WHO DO YOU KNOW THAT’S LARGER THAN LIFE? The 3rd Annual "Paul Bunyan Service Above Self" Award recognizes a resident of the 7th Congressional District of Wisconsin who is “larger-than-life.” The award serves as a way to thank an individual who went above and beyond to serve their community and improve the quality of life for those around them. Nominations are open to anyone in the 7th Congressional District. We will again have both an adult division and a youth division for all nominees under the age of 18.
Click HERE to visit the nomination page. Nominations must be in by June 14!
HOLDING THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT ACCOUNTABLE: Millions of Americans have suffered due to the housing crisis of 2008. That’s why it’s wrong that the Obama Administration took steps to use settlements with banks to support a slush fund for liberal activist groups- rather than focusing on broader economic problems. I recently chaired a subcommittee hearing investigating these shady slush funds. Click below to view my opening statement from the hearing.
Have a wonderful week,
WASHINGTON D.C. – U.S. Representative Sean Duffy (WI-07) and Committee on Natural Resources Chairman Rob Bishop (UT-1) today introduced H.R. 5278, the Puerto Rico Oversight, Management, and Economic Stability Act (PROMESA).
Puerto Rico has over $118 billion of debt in the form of bonds and unfunded pension liabilities. Because its debt has spiraled out of control, the American territory has cut public utilities, closed schools and hospitals, and skipped large payments on its debt.
PROMESA sets Puerto Rico on a path of fiscal responsibility and economic growth by instituting the following reforms:
Congressman Duffy Made the Following Statement on PROMESA:
“Years of disastrous polices have completely wrecked Puerto Rico’s economy. As a result, the island and its millions of American citizens face a humanitarian crisis. That’s why we must allow for a responsible restructuring for Puerto Rico’s debt, and do it without using Wisconsin taxpayer dollars for a bailout.”
Chairman Bishop Made the Following Statement on PROMESA
“Tonight we introduced legislation to responsibly address the crisis in Puerto Rico. The revised bill incorporates technical refinements and input from all stakeholders. Provisions addressing the appointment of the Oversight Board are still being refined and will be addressed through regular order.”
More Background on the Puerto Rico Debt Crisis:
Puerto Rico, a territory of the United States, faces a fiscal and economic crisis that is the result of decades of fiscal mismanagement. The island’s state-run economy is hopelessly inefficient; the government has amassed over $118 billion in debt in the form of bonds and unfunded pension liabilities and has not produced audited financial statements for two years. Puerto Rico has already defaulted on portions of its debt, including $422 million on May 2, 2016.
On July 1, the Island is likely to default on an additional $2 billion in debt obligations, including $800 million of constitutionally backed debt, which poses serious economic and humanitarian consequences. The Puerto Rican government recently enacted a debt payment moratorium, authorizing the Puerto Rican Governor to unilaterally suspend payments on its debt obligations, including the Island’s general obligation debt – a de-facto default.
Large-scale default poses grave consequences for millions of Americans, including investors in Puerto Rico and the mainland. Without broad government and economic reform, Puerto Rico runs the risk of future calls for a financial bailout.
Watch: Congressman Duffy Recent Interviews About The Puerto Rico Debt Crisis
CNBC: “Power Lunch”
CNN: “The Situation Room”
MSNBC: “MSNBC Live with Jose Diaz-Balart”
To View A Summary of the bill, click HERE.
Once again, the young artists in our district showed us that we have incredible talent right here in our part of Wisconsin.
A panel of judges have selected four finalists (I will reveal the winner on Thursday, May 5 in a Google hangout with the finalists' classes).
But now, it's YOUR turn to vote. The People's Choice Award is your opportunity to recognize an additional young artist from our community. Check out the entire album of entrees on our Facebook page and vote for your favorite by 5PM Central on Friday, May 6. Click below to see a preview of all the artwork.
ACADEMY DAY: For the first time since being elected to Congress, I am bringing one of Wisconsin’s “Academy Days’” to the 7th District. It is open to any high school student who may be interested in attending one of our nation’s distinguished military service academies.
