Washington, D.C.- Congressman Jason Smith sent a letter to EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy raising concerns with the EPA's preliminary ecological risk assesment for atrazine, a herbicide widely used by many Missouri farmers. Read the full letter here.Read More
1,811. It was learned this week that was the number of illegal aliens who were ‘mistakenly’ granted American citizenship by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. All of these 1,811 illegal immigrants now turned American citizens were previously ordered to be deported or removed from the U.S. for various reasons, including criminal activity and because their home countries were flagged as ‘special interest countries’ or threats to the United States. This is not only unacceptable, but it’s horrifying. Your federal government, the single entity responsible for the safety of millions of American families is actually doing the opposite – putting them more at risk.
Just this past weekend, twenty-nine people were injured when a bomb exploded in New York City and nine people were victims of a stabbing at a mall in St. Cloud, Minnesota. Both of these attacks were ones of terror. More must be done to strengthen our national security to ensure that those who wish to do Americans harm don’t have that opportunity.
Unfortunately we see the opposite happening. While hundreds scheduled for deportation are now wrongfully granted American citizenship because of an error in fingerprint tracking, the Obama Administration continues to push forward with a plan to ship more and more terrorists from American custody back to the battlefield to commit atrocities against our brave military men and women and innocents across the globe. Simply put, the Obama White House continues to ignore the evidence that nearly one-in-three former detainees return to their jihadist activity upon their release. In an interview last December, with 653 confirmed terrorists once held in Guantanamo Bay already released, President Obama stated, “we assume that there are going to be -out of four, five, six hundred people that get released- a handful of them are going to be embittered and still engaging in anti-U.S. activities and trying to link up potentially with their old organizations.” Unfortunately the President’s rhetoric doesn’t match reality, at the time of that statement, of the 653 who had been released, it was confirmed by the Director of National Intelligence that 196 of these individuals were either confirmed or suspected of returning to terrorist activity – more than just ‘a handful’ I’d say.
Why is the President giving these individuals the opportunity to once again spread the disease of terrorism and hate back in their home countries and once again plan horrifying acts against American citizens? That is why I helped co-author and pass legislation last week to prohibit the transfer of any individual detained at Guantanamo Bay. Don’t let the statements by the Obama Administration fool you into thinking that the closing of that facility does not pose a risk to the safety of our nation. The fact is that the Obama Administration is downplaying just how dangerous those housed at Guantanamo Bay are to fulfill a campaign promise before he leaves office - once again putting politics ahead of the true interest of the American people.
It is the number one job of the federal government to provide for the defense and security of the American people. At a time when our country is under a constant threat of terrorism, we cannot give those who wish to do us harm the chance to attack innocent Americans. We must deny access to those who jeopardize our national security whether they are known terrorists housed at Guantanamo Bay or illegal immigrants who have been mistakenly granted American Citizenship. I remain committed to fighting for the safety of Missourians including physically securing our borders, thoroughly screening and vetting anyone desiring to enter our country with background checks, thwarting the release of any more terrorists back to the battlefield and providing our military men and women with the resources they need to get the job done.. despite the Obama Administration’s attempts to do otherwise.Read More
U.S. House Passes Rep. Jason Smith’s Bill to Increase Coverage Options for those with Kidney Failure
Smith’s bill gives Americans Suffering with End Stage Renal Disease the health care options they deserve
Washington, D.C.- Today, the U.S. House of Representatives unanimously passed Congressman Jason Smith’s bill, H.R. 5659, the Expanding Seniors Receiving Dialysis’ (ESRD) Choice Act with bipartisan support. Smith’s bill expands access to high-quality, affordable health care coverage options for Americans suffering from kidney failure by removing current federal restrictions that block patients with End Stage Renal Disease from enrolling in certain medical plans like Medicare Advantage.
Prior to passage of his bill Smith commented, “The vulnerable patients suffering from End-Stage Renal Disease (ESRD) deserve access to the right doctors and the right treatment at the most affordable cost. Unfortunately, I heard from several folks in southeast and south central Missouri suffering from kidney failure who have been denied that access and option by the federal government.” Smith continued, “Patients suffering from kidney failure deserve the same health care choices that all Americans have. My bill will help ensure that the over 640,000 Americans diagnosed with ESRD benefit from having new options for care and coverage which are currently disallowed in federal statute.”
