The Democrats in the U.S. Senate have spent more time protecting President Barack Obama than passing legislation, Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers, the highest-ranking woman in Congress, tells Newsmax.TV.
“I find myself, right now, asking, ‘Where is the Senate? Where is the Senate during this entire 112th Congress?’” McMorris Rodgers tells Newsmax in an exclusive interview. “We’ve basically wrapped up our work for the 112th Congress.
Watch the exclusive interview here.
“As I look back, there was one body that passed a budget, and that was the House. This is the fourth year that the Senate has failed to even propose a budget.
“There was one house, one body that took action to pass dozens of jobs bills; one house that took action to address the fiscal cliff and address the tax code, extend the tax rates, our current tax rates – and we took action on national security.
“It’s been most frustrating that Senate Democrats have largely protected President Obama, and they have just not taken action,” the Washington state Republican said. “They’ve decided to let the status quo reign and it begs the question: ‘Where’s the Senate? Where’s the leadership?’”
And, in the process, we’ve left a lot undone. Congress cannot ignore where we’re headed going into January, with the tax rates expiring, sequestration, and the tough decisions that will be forced to happen.”
McMorris Rodgers, who is vice chair of the 242-member House Republican Conference, said her biggest disappointment this legislative session was that Congress had not passed a budget.
“To think that we are running a $3.7 trillion enterprise – $3.7 trillion, we call it the federal government – and yet we don’t even have a budget. The debt that we’re facing as a country, the deficits that we’re running up every year, trillion-dollar deficits. That is what, in my mind, is the biggest issue.”
Despite recent polls showing Obama widening his lead – particularly in swing states – against GOP challenger Mitt Romney, McMorris Rodgers said the nation’s economic woes reaffirms the former Massachusetts governor’s campaign platform.
“It comes back, again, to the economy, jobs. Who’s the best person, who’s the one that can lead our country, get us back on track, get Americans back to work, get our economy growing – and it’s Gov. Romney. He’s proven that he knows how to lead, that he knows how to get the job done.
“And, unfortunately, President Obama, he’s had his chance and he’s failed,” added McMorris Rodgers, who serves as Romney’s liaison to the House conference. “His economic policies have failed.
“Gov. Romney has a plan to get our economy growing, get Americans back to work – and it’s one that gets the federal government out of the way, unleashes American ingenuity and gets back to the basics that have made America strong, and that’s what we need to get back to.”
Not only is McMorris Rodgers seeking re-election to represent her own 5th District in Washington state, she also is vying for the chairmanship of the Republican Conference. She was first elected vice chairman in November 2008 and reelected in 2010. She hopes to succeed Texas Rep. Jeb Hensarling.
“This is an important time for the House Republicans,” she said. “First and foremost, though, we’ve got to keep our majority in the House. I am focused on both my own re-election, getting back to Washington State most weeks in October, but also traveling the country for other candidates, helping our House Republicans keep the majority.
“We have 87 freshmen from 2010. Their first re-elect is always their toughest – and I’m trying to help them get re-elected; help some of our new candidates,” McMorris Rodgers added. “That’s where we all need to be focused, and then we’ll start the serious conversations about who should be serving in leadership and helping lead the House Republicans in the 113th Congress.”
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