I am committed to giving students the opportunity to learn more about becoming one of this generation’s leaders by attending one of the United States Service Academies! To be accepted to a service academy, a student must obtain a nomination from a United States Congressional Representative, a United States Senator, or Vice President of the United States. Due to the limited number of openings at the academies and the large pool of applicants who want to attend the academies you will want to attend this informational session to be well prepared for the nomination process. Take a look at the flyer below for full event details.
MARATHON COUNTY TOWN HALL: On Monday, May 2, I will host a town hall meeting in Marathon County to hear your concerns and take your questions. Click below to view the meeting location on Google Maps.
WHEN: Monday, May 2. 5:00PM - 6:00 PM
WHERE: Northcentral Technical College Auditorium - Campus Drive, Wausau 54401
FIDUCIARY RULE: I spoke out against the Obama Administration’s proposed fiduciary rule on the House floor this past Thursday. The rule, proposed by the Department of Labor, would expand the definition of the definition of “fiduciary,” which raises concerns that individuals could lose access to trusted financial advisors, raise the cost of receiving advice, and lead to fewer small business offering retirement plans. It would particularly hurt low and middle-income people. Click below to watch my remarks.
One more thing before you go...
In an effort to keep you informed on the issues you've told me you're concerned about, I've started a "Voices" newsletter series. I'll send periodic updates on the specific issues listed in this link. Please check any that you'd like to receive:
Rep. Sean Duffy Blasts Obama Administration’s Proposed Fiduciary Rule
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Representative Sean Duffy (WI-07) spoke out against the Obama Administration’s proposed fiduciary rule on the House floor Thursday. The rule, proposed by the Department of Labor, would amend the definition of “fiduciary” under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) of 1974 and the Internal Revenue Code.
The proposed rule would expand the definition of the definition of “fiduciary,” which raises concerns that individuals could lose access to trusted financial advisors, raise the cost of receiving advice, and lead to fewer small business offering retirement plans.
Rep. Duffy said that the proposed rule, if enacted, would “hurt middle-income and lower-income individuals,” by preventing them from accessing affordable financial planning advice.
To watch Rep. Duffy’s full remarks, click here.
WAUSAU, WI – U.S. Representative Sean Duffy (WI-07) will bring one of Wisconsin’s “Academy Days” to the 7th District on Saturday, May 7, 2016. Rep. Duffy will co-host this event with the offices of Senators Ron Johnson and Tammy Baldwin.
Interested high school students, teachers, and parents will be able to meet representatives from the U.S. Coast Guard Academy, U.S. Air Force Academy, U.S. Merchant Marine Academy, U.S. Military Academy at West Point, and U.S. Naval Academy.
Full details below:
Media availability with Congressman Sean Duffy at the 7th District’s Academy Day.
Saturday, May 7, 2016
Congressman Sean Duffy will deliver remarks around 9:30AM then will be available to the media afterwards.
Newman Catholic High School
1130 West Bridge Street, Wausau, WI (Exit 193)
For press inquiries, please contact:
As we continue to learn more about the shooting at Antigo High School on Saturday night, one thing is certain: thank God for the quick response from the police officers on the scene.
My own daughter attended her high school prom last weekend. This is every parent’s worst nightmare and a horribly traumatic experience for the students and teachers at the dance.
I am grateful as ever to the men and women in our police force who prepare forthese kind of unexpected tragedies and risk their own lives everyday to keep us safe. Our heroic police officers and first responders saved an untold number of lives last night.
Rachel, our kids and I pray for the emotional healing of the Antigo community and for the full recovery of the injured. Our hearts go out to the families of all involved in this senseless crime.
In other news…
Why are they not investigating this? During a hearing of the Select Panel on Infant Lives, four of the six witnesses – three of them former U.S. Attorneys -- agreed that it is absolutely incredible that The United States Department of Justice is not investigating fetal tissue being sold for profit. Click on the image below to watch my exchange with the witnesses:
Let’s hangout: Taking questions from some of my younger constituents is always a highlight of my day. However, representing a district that spans 18,000 square miles makes it difficult to get to all of their classrooms in person. Thankfully, through the magic of technology, “Google hangouts” have become a great tool to help me reach as many 7th district students as possible. Last week, I hosted a “hangout” with a group of AP students from Medford Area High School. They are always prepared with a wide-range of great questions, which makes for a great conversation. Click on the image to watch a short clip of me discussing internship opportunities with the students:
PROMESA showing promise: We are continuing to work on a solution for Puerto Rico’s debt crisis that does NOT involve a taxpayer-funded bailout. I believe Wall Street hedge funds that made these risky investments should be paying for their own bailout, NOT the taxpayers. The list of Conservative organizations that agree with this approach is growing: take a look. For more about the PROMESA bill, click here.
