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to End Gridlock in Washington
Last week, I voted in favor of the Senate plan to end gridlock
in Washington. I share Kansans’ frustration with Washington’s habit of crisis-to-crisis governing.
This latest standoff offered a rare opportunity for Congress and the President to change course, make
real reductions in spending, lower federal deficits, and address the unfunded liabilities that threaten
U.S. solvency. Unfortunately, none of that happened.
American government should never default on its debt obligations, but unless we find the courage to restrain
our country’s out-of-control spending, that’s exactly what will happen.
deal calms fear of default for now, but we must take advantage of the next 90 days to finally get our
spending under control. Without action to begin addressing our staggering debt and deficits, our country
will inevitably default in the future because we will no longer have the ability to pay our bills.
a sad day in America when Washington must choose between economic catastrophe now and economic catastrophe
later. A better way does exist, and I pray Washington will muster the discipline to pursue it.
Arms Trade Treaty Update
Last month, the Obama Administration signed the United States
on to the United Nations Arms Trade Treaty (ATT). This action was a direct dismissal of the bipartisan
Senate opposition that has vocally disapproved of this dangerous treaty for years. As I shared with you
in KCS a few weeks back, a bipartisan coalition of 50 Senators joined me in sending a message to President
Obama and Secretary Kerry to again warn them of the irresponsible nature of this treaty. Our letter also
served as a reminder of the ATT’s impossible prospects for ratification by the U.S. Senate. I will
continue to work to make certain this treaty is never implemented or allowed to threaten our constitutional
freedoms or American sovereignty. Click
here to read the letter in its entirety.
Will Swenson Medal of Honor
Tuesday, former Army Captain Will Swenson received our nation’s highest honor, the Medal of Honor.
On Sept. 8, 2009, in Ganjgal, Afghanistan, Capt. Swenson saved numerous lives after his team was ambushed
by insurgents in an attack killing and wounding a number of U.S. servicemen and Afghan soldiers. At the
time of his selfless acts, Will was deployed from Fort Riley and wore the 1st ID badge as a member of
a Military Transition Team working with Afghan soldiers. For almost two years, I asked about Will’s
nomination with the Department of the Army and the White House to make certain he was justly recognized
for his honorable acts. Much time has passed, but I’m happy to see that Will’s nomination
has finally received Presidential attention and he is getting the recognition he deserves. Will is the
sixth living service member to receive the nation’s top valor award for actions in Iraq or Afghanistan
— he is truly an American hero. Click
learn more about Will’s story.
County Regional Hospital Opening
It’s great to be back in Kansas, and Friday I helped the
Allen County Regional Hospital (ACRH) celebrate its grand opening. The new, 60,000 square foot facility
replaces the aging downtown hospital which was constructed in 1951. ACRH is a 25-bed Critical Access
Hospital and in addition to a variety of services offered, it provides improved access as a one-story
building featuring a helipad for air-ambulance service.
completion of ACRH is promising for the future of Iola and Allen County. Thanks to Karen Gilpin and David
Wright for giving me a tour of the new facility, and congratulations to the Chairman Harry Lee, Jr. and
the Hospital Facilities Commission on a job well done. Click
here to see a photo from the event.
Northern Santa Fe’s Intermodal Facility Grand Opening
My first top back in Kansas was in Johnson
County, to speak at the grand opening of Burlington Northern Santa Fe (BNSF)’s new Intermodal Facility.
As one of Johnson County’s largest economic development projects ever, the $250 million, 440-acre
facility will provide businesses with a direct connection to the global supply chain via the BNSF’s
transcontinental railroad that begins in California and terminates in Chicago. It will also provide companies
with the ability to quickly ship goods by rail and truck to their final destinations, as well as create
thousands of jobs for Kansans. A special thanks also to the state, county and city leaders who partnered
together to provide infrastructure around the facility including a new diverging diamond interchange
at I-35 and Homestead Lane. Through these partnerships and the project they allow opportunities for jobs
for Kansans and economic benefits to the communities and state. Thank you to Matt Rose Chairman and CEO,
BNSF Railway and Carl Ice President and COO, BNSF Railway for their hospitality.
Club Pancake Feed in Manhattan
Saturday morning, it was great to see Manhattanites and fellow
Lions Club members at their annual pancake feed. In addition to great food and company, Lions Club had
free mobile health screenings and the Kansas Quality Woodworkers had an arts and crafts show with more
than 20 booths. Thanks to the local Lions Clubs members for hosting a great event. Click
here to see a photo.
Clubs International is the world’s largest service club organization with 1.35 million members
in more than 45,000 clubs in 206 countries and geographic areas, including more than 270 clubs in Kansas.
In addition to its efforts to conquer blindness, the organization has made a strong commitment to community
service, disaster relief, and helping youth in Kansas and throughout the world.
Accepting Applications for Spring 2014 Internships
Congressional internships are a great way for Kansas students
to learn about Congress and gain professional work experience. Having worked as a congressional intern
myself, I know what a valuable experience it can be. Interns will gain a better understanding of the
legislative process in the U.S. Congress, and develop knowledge and professional skills valuable to future
career pursuits. I encourage anyone with an interest in government and public service to apply.
office is now accepting applications for the spring semester. Completed applications must include a resume,
cover letter, academic transcript and two letters of recommendation, and all parts must be submitted
for consideration by November 1, 2013.
Please visit the internship
page on my website to apply or email xxx
if you have any questions.
Last week we had several visitors in the Washington, D.C., office,
including the Kansans listed below:
Speno of Hays
Jessica Speno of Hays
Anna Speno of Hays
Maggie Speno of Hays
Isabella Speno of Hays
Henry Speno of Hays
Carol Bain of Ness City
Society of the United States
Chuck Laue of Leawood
Marcia Stambaugh of Topeka
Robert Stambaugh of Topeka
to Serve You in Washington
It is an honor to serve you in Washington, D.C. Thank you to
the many Kansans who have been calling and writing in to share their thoughts and opinions on the issues
our state and country face. I appreciate the words of Kansans, whether in the form of a form of letter,
a Facebook comment or a phone call, who wish to make their voice heard.
let me know how I can be of assistance. You can contact me by email by clicking
here. You can also click
here to contact me through one of my Kansas offices or
my Washington, D.C., office.