There are over 640,000 Americans, 11,000 of those in Missouri who are currently diagnosed with kidney failure, or ESRD. Under the current law, patients with the pre-existing condition of ESRD are the only disease group specifically denied the ability to enroll in more flexible care Medicare Advantage plans. Smith’s bill will expand the options for ESRD patients and allow them to choose these plans by ending the current federal restriction.
Ways and Means Committee Chairman Kevin Brady (R-TX) said, “Patients suffering from a costly and debilitating disease should not be shut out of federal programs proven to deliver high-quality, affordable care-programs like Medicare Advantage. Thanks to Congressman Smith’s leadership, the House just passed legislation to help ensure our sickest patients have access to the life-saving treatment they need, regardless of the disease they have.”
After passage, Smith remarked, “The passage of my bill today will ensure that those suffering from kidney failure are protected. America deserves these types of solutions to improve our health care system. Americans, not the federal government, should be in control of choosing the best heath care options for those in need.”
Kendell and Laurie Clarkston exemplify the true meaning and heart of adoption. As physicians serving in Willow Springs, Missouri, both have directly seen the needs of children living in impoverished conditions and without the love and nurture of a family. While having two biological children of their own, the Clarkstons always felt a tug on their hearts to bring other children into their home.
In 2005, the Clarkstons brought their daughter Claire home from the People’s Republic of China with the help of their adoption agency, Holt International. As soon as they returned to the United States, the family began the process of adopting Ben in 2008 and then Will in 2011. Both of Chinese ethnicity, the boys each had medical conditions requiring treatment. Ben was born with meningocele, a mild form of spina bifida, and Will had a cleft lip and palate.
The Clarkstons love for children and serving did not end with the family’s adoptions. The couple sought to provide others with the opportunity to adopt, an often lengthy and expensive endeavor. Three years ago, Laurie established Orphan Care Ministries at Pomona Christian Church. Through this program, they offer grants to families seeking to adopt when cost is prohibitive. So far, the organization has offered three grants to families living in a rural section of Missouri’s Eighth Congressional District.
The ministry also has a journey care program which provides backpacks full of emergency supplies to children entering foster care. When children are removed from a home, they tend to come without any items of their own. Upon placement in a foster facility, children are given a backpack full of items such as tooth paste, shampoo, pajamas, etc.
On top of these efforts, the family now takes care of foster children and has hosted foreign exchange students. Both physicians also routinely travel to countries such as Nicaragua, Albania, Ethiopia and the Dominican Republic to provide medical care. This year, their older children have the opportunity travel with them thus transferring the heart to serve to the next generation.Read More
Rep. Jason Smith Named Guardian of Small Business
Smith receives The National Federation of Independent Business’s (NFIB) most prestigious award
Cape Girardeau, MO- The National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB), the nation’s leading advocate for small businesses, awarded Congressman Jason Smith with its biennial Guardian of Small Business Award for his outstanding support of America’s small business owners in the 114th Congress. Congressman Jason Smith accepted the award during a ceremony at Horizon Screen Printing in Cape Girardeau. In 2007, Horizon Screen Printing was recognized by NFIB as small business of the year in Missouri.
“A smaller, less intrusive, less burdensome federal government is something I have been fighting for since day one - and it is exactly what is needed to help the close to 20,000 small businesses in southeast and south central Missouri. All they want is the government off their backs and out of their way so they can invest, develop, hire and grow their business. Small businesses are responsible for the creation of 7 out of every 10 new jobs in this country. I am honored to receive this award today for my strong support of Missouri's small businesses. I remain committed to supporting legislation that removes unnecessary regulatory burdens that are hindering the growth of small businesses here in Missouri," said Smith.
