Washington, D.C. – Representative Kevin Yoder (R-KS) has been selected to serve as the Chairman of the House Legislative Branch Subcommittee on Appropriations for the 115th Congress. The Appropriations Committee is responsible for allocating federal dollars to fund various programs, departments, and agencies, with the Legislative Branch Subcommittee specifically responsible for funding the offices of Members of the House of Representatives, the support agencies of Congress, security and police forces, services for visitors, and Capitol operations and maintenance.
Representative Yoder has served on the full committee during each of his first three terms in office, including as one of only three freshman members during his first term in the 112th Congress. He previously served as Vice Chairman of the Transportation, Housing and Urban Development Subcommittee during the 114th Congress and the Vice Chairman of the Agriculture Subcommittee during the 113th Congress.
Yoder is the first Kansan to chair a House Appropriations subcommittee since 1934 and fourth Kansan in history to do so.
Yoder issued the following statement following the announcement of his selection as Legislative Branch Subcommittee Chairman:
“I’m humbled and honored that my colleagues have placed their trust in me to serve as Chairman of the Legislative Branch Subcommittee on Appropriations. One of my top priorities since coming to Congress has been to rein in out-of-control federal spending and increase transparency with regard to how we spend taxpayers’ hard-earned money. I’ve always said that Congress must lead by example when it comes to fiscal responsibility, and chairing this subcommittee gives me the opportunity to follow through with that commitment. I look forward to providing Kansans and the American people with a more streamlined, efficient, and effective legislative branch in this new role.”
House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) offered the following statement in support of Yoder’s selection:
“Kevin is a true fiscal conservative whose work ethic and dedication to service is well-known among his colleagues and the people of Kansas. It’s no surprise that his colleagues have selected him to serve as Chairman of the Legislative Branch Subcommittee on Appropriations, and I look forward to his leadership in this new role.”
Washington, D.C. – Today, Representatives Kevin Yoder (R-KS) and Jared Polis (D-CO) reintroduced the Email Privacy Act, legislation that modernizes America’s digital privacy laws by establishing protections against warrantless searches of private emails.
The Email Privacy Act would update the Electronic Communications Privacy Act (ECPA) to state that all government agencies must get a warrant to search Americans’ online communications, regardless of when the email was crafted. In 1986, Congress passed ECPA, which contains a loophole that allows the government to search any email older than 180 days stored on a third-party server, such as Google or Yahoo, without a warrant.
“After the unanimous passage of our bill last year, I see no reason why we can’t get this done right away,” Representative Yoder said. “Let’s give the Senate ample time to act, because more than 30 years has been long enough for Congress to wait on this. It’s simple, in 2017 if the federal government wants to access Americans’ digital content, it must get a warrant.”
“As a result of Congress’s failure to keep pace with technological developments, every American is at risk of having their emails warrantlessly searched by government agencies,” Representative Polis said. “The Email Privacy Act will update, and bring our archaic laws into the 21st century, and protect Americans’ Fourth Amendment privacy rights, whether they’re communicating through pen-and-paper mail or email. Americans justly demand this level of privacy, and I remain confident that the bill will swiftly pass Congress.”
Both House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-VA) and Ranking Member John Conyers (D-MI) are original cosponsors of the bill.
“I am pleased to continue the bipartisan effort to modernize the Electronic Communications Privacy Act, a law that is woefully outdated and has not kept pace with advances in technology and online communications,” Ranking Member Conyers said. “The statute does not adequately protect the Fourth Amendment rights of our citizens and we must make clear that the law requires the government to get a warrant in order to access private online communications. Our citizens deserve and expect no less. I look forward to swift passage of this bill, which the House approved last Congress by a vote of 419 – 0, and its enactment in the new Congress.”
The legislation has been carefully drafted through negotiations with the House Judiciary Committee, industry stakeholders, law enforcement, and civil liberties groups.
"The Email Privacy Act is a commonsense, bipartisan measure that protects the privacy of everyone's communications. The importance of private communications is clearly one thing everyone in Congress can agree on," said Center for Democracy & Technology Vice President for Policy Chris Calabrese. "Representatives Polis and Yoder have worked tirelessly to craft a measure which passed the House unanimously last Congress. This year we urge rapid passage by Congress and the President."
“The Email Privacy Act introduced today by Congressman Kevin Yoder ensures that your email correspondence with your Doctor, has the same Fourth Amendment protection as your handwritten love notes,” said President of Americans for Tax Reform Grover Norquist. “Americans for Tax Reform looks forward to working together on passing this important legislation in the House (again) and seeing it become law.”
