Congressional Report: March 4-March 10, 2018
March 5: Rep. Turner began the week by presenting the Black History Month Congressional Award for Community Service to Prof. Jeremy Winston, Chorus Director at Central State University.
March 7: Turner introduced a bill that would change the government funding deadline from October 1 to January 1.
Rep. Turner continues to tout his support for increased military spending.
March 8: Turner introduced legislation that would amend the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act to ensure that politically funded information cannot be used as evidence to monitor a U.S. citizen. This proposal follows the disputed use of the FISA process to obtain a warrant in the Russia investigation and could be part of an effort to cast doubt on that investigation and its findings; however, people on both sides of the aisle do have concerns about the possible impact of the FISA process on our privacy rights.
Turner expressed support for two bills (TREAT Act, CRIB act) that would allow programs treating addicted newborns and people who are incarcerated to receive Medicaid funding.
Sen. Portman began the week by praising the bill that will roll back some Dodd-Frank requirements for banks and stressing the regulatory relief for Ohio’s community banks and credit unions. (Obviously there are concerns about what less stringent regulation could mean for the future.)
The Homeland Security Committee passed two amendments to the Department of Homeland Security Authorization Act which were offered by Sen. Portman and Sen. Peters (D-MI) which will help protect Jewish Community Centers.
On the Senate floor, he spoke in favor of SESTA, an proposed act designed to curtail sex trafficking. With a bipartisan group of senators, he introduced a bill aimed at reducing recidivism rates in the juvenile justice system.
At a meeting of the Joint Economic Committee, Sen. Portman continued to praise the tax bill and the long-term growth it will supposedly bring. The transcript is on Sen. Portman’s website.
With Sen. Brown he announced an award by the transportation Department to the city of Akron of more than $8 million dollars to fund the Main Street corridor project.
Sen. Portman spoke at the Great Lakes Day Congressional Breakfast. He has been working with Sen. Brown and other senators from states that border the lake to prevent the massive cuts to projects designed to protect the lakes that were part of the proposed budget. This issue is really important to Ohio!
As the week ended, Sen. Portman made the following statement on the President’s tariff announcement: “Action is needed to address the worldwide overcapacity of steel, but I believe we should take a more targeted approach….I am concerned that broad-based tariffs will have unintended consequences…AK Steel is unlikely to fully benefit from the remedy proposed by the President…”. The full statement is available on the senator’s website.
With Sen. Brown and Sen. Casey (D-PA), he sent a letter to the President voicing concerns about the impact of the tariffs on AKSteel. See the senator’s website for the full text of the letter.
And finally, Sen. Portman stated his pleasure at the strong jobs report that was issued on Friday.