DC Update: Gun Violence Prevention and Census Protection
I write to you today in the midst of the longest federal government shutdown in our nation’s history. Eight hundred thousand federal employees and thousands of federal contractors are furloughed or working without pay and every city in every state, including New York, is feeling the negative effects, but the President and Mitch McConnell still refuse to reopen government despite the House voting nine times to do so. It is truly a tragedy and a failure to serve the American people. I’m doing all I can to end it. ABC 7 has a great list of resources for federal employees here.
But, our work doesn’t stop because the President is playing games. This week, we had an important victory in federal court in our fight to protect the 2020 Census, the House voted to provide needed funds for disaster relief and to condemn white nationalism, and I introduced my bill with Senator Ed Markey (D-MA) to fund gun violence prevention research at the Centers for Disease Control (CDC).
PROTECTING THE CENSUS
On Tuesday, a US District Court Judge ordered the Commerce Department to remove the citizenship question from the 2020 Census, after New York led 17 other states and the District of Columbia in a lawsuit challenging this question. It was one of the strongest court decisions I have seen in a long time and it could end up being one of the most important. That’s because an accurate census, one that counts everyone living in this country, is fundamental for our democracy. And this citizenship question would virtually guarantee an undercount because under this anti-immigrant administration, immigrants and their families — documented and undocumented — might fear completing a census form with a question about citizenship status at all. Unfortunately, last night, the Trump Administration announced it is going to appeal this ruling. That is why I will be introducing the Census IDEA Act next week to legislatively stop the citizenship question.
REJECTING WHITE NATIONALISM
On Tuesday, the House voted overwhelming to condemn white nationalism and white supremacy in the wake of Rep. Steve King’s disgusting comments to the New York Times. There is no room for this type of bigotry and hate in the U.S. Congress.
PROVIDING DISASTER RELIEF
On Wednesday, the House voted to provide more than $700 million for disaster relief and to reopen the government. This bill provides the much needed recovery funds for Americans devastated by Hurricanes Michael, Florence, Harvey, Irma, and Maria; Typhoon Yutu; and wildfires across the West.
FUNDING GUN VIOLENCE PREVENTION RESEARCH
And yesterday, Sen. Markey and I introduced our bill to make sure this country finally treats gun violence like the public health crisis it is. Just as we would study any other epidemic that takes 100 lives a day, nearly 40,000 total in 2018, we need to study firearms safety and gun violence prevention. Our bill, the Gun Violence Prevention Research Act of 2019, would give the CDC $50 million for five years to conduct and support research on firearms safety and gun violence prevention. This legislation can save lives by finally giving our nation’s top public health researchers the funding they need to develop new ways to prevent gun violence.
You can read more about these topics below.
As always, your concerns remain my top priority. Please do not hesitate to reach out to me via my website.
Carolyn B. Maloney
Member of Congress
Washington Post: How the Trump Administration Tries to Skew Democracy by Attacking the Census
I write in the Washington Post why even though talking about data and its collection might not be the flashiest headline of the day, it is arguably one of, if not the, most important.
Census data affects the very core of our democracy and how we decide representation in every level of government. This is no game.
Reuters: Congressional Democrats Move to Stop U.S. Census Citizenship Question
I joined with my colleagues on Wednesday for a briefing with census experts and announced my intention to reintroduce the Census IDEA Act to once and for all remove the citizenship question from the 2020 Census.
Rep. Maloney, Sen. Markey Reintroduce Bill to Fund Gun Violence Prevention Research
I have been working with Sen. Markey for years to fund gun violence research. Last year, doctors and public health officials across the country came out in support of such research and affirmed the need to address gun violence as the public health crisis that it is.