shutdown. Senator Schumer, you are putting your political agenda ahead of what’s best for West Virginia. We have 21,391 children who rely on CHIP, and they’re waiting for you to help protect their health insurance. It’s time for you to set aside partisanship and work on the issues immediately before us so we can reopen the government, pay our troops, and pass a long-term CHIP reauthorization.”
Senator Thomas R. Carper - (D - DE)
“Anyone who knows me knows I believe that, if we work hard enough, there is almost always a principled solution to be found for any problem. This bill, which fails to address longstanding bipartisan priorities, is not that solution. Congress and the Trump Administration have got to stop scrambling at the last minute and governing through continuing resolutions that are woefully inefficient, wasteful and demoralizing.
“In Matthew 25, the scripture asks, ‘when I was a stranger in your land, did you welcome me?’ The idea of sending nearly one million Dreamers away from the only home they’ve ever known is not only heartless, but it flies in the face of our nation’s economic self-interest. A key ingredient in continuing our economic expansion is ensuring we have a workforce that enables employers from coast to coast to fill the millions of jobs that are going unfilled today. At a time when employers across the country are struggling to find high-quality workers to fill millions of jobs, it’s insane that we would send packing nearly one million hardworking young men and women who are striving for the American dream. That sounds like economic malfeasance to me.
“The months have come and gone, and Dreamers are still living in uncertainty and fear of deportation. Meanwhile, millions of families have been desperately waiting on Congress to pass long-term funding for children’s health insurance and community health centers. Communities across the country are struggling to rebuild in the aftermath of disasters. Americans from all walks of life are suffering as our country grapples with a deadly opioid epidemic.
“We in Congress have run out of excuses to explain why we’ve put these and other urgent issues on the backburner, and relied on multiple stopgap spending bills to keep our government up and running on autopilot. It’s an irresponsible way to govern that enables Congress and the Trump Administration to continue lurching from one manufactured crisis to the next without addressing some of the greatest challenges facing our nation.
“During his meeting with our Democratic leader in the White House yesterday, President Trump was offered the one thing that he’s sought the most—authorization for building a wall along our nation’s southern border. Apparently, that’s not enough. Walking away from that offer has to make me think that the president really meant what we said when he said previously that our country ‘needs a good shutdown.’ In truth, there’s no such thing as a ‘good shutdown.’
“If President Trump and my Republican colleagues come to the table, willing to negotiate in good faith, they’ll find earnest partners in me and my fellow Democrats. It’s time we come together and strike a deal.”
Senator Cathrine Cortez Masto - (D - NV)
“Every Member of Congress must come together and work to find a solution to end the Trump shutdown. I will not go home and will not take a salary for as long as my constituents are being impacted by President Trump’s irresponsible choice to shut down the government. Senator McConnell and President Trump have an opportunity to work in a bipartisan way for the benefit of all Americans. It is time to work together on a bipartisan compromise that puts Dreamers on a pathway to citizenship and ensures the long-term health, economic and security needs of all Nevadans.”
U.S. Senator Catherine Cortez Masto (D-Nev.) announced that she will donate her salary as a United States Senator to a charity in the State of Nevada for every day the government remains shutdown by President Trump and Senator McConnell.
Senator Michael B. Enzi - (R - WY)
“I voted to avoid a government shutdown and fund a critical health insurance program for low-income children, but sadly the bill failed to advance,” Enzi said. “While short-term funding bills are not ideal, at this time it is certainly better than the alternative, which could mean limiting services for military families, veterans and countless other Americans. And it appears that some of my colleagues are unwilling to fund the government not because they oppose what is in the bill, but because of unrelated demands on immigration. Congress should continue its bipartisan negotiations on border security and immigration, but in the meantime should not hold government funding hostage over it. I hope my colleagues will reassess their priorities.”
Senator Deb Fischer- (R - NE)
“I’m disappointed the Senate was unable to work together to fund the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) for six years, take care of our military, and keep the government open. I voted for this measure and I am a cosponsor of a bill to extend the CHIP program. I strongly believe we need to get this done for children in Nebraska and across the nation.”
Senator Cory Gardner (R-CO)
“Opposing this funding legislation is support for a government shutdown, and I believe that approach is unacceptable for Coloradans,” said Gardner. “I voted to keep the government open because our military, veterans, children’s health insurance programs, and fundamental government services like opioid treatment centers should not be held hostage for political reasons. I will continue to work with any of my colleagues who are interested in finding a long-term solution to fund our government.
