The House has begun general debate on H.R. 1, a continuing resolution that cuts discretionary spending for the current fiscal year by $100 billion – going beyond the Pledge to America – and focuses on creating a better environment for private-sector job creation.  H.R. 1 also keeps the Pledge’s commitment to an “open process that makes it easier – not harder” to cut spending: this is the first time in history a continuing resolution has come to the House floor under an open process allowing amendments to cut spending.  Shortly before debate began, Speaker Boehner took to the floor to talk about the open process and why it matters.  Here’s the video and brief excerpts from Boehner’s remarks:

  • “I think a lot of you know that I’ve always believed the House works best when the House is allowed to work its will.  I think a lot of you know we’re embarking on a more open process in this Congress and it will start today with the consideration of this continuing resolution.”

  • “I take to the well to suggest to members that we want all members to participate in the debate here in the House. … That means as we go through the next couple of days, I’m going to ask members on both sides of the aisle to try to bring your amendments together, to try to respect the amount of time that’s being taken so that all members have an opportunity to be heard and to participate in the debate.”

  • “We’ve never had an open process for a continuing resolution in our history.  … I want this week for all of us to get started down this road working together, so that when we get into the weeks and months ahead, we can show the American people the House can work together, and the House can work its will.”