Here's how we beat the gun lobby
Friends - Speaking is still physically difficult for me, but my feelings are clear: I am furious. We have watched, time and time again, as people describe these mass shootings as unimaginable and unpreventable acts of evil. But we all know that is not true. We have seen them before, and we will see them again. And what angers me most is that Congress knows how to solve this problem. Bernie Sanders has fought to reduce the epidemic levels of gun violence in this country. And at the end of the day, both of us know that the root of this issue lies in the outrageous amounts of money the corporate gun lobby spends buying candidates and elected officials. So if we want to change the equation, that means Congress must realize they have more to fear from all of us standing together and acting than they do from the gun lobby's money. That starts with all of us making our voices heard. So today I am asking you to do something important, I am asking you to take my pledge. Sign my pledge: "I promise that I will Vote Courage in November and support candidates who will stand up to the gun lobby and take action to make our communities safer from gun violence." For decades now, the gun lobby has used its power and influence to instill fear into the hearts of legislators in Congress and state capitals across our country. But that fear is nothing like what those students fleeing Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School must have felt as they ran out of the building with their hands in the air as officers ran toward them with their guns drawn. That fear is nothing like what the children and teachers must have felt at Sandy Hook Elementary School, or the club goers felt in Orlando, or the holiday party attendees felt in San Bernardino as shots rang out all around them. What those legislators who vote to put the profits of manufacturers ahead of the safety of our communities really feel is cowardice. They look at the most benign and practical solutions offered by moderates from each party and then they look over their shoulder at the powerful, shadowy gun lobby and choose to do nothing. This November, we are going to vote them out. But it will only happen if we stand together. And that starts with making your voice heard. Join me and Senator Bernie Sanders. Pledge to Vote Courage in 2018: We do not have to accept these horrific acts of violence as routine, and we must never stop demanding that our leaders not only acknowledge this devastating problem, but take long overdue action to keep our children safe. If Congress won't act, the American voters must. All my best, Gabby Giffords---- Paid for by Friends of Bernie Sanders (not the billionaires) PO BOX 391, Burlington, VT 05402 This email was sent to xxx. Email is one of the most important tools we have to reach supporters like you, but if you’d like to, click here to unsubscribe: Stand against the powerful special interests and build our movement by contributing to Friends of Bernie Sanders here:
· Tue, Feb 20 · sanders

Introducing Immigration Reform Legislation" >
· Tue, Feb 20 · moran

The Enzi Update - February 2018 Newsletter
Mike Enzi, United States Senator for Wyoming While folks in Wyoming might be taking advantage of our own winter wonderland to go snowmobiling, skiing or snowshoeing, halfway around the world the Winter Olympics are in full swing. I know the state was cheering on Wyoming's three athletes competing in Pyeongchang, South Korea. I also want to make sure you know about the annual GRO-Biz Conference and Idea Expo in Rock Springs. If you own a business, it's a great opportunity to match your product or services with millions of dollars in federal contracting. I always appreciate learning more about the great businesses that call Wyoming home. [image =] * What's new in February?** Enzi says President and Congress must work together to curb rising debt** [image =] [link 1] Click here to watch the video. [link 2] During a hearing on the President Trump's fiscal year 2019 budget proposal, U.S. Senator Mike Enzi, R-Wyo., chairman of the Senate Budget Committee, said Americans deserve a serious budget that addresses the nation's fiscal priorities while curbing the national debt. "One of my greatest concerns is our country's national debt - a figure that now eclipses $20 trillion," Enzi said. "To really secure our economy, particularly for future generations, we must tackle this growing problem. While lowering taxes is proving to bolster our economy, which will bring in new revenue, we must more closely examine the spending priorities and habits of the federal government." Enzi and other committee members addressed their comments to Mick Mulvaney, the director of the Office of Management and Budget, who provided testimony and answered questions about the president's budget proposal. Mulvaney said the budget does not balance within 10 years, but he thought it was better to be realistic about the budget picture. Learn more [link 3] BLM seeks to change methane rules** [image =] The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) announced that it is proposing to replace its methane venting and flaring rule from oil and gas operations on federal and Indian land with requirements similar to those that were in force prior to the 2016 final rule. U.S. Senator Mike Enzi agreed with the change. "The methane venting and flaring rule was part of an anti-fossil fuel agenda," Enzi said. "The regulations were unnecessary, duplicative and overly burdensome." Learn more [link 4] Enzi explores options to help "gig economy" workers to save for retirement** [image =] [link 5] Click here to watch the video. [link 6] As more and more individuals transition to work in the "gig economy," traditional options to save for retirement are appearing to become less practical for modern workers. Enzi held a Senate roundtable with a panel of experts in order to discuss what these changes in the labor market mean for retirement security and what retirement savings options are -- or should be -- available to those in the "gig economy." "Gig economy" generally refers to project-based and temporary work arrangements, or gigs, that individuals rely on for earnings, and are often app-based, such as Uber or Postmates. Learn more [link 7] Enzi seeks more information on FEMA disaster relief contracts** [image =] Enzi, chairman of the Senate Budget Committee, is seeking more information from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) about disaster relief contracts awarded to companies that cannot perform the work required. Enzi wrote to FEMA Administrator William B. Long requesting additional information about two specific contract awards to Tribute Contracting LLC and Bronze Star LLC, which were the subject of recent news coverage. According to reports, FEMA awarded Tribute a $156 million contract to provide 30 million meals to victims in Puerto Rico, but the company only provided 50,000 meals. Enzi said instances like this give the impression that FEMA hasn't properly vetted some companies and may have wasted millions of taxpayer dollars. Learn more [link 8] * Around the state** Enzi congratulated Wyoming athletes Breezy Johnson and Resi Stiegler, both from Jackson, and Jaelin Kauf from Alta for representing the United States at the 2018 Winter Olympic Games in Pyeongchang, South Korea. See more [link 9] [image =] Learn how the federal government can become your business's biggest customer at the 2018 GRO-Biz Conference and Idea Expo on February 21 and 22 in Rock Springs. Attending this conference can give you the resources you need to expand your business into government contracting. See more [link 10] [image =] Are you proud of your Wyoming product? Yellowstone General Stores is giving Wyoming businesses a chance to pitch their products to be sold within Yellowstone National Park. Registration ends March 31. Click here [link 11] for more information. [image =]
· Tue, Feb 20 · enzi