“Technology continues to develop at warp speed, but unfortunately U.S. laws to protect privacy remain woefully outdated. It is long due for Congress to pass legislation that would require the government to obtain a warrant and provide notice before they can collect sensitive information, like emails or documents stored in cloud services,” said ACLU’s Neema Singh Guilani. “We applaud Rep. Polis and Rep. Yoder for their tireless efforts to advance the Email Privacy Act and ensure that Americans’ Fourth Amendment rights are protected in the digital age.”
The Email Privacy Act would:
Last Congress, the Email Privacy Act garnered more than 300 cosponsors and unanimously passed the House of Representatives 419-0. Yoder and Polis are reintroducing the bill because the Senate failed to act before the 114th Congress came to a close.
Representatives Doug Collins (R-GA), Will Hurd, (R-TX), Ted Poe (R-TX), Suzan DelBene (D-WA), Jerrold Nadler (D-NY), and Judy Chu (D-CA) have also joined as original cosponsors of the bill.
Washington, D.C. – Representative Kevin Yoder (R-KS) spoke on the floor of the House of Representatives this week, urging members of both parties in Congress to come together and send a strong message to the United Nations (UN) that America stands with Israel. Tonight, Representative Yoder joined a bipartisan majority of the House in voting to rebuke the UN over its anti-Israel resolution last month. H. Res. 11 – Objecting to United Nations Security Council Resolution 2334 as an obstacle to Israeli-Palestinian peace – passed the House by a 342-80 vote. Yoder was an original cosponsor of the measure.
Following are Rep. Yoder’s remarks, as prepared for delivery:
“Mr. Speaker, I rise today in solidarity and support for one of America’s greatest friends and allies, but one the Obama Administration has sadly abandoned in its last days in office – the State of Israel.
“Since September of 2015 alone in Israel, 42 people have been killed in terrorist attacks and 602 people (including 4 Palestinians) have been injured.
“Yet, last month the United Nations Security Council felt the need to condemn Israel with a misguided resolution the United States should have vetoed.
“In fact, as long as Israel has been a part of the UN, it has been treated with little respect and almost openly disdained.
“In 2016, there were more resolutions regarding Israel than there were regarding Syria, North Korea, Iran, South Sudan, and Russia combined.
“That's a simply unacceptable way to treat the only peaceful, democratic state in the region.
“Mr. Speaker, I urge all of my colleagues to join together in sending a strong bipartisan message this week to rebuke this misguided resolution so we can get back on a path to a peaceful solution to conflict in the Middle East.”
To watch a video of Yoder's remarks, click here.
Washington, D.C. – Over the holidays, Representative Kevin Yoder (R-KS) sent a letter along with 69 of his House colleagues to the Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS) seeking an immediate withdrawal of the United Network for Organ Sharing (UNOS) “Redesigning Liver Distribution” proposal. Representative Yoder’s letter highlights the proposal’s inconsistency with bipartisan goals of providing high-quality care at lower cost.
The proposal would change the rules governing the allocation of transplant livers by significantly broadening the geographic boundaries for sharing of donor livers with the goal of redistributing organs from the generous donor regions like the Midwest to large coastal hospitals who receive fewer donations. The idea is opposed by doctors, transplant officials, and advocates, who argue it would actually reduce organ donation rates nationwide, impose significant logistical and financial challenges for the transplant community, and undermine patient access to care. In fact, eight of the 11 UNOS regions voted against the proposal at their regional meetings.
“Americans are extremely generous when given the information and opportunity,” Yoder said. “So let’s give them the chance to step up and help save lives by becoming organ donors. Let’s work together and collaborate on solutions that increase consent rates everywhere, not penalize generous donors in the Midwest and elsewhere.”
“We are grateful to Congressman Yoder’s attention and action on this,” Dr. Timothy Schmitt, director of transplantation at The University of Kansas Hospital said. “Donors are not a commodity. They are human beings with families and give a great gift. The whole system is based on people giving. Disparity in donation should be the focus -- not the shipping of livers.”
Yoder has spearheaded the congressional effort to oppose this proposal since its outset in 2014. That year, he sent a letter along with more than 50 of his colleagues to the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) expressing concerns regarding the UNOS concept paper that preceded the proposal. In 2015, Yoder successfully included language in the Labor, Health and Human Services Funding Bill directing HHS to establish a coordinated initiative to increase the number of organ donations throughout the United States. Last year, Yoder worked hand in hand with the University of Kansas Hospital to urge members of the public to oppose the proposal.
