Senate Majority Leader Senator Mitch McConnell (R-KY) touted achievements of the majority in the Senate such as a balanced budget, reform of No Child Left Behind, and the transportation bill during Saturday’s GOP Weekly Address.
Transcript (via ABC News Radio) as Follows:
“Hello, I’m Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.
I’m proud to represent Kentucky in the United States Senate. I’m also honored to have served this past year as leader of the Senate’s new Republican majority.
When you voted for this new majority last November, the Senate was a mess. Some thought the Senate could never be cured of its dysfunction and its gridlock.
But the new majority you elected didn’t agree. We believed the Senate could be restored to a place of high purpose again, and we’ve made great strides over the past year proving that it can.
Here’s how we did it.
We got committees working again, just like we promised.
We opened up the legislative process, just like we promised.
We gave Senators of both parties more of a say, and it opened a floodgate of legislative accomplishments and good ideas.
We passed a balanced budget, for the first time since 2001.
We reformed No Child Left Behind and its Common Core mandates—replacing a broken law with the most significant K-12 education reform in more than a dozen years.
We addressed America’s crumbling roads and bridges—passing the first long-term transportation bill in a decade.
At a time of economic uncertainty, we passed permanent tax relief for families and small businesses. We voted to empower job creation by doing things like lift a 40-year ban on energy exports and an act to measure that can help knock down foreign trade barriers.
At a time of diverse global threats, we voted to enact significant military acquisition reform and to provide more of the funding needed to modernize our armed forces. We voted to help those who’ve suffered from the VA scandal and to give our troops the support they need to better confront threats like ISIL.
We passed legislation to help protect your personal financial information from cyberattackers.
We made important reforms to help improve the viability of programs you look to in retirement, like Medicare.
We worked together to extend a hand of compassion to wounded veterans and to bring a ray of hope to victims of human trafficking and modern slavery.
And when it came to some of Washington’s artificial cliffs and manufactured dramas, we were able to pass real, permanent solutions instead of more temporary patches.
These are just a few of the measures the new Senate has passed this year.
Many issues languished in the old Senate for years.
Some were assumed to be too difficult for any Senate majority to address.
But the Republican Senate you elected, working with the men and women who stand up for you in the House of Representatives, tackled each of them—and the President signed most into law.
Of course there are other bills he didn’t or won’t sign.
Like the one we passed to repeal a health law that attacks the Middle Class: Obamacare.
Or the ones we passed to protect coal families, or to approve the Keystone XL pipeline.
It’s true that a new President will be required to notch wins like those for the Middle Class.
But the Republican Senate majority is proving that you can still get a lot done with a President from a different party.
We’re proving you can actually enact significant, long-term reforms—achieve conservative policy goals—and get them signed into law.
That’s good for the Senate. Most importantly, it’s good for our country.
I’m proud of what the new Republican majority has accomplished in such a short time.
We’re not only putting the Senate back to work, we’re putting it back to work on your side.
Just like you asked. Just like we promised.
Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to you and your family, and to all of our brave armed services stationed abroad around the world.”
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