Anna’s Weekly Update
May 3rd, 2019
Highlights of What I Did in Congress the Week of April 29 – May 3
Voted YES on The Climate Action Now Act
Nearly 200 countries, including the United States, signed the Paris Agreement in 2015 to transition to a low-carbon economy and stop global warming. President Trump announced that he planned to go back on America’s promise and pull out of the Agreement.
To keep the United States in the Agreement and push our country to a new frontier of energy innovation, the House voted last week to pass the Climate Action Now Act. The legislation prohibits the President from taking action to advance the withdrawal of the U.S. from the Paris Agreement. It also calls on the President to develop and make public a plan for how the U.S. will meet the pollution reduction goals in the Agreement. He has an obligation to make good on our country’s commitments.
Voted YES on The Senior Security Act of 2019
Every year senior citizens lose $3 billion to financial scams. From IRS impersonators to sweepstakes scams, criminals are preying on the elderly. Law enforcement has struggled to hold perpetrators accountable, with some being located in a foreign country.
To address these scams, I voted for the Senior Security Act which establishes the Senior Investor Task Force at the Securities and Exchange Commission. The Task Force would be directed to identify problems that seniors face, submit a biannual report to Congress on the subject, and make recommendations for rules changes to the SEC.
Legislation Anna Introduced and Cosponsored This Week
Introduced The Prevention of Unconstitutional War with Iran Act
Article I, Section 8 of the U.S. Constitution grants Congress the sole authority to declare war. In recent years this power has been diluted, enabling the Executive Branch to engage in military conflicts unilaterally with little debate. With the President’s hawkish foreign policy team, namely Secretary of State Pompeo and National Security Advisor Bolton, this presents grave implications for possible military entanglements. His advisors have taken several steps to provoke tensions with Iran, including increased economic sanctions and withdrawing from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, otherwise known as the Iran Nuclear Deal.
The Prevention of Unconstitutional War with Iran Act makes it clear that Congress has the sole power to declare war by prohibiting the Administration from engaging in military operations against Iran without explicit authorization from Congress.
Introduced The ROBO Calls and Texts Act
Americans received a staggering 48 billion robocalls last year alone, and the incessant harassment worsens daily. Robocallers have outsmarted regulators and service providers, using new technology and methods to connect with consumers and trick them into handing over credit card or bank account information.
The Regulatory Oversight Barring Obnoxious (ROBO) Calls and Texts Act cracks down on unwanted and frequent predatory calls and text messages by creating a new Robocall Division at the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to combat the daily harassment and scams. The new division will enforce compliance with consumer protections and federal laws related to robocalls, coordinate efforts between the government and private sector to combat robocalls, and manage consumer complaints regarding them.
The Health Committee, which I chair, held a hearing last week to closely examine the Medicare program and what is leading to high prescription drug costs for the 60 million Americans who get their drugs through Medicare.
It was a pleasure to meet with Dr. Steven Artandi, Director of the Stanford Cancer Institute. We discussed federal funding for NIH and the National Cancer Institute, and the important work Stanford is doing to care for patients with cancer.
I had a great time meeting with the 8th grade students of St. Nicholas School visiting Washington, D.C. These young leaders asked excellent questions about work in Congress and many national issues.
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 legislation and policies. Year to date, over 38,000 constituents contacted me, and this past month I received nearly 8,000 messages. I actually read every communication and every constituent receives a personal response to their specific questions and comments. This week, 1,989 constituents contacted our office, including:
- 760 constituents wrote about the Mueller Report and impeachment
- 259 constituents wrote in support of the Climate Action Now Act and action on climate change
- 181 constituents wrote in support of the True Fees Act
Anna’s Recommended Reading and Watching
Frequently, I read articles or see videos that I think my constituents would benefit from.
San Francisco Chronicle (4/30/2019) – “Former Rep. Ellen Tauscher, who negotiated arms control deals under Obama, dies at 67”
A spirited leader of the Bay Area and former colleague, Rep. Ellen Tauscher passed away last week. I had the privilege of working with Ellen on many issues in Congress, and her tenacity and intelligence will always be remembered.