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Speeches and Floor Statements

Tonko statement calling for a humanitarian pause to facilitate the return of Israeli hostages & deliver relief for Palestinians

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In recent weeks, I have heard from thousands of people in the Capital Region grieving for those lost in the October 7th terrorist attacks on Israel, the biggest atrocity against the Jewish people since the Holocaust, and for the innocent Palestinian civilians caught in the crossfire of Hamas’ war. I share in your immense grief and anguish. I have mourned with you, prayed with you, and…

Tonko Floor Statement Opposing HR 1

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WASHINGTON, DC—Congressman Paul D. Tonko (D-NY) delivered a statement on the House floor today strongly opposing the GOP bill, H.R. 1. His full floor statement can be viewed HERE or read below as prepared for delivery. M. Speaker, I rise in opposition to H.R. 1, the Polluters Over People Act. When House Democrats had an opportunity to bring an H.R. 1 to the floor, it was to protect…


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 Thank you M. Speaker.M. Speaker – I think President Obama was right yesterday when he called our friends on the other side of the aisle “out of touch.”In my hometown of Amsterdam, NY my neighbors are hurting. In some instances, this recession has eliminated nearly half of their retirement savings. Others have lost their homes.Despite this downturn and Wall…


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Congressman Paul D. TonkoRemarks in support of H.R. 4247, Keeping All Students Safe ActMarch 3, 2010 Thank you Mr. Chairman. I rise today in support of H.R. 4247, the Keeping All Students Safe Act. This bill is aimed at restricting some of the most abusive practices still employed in certain schools around the country – negligent restraint and abusive…

Congressman Paul D. Tonko Floor Statement in support of H.R. 3962, the Affordable Health Care for America Act November 7, 2009

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Thank you M. Speaker. I am here to speak in support of the Affordable Health Care for America Act, one of the most important pieces of legislation this body has considered since the passage of Medicare in 1965 and Social Security in 1935. M. Speaker, every member of this body has been listening to her or his constituents, and they are saying that they are ready for health…

Rep. Tonko Floor Speech on Youth in Health Care Bill October 15, 2009

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Thank you, M. Speaker.  On Tuesday, Speaker Pelosi announced an important new addition to our health insurance reform package – young adults will be able to remain on their parents’ health insurance plans until their 27th birthday.Young adults make up one third of the entire uninsured population, numbering 13.7 million.  Only 53 percent of young adults are even…

Rep. Tonko Floor Speech on PAYGO Legislation July 21, 2009

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Thank you M. Speaker.M. Speaker, the House will be taking up H.R. 2920 this week, the Statutory Pay-As-You-Go Act of 2009, otherwise known as PAYGO.This bill, sponsored by the Majority Leader, the gentleman from Maryland, will renew our commitment to fiscal responsibility and protect core democratic values.As the President said less than two months ago: “The ‘pay as you…

Rep. Tonko Floor Remarks on Energy -- Tuesday March 17th

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Mr. BLUMENAUER.We have been joined by my colleague from New York, Congressman Tonko from Albany who, in a prior life, as I recall, was CEO of the New York State Energy and Research Development Authority. You have got some practical applications, both in your private sector experience and your work for years in the New York State Assembly. We will welcome thoughts and observations that you…

Rep. Tonko Remarks on Tonko Amendment to the GIVE Act During House Education & Labor Committee Meeting

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This amendment establishes the Social Innovation Fund, which would support our nation’s social entrepreneurs.  As we heard last month in our hearing on national service, Cheryl Dorsey of Echoing Green explained that social entrepreneurs, “identify and take responsibility for an innovative and untested idea for positive social change, and then usher that idea from concept…

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