Marsha Blackburn

Marsha Blackburn

TENNESSEE's 7th DISTRICT

Blackburn Statement on President Obama’s Nashville Speech on Health Care

2015/07/01

Congressman Marsha Blackburn (TN-7) issued the following statement ahead of President Obama’s speech in Nashville today where he will talk about his health care law:

“While a visit from the President is of great importance, my hope is that President Obama will come not just to talk or lecture, but to listen. As a world leader in health care and hospital management, Tennessee has experienced firsthand the disasters of this President’s unworkable health care law. The President has come to the right place to learn from those who know how to solve the problems that Obamacare has created.

"It is my hope on this visit President Obama talks with more than just the people staged in the room of an elementary school. I encourage the President to visit with the insurance companies who will raise their rates in the individual market
by over 30% this year, the emergency room personnel who tell us they are overrun, the rural hospitals struggling to keep their doors open, and my constituents who were forced onto the exchange only to find the insurance provided, due to high out of pocket costs, is too expensive to use. Solutions to these problems begin with the voices in Nashville, Tennessee, not bureaucrats in Washington, D.C.”

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Blackburn Statement on SCOTUS Marriage Ruling

2015/06/26

Congressman Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) issued the following statement in response to the Supreme Court’s decision on same-sex marriage:
 
“Today's Supreme Court decision is a disappointment. I have always supported traditional marriage. Despite this decision, no one can overrule the truth about what marriage actually is -- a sacred institution between a man and a woman. I have always believed marriage is between one man and one woman and I will continue to work to ensure our religious beliefs are protected and people of faith are not punished for their beliefs.”

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Blackburn Reacts to King v. Burwell Ruling

2015/06/25

Congressman Marsha Blackburn (R-TN), who serves as Vice Chair of the Energy and Commerce Committee, issued the following statement expressing her disappointment with the Supreme Court's decision in King v. Burwell.
 
“While today's Supreme Court ruling in King v. Burwell is extremely disappointing, it does not change the fact that Obamacare is broken and was passed based on a series of deliberately misleading promises,” Blackburn said. “The president’s health care law has led to higher costs with even higher costs coming. The law has failed to provide affordable healthcare to Americans. It is nothing more than a broken promise - an insurance card but not actual health care. The law is fundamentally flawed, and the court’s decision does not change our resolve to repeal it and replace it with patient-centered solutions that will increase access to affordable healthcare for all Americans. Much like TennCare, Obamacare will have to be fixed by the next Administration.”

 

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#FaithitForward: The Story of Tommy Lee, Lesa & Abigail

2015/06/23

 

The Congressional Prayer Caucus launched the ‪#‎FaithItForward‬ initiative today to help highlight and share the positive impact faith has on communities all across the country. Today I'd like to share with you the story of Tommy Lee, Lesa and their daughter Abigail Kidd, a remarkable family from Lawrenceburg, Tennessee. At her 20th week of pregnancy, doctors warned Lesa of life-threatening issues with her baby Abigail. Undeterred, Lesa continued her pregnancy and the family has enjoyed a full and blessed life as influential advocates for people with Down syndrome.

Tommy Lee and Lesa created Abigail’s Plan, a non-profit organization dedicated to raising funds to build a totally rubberized baseball field in Lawrenceburg, the first such effort in Tennessee. Abigail’s Plan has raised over $350,000 to build this field which will be accessible to players with and without disabilities. Money for the field was donated by area churches, banks, Rotary-sponsored races, local businesses, charities and citizens of Lawrence County.

Abigail’s Plan’s next venture is to raise funds for three new playgrounds around Lawrence County which will also be accessible to children with and without disabilities alike.

Tommy Lee serves as Chairman of the Tennessee Council on Developmental Disabilities. The Kidd family was named Lawrence County Citizens of the Year in 2014 and received the Governor’s Volunteer Star Award in 2015. From 2002 through 2007, the family raised over $60,000 for the Middle TN Down Syndrome Association. Tommy Lee, Lesa and Abigail have raised awareness about people with disabilities, both at home in Lawrenceburg and around the region. Thank you for your exemplary work and continued efforts to engage and empower people who have disabilities.
 

