Crowley On “Republican” Government Shutdown

    U.S. Representative Joe Crowley/via Facebook

    U. S. Rep. and House Democratic Caucus Chairman Joe Crowley (D-Sunnyside, Astoria, College Point, East Elmhurst, Jackson Heights, Corona, Woodside, parts of the Bronx) this weekend issued the following statement on what he called the “Republican government shutdown.

    The government shutdown, when the GOP controlled Congress could not come to an agreement with the minority Democratic Congress. In order to avoid the shutdown, the Senate needed to come up with 60 of the 100 Senator votes, meaning it needed some Democrats voting for at least a stopgap measure to keep the government running.   

    “There may be no better demonstration of President Trump’s lack of leadership and inability to govern than the fact that Republicans shut down the government tonight, just as his second year in office begins. Republican leaders have been complicit in the many failings of the Trump presidency, and now their inability to lead will directly harm our men and women in uniform, seniors, veterans, and working Americans. Shutdowns leave lasting marks on our economy and leave our country weaker and less secure.

    “Through four different short-term funding bills, Democrats have pushed for compromise. Republicans have refused to work toward an agreement each and every time. Democrats want a government that functions and helps all Americans. Republicans want to hold children hostage and create the illusion of absolute dichotomies.  Let me be clear: what we’re seeing from Republicans is not leadership. This is not courage. And it’s not what Americans deserve.”


    Meeks Decries CFBP Acting Director Mulvaney’s Budget Request for $0

    U.S. Rep. Gregory Meeks

    U. S. Rep. Gregory Meeks (Jamaica, Laurelton, Rosedale, Cambria Heights, Saint Albans, Springfield Gardens, Far Rockaway, JFK Airport) on Friday decried Acting Director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), Mick Mulvaney’s asking to zero out the agency’s budget.

    According to Wikipedia, the CFPB is a U.S. Government-created agency created in 2010 as a legislative response to the financial crisies of 2007-08. It is responsible for consumer protection in the financial sector. 

    “Acting Director Mulvaney’s request confirms what we have known since the President appointed him: that he is a Trojan horse sent to destroy the CFPB from within,” said Meeks, senior member of the House Financial Services Committee. “Mr. Mulvaney, who is concurrently working as Director of the Office of Management and Budget, does not believe the CFPB is worth his full-time attention, and now, apparently, he does not think that the Bureau is worth even one cent. I think the nearly 30 million harmed Americans who have received relief from the CFPB would disagree.

    “Mr. Mulvaney claims that the budget cut will “serve to reduce the federal deficit.” Yet, if President Trump and his administration w so concerned about the federal deficit they wouldn’t have ballooned it by trillions of dollars to give tax breaks mostly to the wealthiest people in our country.”

    “While Republicans continue their onslaught on the CFPB, which provides relief to everyday Americans, I’ll do everything in my power to protect it and them.”


    Maloney: Permanent DACA Fix Is Moral & Smart Economic Choice

    U.S. Rep Carolyn Maloney

    U. S. Rep. Carolyn B. Maloney (Western Queens, Manhattan, Brooklyn), House Ranking Member of the Joint Economic Committee, on Friday argued that the fight for a permanent DACA fix so that Dreamers can live their American dream is not only is the moral thing to do, but is also in our nation’s economic self-interest.

    “Congress is on a collision course regarding the fates of nearly 800,000 Dreamers. These young people are Americans in all ways but on paper. Many have never lived outside the U.S. and know no other language than English and yet, the Trump Administration wants to deport them to countries which they have never called home,” said Maloney.

    “I, like most Americans, support the Dreamers out of compassion, but we know for others that compassion isn’t enough. So how about national economic self-interest?

    “As the Ranking House Democrat on the Joint Economic Committee, I am tasked with studying our nation’s economic issues and I have learned that one of the major challenges facing the U.S. economy is the slow growth of our labor force. We need energetic and hard-working young people – like the Dreamers. In fact, economists predict that deporting Dreamers will hurt our economy. The conservative Cato Institute estimates that such a mass deportation would result in a $280 billion reduction in economic growth over the next decade.

    “So, while Congress should listen to the American people and support the Dreamers on moral grounds, if that is not enough, how about national economic self-interest?”


    Kim Tightens Relations with Japanese Business Community

    Assemblymember Ron Kim/Facebook

    Assemblymember Ron Kim (D-Whitestone, Flushing, Murray Hil) last Thursday met with the Ambassador and Consulate General of Japan Reiichiro Takahashi, for dinner at the latter’s New York residence.

    The two reflected on their offices’ prior efforts to strengthen relations between New York and Japan, particularly in the commercial sector. Their ongoing collaboration began in 2015, when Kim became the first NY lawmaker to visit Japan, where he met with high-ranking officials from over five major cities. Following this trip, the Japanese government worked to set up an annual state delegation trip for NY lawmakers, and took his nominations for which members to invite to Japan.

    For the last two years, Assemblyman Kim has worked with the Japanese government in recommending and sending six New York legislators to visit Japan. He invited the Ambassador and other government and business officials to Albany during session, and hosted a two-day conference with CEOs from Mitsubishi Corp, Itochu Energy, Rockefeller Group, Panasonic, Hitachi America, Canon, and Kawasaki Rail Car.

    “In New York, about 300 Japanese affiliated companies have created over 37,000 jobs and added over $11 Billion in investments. At a time when companies are disincentivized from doing business in New York, I am grateful that Japanese companies continue to thrive in New York and see us as a close partner,” said Kim.

    “We need key partners to ally with us in continuing to build a better transportation infrastructure for the 21st century and to bring high-tech jobs and talent to New York. I hope to work with my colleagues to further these collaborative discussions with the Japanese business community in the near future,” he added.

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