Horizon Screen Printing is a family owned business, started by Rhoda Reeves in 1981. Rhoda’s husband Glenn, a former Sears executive, joined in the business in 1982 followed by their son Dru in 1990. Horizon Screen Printing was recognized by the Cape Girardeau Chamber of Commerce as Small Business of the Year in 1996. In 2002, Rhoda represented the National Federal of Independent Business at President Bush's State of the Union Address and in 2007, the National Federation of Independent Business of Missouri recognized Horizon as Small Business of the Year. Horizon continues to serve customers from California to Maine with the same care and attention required to print a dozen shirts for a family reunion or thousands for the St. Louis Cardinals.
Horizon Screen Printing General Manager Dru Reeves commented, “I really appreciate Congressman Smith’s 100% voting record with the NFIB. I am proud to have him as our representative and an advocate for small businesses in Southeast Missouri.”
This week, the U.S. House Oversight and Government Reform Committee conducted a public hearing delving into the policies and procedures the U.S. State Department employs for preserving federal records. Several former State Department witnesses from the time when Secretary Clinton headed the agency were ordered to testify as to what the polices were, if they were followed, and to Secretary Clinton’s use of a private email server. Unfortunately, on the advice of their legal counsel, three of those witnesses refused to answer any questions, repeatedly asserting their 5th amendment constitutional right. Another witness refused to show up all together and the one witness who did testify in front of Congress on Tuesday admitted that he had access to Clinton’s private email server that transmitted classified information, but he had absolutely no security clearance whatsoever.
The three main IT specialists who assisted Secretary Clinton with her use of a private email server were the ones who refused to testify all together. The former senior Clinton advisor who did testify, admitted to taking a hammer to Clinton’s mobile devices once they were no longer of use instead of properly disposing of the information contained on those devices.
This hearing only continued to add to the current overwhelming evidence that Secretary Clinton broke State Department protocol, National Security protocol and very likely U.S. law in her use of a private email server for State Department business as well as the handling of classified information. In July, FBI Director James Comey held a press conference announcing that the FBI would not be recommending charges be filed against Clinton. This sparked outrage across the country and in response the House Oversight Committee requested that Director Comey testify before Members of the Committee and provide explanation justifying their decision.
FBI Director Comey’s testimony confirmed the truth behind the fact that Hillary Clinton mishandled classified information and put the safety of America in jeopardy. During the hearing, Comey admitted several times that Clinton lied to Congress and the American people. Comey confirmed that although Clinton stated to the American people that she has never sent or received classified emails on her private server, that in fact was false. Clinton claimed that the emails she received were not marked as classified at the time, Comey proved that this was false stating “three of those were classified at the time that they were sent or received; one at the secret level.” Further when asked if all of Secretary Clinton’s work emails were returned to the State Department, Comey replied, “No, we found thousands that were not returned.”
We expect more from the heads of our government and Secretary Clinton is no exception. I have called on FBI Director Comey to submit evidence and further information to Congress on his decision not to recommend charges against Hillary Clinton for her misuse of private, government emails. The American people deserve to know the truth and I will continue to fight for truth and justice against Hillary Clinton’s unacceptable activities.
Those who break laws or put our national security in jeopardy should not escape consequences just because they are a powerful elite or in this case have the last name of Clinton. Americans deserve accountability for those who threaten our safety. We deserve better and I will continue to fight to get answers from Secretary Clinton and demand accountability for the omissions of information and lies she has delivered to the American people.
We have all heard the famous quote “the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.” This week as the U.S. Congress once again gaveled back into session, the same results held true as we were immediately met with new details of just how partisan and politically minded this Administration is. I should have known not to expect anything other than partisan rancor from this Administration but a recent memo leak showing details of the Obama Administration putting liberal politics before the interests of the American people is truly appalling.
A report of a memo sent by the Obama Administration to officials at the Pentagon was uncovered on Tuesday detailing a plan to veto the national defense bill that includes a pay raise for our troops. This revelation further proves that the Obama Administration could care less about the means he uses no matter how unethical they might be to push his liberal agenda. The internal Department of Defense memo instructs top military leaders to “play hardball” against Republican plans to increase the military budget, unless the Obama White House gets the spending increases they want for unrelated social programs. They suggest that the House and Senate fight against each other instead of finding middle ground to enact a national defense bill for our nation’s heroes, of which we have a huge number throughout southeast and south central Missouri. It is shameful that the Obama Administration spends more time playing political games rather than serving the American public.