The text of the letter can be found here and is reproduced below.
Sylvia Mathews Burwell
U.S. Department of Health & Human Services
200 Independence Avenue, S.W.
Washington, DC 20201
Dear Secretary Burwell:
We are writing to express our strong opposition to the proposal by the Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network’s (OPTN) Liver and Intestine Committee entitled “Redesigning Liver Distribution.” This proposal, if finalized, would result in outcomes that are completely inconsistent with and contrary to the bipartisan goals of reforming the health care system to provide high-quality, high-value care at a lower cost. This proposal will reduce patient access to liver transplant services and increase the transplantation costs. We urge you take action to direct the OPTN to withdraw this proposal immediately.
The proposal has been circulated without considering larger efforts addressing the need to increase the number of donors and the performance of organ procurement organizations in underperforming regions. If finalized, the proposal would result in diminished access to liver transplant services in the Midwest, Southeast, Northwest, and Hawaii and the Pacific Basin where there have been strong efforts to increase organ donation rates and procurement practices. Before engaging in a redistricting process that only addresses allocation policy, a broader examination of the entire liver donation, procurement and transplantation process is needed. Furthermore, this proposal will exacerbate disparities in health care suffered by minority and rural communities by decreasing organ availability in these communities which have a high burden of liver disease and will weaken their transplant centers.
The projected 2 percent decline in the number of liver transplants significantly outweighs the alleged current geographic disparity. Additionally, the proposal creates significant logistical and financial challenges for the entire transplant community and threatens to undermine patient access in areas with limited access points for transplant services. Spreading livers across a broader geographic region will result in higher costs and require longer air transport times and costs. Transplant centers are unlikely to receive sufficient funding from government and/or private payers to offset additional costs. These challenges could result in closure of some transplant programs, which find the prospect of performing fewer transplants cost prohibitive.
Because the UNOS proposal will increase cost and reduce the number of transplants performed, some transplant programs will (or are likely to) close, harming the people they were created to serve. This is unacceptable to our constituents and to us as their representatives.
Congress created the OPTN to support reasoned, expert-based and consensus driven decisions in organ allocation policy. This proposal contradicts that expectation as evidenced by its unpopularity among members of the transplant community and the general public. Eight of the 11 UNOS regions voted against the proposal at their regional meetings. Public comments collected in fall of 2016 showed staunch opposition from the general public. Seventy-six percent of transplant stakeholders opposed the proposal’s use of Median MELD at allocation as the sole metric of geographic disparity at the first public forum held in July 2014.
There are also several procedural shortcomings that demand further examination. The Committee failed to model the effects of the proposal before it was released for public comment, the Committee leadership has remained under the control of representatives from regions that stand to benefit from redistricting, the policy proposal itself advocated for its own merits, and there are concerns regarding conflict-of-interest that have been present throughout the process.
We recognize that there are significant disagreements among stakeholders on how to best distribute donated livers in an equitable manner. But proceeding with a deeply flawed and unpopular proposal that will leave patients in large swaths of the country worse off without additional study of alternative solutions is unwise. We urge you to take action to direct the OPTN to withdraw the “Redesigning Liver Distribution” proposal immediately.
Member of CongressRead More
Washington, D.C. – Today, Representative Kevin Yoder (R-KS) joined a bipartisan majority of the House of Representatives in passing the 2017 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) by a vote of 375-34. This bill authorizes $619 billion for the Department of Defense (DoD) to fully fund our military so it can protect and defend the United States. Some of the highlights of the bill include:
Following the passage of the bill, Representative Yoder issued the following statement:
“Congress and the federal government’s number one priority is to protect and defend our nation, and the NDAA provides our military the resources to do just that. This bill reverses the trend over the last several years of squeezing our military’s budget, cutting troop levels, and reducing readiness. Instead, we’re giving our troops their largest pay raise in six years and providing them with the tools they need to defend us from threats around the world.
“Over the last year, we’ve seen far too many ISIS-inspired attacks on Americans and our allies in Europe and the Middle East, and the NDAA will help refocus our efforts to destroy ISIS and defeat radical Islamic terrorism. Importantly for our community, the bill also holds the line in federal law against bringing any dangerous terrorists from Guantanamo Bay to Fort Leavenworth. I’m proud of this vote today – a vote to support our troops and keep our nation safe.”