“I will also continue to work with members on both sides of the aisle to gain support for bipartisan immigration reform that includes border security measures and protections for Dreamers, but shutting down the government over the issue won’t get us closer to a solution.”
Senator Lindsey Graham - (R - SC)
“Leader McConnell mentioned last night he was willing to make a proposal for a CR through February 8 and seek resolution on immigration, disaster relief, military and government funding, CHIP, and other health care related issues. I would support such a proposal.
“I also agree with Senator McConnell we are close to a resolution on all these issues.
“After extensive discussions with Senators, on both sides of the aisle, I believe such a proposal would pass if it was understood that after February 8, the Senate would move to an immigration debate with an open amendment process if no agreement has been reached with the White House and House of Representatives.
“This will guarantee the Border Security/DACA issue will be brought forward with an open amendment process for resolution no later than February 8th. I’m confident we can find a solution to Border Security/DACA once we start the process. Success on this will lead to a breakthrough on all other issues.
“After my discussions with numerous senators on both sides of the aisle last night it is clear to me a commitment to move to immigration after February 8th is the key to ending the government shutdown and finding resolution on all the outstanding issues.
“However, having the time only matters if there is the will to get the job done. General Mattis’s statement yesterday that defense cuts and continuing resolutions have done more damage to the American military than any enemy on the battlefield was very sobering. Military necessity —combined with the reality that DACA recipient lives will soon be turned upside down — provides the incentive for Congress to get it right once and for all.
“In light of these realities, I’m hopeful there will be overwhelming bipartisan support for the February 8 proposal.”
Senator Orrin G. Hatch (R - UT)
“Bipartisan majorities in both the House and Senate supported a non-controversial bill to keep the government funded. But Democrats filibustered this bill, voting instead to shut down the government and block funding for CHIP. They own this mess. But now we need to work together to clean it up. And we won’t make any progress by continuing to invent imaginary deadlines. Now is not the time for political brinkmanship but for responsible governance. Millions are depending on us to do the right thing—and we cannot let them down. So let’s get this done, and let’s get it done right.”
Senator James M. Inhofe (R - OK)
“I have been through every shutdown in the last 30 years. This is the first time there can be no question if you want to say whose fault it is…it is the Democrats.
“Let me tell you, Mr. President, I don’t know of one Republican serving in the United States Senate that isn’t very sympathetic to the [DACA] kids, and particularly the ones who were not here by their own choice. They didn’t personally violate any laws. We want to take care of them. We’re going to take care of them. Our president is going to take care of them. …
“Yesterday, it was Secretary Mattis. He was very clear…he said a shutdown would have a ‘terrible impact’ on two million men, women and their families who serve in our military. A terrible impact. Now, there are approximately 200,000 troops currently forward deployed who are now doing their jobs without pay. Secretary Mattis said all maintenance operations for the military will cease as long as there is a shutdown. That’s all maintenance. When you go through a starvation diet as we have over eight years of the previous administration, the first thing that is always hit is maintenance because that’s not obvious. …
“In Oklahoma, we especially know what’s important – our civilian workforce. The civilian workforce, by the way, in a shutdown is going to be out of business…Tinker, the Air Force depot that performs the maintenance and overhauls our planes, they’re going to be shut down. We have another one in McAlester, Oklahoma. It’s one that has all civilian employees. We have one uniformed officer and all the rest of them are civilian employees… Over half of the civilian workforce will be sent home and those projects will be halted. The impact will ripple for weeks and potentially months beyond the shutdown; once we open back up there will be a high cost of catching back up and getting things back on schedule.
“We have to recognize we’re in this threatened position, and a lot of Democrats have long claimed support for the military, but when the rubber meets the road, they have the problem that was established when President Obama was president—that we’re not going to do anything for the military to rebuild the military unless we put an equal amount of money into the nondefense programs.…
“I sometimes tell people that up until 1964 we were spending half of all the revenues that came into the federal government on defending America. And that’s what we’re supposed to be doing…You know what it is now, Mr. President? It is 15 percent. So we’re only devoting 15 percent of our total revenues to defending America. …
“The one thing that shouldn’t happen at in this time in our history is to have a shutdown. I think about my state of Oklahoma. Six hundred and sixty-three (663) Oklahoma Army National Guard soldiers are being sent home from planned training. Over 100,000 National Guardsmen are being sent home around the country…
“As we face threats from North Korea, Iran, Islamic extremism and Russian aggression-- not to mention our severe readiness crisis-- we can’t afford the negative effects of a shutdown.”
