Update: VAWA, #ProtectOurCare, Subpoenas & more
This week, the House passed important bills to expand and renew the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA), condemn the Trump Administration’s latest effort to take away Americans’ health care, and to end U.S. involvement in the war in Yemen. I was proud to vote for and support these measures and am especially pleased to tell you that VAWA included a provision I authored to continue and increase funding to process DNA evidence, including untested rape kits, which helps victims get justice and put perpetrators behind bars.
Today, I was able to end this productive week on a high note by going to the latest groundbreaking at Hunter’s Point South.
You can read more about all of this and more below.
Expanding and Renewing the Violence Against Women Act
This vote is one of the most important actions this Congress will take. The Violence Against Women Act, through its programs, funding, and protections that are designed to prevent and prosecute abuse against women, is a law that literally saves lives. The bill we passed this week renews these programs for five years, while also strengthening VAWA to include better protections for the LGBTQ+ community and Native women. Importantly, the bill we passed includes new gun safety reforms that prohibit someone convicted of domestic abuse or a stalking misdemeanor from purchasing a firearm.
I’m proud that this legislation also includes my bill to reauthorize the Debbie Smith DNA Backlog grant program, which provides funding to localities to process DNA evidence and reduce the backlog of untested DNA kits, including rape kits. With one in three women experiencing domestic violence today, this legislation is urgently needed. This should not be a partisan issue. It is about keeping people safe. I hope the Senate will quickly send this bill to the President for his signature.
Condemning the Trump Administration’s War on Americans’ Health Care
On Wednesday, I voted to condemn the Trump Administration’s crusade in the courts to take away American’s healthcare. The resolution, H. Res 271, was very straightforward, asserting that the Administration’s attempt to rip away protections for people with pre-existing conditions and repeal the Affordable Care Act is an unacceptable assault on Americans’ healthcare.
Only eight Republicans joined us on this resolution. Talk is cheap. If Republicans really believed in protecting care for those with preexisting conditions, they would’ve joined us in voting yes.
Funding Vaccine Acceptance Research
This week I joined my colleagues on an important letter to the Appropriations Committee in support of additional funding and research to combat misinformation about vaccines and increase acceptance of vaccines’ safety and effectiveness. Due to the spread of misinformation, too many Americans aren’t vaccinating themselves or their children and this is leading to outbreaks of preventable diseases – like the measles outbreak we’re seeing in Rockland County, NY. By researching how to best reach people with accurate information on vaccines, we can hopefully prevent further outbreaks by increasing vaccination rates.
Ending U.S. Involvement in the War in Yemen
I was proud to vote yes yesterday on a resolution directing the President to remove US forces from Yemen. The War in Yemen has led to a humanitarian crisis and our involvement in these hostilities is only fueling the flames. This bipartisan resolution declares that the President must end this unauthorized US involvement in Yemen against the Houthi rebels, including refueling Saudi-led coalition planes carrying out airstrikes.
Subpoenaing the Trump Administration
I’m proud to be a senior member of the House Committee on Oversight and Reform and now that Democrats are in the majority in the House, we can finally conduct the oversight of the Executive Branch that the Constitution requires of us. This week, I voted with my colleagues on the committee to subpoena the Trump Administration for information we have been asking for on the security clearance process at the White House and the Commerce Department’s decision to add a citizenship question to the 2020 Census. The Trump Administration has ignored legitimate requests from Congress for information about how it issued security clearances to certain officials over the objections of career professionals and why it added a citizenship question to the 2020 Census despite serious concerns from its own Census Bureau. The stonewalling from the Administration must stop but if it doesn’t we are prepared to use every tool at our disposal to carry out our oversight responsibilities.
That is why I am also wholeheartedly supporting my colleagues on the House Judiciary Committee in their subpoena for the full Mueller Report – Congress needs to see this document and get answers for the American people.
Groundbreaking at Hunter’s Point South
Today, I had the privilege to join with other elected officials and community leaders to celebrate the ground breaking of the newest phase of Hunters Point South! This new development includes much-needed affordable housing and amenities that will benefit Long Island City for years to come. I am so excited about all the growth and development in LIC and know that this project will help this community to grow and thrive.
As always, your concerns still and always will remain my top priority. Please do not hesitate to email me through my website.
If you have any friends who you think should be received my newsletters, tell them they can sign up here.
Carolyn B. Maloney
Member of Congress