Democrats are set to adjourn the Senate after three years of not passing a budget and with no plans to avert a fiscal cliff. And on the 1,240th day since Senate Democrats adopted a budget, Republican leaders in the Senate on Thursday assailed Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and Senate Democrats for their failures, promising to pass a budget if voters put them in the majority after November.
Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL), the ranking member on the Budget Committee, said “this nation has never faced a more difficult financial challenge” than it current “deep systemic demographic problems.”
“They need to be addressed yet today marks the 1,240th day since the Democratic Leadership in the Senate adopted a budget,” Sessions said. “For three years in a time of financial crises, the Senate’s Democratic majority has failed to comply with the United States code that requires us to bring up a budget and bring it to the floor of the United States Senate.”
Sessions said the Democrats’ failure was “a colossal failure of leadership” and “a failure of fundamental responsibility.” He declared that such a failure makes Democrats “unable to be able to ask to be returned to leadership.”
Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX) said failing to pass a budget for three years should be a “national scandal” and vowed Republicans would pass a budget if put in the majority.
“When Republicans regain the majority in the Senate, we will pass a budget, we will reduce the deficit, we will tackle our long-term debt and we will help grow the American economy by getting our boot off the neck of the small businesses and job creators in our country,” Cornyn declared.
Sen. Mike Enzi (R-WY) said the Obama administration and the Senate majority “have failed to govern during a crucial time for our nation,” and “there is a willingness to kick our problems down the road with the hopes that the next election will suddenly inspire action.”
“Rome burned while Nero fiddled,” Enzi said. “We have had enough fiddling.”
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell also said, “the fact that we have an election coming up is not an excuse for not tackling the tough problems,” because “no matter what the American people decide this November, the problems are there.”
“And our commitment to the American people is, if we’re in the majority, we’ll do the basic work of government and our hand will be out to our colleagues on the other side and whoever the President of the United States is,” McConnell said. “It is time to tackle the biggest problems in the country, the most predictable crisis in American history.”
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) later took to the Senate floor and accused the Republican Senators of “hubris.”