Ben & Chuy
One of the great lessons of our presidential campaign was that we showed -- in a way that can change politics in America forever -- that candidates don't have to spend all of their time begging millionaires and billionaires for money in order to win. We proved that if you run a campaign that authentically and unapologetically speaks to the needs of the working people of this country, they will respond overwhelmingly. My friend Ben Jealous is running that kind of campaign has seeks the Democratic nomination to serve as the next Governor of Maryland. His campaign, like ours, is powered by lots of people giving small amounts of money. He's received more individual donations than any other candidate in the race -- a fact noticed by the special interests likely to spend heavily to stop him. Sound familiar? Chuy Garcia did the same thing when he ran to unseat Rahm Emanuel as Mayor of Chicago. Thanks to the support of working people of all backgrounds across the city, he did better than anyone could have possibly imagined. Today, he's running for Congress in Chicago. His primary is next month, and he needs our help. Ben Jealous and Chuy Garcia supported our campaign for president when we needed it most. And right now -- with their Democratic primaries coming up soon -- they both need us. Please help me elect two more allies of our political revolution: Can you join me in making a $27 donation to Chuy Garcia's campaign for Congress in Chicago and Ben Jealous' campaign to serve as the next Governor of Maryland. Both of these elections are coming up pretty soon, so this is important. Through their campaign's Chuy and Ben are bringing attention to the grotesque levels of income and wealth inequality in this country. Both are talking about health care as a right for every man, woman and child in America. They are talking about our broken criminal justice system and our people's lack of access to affordable higher education. They are addressing the global crisis of climate change and the need for real comprehensive immigration reform. Thank you for supporting them with your donation before their primaries. In solidarity, Bernie Sanders ---- Paid for by Friends of Bernie Sanders (not the billionaires) PO BOX 391, Burlington, VT 05402 This email was sent to xxx. Email is one of the most important tools we have to reach supporters like you, but if you’d like to, click here to unsubscribe: Stand against the powerful special interests and build our movement by contributing to Friends of Bernie Sanders here:
· Sat, Feb 17 · sanders

Senate Intelligence Committee Hears from Intelligence Agency Leaders on World Wide Threats
Richard Burr, US Senator North Carolina id="content_main"> *Senate Intelligence Committee Hears from * *I**ntelligence Agency Leaders on World Wide Threats* This week in Washington, I led a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing with the leaders of our country's intelligence agencies. The Directors of National Intelligence, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Central Intelligence Agency, National Security Agency, Defense Intelligence Agency, and National Geo-Spatial Intelligence Agency all appeared before the committee to discuss the threats facing the United States. Among the many threats facing America, my concern over Chinese technological and intellectual property infringement is growing by the day. Our Intelligence Community has to work with the private sector to confront the emerging threats presented by this new wave of 21st century technology. North Korea also continues to push for long-range nuclear capabilities in addition to its considerable conventional military forces, and I believe this rogue regime must be met with a strong coalition of opposition. We must remain vigilant against these hostile foreign powers and their continued efforts to undermine our country. Rest assured, I have the utmost confidence in the men and women of our intelligence community to see this task through.
· Sat, Feb 17 · burr

The Scoop: Tax Cuts Work, Annual 99 County Meetings, Criminal Justice Reform" >
· Sat, Feb 17 · grassley

The Laudable Pursuit: The Perpetual Amnesty Act of 2018
February 16, 2018 "to elevate the condition of men--to lift artificial weights from all shoulders, to clear the paths of laudable pursuit for all, to afford all an unfettered start and a fair chance, in the race of life." --Abraham Lincoln Chairman's Note: The Perpetual Amnesty Act of 2018 Yesterday, eight Republican senators joined with 46 Democrats to vote for a bill that would have established a de facto rolling amnesty for unlimited numbers of illegal immigrants. The final vote total fell six short of the 60 needed to end debate, with three Democrats crossing the aisle to vote with Republicans because they opposed the bill's increased spending. If amnesty supporters can convince those three Democrats that $25 billion in higher spending is no big deal, then they will be just three votes away from moving their bill through the Senate. And in reality, Democrats may need only two more votes to reach 60 because Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) is slated to return to the Senate later this year. Finally, there are three other Republicans who voted against yesterday's amnesty plan but voted for the Gang of 8 amnesty plan in 2013. Democrats would need to flip only two of the three senators to reach 60. That is why it is so important for conservatives to educate themselves and others about what was in yesterday's amnesty bill-a bill that was posted just a day before the vote. Proponents of the so-called "Immigration Security and Opportunity Act" claim their bill offered "a permanent solution to those who came to our country as children through no fault of their own." In a perverse way, they are kind of right. When President Obama first announced DACA on June 15, 2012, only illegal immigrants who had entered the country before June 15, 2007 qualified for protection. We were told this would be a one-time amnesty-future amnesties would not be needed because people were no longer entering the United States illegally. But just two years later, President Obama moved that June 15, 2007 date back three years, to June 15, 2010. Despite his previous claims that our borders were secure and no new amnesties would be needed, suddenly he discovered an additional three years-worth of illegal immigrants in need of protection. The bill rejected yesterday changed the cut-off date yet again, to June 15, 2012-a full five years after President Obama's original June 15, 2007 cut-off date for DACA eligibility! What exactly will stop amnesty advocates from coming back five years from now to demand amnesty for illegal immigrants who entered the country after June 15, 2017? Absolutely nothing. Because amnesty begets more amnesty. The bill's proponents claim their legislation prohibits parents who brought their children into the United States illegally from receiving citizenship themselves. But this provision contains a loophole so big it would be completely ineffective in practice. The legislation bars only those parents who "knowingly" helped their children enter the U.S. illegally. The burden for proving the parent "knowingly" aided illegal entry would fall on the U.S. government, so unless the parent admitted to the illegal act, the provision would not stop anyone from gaining citizenship. Additionally, the wording of the provision would protect parents who brought their children to the country on a valid visa but then kept them here illegally once the visa expired. The bill also would direct the Secretary of Homeland Security to prioritize the removal of illegal immigrants who enter the United States after June 30, 2018. Although this provision is very likely unenforceable as a matter of law, it would have encouraged additional illegal immigration over the next six months. The "Immigration Security and Opportunity Act" would pave the way for future five-year amnesties. If it passes, people around the world will know that if they come illegally to the United States and manage to avoid deportation, eventually amnesty advocates will clamor for their protection. All future Congresses would need to do was change one date in federal law, and a new class of illegal immigrants would become citizens. Senator Lee discusses the SMARTER Act Click here to watch video Issue in Focus: The Poverty Measurement Improvement Act Since President Lyndon Johnson launched the War on Poverty in 1964, the federal government has spent over $22 trillion on means-tested welfare programs. And what do we have to show for it? When the official poverty rate was introduced in 1969, an estimated 12.8 percent of Americans were in poverty. According to the most recent data available, from 2016, that number is basically unchanged at 12.7 percent. Progressives, of course, see these numbers and push for more programs and more spending. But there are some very good reasons to believe that today's official poverty rate is artificially inflated. The main problem is that the tool the federal government uses to compile the official poverty rate (the Census Bureau's Current Population Survey) does not include the total value of federal benefits when measuring an individual's or a household's income. This leads to a dramatically distorted picture of poverty in America today, and it obscures the true cost and scope of the federal welfare state. For instance, a 2015 study of New York residents found that today's official poverty rate "missed over one-third of housing assistance recipients, forty percent of Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program recipients, and sixty percent of Temporary Assistance for Needy Families benefits." If all of these federal benefits were included in the government's measurement of the official poverty rate, we would have a much clearer picture of the extent to which our federal antipoverty programs help our most vulnerable citizens. But we won't know exactly how much help our welfare programs provide until we have more accurate data. That's why I introduced the Poverty Measurement Improvement Act this week. This bill would improve the data available to lawmakers by authorizing a new Census Bureau survey that would more accurately calculate income and poverty rates. The new survey would incorporate information on federal non-cash benefits, tax credits, and taxes, and estimates would be verified against individual records from the IRS and other federal agencies that administer means tested benefit programs. The core problem with our welfare system today isn't just its bloated annual budget, but its tendency to undermine the two most dependable routes out of poverty: marriage and work. But we can't improve these programs until we have better data on how they are affecting working families. The Poverty Measurement Improvement Act will do just that. Washington, D.C. Office 361A Russell Senate Office Building Washington, D.C., 20510 Phone: 202.224.5444 Fax: 202.228.1168 Salt Lake City Wallace F. Bennett Federal Building 125 South State, Suite 4225 Salt Lake City, UT 84138 Phone: 801.524.5933 Fax: 801.524.5730 St. George Office of Senator Michael S. Lee 285 West Tabernacle, Suite 200 St. George, UT 84770 Phone: 435.628.5514 SaveSaveSave SaveSave SaveSaveSave Save Save Save Save Save Save SaveSave SaveSaveSave SaveSave Save This message was intended for: xxx You were added to the system October 2, 2015. For more information please follow the URL below: Follow the URL below to update your preferences or opt-out: To unsubscribe from future mailings, send an email to mailto:xxx?Subject=Unsubscribe&body=Please%20remove%20me%20from%20further%20mailings with "Unsubscribe" as the subject line.
· Fri, Feb 16 · lee

