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The following is a statement by Frank Sharry, Executive Director of America’s Voice, following this evening’s momentous vote:
Tonight a bipartisan rebellion in the Senate rebuffed a determined Republican strategy to strong arm Democrats, govern by short-term Continuing Resolution, and delay and derail the Dream Act.
The vote tonight in the Senate to defeat the House-passed Continuing Resolution was a stinging rebuke of the dysfunctional governance practiced by President Trump and Republican congressional leaders. This is the first time in American history that a shutdown has occurred with one party in control of the White House and both chambers of Congress. This rejection of business-as-usual reflects the fact that the vast majority of Americans are frustrated with a President and a Congress that seem to view a minority of Americans as the privileged and a majority of Americans as the enemy.
This pinched and polarizing view – that some matter and most don’t – does not reflect our values and ideals. As a nation, we are better than leaders who divide, dismiss, and disgrace. At our core, what unites us are shared ideas and ideals. We are defined not by our birthplace and background, but by our character and contribution. We believe in the America of E Pluribus Unum – Out of Many, One –not in an America of Us vs. Them.
Tonight a brave bipartisan assemblage of senators stood up for an America as good as it ideals. To Democrats who stood strong, we thank you for your courage and your commitment. To Senators Graham and Flake, thank you for putting country over party. And to those in the pro-immigrant and progressive movement, led by the Dreamers, who have fought so tirelessly, we love you, we salute you, and we stand with you. Know that this is a turning point.
For our fight has never been about a government shutdown; it’s about a policy breakthrough. It’s not about political advantage; it’s about people’s lives. It’s not about the good old days that never were; it’s about forging an America that we might yet be – an America that fulfills its promise of freedom, justice and equality, for all.
Victory is close. We won’t stop until we achieve it.