Ros-Lehtinen Slams UN General Assembly’s “Palestine Day” As Platform for Delegitimizing Israel, Ignoring Palestinian Terror Attacks and Incitement to Violence
(Washington, DC) – U.S. Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL), Chairman of the Subcommittee on the Middle East and North Africa, made the following statement after the UN General Assembly’s annual “Palestine Day” once again turned into a platform of anti-Israel, anti-Jewish bias while whitewashing the recent spate of terror and violence unleashed against Israel. The UN General Assembly passed a series of resolutions condemning Israel, including one which places the onus on Israel for the ongoing violence, while placing no blame on the incitement to violence from Palestinian officials. Statement by Ros-Lehtinen:
“In this time of heightened danger posed by terror groups like ISIL, al-Qaeda, Hezbollah and others, responsible nations must be united in their condemnation of the perpetrators of terror attacks and stand in solidarity with the victims of these heinous crimes. Yet once again, with its latest round of resolutions condemning Israel, the UN General Assembly proved its greatest interest lies not in peace, security, human rights or truth, but rather in delegitimizing the Jewish State and perpetuating its anti-Israel bias.
“It goes without saying that there’s no longer even a pretense of impartiality at the General Assembly, with the body voting to place the blame on Israel for the current unrest rather than properly placing the blame on the Palestinian Authority for its incitement to the violence and terror. But this is what passes for statesmanship and diplomacy at the General Assembly and it’s just another in an unending stream of reasons why the U.S. must not continue to send billions and billions of taxpayer dollars to the UN until that broken system is fundamentally reformed.”
Fighting For Innocent Human Life, Ros-Lehtinen Joins Letter Promoting Pro-Life Policies
“Protecting innocent human life is one of our most important priorities that we must promote here at home and abroad.”
(Washington, DC) – U.S. Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R – FL) joined a letter to Speaker Ryan and Majority Leader McCarthy asking that pro-life policies be included in upcoming appropriations bills. The letter requests that the following provisions be enacted to help safeguard innocent life. The requests the Members urge passage of would:
· allow those who have no alternative but to purchase health care plans that include coverage for abortion to go to court to ensure they are not compelled to do so;
· reduce and cap the international funding level as it relates to family planning and eliminate funding for the UN Population Fund; and
· include a provision to withhold funds from the Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services unless the penalization stops for states that remove abortion providers from their networks.
Statement by Ros-Lehtinen:
“Protecting innocent human life is one of our most important priorities that we must promote here at home and abroad. I’m proud to join so many of my colleagues to call for the elimination of funding for the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), due to its connection with China’s coercive birth limitation policy. Additionally, Americans should not be forced into a health care plan that violates their moral or religious beliefs and no state should be forced to include such in their networks if it contravenes of the will of that states’ residents.”
Ros-Lehtinen Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Portrait To Be Unveiled Wednesday, November 18th in DC
“I’m humbled by this moment but the true credit goes to my family, friends, constituents, and colleagues who placed such trust in me.”
(Washington, DC) – U.S. Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL), Chairman of the Subcommittee on the Middle East and North Africa, announced today that a portrait commemorating her time as Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee from 2011-2013 will be unveiled in Washington, DC on Wednesday, November 18th. Ros-Lehtinen was the first female chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee and, by tradition, the portrait will hang in the House Foreign Affairs Committee room as it does for all former chairmen who commission a portrait. All funds relating to the commission of the portrait were raised by the Ros-Lehtinen Portrait Committee through private donations through the U.S. Capitol Historical Society. Statement by Ros-Lehtinen:
“I’m humbled by this moment but the true credit goes to my family, friends, constituents, and colleagues who placed such trust in me. I’m especially grateful to my constituents, who have honored me with the privilege of representing and advocating for our South Florida community. As a young Cuban refugee who didn’t speak a word of English, I could not have imagined that one day my portrait would hang in the halls of Congress. However, this portrait is a testament to all those, like my parents Enrique and Amanda Ros, who worked diligently for freedom in their native homeland of Cuba and around the world. This day is for them.”
WHO: U.S. Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, Speaker Paul Ryan, Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi, former Speaker Newt Gingrich (taped message), Senator Roy Blunt (R-MO), former U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. John Bolton, former House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Howard Berman, Cuban pro-democracy leader Jorge Luis Garcia Perez “Antunez,” Holocaust survivor David Mermelstein, former prisoner of conscience Harry Wu, the Honorable Dexter Lehtinen, and others.