Senator Johnny Isakson - (R - GA)
“It’s time to stop the theatrics and get to the business of governing.
“For too long, we have been kicking the can down the road on an operating budget for our government. A continuing resolution is not the path I would choose for good governing. Now, we can’t even put aside partisan differences and agree to move forward on a continuing resolution under which we all agree on the big underlying priorities. We can’t even agree to extend the Children’s Health Insurance Program for six years so that low-income kids and their families can have access to the health care they need.
“We should immediately be funding children’s health care, our men and women in uniform, our veterans and our seniors as well as other critical functions of the government and not playing political games with our country and our citizens. Shutting down the government is the wrong solution and always causes bigger problems in the end.”
Senator Ron Johnson- (R - WI)
“Unfortunately, Senator Baldwin and 43 of her colleagues decided to play politics with people’s lives by refusing to fund health care for vulnerable children, support for the finest among us serving in the military, and the rest of government.”
Senator Tim Kaine (D - VA)
With Senator Mark R.Warner (D - VA)
“A year after Donald Trump became President, he and Republican leaders in Congress have delivered the shutdown he’s been calling for. Those who will suffer the most from his actions are federal employees and DoD personnel in Virginia who have already been hurt as we lurch from one budget crisis to the next. We put forward offer after offer tonight to prevent a shutdown and keep the government open over the weekend so we could work together to finalize a deal. Republicans rejected every single one. Virginians are counting on us to pass a bill that funds our military, education and health care programs, extends the Children’s Health Insurance Program, and protects Dreamers. We’re still at the table so we can reach that deal, and Republicans should reopen the government immediately and join us.”
Senator Angus S. King Jr. (I - ME)
“For 20 years, Congress hasn’t had a budget on time. Instead, we’ve opted to kick difficult decisions a little bit further down the road through continuing resolutions, leaving important priorities unfinished. This isn’t what our constituents sent us here to do, and we shouldn’t continue taking half-steps on issues that can be resolved in a bipartisan fashion. Nobody wanted to shut the government down, and we didn’t have to – there was enough middle ground between both sides to reach an agreement if only we’d worked together earlier in the process. Moving forward, I am open to a short-term continuing resolution that allows us to finalize the details of a deal, but first we need the framework of that deal. Now is the time for responsible governing; I hope Congressional leadership will rise to the task.”
Senator Patrick J. Leahy (D - VT)
Mr. President, months ago, President Donald Trump called for a government shutdown, and through his leadership of chaos and his inability to govern or keep his word, he got exactly what he wanted.
Make no mistake, it is the Majority’s responsibility to produce a bill to send to the President. If they cannot get 60 votes because they refuse to negotiate with Democrats, that is THEIR responsibility. All they needed was nine Democrats, and they could not get it done – in fact they lost four of their own members. They could not get it done because Republicans shut Democrats out of their closed-door meetings – disenfranchising more than half of the American people -- and only appealed for our support after they had written a bill without our input.
On the first day of this Trump Shutdown, the anniversary of his inauguration, we are 112 days into the fiscal year. For 112 days, Republican leadership told us they “just need more time” to negotiate a bipartisan deal.
But they spent that time pursuing a hyper-partisan agenda over the last year. They stripped health care from millions of Americans. They rolled back common sense regulations. And they passed a tax bill for big corporations and the super wealthy on the backs of the middle class and working people.
This was not time spent negotiating in good faith on the budget, or the Children’s Health Insurance Program, or for veterans, or Community Health Centers, or Dreamers, or a comprehensive disaster relief package.
Last night, Republican leadership asked us for yet another month to negotiate. Another month into the fiscal year. Another month of not addressing the consequences of sequestration by reaching a bipartisan deal that increases spending on our military and invests in our communities. And another month where we fail to adequately take care of our veterans.
Our military leaders agree. We cannot govern by continuing resolution, and the military cannot function under sequestration. We need a budget deal. It was Defense Secretary Mattis who said: “[F]or all the heartache caused by the loss of our troops during these wars, no enemy in the field has done more to harm the readiness of our military than sequestration.”
Last night, I could not in good conscience support another continuing resolution without even the promise of a bipartisan deal.