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This Week in Washington 6.19

2015/06/19

Friends-

High co-pays, high deductibles, and skyrocketing insurance premiums that you’re facing under Obamacare continue to be the focus of your calls and complaints about the program. This past week I met with some of the insurance providers and we discussed the concerns of the Obamacare mandate –driven rate hikes. Everyone is concerned about what is happening with the cost of insurance. These costs plus the enormous out of pocket expenses present a barrier to health care for you and your family. I’ve been working hard to end that. If you can’t afford your co-pay, deductible, or premium, your insurance card is worthless. The King v. Burwell decision in the Supreme Court will arrive any day now and that decision will provide us an opportunity to undo the damage of the past 5 years and reset the health care access button. In the King v. Burwell case, the Supreme Court will set the date for the subsidies to end. At that point the Obamacare subsidies must end and must not be renewed. Many of you agree - increased access to affordable health care begins with the end of Obamacare subsidies. This week I wrote an op-ed for Fox News discussing the conservative way forward to affordable health care and patient-focused reforms, which you can read here

In other Obamacare news, this week the House passed a bill to repeal the medical device tax. The medical device tax, mandated by Obamacare, requires that a 2.3% excise tax on medical devices such as pacemakers, hospital beds, and artificial joints, be collected at the point of sale. Not only does this tax effect medical device manufacturers – which Tennessee ranks 7th among states for the size of its industry – but it effects Medicare patients, hospitals, and the millions of Americans who depend on these devices. Our country is the world leader in manufacturing life-saving and life-enhancing treatments, employing more than 9,000 workers in Tennessee and contributing more than $5 billion per year to Tennessee’s economy. There is no reason to stifle an industry in which Tennessee is a world-leader. I look forward to making certain we repeal other components of Obamacare and get them off the books for good!

Through multiple studies and congressional hearings, Congress has learned that the Ex-Im Bank, an independent agency charged with backing loans for U.S. companies to do business overseas, has been riddled with waste, fraud, and abuse. The Ex-Im Bank has been loaning taxpayer dollars to countries the United States has sanctions against, and in turn, these countries have spent your hard-earned taxpayer dollars on luxury cars and expensive dinners. The Bank has also had several indictments and convictions against its own employees for fraud and money laundering. The Ex-Im Bank cannot engage in new business without Congressional authorization. Fortunately, that authorization is up at the end of this month and I’m leading the charge to end the Ex-Im Bank, which is, in my opinion, more or less corporate welfare. Watch my video message about it here.

This week marked three years since President Obama first unveiled his Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, more commonly referred to as DACA. DACA has provided deportation deferrals and work permits to illegal aliens, which has served as a magnet to encourage more illegal aliens to cross our Southern border. The President's decision to expand amnesty for over five million unlawful entrants is a gross abuse of power. I’ve been working hard to enforce the rule of law. Earlier this year as part of the Department of Homeland Security funding bill, the House approved my proposal to freeze the DACA program. The House first approved my legislation, which would also prevent President Obama from taking future executive actions to expand amnesty for illegal aliens, back in August of 2014. For more information on DACA and to learn what else I’ve been doing to stop President Obama’s lawless overreach, click here.

Be sure to keep up with all the legislation I’m working on and places I’m going in the district by following my Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram accounts. This weekend I look forward to enjoying time with my family, working in the garden, and visiting friends at the Farmer’s Market. I also want to send Happy Father’s Day wishes to all of the dads and granddads who are reading this e-mail.

I wish you a blessed weekend.                 
                   