Urgent Petition to Donald Trump
My Fellow American, If you're disgusted that a coward who deserted the Army in Afghanistan walks free - but an American hero sits in prison for protecting the men under his command... ...then please stand with me by signing this new EMERGENCY PETITION TO PARDON 1LT CLINT LORANCE NOW. As you know, Bowe Bergdahl abandoned his post in a combat zone. His fellow soldiers risked their lives searching for him - and men died. That's right, my friend. American soldiers DIED searching for this deserter. Yet Bergdahl received a mere slap on the wrist for his crime - which let me remind you, is punishable by death. And he won't serve a single day in prison. Meanwhile, Clint Lorance is locked away in a prison cell for saving American soldiers. You see, 1LT Lorance and his men were on patrol in Afghanistan when a U.S. helicopter radioed that a motorcycle was sitting near a road only used by the Taliban. When the motorcycle started gunning toward the platoon and ignored warning shots, Clint ordered his marksman to fire. Two of the riders were killed. The other was captured in the village. Without a doubt, these men posed a threat to Clint's platoon. And as the commanding officer, Clint knew he was responsible for getting every single one of his soldiers back to base alive. Yet our own government didn't agree. 1LT Lorance was convicted of murder and sentenced to 20 years at the U.S. Disciplinary Barracks at Fort Leavenworth. And even though the government withheld critical evidence during the trial that could have proven Clint's innocence, the Army Court of Criminal Appeals recently ruled Clint will stay in prison. Now you know why I'm asking you to follow this link to sign the EMERGENCY PETITION TO PARDON 1LT CLINT LORANCE NOW. As a combat veteran, I'm sick to my stomach over the double standard between Clint's punishment and Bergdahl's. No one ever said that the military justice system was without its flaws - but allowing a deserter to walk free while an American hero rots in prison is an injustice you and I cannot let stand. I've been calling on our Commanders-in-Chief - both Barack Obama and Donald Trump - to pardon Clint since he was convicted more than four years ago. But I can't drive the President to action alone. I need your help. That's where your signed EMERGENCY PETITION TO PARDON 1LT CLINT LORANCE NOW comes in. I'll send your signed petition directly to President Trump at the White House. And I'll also send a copy to Vice President Mike Pence, Attorney General Jeff Session, and Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis - a retired Marine Corps General. My goal is to flood Washington, DC, with over one million signed petitions - and I'm counting on yours to be one of them. So will you sign the petition right away? After signing the petition, I ask that you make a special, tax-deductible donation of $35 to support United American Patriots, the non-profit organization paying for Clint's legal defense. United American Patriots (UAP) was founded by another combat veteran who knows just like I do that you can't second-guess our young men for their split-second actions behind enemy lines. That's why UAP provides legal defenses for soldiers like Clint who have been unfairly accused of crimes for their actions in deadly combat zones. In fact, they're assisting 7 other wrongly accused service members in addition to funding Clint's new appeal in civilian court and our massive petition campaign. But as a non-profit, UAP doesn't receive a dime of federal funding. Instead they depend on the big hearts of patriotic Americans like you who support them and their mission. UAP has estimated the cost of Clint's new appeal and this pardon petition to be more than $625,000... ...but I don't think you can put a price tag on this young man's freedom. That's why I'm hoping you'll make a special donation to UAP to help them fight for Clint. But no matter what, I'm counting on you to sign the EMERGENCY PETITION TO PARDON 1LT CLINT LORANCE NOW. My friend, I know that Clint saved those men's lives because just weeks after the ambush on his platoon, a motorcycle with two riders drove into a village where U.S. soldiers were patrolling and detonated explosives. That leader did not react as Clint did - and his men suffered heavy casualties. I don't know how the judges involved in Clint's case sleep at night. (Or Bergdahl's for that matter.) But I won't sleep until this young man is released and his name is cleared. Please stand with me today and fight for a true American Hero's freedom by signing the EMERGENCY PETITION TO PARDON 1LT CLINT LORANCE NOW and making your best donation of $35 or more. As someone who's experienced the military justice system firsthand, I can't thank you enough for standing with 1LT Clint Lorance, the American soldier who courageously stood and fought the enemy - not the one who abandoned his fellow soldiers when the going got tough. On behalf of Clint, his family and UAP, thank you in advance for your support. Steadfast and loyal, LTC(R) Allen West Sign the Petition United American Patriots is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. All donations are tax-deductible to the extent allowed by law. Mailing Address: 121-F Shields Park Drive, Kernersville, NC 27284 © Copyright 2018, This message was intended for: xxx You were added to the system March 24, 2016. For more information please follow the URL below: Follow the URL below to update your preferences or opt-out: To unsubscribe from future mailings, send an email to mailto:xxx?Subject=Unsubscribe&body=Please%20remove%20me%20from%20further%20mailings with "Unsubscribe" as the subject line.
· Fri, Feb 16 · rubio