Democrats have been ready and willing and asking to negotiate since June. In July, I offered a path forward that would have raised the budget caps set in place by the Budget Control Act. This plan would have increased spending for our military by $54 billion and increased investments in our domestic priorities by $54 billion. Parity has always been the path forward. It has allowed us to both strengthen our military and invest in our infrastructure, improve education, combat the opioid epidemic, and address the needs of our veterans. These are bipartisan priorities shared by my friends on both sides of the aisle, in both chambers of Congress, and by the American public.
But for 112 days now, Republican leadership kicked the can down the road, casting aside the basic responsibility of Congress to fund the federal government. They gave us this government shutdown, and at the head of their charge was the careening leadership and chaos of President Trump.
President Trump was for extending CHIP in the House bill, and then he was against it. The President said he would sign any bipartisan deal we brought to his desk to protect the Dreamers and increase border security, and then he scoffed at a bipartisan deal that met his terms. This is not steady-as-he-goes leadership.
If we cannot trust the word of the President when we know he is only a tweet away from changing his mind, why should we trust him when he says he will take care of our veterans, or get serious about the opioid epidemic? Why should we trust his word when he says he wants to protect the Dreamers?
After promising to treat DACA recipients with “great heart,” President Trump and Republicans instead held our nation’s Dreamers hostage. They caved to xenophobic voices within their party. President Trump rejected a bipartisan deal—the only bipartisan DACA deal—which Senators Graham, Durbin and others specifically crafted to meet the president’s demands. As we speak, 122 Dreamers lose their status each day. And we know that on March 5th hundreds of thousands of DACA recipients will begin to lose their status due to President Trump’s actions. Republicans now argue there is no urgency to provide protections to Dreamers. But that couldn’t be further from the truth. And the Trump Administration has acknowledged to Congress that implementing any Dream legislation will take up to six months - during which tens of thousands more could lose their status. Since President Trump decided to revoke their protected status, these hundreds of thousands of Dreamers have had to live with fear and anxiety every day that their status is not resolved.
President Trump’s views of this program seem to change constantly, almost daily, leaving any observer prone to suffering whiplash. Dreamers have no reason to believe that President Trump will not prioritize them for deportation. Indeed, his administration has asked the Supreme Court to immediately nullify a district court decision that protected DACA recipients. And his administration appears to have no sense of enforcement priorities. It has unabashedly detained a 10-year old Texas girl with cerebral palsy and deported a Michigan father with no criminal record who came to this country as a child 30 years ago.
Even the Majority Leader is uncertain of what the President wants for the Dreamers or for any path forward for that matter. The Majority Leader said earlier this week: “As soon as we figure out what [President Trump] is for, then I would be convinced that we were not just spinning our wheels.”
Well, we are spinning our wheels in the Trump Shutdown because Republican leadership waited for guidance from the President instead of doing their jobs, working with us, and sending a bipartisan deal to his desk. We are spinning our wheels because President Trump repeatedly called for a government shutdown, and he got exactly what he wanted.
Today, medical research has ground to a halt. Today, in Vermont and across the Nation, hundreds of thousands of federal workers are furloughed, through no fault of their own. In Vermont and across the Nation, every additional hour of the Trump Shutdown deals another blow to the men and women trying to recover from opioid addiction. Every hour the burden of the Trump Shutdown should weigh heavier on his shoulders. Because there is only one person in country who wanted this shutdown, and that is President Trump.
The Trump Shutdown is not and was not necessary. We have always had all the pieces. We all want to raise the budget caps set in place by the Budget Control Act and stop the devastating consequences of sequestration. We all want to take care of the bipartisan Children’s Health Insurance Program. We have a bipartisan agreement to protect the Dreamers.
We have all the pieces. We just need the courage to do our jobs.
Senator John McCain (R - AZ)
“The government shutdown is a direct result of the breakdown of cooperation in Congress. It has been clear from the beginning we would need a bipartisan budget agreement to lift the caps on defense spending and fully fund our military. Yet four months into the current fiscal year, we are nowhere near reaching a deal on long-term legislation to properly train, equip and prepare our forces in the face of rising threats around the world.
“As Republicans and Democrats run to cable news to point fingers and assign blame, the hard reality is that all of us share responsibility for this failure. For years, under both a Republican and Democrat-controlled Congress and White House, partisanship has taken precedent over national security. Political gamesmanship, an unwillingness to compromise, and a lack of resolve on both sides have led us to this point. Shamefully, no one will incur more harm than our brave men and women who have volunteered to fight and die for our freedom.