Marsha

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Blackburn Supports Effort to Protect Medical Innovation

2015/06/18

Representative Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) voted today for H.R. 160, theProtect Medical Innovation Act of 2015, which repeals the medical device tax mandated by Obamacare. The provision required a 2.3% excise tax on medical devices such as pacemakers, hospital beds, and artificial joints, be collected at the point of sale.

“This legislation will repeal another disastrous Obamacare mandate that costs Tennesseans jobs, stifles innovation, and raises the price of life-saving medical devices. Repealing the medical device tax is imperative to the millions of Americans who use these devices and the thousands employed in the industry. Our country is the world leader in manufacturing life-saving and life-enhancing treatments, employing more than 9,000 workers in Tennessee and contributing more than $5 billion per year to Tennessee’s economy. There is no reason to stifle an industry in which Tennessee is a world-leader,” Blackburn said.  

Tennessee ranks 7th among states for the size of its medical device manufacturing industry with Memphis being the second-largest center in the United States.

“It is past time this provision goes. I look forward to making certain that we repeal other components of Obamacare and get them off the books,” Blackburn said.

To watch Congressman Blackburn’s speech on the House floor supporting H.R. 160, CLICK HERE: http://bit.ly/1IRgf8r


 
 
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Obama's Lawless Amnesty Turns Three

2015/06/17

It has been three years since President Obama first unveiled his Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, more commonly referred to as DACA. DACA has provided deportation deferrals and work permits to illegal aliens, which has served as a magnet to encourage more illegal aliens to cross our Southern border. The President’s decision to expand amnesty for over five million unlawful entrants is a gross abuse of power.

More than 90 million Americans are out of work, so it is unfair to Tennessee families that this President wants to force hard-working taxpayers to compete for jobs with illegal aliens to whom he is unilaterally granting work permits. In addition, what is the President’s response to those immigrants who have been lawfully waiting in line for years to become citizens? Is that consistent with the societal “fairness” of which he so often speaks?

During the first two years of his term, the President had a Democrat super-majority in Congress and did nothing to address this immigration crisis that he now claims is such an emergency that he must go it alone. He kicked the immigration reform can down the road for years and failed to work with Congress on serious solutions to address the problems with our immigration system.

His solution to immigration is to take out his pen and write an executive memo that encourages thousands of illegal aliens to flood our borders through unconstitutional executive actions. DACA is the primary example. President Obama’s actions have effectively nullified the immigration laws of this country and made America an “open borders society” with no rules governing entrance except those announced through royal decree.

Time and time again I’ve said that President Obama’s attempt to re-write our nation’s immigration laws from the oval office has turned every town into a border town and every state into a border state. We must prioritize legal immigration and enforce the rule of law.

Here’s what we’ve been doing about it:

  • Earlier this year, as part of the Department of Homeland Security Funding bill, the House approved my proposal to freeze the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. The House first approved my legislation, which would also prevent President Obama from taking future executive actions to expand amnesty for illegal aliens, on August 1, 2014.
  • Last year I voted in opposition to the House Continuing Resolution, which failed to take the steps necessary to defund President Obama’s executive actions to expand amnesty for illegal aliens.
  • I had the opportunity to visit an unaccompanied alien children (UAC) facility at Fort Sill and also traveled to the southern border where I was briefed by U.S. Border Patrol agents. These visits confirmed what we have known all along -- DACA is the magnet drawing Central American children here.His failure to enforce deportation laws has given children false hope that they can cross the border and remain in America permanently. Many of the Central American children who have come here were abused or injured along the way. Some even had friends who died on the trip. I am disgusted by the fact that these children have become pawns in the President’s political game. We must find a way to humanely re-patriate these children back to their country of origin and secure our border.
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IRS Apologizes to Blackburn

2015/06/16

Congressman Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) today received a letter of apology from Internal Revenue Service (IRS) Commissioner John Koskinen nearly two weeks after being sent a dismissive form letter in response to a Congressional inquiry into the Clinton Foundation’s tax-exempt status.
 
