Braley: Congress needs to learn lessons from shutdown

Rep. Bruce Braley, D-Iowa, said lessons need to be learned by members in Congress through this government shutdown and debt ceiling crisis.

“I think it continually reminds us all that we should be working every day to help the economy, not hurt it,” Braley said during his weekly telephone press conference with Iowa reporters Wednesday.

Braley met with veterans on an Eastern Iowa Honor Flight Wednesday morning. He said it reinforced the point of the need to have a government that works for the people.

“Iowans deserve a government that works for them and the harsh reality is they are not getting it,” Braley said.

Braley used an example of small business owners in Marshall County working together like people he met at the Marshalltown Rotary Club and the need for the 435 members of Congress to follow that example. He said Congress must “build relationships of trust.”

Braley made national news – and was late night talk show fodder – for a comment he made last week about the lack of towel service at the Congressional gym during the shutdown.

Braley said his point was the gym brings members of Congress together and it’s important to have that communication – though it came across to many as just another taxpayer-funded legislator perk.

“I regret that my comment may have distracted from the point I made,” Braley said. “…I think (Congress working together is) something we need more of, not less of.”