“Without long-term, stable and predictable funding for the military, our service members will pay the price. Troops will be denied scheduled training. Ship maintenance backlogs will grow. A depleted force will continue to shrink. And readiness will further suffer. At a time when more service members are dying in routine training accidents than in combat, asking the military to continue doing more with less is a disgraceful dereliction of our foremost duty in Congress to defend the nation.
“It’s time that both sides put politics aside, come to the table, and compromise on an agreement that will give our service members the training, equipment and resources they need to succeed.”
Senator Claire McCaskill (D - MO)
“While I voted yes tonight to continue funding the government, it's embarrassing how badly this place is being run. I'm disgusted that Mitch McConnell waited three months until after the expiration of the Children’s Health Insurance Program to decide it was a crisis. I'm disgusted that we offered the President border security measures he wanted, and yet he still chose the chaos of a shutdown. I’m disgusted most of all that we've quit governing in the middle, from a place of compromise and consensus, which is what Missourians expect and deserve, what I strive for every day. My focus now is on making sure we take care of our military servicemembers and our veterans during any lapse in government funding, and that we get back to governing as quickly as possible.”
Senator Mitch McConnell (R - KY)
“What we just witnessed on the floor was a cynical decision by Senate Democrats to shove aside millions of Americans for the sake of irresponsible political games. A government shutdown was one hundred percent avoidable. Completely avoidable. Now it is imminent. All because Senate Democrats chose to filibuster a noncontroversial funding bill that contains nothing –not a thing – they do not support. Perhaps, across the aisle, some of my Democratic colleagues are feeling proud of themselves.
“But what has their filibuster accomplished? The answer is simple – their very own government shutdown. Shutdown effects on the American people will come as no surprise. All week, as we have stood on the floor and begged our colleagues to come to their senses, Senate Republicans have described exactly what this will mean.
“For America’s men and women in uniform, shutting down the government means delayed pay. For the many thousands of civilian employees who support their missions, it means furloughs. And for the families of fallen heroes, it may well mean a freeze on survivor death benefits. For veterans who rely on our promise of care, shutting down the government means threatening their access to treatment.
“For so many Americans struggling with opioid addiction, the same is true. And thanks to the Democratic Leader’s decision to filibuster an extension of the State Children’s Health Insurance Program, low-income families will slip closer to losing health coverage for their kids. And in many states this is an emergency.
“I’m having trouble understanding which one of those outcomes my Democratic colleagues could possibly be proud of. Which one of them? I think our friends on the other side took some really bad advice. I’d hate to have to try and explain this myself. They ignored the Governors, including seven Democrats, who wrote Congress, begging us to extend S-CHIP for nine million children. And they ignored the needs of millions of Americans who rely on the federal government for important services.
“They held all this hostage over the completely unrelated issue of illegal immigration. Republicans in the Senate have done all we can to continue the normal operations of the federal government and secure certainty for S-CHIP kids. We could pass it tonight, it could go to the president for signature, and these kids would be okay.
“We will continue to do all we can. We will vote again. So the American people know who stands for them.
“And when our friends across the aisle remember who it is they actually represent, we will be ready to come together in the bipartisan discussion that will be necessary to clean up all of this mess. We’ve all been having private conversations here on the floor. Almost everyone on both sides doesn’t understand how we ended up here. Because most of this stuff we agree on. There’s only one reason we ended up here: the shoehorning of illegal immigration into this debate.
“Now having said that, there is a lot of sympathy in this body for doing something about the DACA kids. It’s not like nobody is interested in that – we’ve been talking about it for three months. But the one reason we are where we are, is because we couldn’t close out any of these other component parts. Because our friends on the other side said we’ve got to deal with this issue. This issue is the key to getting defense spending. This issue is the key to getting help for S-CHIP kids. And on, and on, and on.
“I think most of the American people believe that shutting down the government for this issue – that doesn’t even ripen until March – is irresponsible. I’ve just listed all of the people who are going to be adversely impacted by this action. So we’re going to keep on voting. The government may be heading into shutdown, but the Senate is not shutting down. We’re hoping to talk and resolve this. I don’t think it makes this institution look very responsible. The American people should expect better from us than this.”
