WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Fred Upton, R-St. Joseph, along with Congresswoman Jackie Walorski, R-Jimtown, have sent a letter to the chief executive officer of British Petroleum (BP) demanding answers to questions pertaining to the sudden closing of its refinery in Whiting, Ind., which has caused a sharp spike in gas prices throughout the upper Midwest.
“We sent this urgent letter to BP today because consumers have a right to know what is going on with the unscheduled shutdown of the Whiting refinery,” Upton and Walorski stated.
In their joint letter to Robert Dudley, Upton and Walorski noted: “Some areas of the Midwest have seen prices rise over $1 per gallon over a 24 hour period, disproportionately affecting the most vulnerable of our constituents and resulting in large unpredicted costs in getting goods to market across the region. Additionally, some are worried that speculators may force additional increases due to lack of information.
“Needless to say, this incident poses a serious hardship for our districts.”
The BP Whiting Refinery in northern Indian shut down the largest of its three crude distillation units on Saturday.Upton, who is chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, and Walorski, whose Congressional district includes the refinery, demand answers from Dudley for their constituents by August 21 along with daily updates. They want to know how long the outage is expected to last and how BP will prevent price gouging, among other issues.
PORTAGE, MI – Congressman Fred Upton, R-St. Joseph, today presented World War II veteran and Portage resident Robert Max Goldacker with nine service medals. Goldacker, 91, received the Bronze Star, the Purple Heart, the Presidential Citation, the European-Africa-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal, the World War II Victory Medal, the Combat Infantryman Badge, the Honorable Service Lapel Button, the Sharpshooter Badge, and the Marksman Badge.
Goldacker was part of the 5th Ranger Battalion that landed on the beaches of Normandy, France, during the D-Day invasion on June 6, 1944. The 5th Rangers Battalion was charged with scaling the cliffs at Pointe Du Hoc, a harrowing 100-foot climb, to knock out heavily fortified German casements and gun pits. Goldacker, only 19 at the time, was shot in the back and survived a night in an open battlefield – scared he would die and be buried on foreign soil. Goldacker survived and the Rangers at Pointe du Hoc took the cliff.
“It was a true honor to meet Mr. Goldacker, his wife Carolyn, and members of the Goldacker family,” said Upton. “On D-Day, Mr. Goldacker and his fellow Rangers represented the absolute best of the American spirit: Unmatched skills and bravery of the highest order. As memories of the Greatest Generation fade, it is more important than ever to recognize their service to our country when the world needed it most.”
To view pictures from the medal presentation, please click here.Read More
This week I have the honor of presenting World War II veteran and Portage resident Robert Max Goldacker with nine service medals. My father also served in World War II so the opportunity to present another World War II veteran with well-earned medals is an absolute honor.
Because of his outstanding service to our country, Goldacker earned the Bronze Star, the Purple Heart, the Presidential Citation, the European-Africa-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal, the World War II Victory Medal, the Combat Infantry Badge, the Honorable Service Lapel Button, the Sharpshooter Badge, and the Marksman Badge.
Goldacker was part of the 5th Ranger Battalion that landed on the beaches of Normandy, France, during “The Greatest Day” – or D-Day, June 6, 1944. The 5th Rangers Battalion was charged with scaling the cliffs at Pointe du Hoc on the coast of Normandy, a harrowing 100-foot climb to knock out heavily fortified German casements and gun pits. Goldacker, only 19 at the time, was shot in the back and survived a night in an open battlefield – scared he would die on foreign soil.
Goldacker survived and the Rangers at Pointe du Hoc took the cliff. They, like so many American troops that day, represented the absolute best of the American spirit: Unmatched skills and bravery of the highest order.
As memories of the Greatest Generation fade, it is more important than ever to recognize their service to our country when the world needed it most.
To learn more about this, and other legislative issues affecting veterans and their families, please visit my website: upton.house.gov.NOTE: This article originally ran in the Tri City Record.
ST. JOSEPH, MI – Congressman Fred Upton, R-St. Joseph, today released the following statement on the passing of former state legislator Harry Gast.
“Harry Gast exemplified what it means to be a public servant. He never forgot those he represented in a straightforward way and may have been blunt, but you could never question his motives as he put our corner of the state on the map as the Chair of the powerful Senate Appropriations Committee. The two of us were partners on many joint ventures, including the construction of U.S. 31. Without his leadership, we would still be driving the old route. He was as honest and hardworking as the day is long and I will miss his sage counsel and true friendship.”Read More
By now you likely have heard about the chilling video regarding the alleged sale of fetal tissue by Planned Parenthood. I say alleged because the video shows a high-ranking official discussing sale prices of various fetal organs – hearts, livers, etc. – but the organization maintains the video were heavily edited to misconstrue its true activity in this area.
On viewing the video, the contents can’t help but make you weep for the innocents who were sacrificed in such a cavalier manner for alleged profit. The video is abhorrent and rip at the heart.
Planned Parenthood, in a letter responding to a request for answers to questions residents of the entire country has about its practices regarding fetal tissue sales or donations, maintains that it has done nothing wrong.
I am not a lawyer or a judge but as Chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, I can, and will, ask questions and demand answers about the legality and the reality of what Planned Parenthood is – or is not – doing. I will also investigate whether it conforms to what we require and expect a nearly 100-year-old health- and sex-education organization to do with $1.3 billion – or 40 percent of its funding – from the federal government.
