|6:01 PM EDT||
Mitch McConnell, R-KY
Mr. McCONNELL. My good friend, the majority leader, left out one thing, which is this is the second time he has done what is called filling the tree. What that means to the constituents we represent on this side of the aisle is, we got to offer no amendments, no amendments whatsoever, to this bill. This is the second time and the 27th time the majority leader has filled the tree, thereby denying to the minority an opportunity to offer any amendments at all.
We can argue, I guess, about the relative merits of this bill. What we do know for sure is that $47 billion of it is not paid for. So it adds that much additional money to the deficit. We also note, for sure, the one kind of jobs this administration has been able to produce is government jobs.
As a result of the spending binge we have been on for the last year, we have added 120,000 government jobs. In America, if you work for the government, you make an average of $70,000 a year. If you work in the private sector, you make an average of $40,000 a year. We have had a job boon all right--with the government. Of course, the stimulus package principally benefitted State governments, which were very happy to have the money so they did not have to pare back their employment.
So we are interested in talking about jobs all right, but health care is what the majority has been trying to ram through the Congress over the last year. It is the big issue this week. I am sure Members on my side of the aisle who will speak tonight will indeed talk about jobs, but we also fully intend to talk about the health care bill that will be voted on over in the House that cuts Medicare by $ 1/2 trillion, that raises $ 1/2 trillion in new taxes, and is replete with special deals. We
now understand the fix-it bill--the second bill that will come after the health care bill--will not fix all the special deals; maybe only one of the special deals. So we will have on opportunity----