Senator Robert Menendez (D - NJ)
“This is government on life support – lurching from one short-term continuation of money to another… four Republican Senators voted [with Democrats] not to continue these short-term funding resolutions because they understand that we need to get the hard work of the nation done. Yes, four Republican Senators joined with Democrats to say ‘enough is enough.’ That’s a bipartisan view that ‘enough is enough.’”
Afterwards, Menendez tweeted a short video explanation saying, “How did we get here? Dems offered many compromises to FULLY fund the govt but Republicans rejected them each time. At the end, they chose to give the President what he asked for: “a good shutdown”. GOP must stop this foolishness & agree to end the #TrumpShutdown”
Senator Jeff Merkley (D - OR)
“President Trump and most Congressional Republicans are choosing to shut down the government rather than agree to a bipartisan deal. President Trump has been rooting for a shutdown and now he’s got it. This Trump shutdown isn’t a reality TV show - it’s going to have actual consequences for the economy and America’s families, small businesses, military, and kids will pay the price. It’s time for the Republican Congress and the president to do their jobs and take the bipartisan deal in front of them.”
Senator Lisa Murkowski (R - AK)
“Shutting down the government is no way to govern. It is disruptive, harmful, wasteful, and impacts the thousands of Alaskans who are federal employees, contractors and all who rely on the services provided by our federal agencies,” said Senator Murkowski. “I will continue working with colleagues on both sides of the aisle and in the House to get the government back open as fast as possible.”
Senator Christopher Murphy (D - CT)
"Republicans asked to be given control of the White House, the Senate, and the House of Representatives. They got it, and this is what America gets – total, complete dysfunction. The continuing resolution President Trump is trying to force down our throats is terrible for Connecticut – it guts funding for community health centers, inadequately funds our state's military contractors, and may lead to the deportation of thousands of immigrant kids. Instead of punting and passing a fourth continuing resolution, President Trump and Republicans could choose to sit down and write a real budget with Democrats this weekend, but they are refusing. That's really sad.
“I will be here all weekend, ready to work on a budget deal that is good for Connecticut and the country. I'm not going anywhere, and I'm hopeful enough Republican senators are willing to break with President Trump to work with us to get a deal done."
Senator Patty Murray (D - WA)
“Once again, Republican leaders have pushed us into a completely unnecessary government shutdown. Democrats have made clear, again and again, for months and months, that we want to work with the Republican majority on a bipartisan deal to address the many challenges facing the families we represent. But instead of working with us to get a result, President Trump and Republican leaders who control the House and Senate were more focused on pointing fingers and playing political games. This is no way to run the government and no way to treat families looking to Congress for solutions, not dysfunction and uncertainty.
“Now that Republicans have shut down the government, I am going to be doing everything I can to persuade the Republican majority to reopen the government and get to work with Democrats to increase investments in defense and domestic priorities, pass a long-term extension of the Children’s Health Insurance Program and critical primary care programs, and finally pass legislation to protect our DREAMers who have known no home but America and who now have to live in fear for their futures. There are bipartisan solutions to all of these challenges, and there is no reason for Republican leaders to stay in their partisan corner and refuse to get them done.
“This Republican shutdown will significantly impact families and communities in Washington state and across the country if it is not ended quickly and responsibly. I am ready to get to work with Republicans to fix the problems they have created, and I can only hope that they decide to put the people and families we represent above partisanship and politics.”
Senator David Perdue (R-GA)
“This Schumer Shutdown is absolutely ridiculous. It is totally irresponsible for the Democrats to use government funding as a bargaining chip. Democrats have created a false deadline by trying to tie illegal immigration to government funding. As I’ve consistently said, these are two totally different issues and should be dealt with separately. Ever since I was sworn into the United States Senate, I have been talking about the total collapse of the budgeting process. Only four times in the past 43 years has this budget process actually funded the federal government. These repeated failures have manifested into a pattern of short-term funding patches, continuing resolutions, that hamstring our military. This short-term mentality in Washington has got to stop. When Congress fails to complete its budget, the best outcome is that six or eight people determine how to spend a trillion dollars of discretionary spending. Clearly, Congress’ funding mechanism does not work and will never work. We are doomed to this cycle of fiscal irresponsibility until Congress reworks this budget process to successfully meet its Constitutional responsibility of funding the federal government.”
Senator Jack Reed (D - RI)
“Nine months ago President Trump said “our country needs a good shutdown.” Now Republicans are basically giving him what he wants, and wasting taxpayer dollars and creating uncertainty in the process.