Call your senators about DREAM now
Friends, The Senate is voting on immigration right now. We want to be clear, Our Revolution stands with undocumented youth. Our supporters, volunteers, and local groups are calling their Senators every single day to ensure that a clear solution is provided that gives protection to Dreamers. Join Our Revolution and call your senators today to tell them we need a clean DREAM Act. The Senate is voting on immigration as we speak. Today, we are calling on our elected officials to finally move on permanent protection for Dreamers and to hold strong for the rest of the immigrant population. Call your senator right now to support a clean DREAM Act. Every single day that goes by without a clean DREAM Act, 122 DACA recipients lose their protected status and are forced back into the shadows. Our country made a promise to undocumented youth that they could pursue a future in the United States without fear of persecution. The America that we believe in will follow through on this promise. We, the American people, must hold our senators accountable to fight for a country where neighbors look after neighbors. CALL NOW>>>>>> In solidarity, The Team at Our Revolution
· Thu, Feb 15 · sanders

Access Live Event
February 14, 2018 Access Live Event Postponed In light of the still developing news out of Florida and out of respect for those touched by these events, I have chosen to postpone this Access Live event until next week. The Access Live event will now be on February 21st at 5:00 p.m. MT. To receive a phone call at the time of the event, you can register online now. Those who want to stream the event live on their computer or mobile device can use this link when the event starts: Washington, D.C. Office 361A Russell Senate Office Building Washington, D.C., 20510 Phone: 202.224.5444 Fax: 202.228.1168 Salt Lake City Wallace F. Bennett Federal Building 125 South State Suite 4225 Salt Lake City, UT 84138 Phone: 801.524.5933 Fax: 801.524.5730 St. George Office of Senator Michael S. Lee 285 West Tabernacle Suite 200 St. George, UT 84770 Phone: 435.628.5514 Ogden James V. Hansen Federal Building 324 25th Street Suite 1410 Ogden, Utah 84401 Phone: 801-392-9633 Fax: 801-392-9630 SaveSaveSaveSaveSave SaveSaveSave SaveSave SaveSaveSave Save This message was intended for: xxx You were added to the system October 2, 2015. For more information please follow the URL below: Follow the URL below to update your preferences or opt-out: To unsubscribe from future mailings, send an email to mailto:xxx?Subject=Unsubscribe&body=Please%20remove%20me%20from%20further%20mailings with "Unsubscribe" as the subject line.
· Wed, Feb 14 · lee

ALERT: Enrollment is open
Unity, Your support has been essential to our success! We appreciate everything you have done for the conservative cause. It is because of you that we are MAKING AMERICA GREAT AGAIN! We were doing our final review before our special enrollment period closes tomorrow at midnight and we noticed your Charter Membership is listed as EXPIRED and LAPSED for 2018. We can only hold this special February open enrollment period open until tomorrow at midnight. 2018 Charter Membership Email: xxx Account No.: 2538619 Expiration: 12/31/2017 Current Status: LAPSED RENEW NOW >>> Please renew your membership before the open enrollment period closes tomorrow at midnight. Thanks, Senate Republicans RENEW NOW If you recently updated your membership, you may have received this email by mistake. We can't thank you enough for becoming a 2018 NRSC Member!
· Wed, Feb 14 · rubio

· Wed, Feb 14 · rubio

· Wed, Feb 14 · rubio

Staying Connected
February 13, 2018 Live Town Hall on Wednesday The United States economy grew at an annual rate of 2.3 percent in 2017, and growth exceeded 2016 levels in every quarter. Unemployment fell from 4.7 percent in January 2017 to 4.1 percent this month. And wages grew 2.9 percent in 2017, a level not seen since 2009. Not only are more Americans earning higher wages, but starting next month millions of Americans will also start benefiting from the tax cut Congress passed last December. This bill includes a major increase in the Child Tax Credit from $1000 to $2000 and makes $1400 of that amount available to workers without income tax liability. The Senate has also been working diligently to fill the many vacancies open throughout the federal court system. The biggest, of course, being Justice Neil Gorsuch who was confirmed to replace Justice Antonin Scalia on April 10, 2017. Our nation's rural communities also received some much needed help in 2017 as President Trump rolled back multiple restrictive regulations pushed on them by wealthy urban environmental special interests. There still is much for Congress and the White House to do over the next three years, but 2017 was a very solid start. I look forward to hearing from you about what you hope Congress can do in 2018. Join me in an upcoming Access Live event on February 14th at 5:00 p.m. MT. To receive a phone call at the time of the event, you can register online now. Those who want to stream the event live on their computer or mobile device can use this link when the event starts: I look forward to having you join me for this event. Washington, D.C. Office 361A Russell Senate Office Building Washington, D.C., 20510 Phone: 202.224.5444 Fax: 202.228.1168 Salt Lake City Wallace F. Bennett Federal Building 125 South State Suite 4225 Salt Lake City, UT 84138 Phone: 801.524.5933 Fax: 801.524.5730 St. George Office of Senator Michael S. Lee 285 West Tabernacle Suite 200 St. George, UT 84770 Phone: 435.628.5514 Ogden James V. Hansen Federal Building 324 25th Street Suite 1410 Ogden, Utah 84401 Phone: 801-392-9633 Fax: 801-392-9630 SaveSaveSaveSaveSave SaveSaveSave SaveSave SaveSaveSave Save This message was intended for: xxx You were added to the system October 2, 2015. For more information please follow the URL below: Follow the URL below to update your preferences or opt-out: To unsubscribe from future mailings, send an email to mailto:xxx?Subject=Unsubscribe&body=Please%20remove%20me%20from%20further%20mailings with "Unsubscribe" as the subject line.
· Tue, Feb 13 · lee

Change in your neighborhood
Friends, The mainstream media and cable news networks provide endless coverage of budget decisions in Washington, D.C. They offer a perspective on the political system that tells viewers that power is centralized in the Capitol, not dispersed throughout state legislatures, city councils, or school boards. We cannot afford to overlook the huge budget decisions being made on the local level anymore. Our Revolution groups are taking back control of their community resources. Our volunteers are going up against the most powerful entities in local politics by consolidating the hard-earned money of the people and dedicating it toward their most pressing priorities. The scope of power for an individual citizen is limited, but the scope of power for a group is limitless. Our Revolution members have joined forces to lobby city councilmembers, take on the private insurance companies, and protest fracking in communities that could contaminate the very water that we drink. These are the volunteers and activists that you support when you donate to Our Revolution. Can you support the progress being made by Our Revolution groups by contributing $5? CONTRIBUTE » Your contribution allows volunteers to promote their local events through Our Revolution's Organizing Hub, it allows local groups to make calls to members of their community about progressive candidates running for office, it allows our staff the time and resources to work directly with neighborhood leaders who are running for precinct captains to transform the Democratic Party in their state. We have the momentum. Now we need to focus our efforts and make them count. Make a $5 contribution to maintain the momentum Our Revolution is building. CONTRIBUTE » We are capitalizing on the opportunities in front of us to pass meaningful progressive policy on the local level. Your contribution and support for our local groups make our work possible--thank you. In solidarity, Larry Cohen Board Chair Our Revolution CONTRIBUTE »
· Mon, Feb 12 · sanders