This news was especially hard to stomach because while we are trying to find solutions, we keep being met with executive orders and rogue federal agencies specifically trying to impede our attempts. The extent to which this administration has gone out of its way to impede congressional oversight and accountability and implement radical agendas is absolute insanity.
After spending several weeks traveling all 30 counties, talking to farmers about their crops, small business owners about their bottom line, community leaders about their changing needs, and simply just catching up with old friends, facing this type of out-of-control government insanity is difficult because these folks deserve better than what we’re getting from the White House.
The tactics described in the memo that was uncovered this week comes as no surprise because under the Obama Administration, dysfunction and partisanship have continually grown worse. It is no surprise that the American public have lost confidence in this Administration’s ability to do their jobs in the best interest of the American public. Time and time again, the Obama Administration condemns Congress for not reaching across the aisle to get things done, but behind closed doors he continues to encourage a battle between political parties. It is quite clear that the legacy that the Obama Administration will leave behind in January will be that of a politically divided country and bureaucratic insanity.
I believe Congress can come together and continue the more than five decades of bipartisan cooperation it has experienced in the past and pass a national defense bill that gives our troops a pay raise and provides them with the resources they need to defend and provide for the security of our country. The brave men and women who serve our country and keep us safe deserve better and so does the rest of the country, especially from someone who carries the title Commander in Chief.
NEWS: Delta Regional Authority, state and local partners invest more than $7 million into the Missouri Bootheel economy
Investment helps expands fiber optic infrastructure in Marquette tech district
Chairman Masingill: "Help our region attract and keep the companies and workers we need to drive our economy
MISSISSIPPI RIVER DELTA – The Delta Regional Authority and its local partners will invest more than $7 million into strengthening critical and communications infrastructure in southeast Missouri, Federal Co-Chairmen Chris Masingill and Michael Marshall announced today.
The new federal and local investments will build a new wastewater treatment facility in Portageville as well as create fiber optic capability in Marquette's tech district.
"These smart investments not only create good-paying jobs today, they will help our region attract and keep the companies and workers we need to drive our economy for years to come," DRA Co-Chairman Chris Masingill said. "Together with our local and state partners – and all of the wonderful people across the bootheel – we remain committed to keeping Missouri a great place to create jobs, grow businesses, and raise a family."
"The Delta Regional Authority has always been dedicated to driving small business investment, creating jobs, and building crucial infrastructure in the Delta region," DRA Co-Chairman Michael Marshall said. "This year, we're excited to provide support to the region in innovative ways – from improving public health to spearheading tech innovation in the Missouri bootheel – and we're boosting the entire economy in the Delta as a result."
"The Delta Regional Authority has been a strong partner in helping my administration grow Missouri's rural economy, and these new investments continue that focus," Missouri Governor Jay Nixon said. "From strengthening our infrastructure to making sure our communities have cutting-edge technology that will help them compete in the worldwide market, these strategic investments will bolster communities by enhancing opportunities for economic development in this region and throughout our state."
2016 SEDAP INVESTMENTS
1. Portageville Missouri Wastewater Improvement Project: Constructing a new wastewater treatment facility necessary to meet governmental regulations due to a new manufacturing facility in the Portageville area. DRA Investment: $200,000; Leveraged Public Investment: $5,600,000.
2. Marquette Tech District, Fiber Optic Infrastructure: Building fiber optic capability in the Marquette Tech District, a regional innovation hub in Cape Girardeau's historic downtown. Leveraging $25 million in private investment, creating 350 jobs and $42 million annual economic impact. DRA Investment: $200,000; Leveraged Public Investment: $1,416,632.
"These new investments will create and support good-paying jobs and help provide an important boost to the Bootheel's economy. Increasing fiber optic capabilities and modernizing local infrastructure is good for the region—helping grow economic opportunities and providing communities and businesses the structural backbone and innovative tools they need to succeed," said U.S. Senator Claire McCaskill.