I will continue to keep you posted on the progress of this bill, and please keep me posted on the issues that mean the most to you as well. Until next week…
Have a great week,
Sean DuffyRead More
When asked by Rep. Duffy if this warranted an investigation by the Department of Justice, four of the panel witnesses, including three former U.S. Attorneys responded, “yes”. Click on the image to watch the exchange:
To watch Rep. Duffy’s full questions, click here.
The following is courtesy of the office of the Speaker of the House:
This week, many conservative groups came out supporting H.R. 4900, the Puerto Rico Oversight, Management, and Economic Stability Act (PROMESA), introduced by Rep. Duffy and developed by the Committee on Natural Resources. While work on the legislation continues, these groups understand the core bill represents a principled, responsible solution to the fiscal crisis in Puerto Rico.
1) It protects American taxpayers from bailing out Puerto Rico.
2) It brings order to what will be debt-restructuring chaos if Congress does not act.
3) It gives the territory a chance to make conservative, limited government reforms.
One priority the groups reiterated over and over again is that this legislation is Congress’s best tool to avoid a taxpayer bailout of Puerto Rico.
Americans for Tax Reform: PROMESA Contains No Bailout
“If nothing is done the situation will get worse for all stakeholders. Over the next year, Puerto Rico must make $3.5 billion in debt payments that is has no way of paying. As early as next month, 11 government entities will begin defaulting one by one. Because it is unclear which debt is first in line, the ensuing lawsuits will result in chaos. Not only will Puerto Rico lose out, but creditors will lose out because they will not be paid what they are owed. The alternative is the House bill which creates a strong oversight board to manage Puerto Rico’s fiscal crisis. The Oversight Board is clearly the better outcome – it will maximize creditor recovery because they will get little or nothing from Puerto Rico if the island has defaulted. . .
“PROMESA contains no federal bailout and does not leave taxpayers on the hook. Despite accusations that this taxpayers and savers are bailing out Puerto Rico, the legislation has zero federal budgetary impact.
In fact, even expenses for setting up and operating the Oversight Board will come from Puerto Rico, not federal taxpayers. Any suggestions that this legislation contains a bailout are completely false.”
National Review: The Puerto Rico Debt Bill Is a Good Start
“House Republicans are advancing legislation that makes some progress on these issues. It would allow debts to be restructured, albeit using a convoluted process that it pretends does not amount to an extension of bankruptcy protections to the island. It would create a control board for the island, of the type that brought order to the finances of Washington, D.C., in the 1990s. And it would reduce the minimum wage within Puerto Rico. . .
“Conservatives should work to strengthen the bill, but they should also keep in mind that a perfect bill will not get President Obama’s signature, and the imperative here should be to enact a law that reduces the likelihood of a bailout. The House Republican bill does that.”
Council for Citizens Against Government Waste: Supports Bill Which Thwarts a Taxpayer Bailout of Puerto Rico
“This legislation creates an essential mechanism to thwart a taxpayer bailout of Puerto Rico’s fiscal failures. . . The legislation provides reforms that will allow the territory to fulfill its debt obligations responsibly and efficiently. It will also help the citizens of Puerto Rico prosper from a growing economy. The bill is designed to address problems related solely to Puerto Rico and will not have any impact on existing bankruptcy provisions that govern states or their municipalities.
“The structure of the oversight board is based on the precedent established in 1996, when Congress set up a financial control board to oversee the fiscal affairs of the government of the District of Columbia as well as the control board set up for New York City in 1975. PROMESA is not a bailout, despite misleading advertisements to the contrary. Indeed, without the enactment of H.R. 4900, taxpayers will inevitably be forced to bailout Puerto Rico in the near future.”