Legislative Relief for Those Affected by Wildfires" >
· Mon, Feb 12 · moran

Latest from Lamar: How the opioid crisis is affecting Tennessee children and families
Latest from Lamar, Notes from the Senate Desk *Last week, the Senate health committee I chair held our fourth hearing this Congress on the opioid crisis, to look at its impact on Tennessee children and families. * The opioid crisis is particularly heartbreaking for Tennessee children and families. No one understands that more than Jessie, an East Tennessee woman who lost a baby during the nearly two decades she struggled with an addiction to opioids and other substances. Today, Jessie is in recovery and is a powerful resource for pregnant women in East Tennessee who are addicted to opioids -- providing support and encouragement to women going through the same battles she fought during her recovery. Tennessee is on the front lines as this crisis has caused what the Tennessee Department of Health has described as a "sharp increase" in neonatal abstinence syndrome, or the number of babies born struggling with opioid withdrawal. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the number of infants born with neonatal abstinence syndrome, or NAS, and who go through withdrawal symptoms from opioids has tripled from 1999 to 2013 - and Tennessee has a rate of three times the national average. The opioid crisis affects more than just infants - many grandparents and relatives have taken on the role of caregiver for children whose parents are addicted to opioids. In Tennessee, between 2010 and 2014, there was a 51 percent increase in the number of parents who lost parental rights because of an opioid addiction. While that is a lot of numbers, they represent real families and children whose lives are being impacted by the opioid crisis. It is important to hear how states are helping ensure newborns and children impacted by drug abuse are being cared for. At our hearing last week, I asked our witnesses, including Dr. Stephen Patrick of Vanderbilt University Medical Center, if they need changes to federal law or regulations to help improve that care. I appreciated their input because I am working on a package of bills to help states and communities address the opioid crisis. I hope to have them ready for the health committee to approve as soon as the end of March. Last week I, along with the lead Democrat on our committee, Senator Patty Murray, and Senators Todd Young and Maggie Hassan, introduced the first bill. It would give the National Institutes of Health more flexibility to conduct cutting-edge research related to the opioid crisis, including to spur the development of a non-addictive painkiller - which could really be the antidote to the opioid crisis. *Last Tuesday, I met with members of the Tennessee School Boards Association to talk about the implementation of the Every Student Succeeds Act - legislation I sponsored and Congress passed in 2015 to fix No Child Left Behind. School boards played a key role in how the law was written and they are helping make sure the law is being implemented the way it was written, which was to reverse the trend towards a national school board. * *To make college more affordable, we should simplify loans, cut red tape, and encourage innovation and accountability * Last Tuesday, the Senate education committee I chair held a hearing on the cost of going to college. While it is never easy to pay for college, it is easier than many people think, and it is unfair and untrue to suggest that for most students college is financially out of reach. In 2015, Tennessee became the first state to offer two years of tuition-free education at community colleges and technical institutes to every high school graduate through Tennessee Promise. At the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, one-third of students have a Pell Grant, which is worth up to $5,920. In addition, 98 percent of in-state freshmen also receive a Hope Scholarship from the State of Tennessee, which provides up to $3500 annually for the first two years and up to $4500 for the next two years. If a student receives both a Pell grant and the Hope Scholarship, that nearly covers the full cost of tuition. Despite this, there is no doubt college costs are rising and that a growing number of students are having trouble paying back their debt. The Senate education committee I chair has held 22 hearings over the last four and a half years in preparation for reauthorizing the Higher Education Act and produced a number of proposals to reduce the cost of going to college and making it more affordable - that do not necessarily include asking the taxpayer to spend more money on student aid. These include ideas to: First, simplify the FAFSA -- the burdensome Free Application for Federal Student Aid that 20 million families struggle to fill out each year - to remove it as a barrier to college and help students better understand the range of schools they can afford. Second, simplify the existing federal student aid system of grants, loans, and repayment plans and redirect some of those dollars to higher priorities, such as creating additional Pell grants. Third, more competency based education would allow students to more rapidly complete degrees based on knowledge and learning, not time in the classroom, therefore saving the student money. And fourth, hold schools accountable for their students' ability to repay their loans--it makes no sense to spend taxpayer dollars helping students earn degrees that are not worth their time and money. *It was great to meet with members of the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities last week. I appreciated their input as we continue to work on reauthorizing the Higher Education Act. * On February 2, President Trump announced his intent to nominate John Ryder of Tennessee to serve on the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) Board of Directors. I was glad to join Senator Corker in recommending him for membership on the TVA Board. John is a respected leader in Shelby County and in our state. He understands that TVA's mission is to continue to provide cheap, clean, reliable electricity for homes and businesses throughout the seven-state Tennessee Valley region. I look forward to his confirmation by the United States Senate. *On Tuesdays in Washington when the Senate is in session, Senator Bob Corker and I welcome Tennesseans to join us for coffee and donuts at "Tennessee Tuesday." We share updates on what we're working on so if you're planning a visit to Washington, let us know. *Passing a two year budget agreement to fund important priorities * Last week, Congress passed and President Trump signed a 2-year budget agreement into law that sets important priorities for our nation: fighting the opioid crisis, ending sequestration funding restrictions on our military, and improving our nation's roads, bridges, locks and dams. It also extends funding for the community health centers that nearly 400,000 Tennesseans rely on for their health care, and extends funding for CoverKids, which provides health insurance to nearly 74,000 Tennessee children and pregnant women. Always keep in mind this advice from Minnie Pearl: "I've gotten to the point in life where I've decided that if people aren't nice, they're not so hot in my book, no matter how big they are."
· Mon, Feb 12 · alexander