“Americans deserve a fully functioning government.
“For months, President Trump and Congressional Republicans have prioritized corporate tax cuts over passing a budget that helps working families. Congress repeatedly passed short-term spending bills over the last several months in order to provide additional time to negotiate a long-term, bipartisan budget agreement. However, no real talks ever occurred and the President has provided contradictory and changing objectives.
“Now here we are, already four months through the fiscal year and Republicans are insisting on yet another one month stopgap.
“Enough is enough.
“Our military leaders have warned that this is a wasteful approach that constrains their ability to make long-term strategic decisions. And it doesn’t begin to address other needed priorities.
“For too long, the American people have waited for Congress to do the right thing and reach an agreement on budget caps, healthcare, immigration, and a host of issues. We need a long-term reauthorization of the Children’s Health Insurance Program and funding for our community health centers, resources to combat the national opioid epidemic, and emergency disaster relief to help storm-stricken communities recover. But for months, Republican ignored the needs of working men and women. They prioritized corporate tax giveaways over passing a budget that helps our veterans, protects workers’ hard-earned retirement security, supports a strong national defense, and provides a pathway to citizenship for kids who were brought to this country by their parents and are contributing to their communities and serving in our military.
“The American people overwhelmingly support these priorities, and I think most Republicans do too. All we need now is a real deadline so a bipartisan agreement can be reached. I’m ready to work, and I hope the President and Congressional leaders join that effort.
“I'm ready to do my part to help end this impasse and reach a principled solution. I urge the President and my Republican colleagues to do the same.”
Senator Pat Roberts (R - KS)
“Kansans are sick and tired of the political games in Washington,” Roberts said. “They are not interested in leverage or brinksmanship. They want certainty. They expect us to fulfill our Constitutional duty to fund the government.
“Just three months ago, I joined my colleagues on the Finance Committee in passing bipartisan legislation to extend the Children’s Health Insurance Program for five years. Now we have the option of delivering six years, the longest extension in the history of the program. Unfortunately, that bipartisan support for this critical program has disappeared.
“While the minority is intent on the headlines from a shutdown, I will be working with my colleagues on a solution.”
Senator Mike Rounds (R-SD)
“For the 19th time in the 44 years since the modern budget process has been in place, the federal government has once again shut down because Congress could not get its work done on time. South Dakotans sent me to Washington to make informed policy decisions and be a responsible steward of taxpayer dollars. Continuing resolutions, which are just extensions of last year’s budget levels, fail to provide long-term certainty and stability, while government shutdowns waste taxpayer dollars. Reform of the budget process is absolutely necessary, however our immediate responsibility is to deal with the current government funding crisis. I will work with my colleagues to end this unnecessary shutdown as soon as possible.
I have encouraged the bipartisan immigration reform efforts because the H2B visa program is important to many South Dakota businesses, and our economy in general. I support strengthening our border security as a priority. Progress is being made on this effort and we believe an agreement can be reached within a February timeframe. Unfortunately, while our Democrat colleagues have filibustered the continuing resolution, which includes Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) funding, and bear responsibility for the current government shutdown, I believe there are a number of them who are very serious about finding a solution. This is important to South Dakotans because there are over 16,000 kids eligible for the Children’s Health Insurance Program in our state. This program is currently in jeopardy.
I’ve been a vocal critic of the continuing resolution process, particularly regarding its effect on our military, but I agreed to vote for it this time because I have received assurances that a vote on defense appropriations will occur in the Senate. I’ll continue to push for improvements to our budget process – but this is not a balanced way to govern.”
Senator Brian Schatz - (D - HI)
“Nobody wins in a shutdown. It’s time for us to do the hard work of negotiating and compromise to keep critical government services going. I will continue to work for as long as it takes to solve this terrible problem.”
Senator, Richard C.Shelby (R - AL)
“It is unacceptable that Democrats would vote against a measure to keep our government open to do the work of the American people. I do not believe that shutting down the government is a solution to the problems we face as a country. A shutdown is destructive to the American taxpayer, no matter the circumstances.
“Republicans are working hard to keep the government running, and we also want to approve a long-term reauthorization of CHIP, which provides millions of children with needed health insurance coverage. While a long-term funding measure is preferred, this CR would allow Congress the ability to continue ongoing and proactive negotiations in an effort to approve a bipartisan, bicameral funding bill.
