Press Release
For Immediate Release: 
December 2, 2021
Contact Info: 
Margaret Mulkerrin 202-225-3130
WASHINGTON, DC – House Majority Leader Steny H. Hoyer (MD) joined MSNBC’s “Hallie Jackson Reports” this afternoon to discuss House Democrats’ work to keep the government open as well as news of the day. Below are excerpts from his interview and a link to the video:
Click here to watch the full interview.

On Senate Republicans Threatening a Government Shutdown

“It's incomprehensible that on a totally unrelated issue, a Senator, or the Senate itself, would put at risk the operations of the government of the United States over an issue that is ancillary, is a side issue – Senator Lee may well think it's an important issue, and I get that, I disagree with his premise, but nevertheless, this is about keeping government operating on behalf of the American people, keeping our defense established and strong, and safe, and secure, keeping our civilian employees who participate in that on the job. It's just incomprehensible to me that over a political, totally political effort, Senator Lee or anybody in the Senate would put the government at risk. We have agreed – we've had a long, somewhat tortured negotiation over the last few days to get us to this point. We have agreement between the Senate Leadership, Republicans and Democrats. We're going to pass this bill through the House. I hope we have some bipartisan support of this in the House, but this makes no sense. So, I just talked to Senator Schumer. He is working hard on getting this done when it comes to the Senate, and not sending it back to the House. There are less than 36 hours until the government's authorization to operate expires – and that's crazy. That's stupid. It is, as I say, incomprehensible that adults would put the United States government in that position. So, I’m hopeful that will not happen. But we're going to vote in about an hour.”

On the Build Back Better Act

“Look, we think paid leave, family leave, is a very, very important provision in this bill. We also believe the immigration provision is critically important, for our workforce if nothing else. But the fact of the matter is this Build Back Better bill is an extraordinary piece of legislation that will help every American, help our economy, help health care, help education, do a lot of things in fighting climate change that are absolutely essential to do. So, my answer to you is, look, we think those ought to be in there, but if they are not, if the Senate can't pass them, I believe that we will certainly pass the remaining parts of the bill, which will be extraordinarily important for the American people.”

On the Debt Limit

“The debt limit issue is a phony issue. It should never, frankly, come up. Debt is determined by how much we spend or how much revenue we cut, not by this arbitrary, capricious, and demagogic issue of the debt limit. But nevertheless, it is there, and if we don't do something, the United States may default on its debt, in which case this country will be at risk of going into recession and the international economic community will be economically roiled as well. It's incomprehensible. Who says it's incomprehensible? Mitch McConnell says it should never happen. And yet, Mitch McConnell is not, at least, visibly at this point in time helping to make sure that that default does not happen.”

On Rep. Boebert’s Islamophobic Comments

“The Boebert issue is an important issue. Islamophobia, antisemitism, and racism, are all critically important issues that our country must get over, must oppose, and must exorcise from our public polity, if you will.”