"The Delta Regional Authority's infrastructure investments in Portageville and Cape Girardeau will help support economic growth and improve the quality of life for families living in these communities," saidU.S. Senator Roy Blunt. "I'm glad to see these projects moving forward, and will continue supporting DRA's work throughout southeast Missouri."
"I am glad to see this award being made right here in southeast Missouri," said U.S. Representative Jason Smith. "The future of business and potential for economic growth in southeast Missouri is bright. Investments like these are exactly why Congress created the Delta Regional Authority and why I have continued to work closely with and supported securing resources for Missouri's 8th Congressional District. I will continue to work with entities like the Delta Regional Authority to push for support of projects right here in south central and southeast Missouri which will help attract business large and small and create good paying jobs."
The investments are made through the DRA States' Economic Development Assistance Program, the agency's main federal funding program that invests in basic public infrastructure, transportation infrastructure, workforce development, small business and entrepreneurship, and health access projects in the 252 counties and parishes of the eight-state Delta region. DRA coordinates directly with Missouri's five planning and development districts in the region for program funding implementation.
DRA leadership works closely with the governor of each state and his board designee to identify projects to receive SEDAP investments, which are aligned with state economic development goals.
These federal investments require a minimal investment of state funds that can bring a large return in DRA and other agency funding and result in a great economic impact for the Delta region of Missouri.
About the Delta Regional Authority
The Delta Regional Authority is a federal-state partnership created by Congress in 2000 to help create jobs, build communities, and improve lives through strategic investments in economic development in 252 counties and parishes across eight states. To date, the DRA's SEDAP investments, together with its state and local partners, have leveraged $138 million in federal resources into more than $2.9 billion in public and private investment into local small business owners, entrepreneurs, workers, and infrastructure development projects. These investments have helped create or retain more than 26,000 jobs since the DRA was established. Learn more at dra.gov.
The Salem community and I took a major step toward fall last Friday when we watched Salem High Football return to play under the familiar ‘Friday Night Lights’. The start of a new school year is exciting because it is an opportunity for students to set new goals for the academic year and start to put plans in motion to achieve those goals.
One of my goals is to visit all 125 school districts throughout the 30 counties of the 8th Congressional District of Missouri. One thing that I love is bringing ‘Congress to the Classroom’ and meeting with students to talk the issues they care about most. I am continually impressed by the students I visit and how they view the issues facing Congress as well as the creative solutions they have for solving these problems. I often leave my visit with a new perspective on how the future of our country judges the issues we are facing today.
I have met some incredible young people across southeast and south central Missouri - young people who are not only involved in their own personal growth and achievement, but also involved in what goes on in their schools and communities. One way in which I can honor the time, hard work, commitment and sacrifice these young students have made to better themselves and the community around them is through the Congressional Award.
The Congressional Award is one of the highest recognized and official honor awards that a Member of Congress can bestow on an accomplished student and volunteer. Congress has been giving out this award since 1979 to recognize talented young people across the country and celebrate their commitment to bettering themselves and their communities.
All youth between the ages of 14 and 23 are eligible to register for the Congressional Awards program. Qualifying for the Congressional Award is simple because many youth are already meeting the requirements through their everyday service to their community. However, the first step is to sign up because candidates can only get credit for the service and goals they achieve after they have signed up. Candidates can sign up online at my website, www.jasonsmith.house.gov.
After completing the sign up process, candidates for the Congressional Award must pledge to challenge themselves by offering hours of community service to do things like help out at a homeless shelter or mentor a younger student. Additionally, they may also pledge to improve their physical fitness or develop a project of personal exploration, such as specialized study of a specific topic or making a trip to learn about another culture. Many students who are already taking part in the A-plus program, Eagle Scout, Future Business Leaders of America, National Honor Society or students involved in FFA like I was are most likely already completing some of the requirements of the Congressional Award program.
Currently, there are 50,000 young people throughout the nation working toward the award. They earn certificates, or continue to bronze, silver or gold medals based upon their achievements. Gold medalists are invited to Washington D.C. for a special ceremony to honor their achievements.