Public money may not be spent on abortions – a stipulation I have voted to uphold many, many times - and which the national Right To Life organization has recognized.
My colleagues in the House and I intend to ask the hard questions to learn what is the truth of this practice of “harvesting” fetal tissue. U.S. Sen. Chuck Grassley, chairman of the Judiciary Committee has said he will also start an inquiry. He is also asking for the U.S. Attorney General to look at the video to make sure Planned Parenthood is in compliance with federal law.
I have also been supported by House colleagues, including two from here in Michigan – Rep. Dan Benishek, of Crystal Falls, and Rep. Mike Bishop, of Rochester, to investigate the allegations made by the recording of Planned Parenthood’s worker.
This investigation is important not just to us here today, but for future generations as well. The American people deserve answers and that’s what I am committed to finding.NOTE: This originally ran in the Tri City Record. Read More
Bipartisan Legislation Would also Benefit Local Outdoor Recreation Economy
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Fred Upton, R-St. Joseph, today signed on to co-sponsor H.R. 799, the North Country Scenic Trail Route Adjustment Act. This bipartisan legislation would change the official route of the North Country National Scenic Trail to create a more sustainable trail corridor through improved volunteer and funding efforts.
The trail route begins in Vermont and ends in North Dakota, traveling through both the lower and upper peninsulas in Michigan. Specifically, the trail route passes through the Fort Custer recreational site. The Trail also partners with the W.K. Kellogg Biological Station, located outside Gull Lake.
“Michigan’s beauty is unmatched and making improvements to this historic trail route will allow more folks the opportunity to see it firsthand,” said Upton. “The North Country Scenic Trail not only provides breathtaking views for a wide variety of outdoors enthusiasts, but also bolsters our local outdoor recreation economy. I’m looking forward to working with my colleagues and stakeholders in a bipartisan manner to make sure future generations can experience the adventure of utilizing this fantastic trail.”
The North Country Scenic Trail Route
The North Country National Scenic Trail is the longest of the National Scenic Trails, traversing seven states and more than 100 counties and is enjoyed by hikers, families, skiers, bikers, hunters, and nature lovers.
The legislation has been referred to the House Natural Resources Committee.Read More
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Fred Upton, R-St. Joseph, released the following statement after the House of Representatives advanced legislation by a bipartisan 312-119 vote to authorize and finance our highway and transit programs through the end of the year.
“This extension brings us one step closer to a final agreement. It provides the House more time to negotiate a multi-year agreement to finance our highway and transit programs. Without it, current projects would be stopped in their tracks. I will continue to work in a bipartisan basis with my colleagues as we aim to provide the stability that our highway program needs and towards improving our roads, bridges, and other critical infrastructure.”
2183 Rayburn HOB
Washington, DC 20515
Congressman Fred Upton (MI-06) is proud to represent the commonsense values of southwest Michigan. In 2010, Fred was selected by his House colleagues to serve as Chairman of the Committee on Energy and Commerce, which has jurisdiction over matters concerning energy, healthcare, the environment, telecommunications, commerce, manufacturing, and trade, as well as oversight and investigations.
Prior to his election to Congress, Fred worked for President Ronald Reagan in the Office of Management and Budget (OMB). While at OMB, he learned from President Reagan’s example that it does not matter who gets the credit, as long as the job gets done.
Fred has a well-earned reputation for getting things done in Washington and at home in southwest Michigan. The South Bend Tribune writes that Fred “attacks government spending and wants tax cuts retained and the budget balanced.” Fred’s hometown paper, The Herald Palladium, praises Fred as someone who has “consistently fought against out-of-control spending and bigger government” and has “always treated constituent services as a vital part of his job.”
Fred’s top priorities are job creation and economic growth in southwest Michigan.
Fred strongly supports an “all of the above” energy strategy that puts a greater emphasis on domestic energy production, the advancement of breakthrough technologies, and the development of safe nuclear power. Fred has also been a leading opponent of overreaching federal regulations that stifle economic growth, harm jobs, and raise energy costs for Michigan families and businesses.
Fred values our constitutional system of government checks and balances. Fred is focused on ensuring the federal government remains limited, transparent, and accountable, as our Founding Fathers intended. As Energy and Commerce Chairman, Fred has led the over-year-long investigation of Solyndra, the now-bankrupt solar company that was the recipient of a half-billion dollar Department of Energy loan guarantee.
Fred has also worked to increase the deployment of telecommunications services as well as ensure that free speech and private innovation remain the hallmarks of this industry by opposing needless regulation. Fred helped oversee the successful transition from analog to digital broadcasting – one of the top priorities of the 9-11 Commission. Fred has also worked to guarantee that our children are protected from online predators and indecent material.
Fred has pushed for a greater emphasis on biomedical research to improve the public health. As Energy and Commerce Chairman, one of Fred’s top priorities is to repeal the President’s controversial healthcare law and replace it with commonsense, market-based reforms that benefit patients, doctors, and employers.
Fred was born on April 23, 1953 and holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Michigan. He and his wife Amey have two children.
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Tomorrow morning I will be speaking at the Voice. Change. Hope. Prescription drug and Heroin Conference here in St. Joseph. I hope you can attend
Enjoyed speaking at the Van Buren Farm Bureau Legislative Dinner last night!
Happy #NationalDogDay from the Upton office! #Bugsy #Scout #Gideon
Really enjoyed catching up with friends and speaking at the Rotary Club of Kalamazoo Centennial Gala Dinner over the weekend.
Will continue to keep a close eye on this.