New Year, New Opportunities
United States Senator for Alaska, Lisa Murkowski *New Year, New Opportunities* It's been a busy start to a New Year! Whether it's securing a life-saving road for the community of King Cove, addressing our nation's pressing energy needs and Alaska's vast resource potential, or fighting back against the opioid crisis --- we've started off the year in stride and have much work ahead of us. [image =] *Click image for my comments on President Trump's first State of the Union Address.* *Keep up with what I'm doing, and follow me on:* [image =] [link 1] [image =] [link 2] [image =] [link 3] *Back to Work in Washington* *King Cove* For decades, the people of King Cove have asked for a reliable way to access life-saving services and improve their quality of life, through a simple, one-lane, gravel road. After years of efforts, the Department of the Interior and the King Cove Corporation signed an agreement authorizing a small land exchange needed to construct a road. This is a huge win for the people of King Cove and all of Alaska. [image =] *Alaska Delegation and community leaders celebrating the King Cove land exchange.* [image =] [link 4]* *Click image above for my remarks at the King Cove announcement press conference.* [image =]* *Alaska Delegation and community leaders celebrating the King Cove land exchange.* ANWR* * [image =] [image =]* * [image =]* *Celebrating the opening of the non-wilderness 1002 Area of ANWR* *with longtime friends during a recent visit to Fairbanks. * *New Offshore Oil and Gas Leasing Program* Early last month the Interior Department released a new draft of the proposed Five-Year Oil and Gas Leasing Program for the Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) for 2019-2024, which renews the opportunity for production in Alaska's Arctic. This is important as we seek to create jobs, refill the Trans-Alaska Pipeline, keep energy affordable, and strengthen our long-term security. I'll be encouraging Secretary Zinke to focus on the Chukchi, Beaufort, and Cook Inlet as the new plan progresses through the process. [image =] *A special congratulations to my friend and colleague Congressman Don Young on being named Dean of the House of Representatives.* *Providing Relief to Alaskans* Last month, the Senate ended a government shutdown that was disruptive to thousands in Alaska and across the nation by passing a continuing resolution (CR) which funded the government through February 8, 2018. Congress then passed a funding measure last week to ensure the government remains funded through March 23. These funding measures contained some major legislative wins for Alaska: - Reauthorized the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP) for 10 years, which will be crucial to the more than 17,700 of Denali KidCare enrollees who rely on CHIP. - Suspended three Affordable Care Act taxes and fees, including the so-called Cadillac Tax, which will give Alaskan employers who would have been hit hardest by this tax penalty much needed time to address the impact of this tax on their healthcare plans. - Two-year extension for our community health centers, which will be vital to providing access to affordable healthcare for our most vulnerable individuals and families. - Provided $89.3 billion in emergency supplemental appropriations to help states and communities impacted by recent hurricanes and wildfires. This includes relief for communities affected by fisheries disasters. Standing up for our Fisheries* Senator Sullivan and I urged our colleagues [link 5] to include disaster funding for coastal communities impacted by fisheries disasters as part of any disaster relief package that moves through Congress. After more than a year of persistence, funding for fisheries disasters was included in the emergency supplemental appropriations, contained in the Bipartisan Budget Agreement. This legislation is truly vital to communities like those in the Gulf of Alaska who were hit hard by the pink salmon fishery in 2016. I appreciate my colleagues on the Senate Appropriations Committee, especially Senators Cochran and Shelby, for working with me over the months to secure this aid for Alaska and other states impacted by these disasters. Fighting the Opioid Epidemic* During a Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee hearing [link 6] we heard from Mr. Sam Quinones, journalist and author of *Dreamland: The True Tale of America's Opiate Epidemic*. I questioned Mr. Quinones on how we as Senators and role models can use our positions, federal programs, policies, and funding to address the opioid crisis and the stigma associated with those who have been impacted. [image =] [link 7] Click here [link 8] to watch my Q&A with Mr. Sam Quinones. *Supporting Caregivers * The RAISE Family Caregivers Act [link 9], legislation I cosponsored, was recently signed into law. It directs the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to develop, maintain, and periodically update a National Family Caregiving Strategy. This will provide high-quality family-centered care in all healthcare services to the 40 million family caregivers in this country. *Dreamers * We should not punish children for the actions of their parents. Those who were brought to this country by their parents, were raised here, educated here, lived here, and dreamed here, should be welcomed to stay here. They should have the right to work and a way to citizenship. I have consistently cosponsored legislation to provide just that, which can be found here [link 10]. The Senate will have a robust floor debate beginning today. *Tax Reform* In December, the Senate passed the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, comprehensive tax reform that aims to encourage the economic growth needed to create jobs and generate wealth, while reducing taxes. Americans have already begun to see the benefits. Over 220 companies nationwide and counting [link 11], including in Alaska, have given pay raises, bonuses, or 401(k) increases as a result. The IRS is currently working on new withholding tables that should translate to increases in take home pay for many Alaskans as soon as this month. Important highlights of the bill include: - Roughly doubling the standard deduction to protect the amount of what you earn each year from taxes - from $6,350 and $12,700 under current law to $12,000 and $24,000 for individuals and married couples, respectively. - Increasing the Child Tax Credit. - Lowering individual taxes and setting the rates at 0%, 10%, 12%, 22%, 24%, 32%, 35%, and 37%. - Continuing to allow people to write off the cost of state and local taxes - just like current law - up to $10,000. This gives individuals and families the ability to choose among sales, income and property taxes to best fit their circumstances. - Preserving the Mortgage Interest Deduction and the Earned Income Tax Credit. - Eliminating the ACA individual mandate penalty tax. [image =] *Net Neutrality* In December, the FCC announced its decision to roll-back an Obama-era rule called Net Neutrality. I believe in an open, accessible internet for everyone. It is time for a legislative solution, not more executive action, and I will be pushing my colleagues to work together to enact durable protections for consumers and an open internet. *Coordinated Ocean Monitoring and Research Act * The Senate recently passed the Coordinated Ocean Monitoring and Research Act, legislation that I cosponsored, reauthorizing the Integrated Ocean Observing System (IOOS) to help measure the impacts of Ocean Acidification. This bill will help fill in some of our gaps in ocean monitoring and more effectively address the issues that affect our nation's water. I also introduced a bipartisan ocean acidification bill [link 12]to identify and assess communities, including island communities, low-population rural communities, and subsistence communities, that are most dependent on coastal and ocean resources that may be impacted by ocean acidification. [image =] *NOAA vessel conducting ocean observation.* *Legislator of the Year Award* [image =] *Celebrating being named "Legislator of the Year" with The American Network of Community Options and Resources (ANCOR).* *Opiate Listening Session* * [image =]* *Attended an opiate listening session with groups from around Fairbanks. The Fairbanks Opiate Task Force, Fairbanks Native Association, and Department of Corrections all shared ideas on fostering wellness through prevention and advocacy.* Intern Applications* My office offers a number of internship opportunities in both my Washington, D.C. office, as well as select state office locations. Internship programs are available for recent Alaskan high school graduates. [image =] To apply, please send a resume, cover letter, and a letter of recommendation to my Washington D.C. office. Faxed or e-mailed applications are preferred. Information should be faxed to 202-224-5301 attn: Intern Coordinator. For the Summer Internship program, please complete the application below. Applications are due March 15th! 2018 Summer Internship Application [link 13] *Military Academy Nominations* Every year I have the honor of nominating a group of promising young Alaskans for admission to our nation's military academies. Thank you to all the applicants for their willingness to serve. I wish you all the best of luck. See the complete list of my nominees here: [link 14] *Headlines in the News* - Murkowski sees reason for optimism, though work remains to be done [link 15] (Peninsula Clarion) - 'A historic moment': How ANWR drilling was passed by Congress after decades of effort [link 16](Anchorage Daily News) - Zinke advances road through Alaska wildlife refuge [link 17] (The Hill) - Senator Murkowski, worried for coastal communities, is trying to assess ocean acidification [link 18] (Gray TV) - Commend Murkowski for clean energy priority [link 19](Fairbanks Daily News-Miner) - Net Neutrality fight continues on Capitol Hill [link 20] (KTUU)
· Mon, Feb 12 · murkowski