“Democrats have chosen partisan politics over funding our government, funding our troops, and providing health insurance to low-income children and pregnant women. The American people deserve better.”
Senator Dan Sullivan (R - Ak)
“Tonight, we saw a manufactured crisis officially turn into a government shutdown – something that was absolutely preventable. The bipartisan bill we considered tonight, which funded the government until February 16th, was voted down not for the items it contained, but for what was not included – a long term agreement on immigration for which we still have weeks to resolve. I simply fail to understand the logic behind the Minority Leader’s decision to shut down the government. Passage of the Continuing Resolution (CR) tonight would have continued the essential functions of government, provided critical funding for the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) for thousands of Alaskan children for six years, and given Congress an opportunity to address a long term spending measure.
“As work continues, I am hopeful that we can find a solution to reopen the government. The American people, particularly our veterans and troops, deserve better. Please know, my office stands ready to assist Alaskans, including those negatively impacted by this unnecessary government shutdown.”
Senator John Thune (R - SD)
“Democrats continue with their obstruct-at-all-costs approach by threatening a government shutdown over illegal immigration. The continuing resolution includes provisions that should be supported by members of both sides of the aisle — including funding for our troops and a six-year extension of the bipartisan Children’s Health Insurance Program. By forcing a government shutdown, Democrats are preventing our troops from receiving the resources they need to help keep our nation safe, and they are jeopardizing the future of an important program that provides health coverage to children in need. Democrats should end these partisan, political games and join us in funding the government.”
Senator Tom Udall (D - NM)
“Every day, over 45,000 New Mexicans work hard at our national labs, military bases, national parks and other federal installations and related contractors. They need — and deserve — thoughtful long-term budgets that will enable them to plan ahead and do the important work of keeping our nation safe, managing our land and water, and meeting the needs of our citizens. The Republicans control the House, the Senate and the White House, but they have failed to pass the kind of long-term budgets that the members of the military say they desperately need. The Republicans’ four-week continuing resolution would have punted those decisions for the fourth time since the start of the fiscal year, with no end in sight. It also failed to offer a real solution to desperate needs, including protection for 800,000 DREAMers; certainty for millions of families who depend on community health centers; the Special Diabetes Program for Indians; and disaster assistance for Puerto Rico, Texas and other states still reeling from last year’s hurricanes and wildfires.
“We must do better than this, and that is why I voted no tonight. But let’s be clear: the only person who has said he wanted to shut down the government was President Trump. Democrats are ready and willing to come to the table to work with Republicans on a responsible long-term budget agreement. And Democrats already have been hard at work, with a growing number of Republican senators, on an agreement for DREAMers that also met all of the president’s demands. It’s unfortunate that President Trump so far has been unable to take yes for an answer and has preferred to pander to extreme right-wing factions in his own party.
“Responsibility for this government shutdown is on the shoulders of Republicans and President Trump — New Mexicans and the American people need them to show some leadership, come to the table and negotiate in good faith.”
Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D - RI)
“I joined Senate Democrats and Republicans in voting against this stopgap funding bill because it did not provide the long-term stability our military and economy need and it did not address urgent, overdue bipartisan needs. Those include immediate resources to fight the opioid epidemic in Rhode Island and across the country, badly-needed relief for communities that remain ravaged by natural disasters and wildfires, reliable defense funding, and a path for Dreamers to stay in the only home they have ever known. These are all bipartisan priorities, but the Republicans refuse to work with us to get them done.
“And after months of refusing Democrats’ demands to fund a health insurance program that covers millions of children from low-income families, it is disappointing that President Trump and Republican leadership in Congress used children whose health care is now on the brink of running out as a bargaining chip to force the federal government to a halt. This is no way to govern.
“I will be working around the clock until we have hammered out a bipartisan path forward that reopens the federal government as quickly as possible with minimal disruption to Rhode Islanders.
Senator Todd Young (R - IN)
“When given the opportunity to extend the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) for more than 104,000 Hoosier children, provide for our servicemembers, lift the burden of the job-killing medical device tax, and keep government functions operating, some of my colleagues took a pass. For reasons I can’t understand, they voted to shut down the government even though they support the bill. I will continue working through the weekend to ensure that a solution is reached for the good of Hoosiers and all Americans. I will also be donating my salary to the Marine Corps Scholarship Foundation until the government reopens."