Weekly Update From Congresswoman Anna G. Eshoo
Statement on Trump-Putin Summit in Helsinki
When President Trump took the Oath of Office, he pledged to preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States against enemies foreign and domestic. This week he trashed this oath and brought great shame to the U.S. and the presidency itself by standing with Mr. Putin, an enemy of democracy. He accepted the word of the former head of the KGB over the findings of the U.S. intelligence community, the Senate Intelligence Committee, the Director of National Intelligence, the FBI and the Justice Department that Russia attacked our democracy by blatant interference in our national election.
July 16, 2018 will be noted by historians as the day that the President of the United States betrayed our country.
Highlights of Legislation the House Took up This Week
H.R. 6147, FY 2019 Minibus: Interior-Environment, Financial Services & General Government Appropriations
This week the House voted on the so-called ‘Minibus’ legislation that included two appropriations bills: Interior-Environment, and Financial Services & General Government Appropriations.
The legislation eliminates funding for Election Assistance Commission (EAC) grants to states to enhance their election equipment, counter cyberattacks and defend against future intrusions, despite the fact that Russia has, and will continue to attack our election systems.
The legislation also slashes funding for the Land and Water Conservation fund, a bipartisan program that protects conservation and recreation land in every state and supports tens of thousands of state and local projects. The bill includes dozens of harmful ‘poison pill riders,’ including provisions that undermine the Endangered Species Act; undermine the ability of the EPA and Department of Interior to keep our air and water clean; and attack the reproductive healthcare of women.
H.Con.Res. 119, an Anti-Carbon Tax Resolution
This week the House passed a concurrent resolution stating that a carbon tax is “detrimental to the United States economy.” I voted against this resolution because its central claim is not true. Rather than harming our economy, a carbon tax incents sustainable innovation, making our country more competitive in the global economy. An independent study commissioned by the Citizens’ Climate Lobby found that a carbon tax would actually lead to economic growth and an increase in employment.
Along with creating jobs and generating innovation, a carbon tax is essential to reducing our economy’s appetite for fossil fuels. Because of climate change, my constituents and people across America are experiencing the hottest years on record and enduring severe floods, wildfires, and droughts. As the second largest emitter of greenhouse gasses in the world, the United States needs to do more, not less to address the problem of global climate change.
Legislation Anna Introduced and Cosponsored this Week
Introduced the Pandemic and All Hazards Preparedness Reauthorization (PAHPA) Act
The September 11th attacks on our country and the deadly anthrax attacks that followed in 2001 motivated me and former Rep. Richard Burr to create this bipartisan legislation to coordinate responses to public health emergencies and develop necessary medical countermeasures, and it became law in 2006.
This week my colleague Rep. Susan Brooks (R-IN) and I introduced legislation to reauthorize these critical programs that protect our national security and public health from chemical, biological, radiological, or nuclear attacks. PAHPA updates the legislation to meet the challenges of today, such as the demands placed on our heath care response systems by the increasing number and severity of natural disasters, the growing threat of antimicrobial resistance, and the continuing need to develop medical countermeasure products where there is no commercial market.
Good news—the legislation was passed by the Energy and Commerce Committee this week with unanimous support. To read more about the legislation, CLICK HERE.
Introduced the 9-1-1 Fee Integrity Act
Our 9-1-1 call centers are the first point of contact for Americans in emergency situations, but they rely on technology that’s been in place since the time of the first 9-1-1 call 50 years ago. Unfortunately some states divert fees collected from consumers on their phone bills intended to improve 9-1-1 emergency communication systems and use it for other purposes.
The 9-1-1 Fee Integrity Act directs the FCC, in consultation with public safety organizations, state, local and tribal governments, to determine the appropriate use of funds collected from consumers. We need to make certain the public safety community has every tool it needs to serve and protect our communities because in life-threatening situations, seconds matter.
Cosponsored H.R. 2354, the ANTIQUITIES Act
Nationwide, our public lands and national monuments help fuel an $887 billion outdoor recreation industry which sustains millions of jobs and billions of dollars in federal, state, and local tax revenue. The Trump Administration announced at the end of 2017 that they will eliminate 2 million acres of protections for Utah’s Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante national monuments — the largest rollback of federally protected lands in American history.
The ANTIQUITIES Act enhances protections for national monuments against attacks from the Trump Administration and preserves opportunities for hunting, tourism, scientific research, conservation, and cultural uses in our national monuments.
Letters Anna Wrote and Cosigned this Week
Letter to President Trump Demanding Protection for Former U.S. Ambassador Michael McFaul
This week the Trump Administration raised the possibility of allowing the Kremlin to interrogate the former U.S. Ambassador to Russia and my constituent, Michael McFaul. This is utterly unacceptable and absurd. The United States does not hand over esteemed diplomatic personnel to our adversaries. I joined colleagues this week in writing to President Trump demanding he denounce this offer immediately.
Former Ambassador Michael McFaul is a patriot who served the U.S. with honor and distinction. Our diplomats across the world deserve to know their President will support and protect their work. To read the full letter, CLICK HERE.
Letter to House and Senate Leaders on the National Flood Insurance Program
Following an historic 2017 hurricane season, which for the first time on record resulted in three Category 4 hurricanes making landfall in the United States, and facing the beginning of the 2018 hurricane season, Congress has yet to provide American families with the certainty that the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) will be available to them when the inevitable floods arrive.
More than 5 million families rely on the NFIP for affordable flood insurance coverage. However, since its multi-year authorization expired on September 30, 2017, Congress has passed six short-term extensions and even allowed the program to briefly lapse twice during government shutdowns. The NFIP is set to expire yet again on July 31, 2018.
I joined colleagues this week in writing to House and Senate leadership urging them not to allow this critically important program to lapse. To read the full letter, CLICK HERE.
I joined former and current colleagues on the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence this week in condemning the President’s shocking statements in Helsinki, where he accepted the words of Vladimir Putin and rejected the analysis of the entire U.S. intelligence community that Russia attacked our democracy by attacking our election system in 2016.
Communications and Technology Subcommittee Hearing
This week the Communications and Technology Subcommittee held a hearing on expanding high-speed broadband for all Americans. I highlighted my various pieces of legislation designed to expand access to broadband, increase choice and lower costs for all Americans.
In the Words of My Constituents
Every week hundreds of my constituents call and write to me to express their concerns, share their passions and ask questions regarding a wide range of legislation and policies. I actually read every communication and every constituent receives a personal response from me regarding their specific questions and comments.
Here’s a snapshot of the issues constituents wrote and called me about this week:
· 244 constituents wrote to me to express concern about President Trump’s meeting with Putin.
· 188 constituents wrote to me in opposition to Congressional efforts to undermine the Environmental Protection Agency’s protection of our environment and health.
· 190 constituents wrote to me to in opposition to the Administration terminating Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for immigrants.
Anna’s Recommended Reading
I frequently read articles or see videos I think my constituents would benefit from.
San Jose Mercury News Editorial (7/10/18) “Editorial: Why Kavanaugh is a disaster for tech industry and its users”
This Editorial from the San Jose Mercury News explains how the Supreme Court nominee’s positions on net neutrality and privacy could set back the tech world for decades.
Bloomberg Op-Ed (7/17/18) “A New Reason for Trump to Release His Tax Returns: Helsinki”
Tim O’Brien explains in his Op-Ed why releasing Trump’s tax returns has become a national security concern: because they’d show whether business dealings in Russia could give Putin leverage over the president.
You can find more press releases, commentary and information on issues at my website, eshoo.house.gov. And please visit Instagram, Facebook and Twitter for more ways to stay informed.