WASHINGTON, D.C.—House Republican Whip Steve Scalise (R-La.) joined fellow Republican leaders to call out Speaker Pelosi’s partisan games that could put our nation’s defense at risk. As the House prepares to consider the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), Whip Scalise compared the bipartisan nature of previous NDAAs to Speaker Pelosi’s efforts this Congress to appease her radical base and put forward a partisan bill that will reduce the readiness of our nation’s military. He then highlighted the stark contrast between Democrat priorities like raising the minimum wage that could eliminate up to 3.7 million jobs and Republican pro-growth policies that have led to more job openings than people looking for work.
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On House Democrats’ actions to politicize our nation’s defense:
“I want to thank [Ranking Member] Mac Thornberry for his leadership, and the entire Armed Services Committee on the Republican side for their continued leadership to try to make sure that our Defense Department has the tools that they need so our men and women in uniform can train safely, and be able to defend our national defense in a safe and effective manner.
“Historically, the NDAA, the National Defense Authorization Act, has been a very bipartisan bill. A bill where both sides come together, put their other differences on the side and work for what’s best for the defense of our nation. Unfortunately, that didn’t happen this year in the House.
“I would urge Speaker Pelosi to go take heed at what the Senate did last week. By an 86-to-8 vote, they came together where Republican and Democrat leaders all voted for their NDAA bill, a very bipartisan bill that focuses on making the right priorities for our national defense.
On Speaker Pelosi’s decision to appease her radical base rather than work with Republicans on a bipartisan NDAA:
“Unfortunately, the House goes in the opposite direction, and they’re not done yet. …The bill out of committee takes a very harsh, I think in many ways, anti-defense approach to make it a very partisan bill. That’s still not enough for them because they still don’t have the votes to pass it.
“Instead of going to Mac Thornberry and other Republican leaders on the House side to put together a bipartisan bill that can get the votes to pass, they’re going in the opposite direction. They’re taking a far-left shift in going even worse for our nation’s defense to try to bring amendments to appease the radical left, Socialist base of Speaker Pelosi’s wing.”
On the infighting in the Democrat caucus:
“We’re seeing the internal fight that they’ve been having for the last few weeks. It’s getting even worse where they’re fighting amongst themselves. Why don’t they stop the fighting and start working with Republicans to get real solutions to the problems we’re facing?
“I mean, even on something like securing the border and giving our Border Patrol agents the tools that they need to help take care of these young kids. You saw many Democrats who are still making a lot of false claims about the President that voted against giving Border Patrol agents the ability to buy diapers for young kids.
“Our Border Patrol agents were paying out of their own pockets for diapers and other basic supplies for children coming across the border and they wouldn’t even vote for that basic funding. That shows you how far left they’ve moved.”
On Speaker Pelosi’s bill to hike the minimum wage and eliminate jobs across the country:
“The final point, if you’re looking at where Speaker Pelosi’s going next week, they’re talking about bringing a bill to the floor to increase the minimum wage.
“If you look at the bill they’re planning on bringing to the floor next week, the CBO report that came out should be alarming to everybody in America who believes in trying to become part of the middle class, who wants to be able to get an entry level job so that they can then move up and be able to achieve the American Dream for themselves.
“The report showed that about 3.7 million people could lose their jobs if Speaker Pelosi’s bill were to pass. Now think about that, that’s the entire state of Oklahoma losing their job because of a bill that Speaker Pelosi wants to bring to the floor.
“It’s so radical that even the Democrat Mayor of Baltimore vetoed a similar increase in the minimum wage proposal because she noted how it would be devastating to job loss. You’re seeing in Seattle when they increased the minimum wage, they did a report and it showed how devastating it is for middle class families, how it actually lowers overall wages.
On Republicans’ efforts to grow the economy compared to Democrats’ radical agenda that will cost American jobs:
“We’re seeing wages grow right now. Our economy is booming. We are the envy of the world and we’ve got more job openings than there are people looking for work with wage growth because we cut taxes, because we got regulations under control.
“The last thing we need is the government to come in and undermine that success by passing a bill that would literally eviscerate up to 3.7 million jobs. So every Democrat that’s thinking about voting for that bill next week should be asking themselves, ‘What am I going to say?’
“What would they say to those 3.7 million people that would lose their jobs? To the millions of families in America that would fall below the poverty wage because of their vote? How can they justify that? They should be working with us to solve problems.”