Overland Park, KS – Representative Kevin Yoder (R-KS) announced today that he has nominated 27 area students to the U.S. Military Academy, U.S. Naval Academy, and the U.S. Air Force Academy.
The Third District’s Academy Nomination Board, appointed by Representative Yoder, conducted interviews with the applicants following review of their applications. After receiving their nominations, the applicants must now meet the requirements of each U.S. Service Academy to be considered for appointment. Ultimately, the Academies make the final decision on who receives an appointment of admission.
“I’m honored to announce the nominations of the following outstanding Kansans from the 3rd Congressional District to an United States Service Academy,” Rep Yoder said. “These young men and women do an excellent job representing our district with their distinguished character, scholarship, leadership and service. The impressive attributes each one of the nominees possess make them great candidates, and I wish them well as they seek an appointment to an U.S. Service Academy.”
United States Naval Academy – Annapolis, Maryland
Harrison Boldt – Merriam
Chad Coates – Overland Park
Ryan Devers – Olathe
Noah Didier – Overland Park
Marie Divine – Prairie Village
Claire Ivey – Shawnee
Luke Kuklenski – Prairie Village
Austin Lee – Overland Park
Owen Swanberg – Leawood
Maddie Wheat – Shawnee
United States Military Academy – West Point, New York
Claire Allen – Shawnee
Emmett Lockeridge – Kansas City Kansas
Steven Rohde – Overland Park
Jack Russell – Overland Park
Brenden Shutt – Shawnee
Cole Smith – Overland Park
Sidney Spry – Overland Park
Karen Yan – Overland Park
United States Air Force Academy – Colorado Springs, Colorado
Chad Buzzell – Overland Park
Cole Dahlquist – Lenexa
Patrick Doyle – Prairie Village
Annalise Holland – Olathe
Will McConwell – Fairway
Cooper May – Leawood
Jonas Price – Overland Park
Jacob Taylor – De Soto
Victoria Wall – Mission
Rep. Yoder will begin accepting applications for the 2018 Academy class on May 1, 2017. The application deadline is October 1, 2017. For more information on the application process or to receive an U.S. Service Academy Nomination Application packet please contact Susan Metsker in Rep. Yoder’s Overland Park Office at 913-621-0832 or visit www.yoder.house.gov.
Rep. Kevin Yoder: Here's a cause to unite Trump AND Clinton voters
By Rep. Kevin Yoder (R-KS)
November 30, 2016 | To view online, click here.
There’s no two ways about it, America is divided.
Gallup recently reported a record-high 77 percent of Americans describe our country using that word. Most of us can understand why, after spending last week at the Thanksgiving dinner table avoiding political landmines like Donald Trump’s electoral victory without the popular vote or Hillary Clinton’s email server and whether she should be prosecuted for it.
Although unfortunately too late to solve your Thanksgiving dilemma, the House is voting this week on legislation the entire dinner table could’ve agreed on. It’s called 21st Century Cures.
Whether you voted for Trump or Clinton, life-threatening diseases have almost certainly affected you or someone you love. They affect all of us indiscriminately, regardless of political party. And they are ruthless, killing more Americans each year than any war. Cancer will kill almost 600,000 Americans this year. Another 700,000 Americans will die with Alzheimer’s disease.
A whopping 30 million Americans live with one of the 7,000 known rare diseases. Of those diseases, we only have treatments approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for about five percent of them. In fact, we only have about 500 treatments for the nearly 10,000 total known diseases.
President-elect Trump signaled last week he wants the next wave of innovation – the next generation of research to cure diseases – to take place here in America. That’s encouraging, and House Republicans stand ready to work with his Administration in the coming months and years to ensure it does. But Congress isn’t waiting for his inauguration to get started.
Last year, I was one of the leaders in an effort to secure the largest funding increase at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) since 2003. We convinced even the most ardent fiscal conservatives to spend more money on research because the investment saves lives and pays for itself. And it’s necessary – the private sector can’t fund research of this magnitude. Since 1946, the American Cancer Society has spent $4.5 billion on cancer research, for example. The federal government, through the NIH, will spend $5.6 billion this year alone.
This week, House Republicans are again working hand in hand with our colleagues across the aisle to pass Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Fred Upton’s (R-MI) 21st Century Cures Act.
Chairman Upton’s initiative, which has stalled in the Senate after passing the House last year with overwhelming bipartisan support, is returning to the House floor for a vote. After continued public conversations with patients, researchers, innovators, and health care providers on how to expedite the discovery, development, and delivery of new treatments and cures, we are set to pass it with majorities from both parties in Congress.