WHAT: Ros-Lehtinen House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Portrait Unveiling, Reception to Follow
WHEN: Wednesday, November 18th from 5:30pm to 7:30pm
WHERE: 2172 Rayburn House Office Building, Washington, DC
The Honorable Arne Duncan Secretary U.S. Department of Education 400 Maryland Avenue, SW Washington, D.C. 20202
Dear Secretary Duncan:
We, the undersigned Members of the South Florida Delegation, write to request that you use all available resources at your disposal to provide assistance for students negatively impacted, through no fault of their own, by the recent closure of Dade Medical College and the University of Southernmost Florida. With multiple locations across the State of Florida and several thousand students left confused and with limited options, there is a supreme need for your direct and immediate intervention.
As you know, these students face not only mounting debt, but also a lack of options when attempting to transfer their previously earned credits. This situation presents a serious hardship for all students, but even more so for those students with children and families to support or those who were counting on completing their education and gaining employment in the coming months.
Education is the key to success in today’s increasingly complicated economy and we urge our children to pursue higher education to achieve their goals. These students who took that noble path should not be penalized for the actions of irresponsible administrators. Instead, it is these administrators who must be held accountable for these institutions' failures.
While it is commendable that your Department has instituted a hotline and website for students, we encourage you to make an active and expedited effort to reach out and connect with each and every student to ensure that their rights are protected and that all know the options available to them. This ought to include the Department acting as a clearing house for all information and resources that could help make this difficult situation and transition less painful for impacted students.
Once again, we write to encourage you to make the welfare of these cheated students a serious priority for your Department and work for equitable solutions for each and every individual who has been impacted. Thank you for your time and attention to this important matter.
Cc: The Honorable Rick Scott
Governor State of Florida The Capitol 400 S. Monroe St. Tallahassee, FL 32399-0001 Cc: The Honorable Pam Stewart Commissioner Florida Department of Education 325 West Gaines Street Tallahassee, Florida 32399-0400
New EU Labeling Guidelines Only Give Credibility to Anti-Semitic BDS Movement, Says Ros-Lehtinen
“These new guidelines are clearly political in nature and designed to further isolate Israel and force the Jewish State into dangerous concessions in future peace talks.”
(Washington, DC) – U.S. Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R – FL), Chairman of the Subcommittee on the Middle East and North Africa, made the following statement regarding new European Union labeling guidelines which clearly identify Israeli settlement-made products. Statement by Ros-Lehtinen:
“Just one day after the 40th anniversary of the UN General Assembly infamously passing a resolution declaring that Zionism is racism, giving international credence to the anti-Semitism movement, the European Union adopted its new labeling guidelines that are designed to give credibility to the anti-Semitic BDS movement. These new guidelines are clearly political in nature and designed to further isolate Israel and force the Jewish State into dangerous concessions in future peace talks. The United States must stand in vehement opposition to these craven and bias tactics and continue to be outspoken against the anti-Semitic and anti-Israel BDS movement.”
Ros-Lehtinen’s Miami Office Assisting Dade Medical College Student, Urges Others To Come Forward If They Need Help
“My Congressional office is already helping one former student and I urge any others who are residents of my South Florida district to seek help.”
Miami, Florida – Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R – FL) announced today that her Miami office is assisting a former Dade Medical College student who has been negatively impacted by the school’s sudden closing. Ros-Lehtinen urges any constituents of her Congressional District who need assistance to contact her Miami office at 305-668-2285. Former Dade Medical College or University of Southernmost Florida students who wish to examine their options immediately should visit a U.S. Department of Education website tailored to the school’s unique situation - https://studentaid.ed.gov/sa/about/announcements/dade-southernmost-florida. Statement by Ros-Lehtinen:
“The shocking closure of Dade Medical College has left many students in debt, without the ability to transfer credits, and lacking much recourse. My Congressional office is already helping one former student and I urge any others who are residents of my South Florida district to seek help. My staff and I are committed to doing our utmost for the victims of this terrible event.”
