WASHINGTON – On Jan. 3, U.S. Senator Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.) released the following statement regarding the House passage of two pieces of legislation to end the current shutdown. One bill funds the Department of Homeland Security at current levels — the same level President Trump previously signed into law — until February 8th. The second bill would fund all the other government agencies for the full fiscal year.
“The House of Representatives, led by Democratic Speaker Nancy Pelosi, passed legislation today to fund the government and end the Trump Shutdown. This straight-forward, simple solution allows negotiations to continue on the issue of border security and ensures funding for other federal departments is not held hostage by President Trump. The package also ensures that federal employees are paid and not punished for a shutdown they had nothing to do with. And it ends the Trump Pay Freeze, providing the modest cost-of-living adjustment for civil servants that I am fighting for in the Senate.
“The Senate should take up this legislation at once. But Senate Republican Leader McConnell and his caucus are refusing to allow a vote on this proposal – despite the fact that many of them already voted in favor of these same funding levels. This is political cowardice at its worst. I urge my colleagues to put politics aside and end this government shutdown now.”