Update from Senator Bob Corker - February 12, 2018
Bob Corker - U.S. Senator, Tennessee *More Than Discouraged by Irresponsible **Spend-Now-Pay-Later **Mentality in Congress* On Thursday, Senator Corker announced his opposition to the massive spending agreement reached by congressional leaders. "This agreement increases the discretionary spending caps by nearly $300 billion over the next two years, perpetuates the abuse of OCO, and tees up another spending battle two years from now," *said Corker*. "It is also only partially offset, and most of those offsets occur years from now, doubling down on the irresponsible mentality in Congress of spend-now-pay-later. To say I am discouraged by the outcome of these negotiations would be an understatement." Overseas Contingency Operations (OCO) is intended to provide emergency funding for military missions overseas but has been repeatedly abused to fund normal operations at the Departments of Defense and State in order to avoid exceeding statutory spending caps. *Tennessean Paul Ney **Nominated to Serve as General Counsel for the Department of Defense* On Thursday, Senator Corker introduced Tennessean Paul C. Ney Jr. at a Senate Armed Services Committee hearing on his nomination to serve as general counsel of the Department of Defense. "I am pleased to be here with you to introduce Paul Ney, who has been nominated to serve as general counsel for the Department of Defense," *said Corker*. "Paul has worked for the state of Tennessee ably and well for many years, currently serving as the chief deputy attorney general. For two years, he was director of Nashville Mayor's Office of Economic and Community Development... During the Bush administration, he served as acting general counsel for the Navy, where he led 600 Navy lawyers stationed all around the world. From there, he became deputy general counsel for the Department of Defense, where he advised senior defense officials on constitutional law issues, litigation, detainee policy, and other weighty matters." "When people who have worked closely with Paul describe him, they use words like 'respected', 'warm', 'well-liked'," *concluded Corker*. "For someone who is as accomplished and capable as he is, Paul is surprisingly humble. He has a great respect for the permanent civil service and uniformed personnel, and he strives to help them succeed. I wholeheartedly support his nomination, and thank the committee for holding this hearing, and encourage my colleagues to support his confirmation." [image =] [link 1] **Click here [link 2] or on the image above to watch the senator's remarks.** *Ensuring Music Creators in Tennessee Are Compensated for Their Work* On Wednesday, Senator Corker joined four of his Senate colleagues to introduce the Compensating Legacy Artists for their Songs, Service, & Important Contributions to Society Act, or CLASSICS Act. The bipartisan legislation would ensure that recording artists from the pre-1972 music eras are fairly compensated when their music is played digitally. For historical reasons, sound recordings made before February 15, 1972 are governed by state law rather than federal law. In recent years, this has led to disputes as to the scope of state law rights when sound recordings are performed by digital music services. The CLASSICS Act would correct that oddity by bringing those pre-1972 sound recordings into the federal system, thus allowing the artists and owners of such recordings to be fairly compensated when their music is digitally transmitted. "Tennessee is blessed with a vibrant music industry composed of talented songwriters, skilled musicians, and gifted recording artists," *said Corker. *"However, while the industry has been transformed with advances in technology, we have yet to modernize the way music creators are compensated for their work. It is nonsensical that today some of our legendary performers may not get paid for the hits they recorded before 1972, and this legislation will provide certainty for those artists." Last month, Corker joined seven of his Senate colleagues to introduce [link 3] the Music Modernization Act. The bipartisan legislation would be the most significant change in music licensing laws in decades to ensure songwriters are paid fair value for their songs. The Music Modernization Act would set up a new simplified licensing entity to make it easier for digital music companies to obtain a license and play songs. The entity will also ensure songwriters are paid the royalties they are owed. Click here [link 4] to learn more about the CLASSICS Act. *Tyson Foods to Pass on Tax Reform Savings to More Than 5,000 Tennessee Employees* On Wednesday, Tyson Foods announced it will use its savings from tax reform to provide one-time bonuses to employees, improve advancement opportunities, and accelerate capital projects. The company employs 5,000 Tennesseans and last year announced it would create 1,500 new jobs and invest $300 million in Humboldt. [image =] [link 5] *Welcoming Tennesseans to Washington* Last week, Senators Corker and Alexander hosted more than 50 Tennesseans at "Tennessee Tuesday," a regular breakfast held on Capitol Hill every week the Senate is in session for visitors from the Volunteer State. For more information, click here [link 6]. [image =] [image =] Last week, Senator Corker met with members of the Tennessee Association of Utility Districts to discuss their work to serve over 500 utilities and businesses across the Volunteer State. [image =] [image =] *Working to Reform the Peace Corps and Better Protect Its Volunteers* On Wednesday, Senator Corker, chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, praised committee passage of legislation to reform the Peace Corps. The Nick Castle Peace Corps Reform Act of 2018 [link 7] would improve access to medical care for volunteers, strengthen accountability and oversight, and enhance procedures to reduce the risk of crime in the countries in which volunteers serve. The legislation was authored by Corker and is named in honor of Nick Castle, of Brentwood, Calif., who lost his life at age 23 due to inadequate health care while serving in China in 2013. It was later determined by the inspector general that flaws in medical care and the response to his illness contributed to his death. "Very simple steps would have saved Nick's life," said Sue and David Castle, the parents of Nick Castle*. "As parents, we have worked for legislation to ensure this never happens to another family, and we believe this legislation will make the changes that are needed. Nick wanted to make a difference in this world, but he didn't have time to do that. We hope with the passing of this legislation that he can make a true lasting impact on the Peace Corps." "I am always inspired by young people, like Nick Castle, who dedicate themselves to making a difference early in life," *said Corker. *"Nick exemplified the extraordinary commitment of Peace Corps volunteers who devote 2-3 years in service to our country. They deserve the very best support we can provide. Our bill will expand oversight and accountability at the Peace Corps while improving the care our volunteers receive overseas and for service-related injuries when they return home. As this bill advances to the full Senate, I am encouraged by the strong bipartisan support for our efforts to strengthen the Peace Corps and honor Nick Castle's memory." Click here [link 8] to learn more about the Nick Castle Peace Corps Reform Act of 2018.
· Mon, Feb 12 · corker

Harvey Newsletter
The Lonestar Weekly The Lonestar Weekly About For Texans Issues Newsroom Contact #TexasStrong It's difficult to comprehend the scale of destruction that Hurricane Harvey inflicted on the state of Texas. But we Texans are strong and resilient; we always band together. Click here to watch the video. While Texans have begun the rebuilding process in the wake of Hurricane Harvey, our state is still in need of resources as we recover from the most extreme rain event in our nation's history. This week, Congress voted to approve nearly $90 billion in funding for relief efforts following natural disasters like Hurricane Harvey. I applaud the Texas congressional delegation for taking the first step, and I appreciate Governor Abbott and the Senate Appropriations Committee for working with us to strengthen this bill. Helping Texans recover and rebuild has been my top priority, and I am delighted that my colleagues joined with me this week to pass additional relief to help us do just that. 517 Hart Senate Office Bldg. Washington, DC 20510 Main: 202-224-2934 Fax: 202-228-2856 Get Assistance This message was intended for: xxx You were added to the system October 8, 2015. For more information please follow the URL below: Follow the URL below to update your preferences or opt-out: To unsubscribe from future mailings, send an email to mailto:xxx?Subject=Unsubscribe&body=Please%20remove%20me%20from%20further%20mailings with "Unsubscribe" as the subject line.
· Sat, Feb 10 · cornyn