On May 19, 2015, Blackburn was joined by 51 of her House colleagues in sending a letter to IRS Commissioner John Koskinen requesting a review of the Clinton Foundation's tax-exempt status. On June 3, 2015, Blackburn received an unsigned form letter addressed to “Sir or Madam” from the IRS in response to this request.

Blackburn issued the following statement in appreciation of Commissioner Koskinen’s letter of apology:

“We appreciate that Commissioner Koskinen is not letting this issue go ignored. It is appropriate that the IRS has issued an apology and corrected the record. Congressional inquiries are deserving of respect and a certain level of tact, which was glaringly absent in the agency’s initial response.
 
“Members of Congress have an obligation to be responsive to the questions being raised by our constituents regarding these widely reported improprieties. The allegations swirling around the Clinton Foundation are very serious and raise issues of great public importance.  They should be thoroughly vetted and we intend to continue our examination of the Foundation.” 


To read the IRS Letter of Apology, Click Here  Read More

Blackburn Supports Jobs for Tennesseans

2015/06/12

Representative Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) voted today for H.R. 1890, the Bipartisan Congressional Trade Priorities and Accountability Act of 2015.
 
This legislation sets roughly 150 trade objectives that the President and the United States Trade Representative must pursue during trade negotiations, including: the reduction of trade barriers, enhanced United States competitiveness, and small business access to international markets. TPA directs the President to address trade barriers and works to make sure American products have as much access to world markets that foreign products have in American markets.

“Frankly, I support free trade because free trade makes Tennessee’s economy more vibrant. Free trade keeps our neighbors employed and puts food on the family table. Trade-related jobs in our state grew 6.4 times faster than total employment from 2004 to 2013. We all like to talk about our state being above average and leading the way in having employment growth and economic growth and health for our citizens.  Over the past two decades, trade has been an active contributor to our positive stats,” Blackburn said.

Trade accounts for 11.1% of Tennessee’s annual GDP and supports more than 829,000 jobs.  

“Many worry that the trade agreements are being negotiated in secret and that TPA will provide a ‘fast track’ for the President to saddle America with a bad deal. TPA is not about granting power, it is about establishing transparency and oversight. In fact, TPA will give America more time to review any trade agreement the President negotiates. For 60 days after the negotiations are complete, every single American will have access to the text for review. In actuality, TPA creates a ‘slow track,’ so we can pour over every detail of the document and decide if this is what is best for our nation, both today and in the future,” Blackburn said.

To read Congressman Blackburn’s op-ed in The Tennessean, CLICK HERE: http://tnne.ws/1MvBfCa.

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Blackburn: The Facts on TPA

2015/06/11

I have been thoroughly reviewing the language in the full and final Trade Promotion Authority bill, H.R. 1890, over the past several days. I have also read some of the analysis and summaries that different economists have offered. However, like you, I want to read the bills myself.

Many have contacted me with their concerns about Trade Promotion Authority. When traveling around my district, I consistently hear “Congressman, I support free trade, but I just don’t trust this Administration.” You know what? I don’t trust him either, but TPA does not give the President one ounce of authority he isn’t already granted by the Constitution. TPA is not about granting power, it is about establishing transparency and oversight. TPA will allow Congress oversight to make sure President Obama is exercising that authority properly and for the betterment of the United States and the American people.

Here are some of the facts:

FACT #1: TPA is the trade authority process. It does NOT include any trade agreement. What this 114 page bill does is lay out the process that a President must follow to both negotiate and seek approval for a trade agreement. Part of that process is on page 85 of the bill text, requiring the administration to make any trade agreement public and posted online for 60 days before the President can agree to it. That’s also long before Congress actually votes on whether to accept it. Not only will this give Congress oversight, but it gives you all the opportunity to evaluate the proposed trade agreement as well.
 
