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Posted by Randy | December 31, 2015
You may remember a few years ago when the General Services Administration (GSA) flew bureaucrats to Las Vegas for a multi-day conference. The Washington Post reported that the conference served $7,000 worth of sushi and spent $44 per person on breakfast – and that the American taxpayer footed the bill to the tune of approximately $823,000, according to the Post. Unfortunately, this wasn’t an isolated incident. In 2013, an Inspector General audit reported that the IRS spent $4.1 million on a conference in California. And earlier this year, the Washington Post reported a contractor working for USAID billed the federal government $1.1 million for staff parties and retreats.

This needs to stop. That’s why I’m supporting the Government Spending Accountability (GSA) Act, to cut waste, fraud, and abuse by increasing transparency into federal government spending on travel and setting caps for what can be spent on conferences. You can take a look at the bill for yourself, here.

We must restore faith in government by restoring the proper function of government – and it begins by stopping the waste.

Posted by Randy | December 30, 2015
Wanted to let you know that I recently cosponsored the National Nurse Act, to designate the Chief Nurse Officer (CNO) of the U.S. Public Health Service as the “National Nurse for Public Health.” Similar to the Surgeon General, the National Nurse for Public Health would help raise awareness with the public about disease prevention and healthy living.

You can learn more about the bill and the role of the National Nurse for Public Health, here.

Posted by Randy | December 29, 2015

Employees should have the right to select or refrain from joining a labor organization. That’s why I’m supporting the Employee Rights Act (H.R. 3222), to guarantee a worker’s right to:

  • Vote privately in a secret ballot election before forming a union;
  • Vote regularly on continuing their union;
  • Vote in a secret ballot election before accepting a contract or going on strike;
  • Decide whether their union can spend their dues on matters unrelated to collective bargaining; and
  • Be free from union interference or coercion in exercising their legal rights.
P.S. I also recently signed on to a bill that reforms the way the National Labor Relations Board (NRLB) is structured. In recent years, the NLRB has become increasingly partisan and politically motivated, handing down controversial decisions which, in some cases, have resulted in harmful regulations for job creators. Read what the bill does, here.
Posted by Randy | December 29, 2015
Bureaucrats don’t create jobs – small businesses do. Washington needs to get out of the way and let American entrepreneurs light up the economy again. I supported the REINS Act (H.R. 427), which passed the House, to require Congress to take an up-or-down vote on every new major rule (having an annual economic impact of $100 million or more) issued by a Federal agency before it can be enforced on businesses and the American people.
Posted by Randy | December 28, 2015

Illegal immigrants shouldn’t be receiving government benefits. Period. That includes:

  •  No in-state tuition. (Read the bill I’m supporting).
  •  No Social Security or Medicare. (Read the bill I’m supporting).
 Citizenship in this country – and all that entails – is a privilege, not a right.

Posted by Randy | December 24, 2015
Cancer in children is the leading cause of death by disease past infancy among children in the United States, according to data from the National Cancer Institute, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the North American Association of Central Cancer Registries. In 2014, it is estimated that 15,780 children and adolescents ages 0 to 19 years will be diagnosed with cancer and 1,960 will die of the disease in the United States.

I recently cosponsored the Childhood Cancer Survivorship, Treatment, Access, and Research (STAR) Act to expand opportunities for childhood cancer research, improve efforts to identify and track childhood cancer incidences, improve quality of life for children who survive cancer, and promote access to policies that provide hope for patients who are still searching for treatment and cures. Take a look at the bill, here.
Posted by Randy | December 23, 2015
If a church, faith-based organization, or non-profit wants to help pay health insurance premiums for individuals and families, including those struggling with chronic illnesses and conditions, they should be able to do that. Under Obamacare, churches and charities can be denied the ability to provide premium assistance for those in need.

I’m cosponsoring a bill to fix that. Take a look at the text, here.
Posted by Randy | December 22, 2015

The House of Representatives is holding a nationwide event that allows students from across the country to compete by creating and exhibiting their software application, or “app,” for mobile, tablet, or computer devices on the platform of their choice – and I wanted to invite any interested high school students to participate.

This academic competition is designed to engage student’s creativity and encourage their participation in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) education fields. Winning apps are announced nationally and are displayed in an exhibit in the U.S. Capitol.

The 2015 Congressional App Competition is underway, and we are inviting all high school students in the Fourth District of Virginia to participate. Through this competition, one student or one team of students – no more than four per team – from Virginia’s Fourth District will have the unique opportunity to have their app showcased in our Nation’s Capitol Building, alongside the apps designed by other students from across the country.  The student or students who create the winning app will be invited to Washington, D.C. to meet with me and have the opportunity to see the display of winning apps in the Capitol.

If you have or know of a high school student who may be interested in participating in the Congressional App Challenge, I hope you will forward this to them. Details about the competition are on my website at http://forbes.house.gov/constituentservices/app-challenge.htm. Here are a couple of guidelines:  

  • All submissions must be an original concept by the student.
  • All submissions must have a title for their app and must include a video, no longer than four minutes, that outlines what the app does, what tools were used to create the app, and how the app works.
  • All submissions must register online through the Congressional App Challenge website and complete a digital contact form, also found on the website.
  • All submissions must be submitted online to the Congressional App Challenge page by Friday, January 15, 2016, in order to be considered. 
Thank you for taking the time to read this and to help spread the word about the Congressional App Challenge. I am proud of our Fourth District students, and look forward to seeing their submissions this year.
Posted by Randy | December 22, 2015
You might remember when I sent this letter to Secretary of State Kerry and Secretary of Homeland Security Johnson in October. It requested a commitment that both the State Department and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) maintain the highest level of security protocols when vetting Syrian refugees allowed into our country, to ensure our national security is not compromised in the process.

Recently, I received a response back from DHS. You can read it here.

The letter I received in response details the vetting process currently in place, but it doesn’t address the fact that Secretary Johnson himself said previously that, “It is true that we are not going to know a whole lot about the Syrians that come forth in this process.” He also explained that “organizations like ISIL might like to exploit” the Syrian refugee resettlement program into the United States.
 
Are you convinced that the vetting process in place effectively ensures our nation’s safety? I’m not. That’s why I support immediately pausing the refugee program, and voted for a bill to ensure we aggressively scrutinize the vetting process. Bottom-line: Until the federal government can adequately ensure the safety of the American people, we must pause the refugee program

If you want to learn more about the reasoning behind my stance on the refugee program, click here. Our top priority must always be the safety and security of American citizens. Period.
Posted by Randy | December 18, 2015

It was a joy to be able to sit down and meet with Sister Constance from Little Sisters of the Poor in my office recently. For over 175 years, the Little Sisters have devoted their lives to honoring the inherent dignity of some of the most vulnerable in our society—the elderly poor. I stand with them as they head to the Supreme Court to keep the government from forcing them to violate the very faith that motivates their selfless service.

Every American should be free to live out their faith without fear of punishment from the government.

 
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