The Scoop: Biofuels, Bill Northey, Cedar Rapids Flood Funding" >
· Sat, Feb 10 · grassley

The Laudable Pursuit: A Betrayal of Limited-Government Conservatism
February 09, 2018 "to elevate the condition of men--to lift artificial weights from all shoulders, to clear the paths of laudable pursuit for all, to afford all an unfettered start and a fair chance, in the race of life." --Abraham Lincoln Chairman's Note: A Betrayal of Limited-Government Conservatism Last night, Congress passed a continuing resolution (CR) that will keep the federal government funded through March 23. This is the fifth Continuing Resolution of the fiscal year-a sixth may be needed before March 23, since both parties have agreed to begin debate on an immigration bill next week. But as bad as the decision to continue funding the government through un-amended short-term auto-pilot bills is, the two-year budget cap deal that passed along with the CR is even worse. With the CR, Congress agreed to fund specific government programs at specific levels only through March 23.The larger budget deal set overallspending levels for two years. The breakdown of spending on specific programs after March 23 will be decided in future funding decisions. But no matter how Congress divvies up the budget in the months ahead, last night's budget deal guaranteed that the end result will blow the top off the nation's already rising debt. According to the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, the spending increases in last night's budget deal will drive next year's budget deficit to almost $1.2 trillion, a level not seen since the beginning of President Obama's failed stimulus program. This is a complete betrayal of everything limited-government conservatives fought for during Obama's presidency. It also is a betrayal of the limited-government vision the Trump administration outlined in its FY 2018 budget. That document called for a $1.4 trillion reduction in discretionary spending over the next ten years. By contrast, this bill sets up a path to dramatically increase discretionary spending. But that's not all. The bill also threw in more than $17 billion in tax loopholes to special interests, including tax rebates for rum producers in Puerto Rico, accelerated depreciation for racehorse investors, special expensing provisions for Hollywood producers, and tax subsidies for electric vehicles. It even suspended the federal government's $20.5 trillion debt limit through March 1, 2019. Suspending the debt limit functionally raises the borrowing authority of the federal government by over one trillion dollars-and it does so without any effort to reduce or reform federal spending. If you hoped that this budget deal would create the possibility for welfare orspending reform, I have bad news for you. By setting spending levels for the next two years, the deal has made passage of a budget resolution this year extremely unlikely. Without a budget resolution, there can be no reconciliation process. And without a reconciliation process, any serious effort to reform welfare or spending is dead. It is unclear what the Senate will do legislatively between now and the November elections. What should be clear to limited-government conservatives is that they have been completely abandoned by the Republican Congress. He's Always Lucas First Click here to watch video Issue in Focus: A Threat to Marriage from the EEOC The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission may seem like an unlikely threat to religious liberty and the institution of marriage. After all, the federal agency was created to combat workplace discrimination by the Civil Rights Act of 1964. But sadly, the agency created to fight discrimination now threatens to discriminate itself; one nominee to the commission's five-member board wants to use the federal agency's power to undermine our nation's founding principles. Chai Feldblum was first nominated to the EEOC by President Barack Obama in 2009, but she was not confirmed by the Senate. In March 2010, President Obama skirted the Senate by seating Feldblum on the commission when Congress was in recess. The Senate ultimately confirmed Feldblum on a 54-41 vote during a lame-duck session in December of that year. Only two Republicans voted for Feldblum's confirmation. Last December, President Donald Trump re-nominated Feldblum, along with two Republicans, to the EEOC. If all three nominees are confirmed, Republicans will have a 3-2 majority on the EEOC. If Feldblum were a typical Democrat, it might make sense to let her nomination proceed through the Senate along with her two Republican colleagues. But Feldblum is no typical Democrat. Her radical views on marriage and the appropriate use of government power place her far outside even the liberal mainstream. Feldblum has argued that, "I, for one, am not sure marriage is a normatively good institution." Instead of promoting marriage as the best arrangement for the emotional and economic security of families, Feldblum believes "all of us are harmed… when society fails to acknowledge the wide array of non-marital social structures." Feldblum even signed a manifesto proposing government recognition of "diverse kinds" of partnerships that "move beyond the narrow confines of marriage politics" in the United States. Don't think for a second that Feldblum's derogatory views about marriage will stay private. Feldblum wants to turn her opinions into federal policy through the EEOC. "The EEOC has jurisdiction only over employment," Feldblum told The Washington Blade in 2015. "But other federal agencies that enforce sex discrimination provisions often look to our interpretation for guidance in interpreting the laws they enforce." And don't think for a second that you, your family, and your neighbors will be left alone if Feldblum gets her way. Feldblum has described modern-day politics as a "zero-sum game," where rights for LGBT Americans are secured only by curtailing the rights of religious Americans. Likewise, Feldblum believes her radical agenda "cannot be adequately advanced if pockets of resistance… are permitted to flourish." She therefore has argued that "no individual exceptions based on religious beliefs" should ever be allowed if they conflict with "the goal of liberty for gay people." Feldblum's desire to use the might of government to stamp out traditional marriage supporters stands in stark contrast to Justice Anthony Kennedy's majority opinion in Obergefell v Hodges, which redefined marriage in 2015. "The First Amendment ensures that religious organizations and persons (emphasis added) are given proper protection as they seek to teach the principles that are so fulfilling and so central to their lives and faiths," Kennedy wrote. "And to their own deep aspirations to continue the family structure they have long revered." As the Supreme Court acknowledges, America's tradition of religious freedom embraces all. Rather than a "zero-sum game" that pits Americans against each other, we should work to build an America where "all possess alike liberty of conscience and immunities of citizenship," as George Washington wrote in 1790. President Trump and Senate Democrats should reject Chai Feldblum's divisive agenda by finding a more mainstream candidate for the EEOC, one who respects the institution of marriage and religious freedom for all Americans. Washington, D.C. Office 361A Russell Senate Office Building Washington, D.C., 20510 Phone: 202.224.5444 Fax: 202.228.1168 Salt Lake City Wallace F. Bennett Federal Building 125 South State, Suite 4225 Salt Lake City, UT 84138 Phone: 801.524.5933 Fax: 801.524.5730 St. George Office of Senator Michael S. Lee 285 West Tabernacle, Suite 200 St. George, UT 84770 Phone: 435.628.5514 SaveSaveSave SaveSave SaveSaveSave Save Save Save Save Save Save SaveSave SaveSaveSave SaveSave Save This message was intended for: xxx You were added to the system October 2, 2015. For more information please follow the URL below: Follow the URL below to update your preferences or opt-out: To unsubscribe from future mailings, send an email to mailto:xxx?Subject=Unsubscribe&body=Please%20remove%20me%20from%20further%20mailings with "Unsubscribe" as the subject line.
· Fri, Feb 9 · lee