Ranking second in America for completed apprenticeships for the second year in a row, Missouri is leading the way and showing the rest of the country how beneficial apprenticeships can be. Apprenticeships are a win-win for companies and workers. Employers are able to train and invest in skilled professionals and workers are able to receive on-the-job training while also receiving a paycheck.
Here in Missouri, apprenticeships are available for over 70 different occupations in high growth industries like health care, manufacturing, technology and transportation. Local partners like GM of Wentzville, Ozark Electric Co-Op, National Association of Insurance Professionals, and University of Missouri Health Care have utilized apprenticeships to create opportunities for local workers to attain new skills and new jobs. And across the country, major companies like Sears, Hertz, Walmart and CVS Health have recognized the value of apprenticeships and now rely on them for attracting hardworking Americans who are looking to expand their skillset.
This week, I introduced a bill that would help maintain apprenticeship standards implemented by the Trump Administration. Under President Trump’s leadership, the Department of Labor has established the “Industry Recognized Apprenticeship Program” (IRAP) which recognizes high-quality apprenticeship programs that fall under the Department’s Standard Recognition Entity (SRE). IRAPs provide individuals with opportunities to obtain workplace-relevant knowledge and progressively advancing skills. They include both a paid-work and educational component. With 3,388 completed apprenticeships in the 2020 fiscal year and over 13,560 active apprenticeships, Missouri is setting an example for the rest of the country. Because of Missouri’s significant progress with apprenticeships, we are just one of four states in America to be recognized as an SRE. Hardworking Missourians and apprenticeship partners are finding great success with this program and my legislation would ensure that success continues. It would also allow Americans across the country the same, extremely worthwhile apprenticeship opportunities.
After a trying economic year, apprenticeships are an incredible way to kickstart local economies and help keep small businesses afloat. Our labor market continues to rebound, but not everyone has been able to go back to work, unfortunately. Apprenticeships are a great way for anyone seeking a job to quickly get back into the workforce and start earning a paycheck to support their families. For anyone who would like more information on starting an apprenticeship or partners seeking apprentices, please visit jobs.mo.gov. I am confident that Missouri will keep leading the charge in apprenticeships and am thankful for the partners and apprentices who continue to rejuvenate our economy.Read More
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Congressman Blaine Luetkemeyer (MO-03) released the following statement regarding an announcement from the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) regarding their “Fair Access Rule.”
“For years I have been fighting the harmful Obama-era initiative, ‘Operation Choke Point.’ Today’s announcement from the OCC gets America another step closer to putting it completely behind us. Operation Choke Point sought to eliminate legally operating American businesses only because they did not fit within the Obama Administration’s political ideals. The Fair Access Rule will ensure all legal American companies have full and fair access to financial services and the economic freedom they deserve.”
Background: In 2019, the House passed Congressman Luetkemeyer’s legislation to end Operation Choke Point, the Financial Institution Customer Protection Act, by an overwhelmingly bipartisan vote of 395-2. For full text of the Financial Institution Customer Protection Act, please click here.Read More
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, House Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy announced Congressman Blaine Luetkemeyer (MO-03) has been chosen to serve as a conferee on the House-Senate Conference Committee for the 2021 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA).
“Reauthorizing the NDAA is one of Congress’ most important jobs each year. It is critical that we ensure the brave men and women of America’s military have everything they could possibly need to continue defending this country. As a member of the House Financial Services Committee, one of my main priorities is to enhance our nation’s defense against illicit finance and money laundering in order to maintain America’s financial security. I am honored to have been chosen and look forward to getting to work.”
On Congressman Luetkemeyer’s selection, Leader McCarthy said, “Blaine is a patriot whose love of country and understanding of our national security threats make him a natural choice to help get this critical defense bill signed into law. Through his time in Congress, he has distinguished himself as an effective and results-driven leader who puts the priorities of his constituents above all else. His broad experience will help bring a unique perspective to the NDAA process that will help deliver an outcome that our service members both need and deserve.”Read More
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Yesterday, Congressman Blaine Luetkemeyer (MO-03) introduced the Modernizing America’s Apprenticeships Act to codify the Trump Administration’s Industry Recognized Apprenticeship Program (IRAP) rule. IRAPs are high-quality apprenticeship programs that fall under the Department of Labor’s Standards Recognition Entity. They provide individuals with opportunities to obtain workplace-relevant knowledge and progressively advancing skills and include both a paid-work and educational component.
