WASHINGTON, D.C. -- House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) today released the following statement applauding Senate passage of the Gabriella Miller Kids First Research Act. Having passed both chambers of Congress, this bill will now be sent to the President's desk to be signed into law:
“So often everyone is focused on what Congress cannot accomplish that we overlook the good that can be done when both parties work together. One courageous young girl, Gabriella Miller, inspired bipartisan action to help research, treat, and cure pediatric diseases and disorders. When people would remark that Gabriella was wise beyond her years, she would tell them that having a brain tumor means you have to grow up real fast. And so a 10-year-old was girl battling for more pediatric research at the same time she battled for her life.
“Ellyn and Mark Miller have been steadfast in their desire to increase support for pediatric research on behalf of their daughter, and today is a major victory for them and this cause. I also know the Millers know this is but a first step, and I look forward to continuing to work with them to build more support to help these kids.
“Representative Gregg Harper was the champion for this effort in the House, and I know he and his son Livingston are celebrating their achievement on behalf of kids with diseases and disorders. Representative Tom Cole provided the idea on how to fund the support, and Representative Peter Welch gave it the bipartisan boost it needed. Senator Tim Kaine joined this effort and got this across the finish line in the Senate. Working with my colleague from Virginia on this was a tremendous pleasure, and I am thankful for his leadership and bipartisan efforts for this cause. Senators Mitch McConnell and Orrin Hatch were instrumental in getting this done from the start.
“Putting pediatric research over politics was the entire point of this bill, and we have achieved that in more ways than one. Gabriella Miller’s amazing spirit stirred the Capitol into action, and I hope it continues to do so for years to come.
“In the words of Gabriella Miller: ‘There could be a lot, a lot, a lot of awareness at one time, and then after a while, it just dies off. But I would prefer there be a little awareness out there and it be constant, forever and ever and ever, and that will build up. It’s like sugar, sugar you go up like this and you go down like this, you have protein, you go up only halfway and you’re steady through the entire day. And that’s what we need.’”