|2:49 PM EDT||
John A. Boehner, R-OH 8th
Mr. BOEHNER. Let me thank my colleague for yielding and ask my colleagues what is it that we are doing here? We got 1 week before we break for the Memorial Day recess. Admiral Mullen, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs, has said we have to have the funding for our troops in Iraq and Afghanistan.
We know that come early June, layoff notices go out to contract employees who work at the Pentagon. Why? Because we can't seem to get this bill finished. And why can't we get it finished? Because we have a bill in front of us that has all types of unrelated spending beyond what is needed to fund our troops.
The gentleman from California (Mr. Lewis) earlier this week, introduced a clean troop funding bill, a bill that the President called for with the changes that were made up here to make sure that we got funding to the troops as quickly as possible. That is the bill that ought to be on the floor today, not a bill that handcuffs our generals, starves our troops and puts them in a position where they can't succeed in their mission in Iraq and Afghanistan.
The bill also includes a $54 billion tax hike on small businesses around the country. And if there is a time when we don't need to be raising taxes on small businesses, it is now. They are the engine of new job growth in our country. And what are we going to do? We are going to put more taxes on them.
I think that what we are doing here is that we are playing political games on the backs of our troops. You know it. All this bill is going to do is delay the process for weeks and weeks and weeks while we play political games because you know the President is not going to sign this bill.
Why don't we move Mr. Lewis' bill? We can do it today. We can do it early next week. It is a clean troop funding bill that takes care of our troops and honors them on the eve of Memorial Day instead of playing political games on their backs.