About Dr. Bera
By Ami Bera, MD
, though, said Republicans and Democrats can work together on more modest measures to build trust and establish common ground that would make it easier to deal with tougher problems such as immigration legislation, gun control and spending limits.
"First we demonstrate to America how Congress can work, then hopefully we gain some momentum and start tackling more divisive issues," Bera
, a California Democrat who defeated incumbent Republican Rep.
"The idea is we've got to move past being only Democrat or Republican," Bera
said in an interview.
"It's very evident in my freshman class.
All of us got elected knowing there was an expectation that we would work together."
fellow Problem Solvers scored a major victory last week when Congress passed and Obama signed the No Budget No Pay Act.
It raises the federal debt ceiling through May 18 while blocking lawmakers' salaries if they fail to pass a budget for fiscal 2014, which starts Oct. 1.
made the bill a central plank of his
campaign against Lungren last year.
preferred a tougher measure than the one that eventually passed - it holds lawmakers' pay in escrow instead of eliminating it - the new Sacramento-area lawmaker voted for it in the spirit of compromise that he
thinks is so important.
"Passing a budget is our core job," Bera
Last week, a political maneuver by House Republicans to include a "no budget, no pay" provision in legislation to temporarily suspend the federal debt ceiling gave Bera
the chance to act on one of his
key campaign pledges.
The House bill included language to withhold pay for members if their chamber doesn't pass a budget plan.
The move was seen as a political poke at the Senate, which hasn't adopted a full budget resolution in years.
pledge to support a slightly different version of the act a central theme of his
successful campaign to oust former U.S. Rep.
Though the provision that passed lacked some of the bite of the original bill, Bera
's office said he
saw the language as a step in the right direction.
And the vote presented the first-term congressman with his first opportunity to give remarks on the House floor
© 2013, Bera
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