“Ranking second in the nation in completed apprenticeships for the second year in a row, Missouri continues to be a prime example of how successful IRAPs can be. The Modernizing America’s Apprenticeships Act would make it possible for Americans across the country to enjoy this same success. Following a trying economic year, investing in apprenticeships is a great way to help our local economies rebound and keep small businesses afloat.”Read More
Just recently while in Franklin County, I passed by the Specialist Jeffrey L. White, Jr. Post Office in Pacific. Like many of you who live near that area, I’ve been by that building countless times. It’s a fine building and a good post office with great postal workers. But the name of post office always catches my attention and serves as a sobering reminder of one of the many Missouri veterans who made the ultimate sacrifice for our country. Like so many before him and too many since, Specialist White gave his life in defense of this nation while serving in the U.S. military. I was proud to pass the bill to rename the post office in his honor, but much more importantly I am eternally grateful for his sacrifice and the service of all our veterans.
Missouri is home to over 400,000 veterans. This week, we celebrated Veterans Day and the millions of brave men and women who have dedicated their lives to keeping this country safe and preserving the freedoms we enjoy each and every day. You’ll be hard pressed to find a veteran who is looking for a thank you; the same mentality that led them to serve often prevents them from seeking any credit. That is the reason Veterans Day and making a point to thank veterans is so important. It is also the reason I continue to support and advocate for legislation that provides our veterans the services they have earned and most certainly deserve. In a year that has limited access to VA hospitals and many veterans, due to their service, are a part of our high-risk population, increased services and support are more important than ever.
One of the most enjoyable initiatives my office leads every year is our “Valentines for Veterans” program. Each year, we ask classrooms across the Third District to create valentines for the veterans in our community to let them know we’re thinking about them and thankful for their service. We have received and delivered tens of thousands of valentines over the years. Receiving encouraging notes from children and adults alike at our office is always heartwarming and a great reminder of how kind and caring our community really is.
Most importantly, my job is to be a resource to veterans looking for help. We are able to help with a wide array of issues like pension, survivor, life insurance, and education benefits. We are also able to help with issues dealing with the VA, from problems getting proper care to helping obtain documentation. The Missouri Department of Public Safety Veterans Commission is also a great resource for getting help with things like benefits, connecting with your local military community and enrolling in VA health care. These and more helpful resources can be found on their website, mvc.dps.mo.gov.
Missouri veterans have given so much for this country. Veterans Day is a reminder of that, but every day is a good opportunity to honor the incredible men and women who are currently serving our country, retired from duty, the souls we have lost, and the families they left at home. This week and every week, we thank you for protecting our country and for keeping us free.Read More
This week, I was extremely honored to be re-elected to serve the people of Missouri’s Third Congressional District. My family has called this area home for generations, and it is a great privilege to continue representing you in Congress. I do not take this privilege lightly and pledge to do everything in my power to maintain Missouri values and advance our priorities in Washington, D.C.
Through the end of the year and into 2021, Congress will continue fighting the coronavirus and supporting the ongoing economic rebound. As a member of the Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Crisis, I assure you we will continue working hard to put our economy in the best position possible, get students back to full time in-person learning, seek the latest advancements in health care and ensure businesses have the tools they need to make a full recovery from the shutdown.
Those and other national priorities will and should get the majority of our attention. But my job is to make sure Missouri is represented in those efforts and our specific priorities receive the attention they deserve in Congress. I will continue my efforts to improve our roads, bridges and waterways to ensure Missourians and the products we sell travel safely and efficiently. Equally important is our digital infrastructure. Access to broadband is more important than ever – especially following the pandemic and distance learning. And while flooding season was a little bit more merciful this year than last, improved flood protection for all Missourians, especially farmers, is always at the top of my priority list.
As a member of the House Financial Services Committee, the financial recovery and ensuring government policies do not harm that rebound is my focus. During the 2008 financial crisis, government regulations actually mandated that financial institutions close lines of credit and literally forced small businesses into bankruptcy. I am spearheading legislation to ensure that does not happen again. Outside of recovery, updating our data security laws; reforming the flood insurance program so Missourians are no longer subsidizing coastal states; and giving every person access to the financial system will be my goals. Whether it’s a home mortgage, retirement savings, a checking account, or just a small loan to get through until the next pay period, every American needs financial services which is the reason the committee is so impactful.
Serving you and your families in Congress has been and will continue to be the honor of my lifetime. This was not my first election, but the feeling of being elected to serve Third District constituents in the United States Congress never becomes less humbling. I am extraordinarily grateful for the faith and trust you have put in me and am excited to get back to work for Missourians here in the Third District and on Capitol Hill.Read More
For two and a half years, my Democratic colleagues put America through a fruitless, politically motivated investigation of President Trump and his family. Rather than accepting the results of the 2016 election, moving on, and serving the constituents who elected them, they jammed the legislative gears of Congress with “investigations” and impeachment proceedings in a four-year plan to displace the President.