Americans for Limited Government: Puerto Rico Bill Necessary to Protect Taxpayers
“The United States finds itself in a difficult position in relation to the Puerto Rican debt crisis. Speaker Paul Ryan, House Natural Resources Committee Chairman Rob Bishop and Financial Services Subcommittee Chairman Sean Duffy have put together a thoughtful approach to protect the U.S. taxpayers by imposing a tested mechanism for getting the territory’s finances under control and by creating a controlled environment for restructuring Puerto Rico’s unsustainable $72 billion of debt that will keep taxpayers off the hook.
“There is a successful history of Congress imposing financial controls in the past with the most recent example being the successful effort in the District of Columbia to pull the nation’s capital back from the brink of insolvency. Protecting taxpayers is job one of this legislation . . . any attempt to weaken the power of the imposed financial control board to restructure Puerto Rico’s $72 billion debt must be a deal breaker.
R Street Institute: Time for Congress to Act on Puerto Rico
“The first alternative available is to deal with many hard decisions and many necessary reforms in a controlled fashion. The second is to have an uncontrolled crisis of cascading defaults in a territory of the United States. Congress needs to choose the controlled outcome by creating a strong emergency financial control board for Puerto Rico—and to do it now. This is the oversight board provided for in the bill currently before the House Natural Resources Committee. The bill further defines a process to restructure the Puerto Rican government’s massive debts, which undoubtedly will be required.
“Some opponents of the bill, in a blatant misrepresentation, have been calling it a “bailout” to generate popular opposition. To paraphrase Patrick Henry, these people may cry: Bailout! Bailout! …but there is no bailout. Enacting this bill is the first step to get under control a vast financial mess, the result of many years of over borrowing, over lending and financial and fiscal mismanagement.”
Speaker Ryan has made it crystal clear that House Republicans’ number one priority is to shield American taxpayers from a bailout of Puerto Rico. This legislation is the way to do that.
For the first time since being elected to Congress, I am very excited to announce that I will be bringing one of Wisconsin’s “Academy Days’” to the 7th District. Senators Ron Johnson and Tammy Baldwin will join me to host this great event. It is open to any high school student who may be interested in attending one of our nation’s distinguished military service academies.
I am committed to giving students the opportunity to learn more about becoming one of this generation’s leaders by attending one of the United States Service Academies! To be accepted to a service academy, a student must obtain a nomination from a United States Congressional Representative, a United States Senator, or Vice President of the United States. Due to the limited number of openings at the academies and the large pool of applicants who want to attend the academies your students will want to attend this informational session to be well prepared for the nomination process. Take a look at the flyer below for full event details.
In Other News…
PROMESA: The three and a half million Americans living in the U.S. territory of Puerto Rico deserve the attention and support of Congress. After decades of mismanagement, Puerto Rico’s investors also deserve better. A protracted and chaotic legal battle would not serve the interest of creditors or the island. Worse would be a mutli-billion dollar taxpayer bailout thrust on the shoulders of America’s taxpayers and retirees. The PROMESA Act will ensure that the island meets its debt obligations in a controlled, responsible manner, without saddling the U.S. taxpayers with the bill. If we get this right, we have an opportunity to put the people of Puerto Rico on a path to economic opportunity. However, if we do nothing, the American people will be on the hook. Watch this excerpt from my conversation on the topic with CNBC’s “Power Lunch:
On a personal note: It has been eighteen years since Rachel and I met and crisscrossed the globe for the adventure of a lifetime on “Road Rules”. Joining us on that trip was a great Christian man from Kentucky who would become one of our lifelong friend, Jon Brennan, known to friends and fans as “Cowboy Jon”. Since our time on the show, Jon has spent much of his time doing missionary work in Uganda, among other places. Currently, he is taking twenty-two talented Ugandan young people on the trip of their lifetimes. The Sozo Children’s Choir is on a three-month tour of the United States. This week, they stopped in Washington D.C. for a concert and a tour of the U.S. Capitol – and they gave me the chance to reunite with my friend and meet these incredible young people.