This compromise package provides the NIH $4.8 billion and the FDA $500 million in new funding over the next decade that is fully paid for without adding to the National Debt.
NIH spending is credited with mapping the human genome, generating an economic impact of $796 billion. Impressive, considering Human Genome Project spending amounted to $3.8 billion. Curing cancer or Alzheimer’s would save our nation trillions more over our lifetime – easily justifying the billions in investments today.
Cures also takes important steps toward maintaining America’s global status as the leader in biomedical innovation by modernizing clinical trials to reduce waiting periods for moving new drugs from the lab to the pharmacy, removing regulatory uncertainty, and breaking down unnecessary barriers to research collaboration.
Ultimately, Cures is something that can unite us. We have a long way to go to lower Gallup’s 77 percent figure, but if we can’t agree on curing disease, what exactly can we agree on?
Kevin Yoder is a United States Congressman, representing Kansas' 3rd District.
Washington, D.C. – This afternoon, Representative Kevin Yoder (R-KS) spoke on the floor of the House of Representatives about the importance of getting the 21st Century Cures Act signed into law before the 114th Congress adjourns in December. The House has scheduled a vote on the legislation for this evening.
Click here to watch a video of the speech. Following are Rep. Yoder’s remarks, as prepared for delivery:
“Mr. Speaker, I rise today in support of innovation, research, and life-saving cures to diseases that affect every family in every neighborhood of America.
“We are set to begin a new era in Washington soon in January, but we still have the opportunity to accomplish meaningful change before the end of the year.
“We have the opportunity to save lives by getting the 21st Century Cures Act signed into law.
“For example, right now, each year 700,000 people die with Alzheimer’s disease.
“By 2050, estimates are that our country will spend $1.1 trillion to treat patients with Alzheimer’s alone. Yet, we spend just a few hundred million dollars a year on Alzheimer’s research.
“This weekend, 60 Minutes highlighted an NIH-backed Alzheimer’s study and the amazing work researchers are doing to find a cure for this dreadful disease.
“21st Century Cures increases our commitment to studies like these by adding almost $5 billion in new investment for research over the next 10 years.
“Mr. Speaker, if we support 21st Century Cures, we will not only save lives, but our investment will pay for itself one thousand times over.
Overland Park, KS – Representative Kevin Yoder (R-KS) will host an Open House at his District Office next week on Monday, November 21st from 3:30 to 5:00 PM.
Representative Yoder and his staff look forward to visiting with constituents over coffee about the top issues facing Congress through the end of this year and beyond in 2017. Those planning to attend should feel free to come and go as their schedule permits. The event is open to the public.
RSVP’s are not required but are encouraged. If you’re planning to attend, please contact our office at email@example.com or call (913) 621-0832.
WHO: Representative Kevin Yoder
WHAT: Constituent Open House
WHEN: Monday, November 21, 2016
3:30 PM to 5:00 PM
WHERE: Office of Representative Kevin Yoder
7325 W. 79th St.
Overland Park, KS 66204
Washington, DC –The office of Representative Kevin Yoder (R-KS) announced today it will be offering a limited number of tickets to the 2017 Presidential Inauguration to constituents of the Third District. The inauguration ceremony will take place on Friday, January 20, 2017 on the West side of the U.S. Capitol Building.
If constituents coming to DC are interested in requesting tickets, Yoder’s office has provided this online submission form, which must be completed by January 6, 2017.
Those requesting tickets should note that only a limited number are available, and Yoder’s office will not likely be able to fulfill all requests. Tickets will be distributed on a lottery basis, after the submission deadline. If Yoder’s office is unable to fulfill a request, constituents can still view the Inauguration from the National Mall. Additionally, there will also be a parade afterward that will proceed down Pennsylvania Ave, beginning at the U.S. Capitol and ending at the White House.
215 Cannon HOB
Washington, DC 20515
Kevin is a 5th generation Kansan who grew up on a grain and livestock farm in rural Kansas near a town called Yoder. It was on the farm where Kevin learned the true value of hard work and where he saw first-hand the ingenuity and prairie spirit that makes Kansas such a special place.
My full statement on the President's decision to commute the sentence of Private Manning: https://t.co/oLSjxZLHwo
It was an honor to join many community leaders at the 13th Annual MLK Legacy and Scholarship Awards Dinner in OP: https://t.co/HZbubKzfE4
The only way to make true progress is to work together and overcome our differences. Thank you for your example, Dr. King.