Washington, D.C. – Today, Reps. Elise Stefanik (R-NY-21), Ryan Costello (R-PA-06) and nine of their freshman colleagues sent a letter to the entire House Republican Conference, urging their support for a government funding measure that will avert a harmful and unnecessary government shutdown. The lawmakers wrote:
With less than two weeks until the September 30 deadline to fund federal government operations, we are writing today to express our strong support for a funding resolution that will avoid another unnecessary and harmful government shutdown. We believe Congress should complete its work and provide funding for the federal government through September 30, 2016, but we are willing to support a short-term resolution that will give both the House and the Senate the additional time necessary to negotiate final spending numbers.
As freshman Members of the House Republican Conference, we were elected by our constituents to be principled, pragmatic leaders. They expect us to fulfill our responsibilities, avoid repeating the mistakes of the past, and live up to our commitment to work every day to help keep the American economy moving forward.
The sixteen-day government shutdown in 2013 cost our economy an estimated $24 billion and stalled the creation of over 100,000 private sector jobs. It also imposed unacceptable delays in life-saving NIH research studies and payment of veterans’ disability claims, cost over $500 million in lost revenue at our national parks, and shut thousands of children out of Head Start programs. In short, the shutdown not only hurt taxpayers with the loss of important government services — it actually cost more taxpayer money to close the federal government than to keep it open.
We are living in challenging times that require serious, thoughtful leadership. We are proud of the many accomplishments that House Republicans have achieved this year, including passage of the first real entitlement reform in two decades, measures to strengthen veterans’ health care, new efforts to combat human trafficking, and legislation to accelerate the discovery and delivery of life-saving medical innovations. These legislative achievements will make a real difference in the lives of all Americans. We need to build on that record by passing fiscally responsible spending bills that will cut wasteful spending, rein in our debt, and reform government.
We stand together in the effort to keep the government funded beyond September 30 as we continue the fight to pass responsible spending bills that put the taxpayers first.
Freshman House lawmakers who signed the letter included Reps. Elise Stefanik (R-NY-21), Ryan Costello (R-PA-06), Mimi Walters (R-CA-45), Daniel Donovan (R-NY-11), John Katko (R-NY-24), Carlos Curbelo (R-FL-26), Amata Radewagen (R-American Samoa), Cresent Hardy (R-NV-04), Bruce Poliquin (R-ME-02), Martha McSally (R-AZ-02), and Tom MacArthur (R-NJ-03). A digital copy of the letter can be found here.