Ros-Lehtinen Delegation Fact Finding Mission Stops in UAE to Discuss U.S. Strategy in Middle East Region
Washington, DC – U.S. Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL), Chairman of the Subcommittee on the Middle East and North Africa, was joined by U.S. Reps. Ted Yoho (R-FL), Donald Norcross (D-NJ) and French Hill (R-AR) on a bipartisan Congressional Delegation trip to the United Arab Emirates. The trip to the UAE was the second leg of the bipartisan fact-finding mission, with the delegation having made a previous stop in Afghanistan. The lawmakers met the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, Mohammed bin Zayed al Nahyan, and the Minister of State for Foreign Affairs and Federal National Council Affairs, Anwar Mohammed Qarqash. Statement by Ros-Lehtinen:
“I want to thank His Highness the Crown Prince for his hospitality. I took this opportunity to reassure him of our commitment to the UAE, our regional ally and an important partner in the fight to combat extremist elements like ISIL, Al Qaeda, and the Houthis. Whether it be contributing to the coalition’s operations against ISIL in Iraq and Syria or countering Iran’s attempts at destabilizing Yemen, the UAE has shown that it is willing to make the tough decisions necessary, not only to protect its own interests, but to prevent the region from descending into further chaos.
“Regional allies remain concerned as increased threats emanating from Iran and its proxies continue. The U.S needs a clear and comprehensive strategy to protect our national security interests in the region; interests that do not align with Iran or Russia. We have willing and able partners, like the UAE, who are ready to act but there needs to be strong American leadership that is also willing to defeat ISIL and confront Iran.
“We must do a better job to reassure our allies that the U.S. will stand with them to confront Iran’s actions in Iraq, Syria and Yemen.”
Ahead of Veterans Day, Ros-Lehtinen Leads Bipartisan Delegation to Afghanistan to Meet With U.S. Service Members
Washington, DC – U.S. Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL), Chairman of the Subcommittee on the Middle East and North Africa, was joined by U.S. Reps. Ted Yoho (R-FL), Donald Norcross (D-NJ) and French Hill (R-AR) on a bipartisan Congressional Delegation trip to Afghanistan. The lawmakers met with top U.S. military and civilian officials as well as President Ghani and CEO Abdullah. They also met with many men and women in uniform fulfilling the U.S. mission in Afghanistan. Statement by Ros-Lehtinen:
“First and foremost, I want to thank the brave men and women serving and protecting our national security interests in Afghanistan. We had an opportunity to meet with so many of these truly remarkable and capable individuals and it’s always a humbling experience to meet with them, knowing that they are putting their lives at risk each and every day so that we can sleep safely at home with them out there defending our freedom.
“The delegation had a very productive and meaningful visit to Afghanistan. But the one thing that we heard from all parties – from President Ghani and Afghan officials to General Campbell and other U.S. officials – is that we are facing a new environment in Afghanistan and it’s more important now than ever that the United States remain committed to ensuring the safety and stability of the country.
“With the resurgence of the Taliban, an increased threat of al-Qaeda and ISIL’s presence, the United States and Afghanistan cannot afford to lose any of the gains we have made. We need a policy that will ensure that we are able to continue to perform our core mission of advising, training and assisting the Afghan security forces while also allowing us to carry out counterterrorism efforts against al-Qaeda, ISIL and other terror groups. Our mission needs the flexibility to adapt to the changing conditions on the ground without the pressure of any artificial timeline.”
Representatives Al Green And Ros-Lehtinen Introduce Resolution Honoring the American Jewish Committee (AJC)
(Washington, DC)—On Thursday, November 5, 2015, Congressman Al Green (TX-9), along with original co-sponsor Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (FL-27), introduced a resolution honoring and praising the American Jewish Committee (AJC) on its upcoming 109th anniversary.
"It is an honor to associate my name with the American Jewish Committee and to work for greater recognition of this distinguished organization,” Congressman Al Green said. “Throughout its history, the AJC has been a stalwart for human rights and a bulwark against injustice worldwide. In this, their 109th, year, they continue to fight for social justice as well as to combat racial hatred and anti-Semitism in our society. The AJC is truly on the frontlines of the struggle for increased tolerance and understanding. Additionally, the support and input of Ileana was invaluable throughout the process of crafting and introducing this resolution.”
The AJC was founded on November 11, 1906 as an advocacy organization for human rights worldwide, interfaith dialogue, and to the defend Israel’s right to exist as a Jewish state. The AJC, in partnership with Jewish community and other civil society leaders, has been a preeminent advocate in the fight against rising global anti-Semitism as well as other forms of bigotry. This resolution acknowledges the efforts of the AJC, including its prominence in not only supporting Israel, but also supporting the rights of individuals worldwide.
