Heller delivers withering critique of Washington in maiden Senate speech

“Unfortunately Washington today has been paralyzed by politics and has been reduced to sound bites,” Heller said from the Senate floor. “Too often it seems we cannot move beyond the politics of today. It seems we are more concerned with press conferences then solving the nation’s most pressing problems.” 

At least some of Heller’s ire seemed directed at his own party. For example, he attacked those whom he sees as more focused on tearing down the Medicare program than repairing it.

“Issues such as Medicare, which is on the verge of bankruptcy, instead of strengthening and preserving the program, it is often used as a political weapon,” Heller said.

“Washington has not done enough to get out nation back on track and the American people know it.”

Then-Rep. Heller was appointed by Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval (R) in May to fill the vacant seat created by the resignation of Sen. John Ensign (R) who found himself about to become the subject of intense congressional scrutiny over actions surrounding an extramarital affair he had with a woman who was married to one of his top aides.

Heller said in his maiden speech that there “is not a day that goes by” that he does not think of how to create jobs.

The senior senator from Nevada, Majority Leader Harry Reid (D) and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) both attended the speech in the Senate chamber.