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Posted by Randy | September 12, 2014
I wanted to be sure you saw that the Navy decided to allow Bibles back in Navy lodge rooms while leaders continue to review the policy. Last month, I led 25 Members of Congress in sending a bipartisan letter to the Secretary of the Navy, Ray Mabus, urging that donated religious materials remain in the guest rooms at Navy Lodge facilities -- after the Navy announced that it would be removing Bibles from the guest rooms.

The Constitution prohibits the government from coercing its citizens in their religious beliefs; it does not require that all vestiges of faith be scrubbed from view. I continue to urge the Navy to keep Bibles in lodging facilities, and will keep you updated on this situation.

As the Founder and Co-Chairman of the Congressional Prayer Caucus, I lead a bipartisan group of over 100 Members of Congress committed to defending America’s heritage of religious freedom. More information on our work protecting the religious liberties of our servicemembers is available, here.
Posted by Randy | September 05, 2014
This week, reports indicate that Home Depot may be the latest target of a data breach, following attacks on companies like Target and Supervalu.

In August, the Department of Homeland Security and the Secret Service issued an advisory encouraging all companies to check their systems for malware infections, and noted that over 1,000 businesses have been infected.

In line with that warning, a recent survey found that 62% of online users are worried about financial fraud.

In addition to retailers, it was reported that large financial institutions, like JPMorgan Chase & Co., have also been targets of hackers seeking access to consumer data.
                   

Question of the weekWhat steps do you support in order to protect personal consumer information?  (multi-answer)

( ) Enact a federal data breach notification law, because there is no comprehensive federal law governing the protection of data held by private companies.
( ) Increase penalties on businesses that fail to adequately protect consumers' personally identifiable information.
( ) Move to a Chip and PIN system, which authenticates an individual’s identity through a computer chip embedded in a credit card and includes a personal identification number.
( ) Ensure that financial institutions and retailers are held to the same standards.
( ) I don’t know.
( ) Other.


Take the Poll here.

Find the results of last week’s InstaPoll here.
Posted by Randy | September 01, 2014
Our law enforcement officers and first responders put duty before self, working on the front lines to protect our homes, our communities, our children and our lives.

For that, I am grateful.  I have supported the National Blue Alert Act, H.R.180, to establish a Blue Alert system throughout the United States to help speed the apprehension of violent criminals who kill or seriously injure law enforcement officers.  I have also supported the Eric Williams Correctional Officer Protection Act, H.R.4607, to authorize the Bureau of Prisons to issue pepper spray to any officer employed in a prison that is not minimum or low security to respond to emergency situations.

As a senior member of the House Judiciary Committee, Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, Homeland Security and Investigations, I will continue working to increase public safety and ensure proper protection for our law enforcement officers and first responders.

I have also been vigilant in working to combat the serious threat that gangs, human traffickers, and those seeking to exploit children over the internet pose to our local communities and to the nation. Read more about my work here
Posted by Randy | August 29, 2014
I wanted to share a Washington Post article with you, which highlights that safeguards are not currently in place to stop people who are ineligible for taxpayer-subsidized healthcare from getting tax credits to help pay for premiums.

We cannot tolerate this lack of accountability. That’s why I’m supporting the No Subsidies Without Verification Act, H.R.4805, to prohibit the federal government from providing any insurance subsidies until a program that can fully verify an applicant’s eligibility is put in place.

It’s essential that an income verification system is put in place before any additional taxpayer subsidies are given out. We must protect taxpayer funds from potential fraud.  
Posted by Randy | August 28, 2014
Currently, the corporate tax rate in the United States is 35% (over 39% with local and state taxes) and is the highest of any country in the industrialized world.  Additionally, unlike other countries, U.S. corporations are not just taxed on their activity inside our borders, they are taxed on the income they earn all over the world.

In order to reduce their tax burden, some U.S. companies use an inversion, which is when they acquire or merge with a company overseas, and reorganize in a country with a lower tax rate.  Inversions allow companies to transfer money earned abroad to the new parent company without being subject to U.S. taxes.

Some argue that inversions allow American companies to overcome these tax disadvantages in order to compete in a global market, while others believe it is unpatriotic to move companies overseas and this is simply a tax loophole that should be closed.

This week, Burger King announced it was entering into a deal to buy Tim Horton’s, a Canadian coffee and doughnut shop.  In doing so, Burger King would create a new corporate parent of both companies, with its headquarters in Canada.