FACT #2: Once TPA is approved, Congress has the power to stop TPP and other Fast Track Authorities (FTAs). TPA includes new language that the House or Senate can withdraw or override the expedited procedures for trade implementing bills or “fast-track” rules for various reasons if they disapprove. For the first time, the House has a new authority to strip TPA for a particular agreement – even without having to get the Senate to concur. The House maintains full control over whether a trade agreement followed the guidelines and, thus, whether it maintains TPA protections.

FACT #3: A lot of you are under the impression that TPA allows the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) to become a backdoor for President Obama to bypass Congress and expand immigration and climate change. This is simply not true. No law can be implemented via the TPP unless Congress agrees to implement it through a formal vote. Sec. 6 requires all agreements to be made public 60 days before enactment. Pages 92-98 sets a structure to allow Congress to use an off switch to stop a deal.

FACT #4: TPP is still being negotiated and is NOT what Congress is voting on this week. The text of any final TPP deal will be REQUIRED by law to be publicly available online for months before Congress votes on it. TPA actually exists to make trade deals like TPP more transparent and fair. Under TPA President Obama must make TPP available to the public for 60 days before he can agree to it. Then Congress has weeks and potentially months more to study the deal before a final vote. In short, everyone, members of Congress and the American people, will have months to read the deal before a vote.  

FACT #5: Trade affects everyone. TPA is key to securing job-creating trade agreements that allows America to compete in a global economy and helps American workers. Here’s how it affects Tennessee: http://bit.ly/1Gh5f33  

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Blackburn: IG Reports Show Repeated Waste, Fraud & Abuse of Taxpayer Dollars

2015-06-25 17:54:21


Blackburn Works to Level Playing Field for Music Creators

2015-06-24 20:15:00


Blackburn: TPA Allows Congress to Have an On-Off Switch for Trade.

2015-06-18 19:45:26


Blackburn Works to Protect Tennessee Health Care Innovators

2015-06-18 16:33:41


Blackburn Speaks in Support of Effort to Protect Medical Innovation

2015-06-18 15:31:16


Blackburn: IRS Response Shows Little Respect for Members of Congress

2015-06-12 21:45:10


Blackburn Works to Put America Back on Path to Fiscal Health

2015-06-04 14:30:58


Blackburn Offers 1% Cut Amendment to Restore Fiscal Responsibility

2015-06-03 14:55:48


Blackburn Seeks Answers on Takata Airbag Ruptures & Recalls

2015-06-02 21:59:15


Blackburn Voices Strong Support for TVA Energy Innovation

2015-06-02 16:54:35


Blackburn Urges Support for 21st Century Cures

2015-05-20 20:35:32


Blackburn Works to Reduce Debt, Protect Taxpayer Dollars

2015-05-19 21:16:12


Blackburn Wants IRS to Review Clinton Foundation's Tax-Exempt Status

2015-05-15 14:25:05


Blackburn: IRS Must be Held Accountable for Wasted Taxpayer Dollars

2015-05-06 19:22:58


Blackburn Continues Fight to Get Spending Under Control

2015-05-01 06:31:26


Blackburn Leads Fight to Protect American Families from Increased Energy Costs

2015-05-01 06:06:32


Blackburn Joins in Effort to Protect Religious Freedom

2015-05-01 02:56:21


Blackburn Works to Protect Consumers & Manufacturers from Invasive DOE Regulations

2015-05-01 02:18:58


Blackburn Supports Effort to Protect Innovators from Abusive Patent Trolls

2015-04-30 16:10:39


Blackburn Pays Tribute to General Federation of Women’s Clubs

2015-04-23 15:00:17


Contact Information

217 Cannon HOB
Washington, DC 20515
Phone 202-225-2811
Fax 202-225-3004
blackburn.house.gov

Committee Assignments

Budget

Energy and Commerce

Growing up, Marsha Blackburn learned that the promise of our nation depends on each generation of Americans working hard to leave the country a better place than they found it. As a small business woman, author, mother, grandmother, and Member of Congress, Marsha Blackburn has dedicated her service to the sacred obligation all citizens have to their communities: making Tennessee and America a better, more prosperous, and freer place.