“It is my privilege to join Al in introducing this resolution to commemorate and honor the American Jewish Committee on its 109th anniversary,” Congresswoman Ileana-Ros-Lehtinen (FL-27) said. “By collaborating on key public policy issues and Israel’s right to defend itself, AJC has been a beacon in defending Jewish interests at home and around the world. I wish AJC many more years of successful advocacy and I look forward to continue working with its members so that together we can build stronger alliances and promote our cherished values of freedom, democracy, and respect for human rights.”
The resolution is cosponsored by Reps. Emanuel Cleaver (MO-5), Steve Cohen (TN-9), Alcee Hastings (FL-20), Sander Levin (MI-9), Jerrold Nadler (NY-10), Charlie Rangel (NY-13), David Scott (GA-13), Debbie Wasserman-Schultz (FL-23), and Frederica Wilson (FL-24).Read More
2206 Rayburn HOB
Washington, DC 20515
I am proud to represent Florida’s 27th Congressional District, a diverse area which includes Coral Gables, Cutler Bay, Hialeah, Key Biscayne, Little Havana, Miami, Pinecrest, South Miami, and Westchester.
I was born in Havana, Cuba on July 1952. At the age of eight, my family and I were forced to flee from the oppressive communist regime of Fidel Castro. We settled in Miami and put down permanent roots in our community. I attended Southside Elementary School in Little Havana, West Miami Junior High, and Southwest High School. In the years following, I earned an Associate of Arts degree from Miami-Dade Community College in 1972, Bachelors and Masters Degree in Education from Florida International University in 1975 and 1985 respectively, and a Doctorate in Education from the University of Miami in 2004. I consider education a lifelong journey.
I began my career as a Florida certified teacher. I also founded and served as the principal and teacher of a private bilingual elementary school in Hialeah. I was inspired to enter public service by many of the parents and students; to fight on their behalf for a stronger educational system, lower taxes, and a brighter economic future.
In 1982 I was elected to the Florida State House of Representatives and the Florida Senate in 1986, becoming the first Hispanic woman to serve in either body. In the state legislature I authored the Florida Prepaid College Plan, which is now the largest pre paid college tuition program in the nation. More than one million Florida families have used this program to send their children to college.
I was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 1989– the first Hispanic woman to serve in Congress–following a special election to fill the seat held by the late Claude Pepper. I have been strongly returned to Congress since, winning 60% of the vote in 2012.
To this day, I remain committed to improving the lives of my constituents and our beautiful South Florida community. As the economy remains a pressing issue, I support reducing taxes and cutting back unnecessary government spending. I also support plans to balance the federal budget and increase tax incentives for small businesses and middle class families. South Florida has also felt the devastating effects of the housing crisis. I have fought to end predatory lending practices by mortgage companies and extend the first time homebuyers tax credit.
Given my background in education, I have worked to strengthen the Head Start program. I have also supported legislation to increase the availability to student financial aid and revise the cumbersome and complicated Federal Application for Student Aid (FAFSA) process.
I am a strong advocate of programs that address the serious problem of domestic violence against women. I was a lead sponsor of the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act, which increases resources towards the prosecution of domestic violence, dating violence, and sexual assault. I also support legislation to increase criminal penalties for perpetrators of Medicare fraud. Medicare fraud is a deplorable practice which robs hardworking seniors of the benefits they spent a lifetime earning, while also wasting billions in taxpayer dollars.
As the wife of a Vietnam veteran and step-mother to Marine aviators, I am passionate about improving our nation’s military, safeguarding veteran’s health care, and ensuring that returning veterans have access to a college education. I have been an outspoken critic of the Miami VA’s recent failures to notify veterans who were at risk of infection, due to contaminated colonoscopy equipment. I also authored legislation awarding the Congressional Gold Medal to the Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASP). These women pioneers had been denied recognition for their service during World War II.
I am Chairman emeritus of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs and am now Chairman of the Subcommittee on the Middle East and North Africa. In this role, I continue to voice my strong support for the state of Israel and human rights, including my opposition to Castro’s dictatorial regime in Cuba. I have also led on pressing foreign policy issues including the fight against Islamist extremism, and support of free trade agreements with Colombia, Panama, and South Korea.
I also serve as a member of the House Committee on Rules. This Committee decides what legislation makes it to the House floor and its members are chosen by the Speaker of the House. My priorities as a member of this Committee is to get our nation’s economy back on track and ensure passage of legislation that betters the state of our nation.
I am the proud wife to Dexter Lehtinen, mother and step-mother to 4 adult children, and grandmother to two beautiful baby girls – Morgan Elizabeth and Caroline Grace.
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