I hope you and yours have been able to get out and enjoy this wonderful weather! Until next week…
Have a great week,
Washington, D.C. - Today, the House Committee on Natural Resources released H.R. 4900, the “Puerto Rico Oversight, Management, and Economic Stability Act (PROMESA).” Committee Chairman Rob Bishop (R-UT) and bill sponsor Rep. Sean Duffy (R-WI) issued the following statements:
“We are nearing the conclusion of a collaborative and open drafting process that has involved all stakeholders to reach a responsible consensus.
“This package of reforms will restore the guardrails of freedom and self-governance in Puerto Rico. It will hold Puerto Rico accountable to its debt, uncover audited financial statements, enforce fiscal responsibility and cut red tape holding down the Island’s economy. It provides tools to redirect Puerto Rico from a path of destitution towards a path of prosperity, preserving freedom and opportunity for the next generation.
“This is the constitutionally-sound solution that will provide real, long-lasting reform to the Commonwealth while respecting the rights of all parties and creditors. It is the Island’s best shot to mitigate its financial collapse and future calls for a bailout, which would be untenable. Congress must act now to avoid a humanitarian crisis that will severely impact 3.5 million Americans living in Puerto Rico and millions of Americans on the mainland,” Chairman Bishop said.
“The three and a half million Americans living in the U.S. territory deserve the attention and support of Congress. After decades of mismanagement, Puerto Rico’s investors also deserve better. A protracted and chaotic legal battle would not serve the interest of creditors or the island. Worse would be a mutli-billion dollar taxpayer bailout thrust on the shoulders of America’s taxpayers and retirees. The PROMESA Act will ensure that the island meets its debt obligations in a controlled, responsible manner, without saddling the U.S. taxpayers with the bill. If we get this right, we have an opportunity to put the people of Puerto Rico on a path to economic opportunity. However, if we do nothing, the American people will be on the hook,” Rep. Duffy said.
Click HERE to view the bill.
1208 Longworth HOB
Washington, DC 20515
Congressman Sean Duffy was born and raised in Hayward, Wisconsin. His great, great grandfather was one of the state’s early pioneers and a laborer for the Northwestern Lumber Company. His great grandfather, one of Hayward’s founding settlers, was a sawyer for 27 years.
Congressman Duffy has never strayed far from his roots, becoming a nationally recognized professional lumberjack athlete. He is a two-time world champion in the 90-foot speed climb, three-time champion in the 60-foot and an accomplished log-roller. Sean has been a color commentator for ESPN’s Great Outdoor Games, as well as a Badger State Games Honorary Athlete and takes pride in bringing national attention to a sport with vital roots in Wisconsin’s proud history.
The tenth of eleven siblings, Congressman Duffy worked his way through law school by performing in lumberjack shows and exhibitions across the state of Wisconsin and around the country. After graduating from law school he practiced law for two years in Hayward before becoming a special prosecutor in Ashland, Wisconsin. Shortly thereafter, he became the acting assistant D.A, and later the District Attorney of Ashland County. He is most proud of his dedication to prosecuting child sex crimes. Working together with law enforcement, Congressman Duffy helped make Ashland County one of the first counties in the state to investigate and prosecute child Internet sex crimes.
Congressman Duffy met his wife Rachel Campos-Duffy, an Arizona native, through the MTV show, “The Real World,” Together, they are the proud parents of six children: Evita, Jack, Lucia-Belen, John-Paul, Paloma, and MariaVictoria.
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It was an honor to speak at the Wausau Memorial Day Ceremony today. We must always remember both the sacrifice that our men and women in uniform
Who do YOU know in our community that is larger than life? Nominate someone TODAY for the 3rd annual Paul Bunyan #ServiceAboveSelf Award! The
Great article highlighting the work of a Marshfield group, Sweet Dreams, that helps kids in need #WIWednesday http://www.marshfieldnewsherald.com/story/news/2016/05/23/sweet-dreams-collection-helps-156-kids/84652904/
Lots going on these days! Sign up for our newsletter for a quick update every week. Check it out here and sign up today! https://duffy.house.gov/media-center/enewsletters/who-do-you-know-thats-larger-than-life
Check out a new op-ed I wrote with Chairman Rob Bishop in National Review on how we can fix Puerto Rico's debt crisis and prevent a taxpayer