Congressman Blackburn began her elected service career in 1998 as a Tennessee State Senator. Blackburn’s Senate career was marked by her commitment to fiscal common sense and government accountability. She became known to her constituents for holding “budget school” in her district and across the state; identifying waste and offering solutions for a state in a budget crunch.

While serving in the Tennessee Senate, Blackburn led a statewide grassroots campaign to defeat a proposed state income tax. She earned the reputation as a champion of anti-tax and government reform issues, frequently appearing on local talk radio and even earning the attention of national publications like the Wall Street Journal and conservative groups such as Americans for Tax Reform.

Blackburn’s reputation for focusing on individual freedom and free enterprise boosted her from the Tennessee Senate to the U.S. House of Representatives. Blackburn was first elected to represent Tennessee’s 7th Congressional District in 2002, quickly becoming a leader in Congress and a leading voice advocating for a small, efficient federal government that is accountable to its citizens. She is regularly praised by good government groups like the National Federation of Independent Businesses, the Farm Bureau, the Chamber of Commerce, the Small Business and Entrepreneurship Council and the American Conservative Union. She has been named a Taxpayer Hero by Americans for Tax Reform each year she has served in Congress. In 2007 Blackburn received the Conservative Leadership Award from the Clare Boothe Luce Policy Institute.

Congressman Blackburn is often selected by her colleagues to lead the charge for common sense reform. In February 2010 she was selected to represent conservative views on health care reform at the President’s Blair House Summit. She has served on the majority and minority whip teams since her election in 2002, and holds a seat on the vital Energy and Commerce Committee which has jurisdiction over health care, energy regulation, and telecommunications issues. In 2006 the Independent Electrical Contractors recognized her as their Lawmaker of the Year.

Marsha has earned a special reputation as a bi-partisan leader and policy expert on telecommunications issues and intellectual property rights. She has strong ties with Tennessee’s recording industry and the songwriters and performers who make it great. In 2003 Blackburn founded and serves as Chairman of the Congressional Songwriters Caucus to give the nation’s creative community a voice on Capitol Hill. In 2007, she was awarded the Congressional Grammy by the Recording Academy; the White Hat award from the Nashville Songwriters Association and in 2008 received the Platinum Award from the RIAA.

In 2012, Health IT Now presented her with the HITN Innovation Award for her work in support of innovative solutions to our most pressing healthcare problems. Marsha has also been honored by the Family Research Council and the Susan B. Anthony list for her pro-life, pro-family work. And recognized by the Association of Children’s Hospitals and the American College of Radiology for her leadership on healthcare issues. In April 2013 at the “Women Run The World” Half Marathon in New York City, More Magazine recognized Blackburn for her service in government by honoring her as one of 10 women who are making a difference in the world.

Blackburn was selected to serve as Vice Chair of the House Energy and Commerce Committee for the 113th Congress where she will continue to serve on four critical Subcommittees: Commerce, Manufacturing, and Trade (CMT); Oversight; Health; and Communications and Technology. She serves on the House Budget Committee and is a founding member of the Republican Women’s Policy Committee. Blackburn is also a member of the Smithsonian Libraries Advisory Board.

Marsha and her husband Chuck live in Williamson County, Tennessee. They have two children, Mary Morgan Ketchel and Chad Blackburn; and two grandsons. Blackburn is a native of Laurel, Mississippi and graduate of Mississippi State University.

 


Serving With

Phil Roe

TENNESSEE's 1st DISTRICT

John Duncan

TENNESSEE's 2nd DISTRICT

Chuck Fleischmann

TENNESSEE's 3rd DISTRICT

Scott DesJarlais

TENNESSEE's 4th DISTRICT

Diane Black

TENNESSEE's 6th DISTRICT

Stephen Fincher

TENNESSEE's 8th DISTRICT

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