Students from Sikeston to Hillsboro, from West Plains to New Madrid, and from Cape Girardeau to Ava have signed up to be a part of the Congressional Award program. I look forward to seeing these incredible young people work to earn the prestigious award and I am excited to get the chance to honor them with an award for all of their hard work. There are many other students across southeast and south central Missouri that I want to encourage to get involved in this program. I also encourage parents and teachers of these young people to urge them to get involved in a personal growth program with the start of a new school year.
U.S. Rep. Jason Smith (MO-08) released the following statement regarding a new report showing that an estimated 85 percent of Missouri counties could have only one Obamacare insurer in 2017:
“Six years ago, when Obamacare was signed into law the President promised that this plan would provide more affordable health care options for Americans. Six years later, Obamacare continues to fail Americans by providing fewer health care options and costing taxpayers hundreds of millions of dollars. Preliminary data show the result of this disastrous plan will leave most families across Missouri with only one choice for health insurance,” said Smith. Smith continued, “ 26 of the 30 counties in our Congressional district are estimated to only offer one insurance option. When the market place fails to offer adequate competition, hardworking families lose millions of dollars and their ability to receive affordable and high-quality health care insurance is diminished. President Obama’s refusal to accept reasonable changes to his namesake health care law shows that he cares more about protecting his legacy over the interests of hardworking Americans. The people across Missouri and the nation are paying the price. There’s a better way to approach health care, and House Republicans have proposed sweeping overhauls that will actually increase competition, offer more choices, and lower costs by cutting bureaucratic red tape instead of creating more requirements, complexities, and barriers between you and your doctor.”Read More
1118 Longworth HOB
Washington, DC 20515
Jason Smith is a seventh-generation Missourian, a citizen-legislator, and a champion for the rights and values of rural Missourians.
Jason was raised in Salem, Missouri, where he still owns the same family farm that was started by his great grandfather. He attended Salem High School, where he was an active member of FFA. At the University of Missouri-Columbia, Jason earned degrees in Agricultural Economics and Business Administration. After receiving degrees from both programs in three years, he attended law school at Oklahoma City University before returning home to serve his community. Back home in Missouri Jason began running the family farm and practicing law. It was during this time that he recognized the harm that the overbearing government was inflicting on Missourians and our economy. This inspired Jason to run for office himself so he could begin to undo the damage.
Jason was elected to the Missouri General Assembly in a special election in 2005.
In the General Assembly, Jason fought to shrink the size of state government, eliminate burdensome rules and regulations, increase government transparency, protect property rights, require drug testing for welfare recipients, and defend Missouri agriculture. Thanks to his efforts, Jason’s colleagues selected him to serve in leadership: first as the Majority Whip and then as Speaker Pro Tem—one of the youngest in state history.
During a special election in June of 2013, Jason was elected to represent Missouri’s Eighth Congressional District in the United States House of Representatives. He was re-elected in November 2014.
As a member of the 114th Congress, Jason serves on the Ways and Means Committee. In Washington Jason has made a name for himself as a strong defender of rural Missouri and all of rural America. Jason is committed to fighting intrusive government regulations, increasing markets for farmers and ranchers, and protecting his constituents’ rural way of life.
Jason has earned 100% ratings from the American Conservative Union and the Chamber of Commerce; he is a lifetime member of the National Rifle Association, pro-life and supports traditional values.
Jason attends Grace Community Church in Salem.
Retweeted by repjasonsmith
Retweeted by repjasonsmith
Thanks to the folks who attended my Washington Co. Listening Post today Join members of my staff for a public liste… https://t.co/80cRPpwGE1
Retweeted by repjasonsmith
Under the EPA's 'Clean Power Plan', 40 states are projected to experience double digit increases in electric rates.… https://t.co/8R7OIT3Nzo
Retweeted by repjasonsmith
Thank you Poplar Bluff Garden Club for graciously donating a Blue Star Mem. marker to recognize the service and sac… https://t.co/ZInMyVgxJI