Recently, Walgreens announced a similar move to buy a Swiss company, Alliance Boots, and relocate its headquarters overseas; however, after facing criticism, the company is now pursuing the merger without an inversion, keeping its headquarters in the U.S.


Question of the week
Do you believe that we should reform the corporate income tax structure in America?

( ) Yes.
( ) No.
( ) I don’t know.
( ) Other.


Take the Poll here.

Find the results of last week’s InstaPoll here.
Posted by Randy | August 28, 2014
I believe that Congress has an obligation to address our nation's fiscal challenges in a responsible fashion that does not harm seniors or future generations of Americans.   I introduced legislation (H.R.3161) to ensure that money allocated to both the Social Security and Medicare Trust Funds can only be used for the purpose for which they were intended.  Medicare and Social Security need to be dependable and consistent for the seniors who rely on them.

We must fulfill the commitments we have made to our seniors – that after a lifetime of work and service to our communities, Social Security and Medicare will be there for them when they need it.

I will continue working to eliminate fraud in Medicare, oppose access to benefits for those here illegally, provide access to local pharmacies, ensure that healthcare decisions are made between patients and their doctors, instead of bureaucrats in Washington, and prioritize medical research to find cures for diseases like cancer, heart disease, and Alzheimer’s.
Posted by Randy | August 27, 2014

Last week, I spent some time touring several of the different manufacturing plants we are fortunate to have in the Fourth District. One of the things that struck me, as I met with employees and toured the different facilities, was the stark difference between the way Washington operates and the way these manufacturing plants operate. In Washington, it’s all about talk. The air is stagnant with clunky bureaucracy and inefficiency. Here at the manufacturing plants in the Fourth District, the air crackles with energy and efficiency. There’s less talk and more action, more building, more creating value.

Below is a roundup of photos, so you can see what I saw during my tour:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
Posted by Randy | August 26, 2014

The Port of Virginia is one of our most unique and valuable assets in the Fourth District of Virginia. As the Panama Canal expands to allow the passage of the large cargo vessels known as Post-Panamax ships, it is important to note that the Port of Virginia is one of the few deep-water ports already able to accommodate such vessels. However, the maintenance and improvement of crane, rail, and trucking infrastructure remains critical for the Port to handle the increased volume of cargo the Post-Panamax ships carry. Ships will only come to the Port if the channel is deep enough and the Port can receive and process their cargo in a timely and efficient way.

Ensuring that these transportation links are not only working, but growing, will give us tremendous economic opportunities. That’s why I spearheaded the creation of the bipartisan Congressional Panama Canal Expansion Caucus to assess the impact the expansion will have on U.S. ports and inland infrastructure. The Caucus will highlight steps that Congress needs to take to make sure our nation's ports are prepared for a new era of commerce, and to ensure the United States remains a global leader in commerce and transportation.

Posted by Randy | August 25, 2014
One message I keep hearing over and over again is: Enough is enough!

Businesses across the 4th District and around the nation have had enough taxes, enough regulation, and enough uncertainty.

It’s time for Washington to be an enabler to economic growth, not a barrier. We must work to reform the tax code so it’s simple and fair, reduce burdensome regulations, and ensure that the rules are not changed from day to day in order to return stability to the marketplace.

Read more about my effort to achieve these goals in both the financial services and housing industries.

What are your ideas on how we can strengthen the financial services and housing industries? Weigh in, here.  
Posted by Randy | August 21, 2014
Michael Brown, an eighteen-year-old African American male, was shot and killed on August 9th by a police officer in Ferguson, Missouri.  Reports indicate that police had suspected Brown of being involved in a robbery; however, he was unarmed and, according to an autopsy report, shot six times by the officer.

A Missouri state prosecutor is preparing to present the case to a grand jury, and the FBI and the Civil Rights Division of the Department of Justice are heading a federal investigation of the shooting.

The fatal shooting has been followed by violent protests, prayer vigils, and calls for more transparency in the investigation.  Some are questioning the use of force by local police, while others want to know if charges will be brought against the officer involved.

Question of the week: Do you support the actions being taken by local and state officials in the investigation?

( ) Yes.
( ) No.
( ) I don’t know.
( ) Other.


Take the Poll here.

Find the results of last week’s InstaPoll here.