Does a procedural vote gaining super hero status sound strange? It probably does, but an important amendment proposed by our very own Senator Patty Murray, with support from Senator Maria Cantwell, has saved the day. The amendment passed the Senate in a procedural vote on Wednesday morning. It passed out of the Senate this morning and now goes to the House. If passed in the House, it will prevent Governor Christine Gregoire from making across the board cuts to critical services.
The federal funding in the amendment (also called FMAP) gives states money to help pay for their Medicaid programs, which funds, in part, Apple Health for Kids. It also provides money for public schools. For Washington state, the measure is expected to bring in $543 million.
That deserves celebration as well as thanks to Senator Patty Murray for her heroic work to bring these dollars home! It was voted out of the Senate this morning, and must get passed in the House – a vote which could happen as soon as next week if the House returns from their recess for a vote
With these important gains for children comes a floor speech by Senator Casey (D-PA) that couldn’t have been timelier.
“Whether you are in office for 1 year or 1 month or 10 or 20 years or longer, every public official has an abiding obligation – I think it is actually a sacred duty – to do everything possible to ensure that the light inside every child burns as brightly as the reach of its potential,” said the Senator in his speech.
He spoke up in support of all of the bills in Congress that we advocate for. He stood up for early learning and child care. He was forceful about the need to pass a robust Child Nutrition Act. And finally, he was passionate about the gains that children made in the Affordable Care Act (the health care bill), including the exciting program for home visiting.
“We can’t do everything, but America can do a lot more than it is doing now as it relates to our children,” he said. We take that message to heart and will work tirelessly, with your help, to advocate for a bright future for all of our children.
-Posted by Katie Hewitt, Federal Advocacy Assistant