Speaker Pelosi and Congressional Democrats have been searching for ways to overturn the results of the 2016 election since the day President Trump was sworn in. They have searched for evidence that the President illegally used his position for financial gain and insist any success his family has ever had, going back decades, is somehow tied to the Presidency. They turned the House Intelligence Committee and even the House Financial Services Committee into investigative tasks forces and abandoned all committee responsibilities. After the Mueller investigation produced absolutely no evidence of impropriety, Speaker Pelosi desperately threw a Hail Mary and began impeachment proceedings. Months of Congress’ time and resources -- not to mention millions of taxpayer dollars -- went into their impeachment attempt that came up fruitless and actually exonerated the President of any wrongdoing. And while House and Senate Democrats were solely focused on impeachment proceedings and incessantly going through the Administration’s every move with a fine-tooth comb, issues that actually affected American lives were completely overlooked, the biggest being COVID-19 which was spreading rapidly and taking lives throughout Asia and Europe.
Fast forward six months and we may finally have the evidence of money laundering and impropriety the Democrats were looking for. It’s just like they said: massive amounts of money from Eastern Europe and Asia were being illegally sent into the United States to influence the very top of the United States government. Family members were making millions off their connections to the White House and middlemen were allegedly used to cover the tracks. House investigators may have finally caught the break they’ve been seeking for nearly four years. Of course, none of this evidence has anything to do with President Trump but points squarely at former Vice President Joe Biden and his son Hunter.
In light of the allegations and evidence of the former Vice President’s and his son’s suspicious activity with foreign governments, earlier this week I officially called on the House Financial Services Committee and the Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence to open an investigation. On Thursday I led a letter with eleven of my colleagues to Chairman Schiff and Chairwoman Waters urging them to take immediate action. These committees have stopped at nothing to find fault with the President under the guise of “oversight” and dismissed all suggestions of political motivation. If oversight is truly what they are seeking, they now have the chance to prove it to the American people by looking into the Biden family’s potentially illegal behavior and ridding the country of the notion that their nonstop investigations into the Trump family was a politically driven witch hunt.
Regardless of what happens Tuesday, the former Vice President of the United States and his family have been implicated in some very unsavory activity and America deserves an explanation. If Financial Services Chairwoman Maxine Waters and Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff are to be taken seriously as anything other than partisans with zero regard for the committees they lead and the people they represent, they will immediately open an investigation into these very serious accusations.Read More
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Congressman Blaine Luetkemeyer (MO-03) was joined by eleven of his colleagues in sending a letter urging House Financial Services Chairwoman Maxine Waters and Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence Chairman Adam Schiff to investigate potential money laundering involving foreign governments and the Biden family. Excerpts and the link to the full letter can be found below.
“Because you have dedicated the majority of your respective committees’ time and resources to investigating administrations, which you claim is neither partisan nor political in nature, you have a duty to the members of the committees and the American People we represent to investigate Former Vice President Joe Biden and Hunter Biden’s alleged connections to companies in China and Ukraine.”
“Further, allegations that a deal between Hunter Biden and the Chinese energy conglomerate CEFC China Energy Co included, ‘10 held by H for the big guy’ suggests the Vice President was receiving payments directly from a foreign country. The Vice President’s knowledge of the alleged arrangement should be a focus of the investigation.”
“If your Committees truly are committed to investigating money laundering, an FBI probe centered around money laundering involving foreign governments and high-ranking American officials must be a top priority.”
The full letter can be found HERE.Read More
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Congressman Blaine Luetkemeyer (MO-03) released a statement following the Senate’s vote to confirm President Trump’s nominee for the United States Supreme Court, Judge Amy Coney Barrett.
“President Trump has made another outstanding choice to serve this country and defend conservative values on the United States Supreme Court. Judge Amy Coney Barret is an extremely well-qualified nominee who is widely known for her brilliant legal mind and fidelity to the Constitution. I am pleased she has received a swift and fair confirmation in the Senate and am confident she will be an exemplary addition to our nation’s highest court.”
Small businesses are the perfect example of the notion that with hard work, resourcefulness and an entrepreneurial spirit, anything is possible in America. They have always played a unique role in our local economy and have been a major source of jobs in our communities. Just like all of us, this year has been extremely difficult for small businesses. But these entrepreneurs have gotten creative and figured out ways to keep their doors open in the face of adversity. From restaurant owners driving meals to homes themselves to fulfill orders, to creating a home office in the kitchen while simultaneously teaching their children school, small business owners have gone to exceptional lengths to stay afloat and keep their employees in a position to support their families. It has been incredible to witness their fighting spirit and that is why this year especially, I am proud to be named a Guardian of Small Business by the National Federation of Independent Business.
While it has unfortunately not been possible to save every small business from shuttering, the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) has been able to keep millions of businesses afloat. Since the PPP began accepting applications in April, more than 4.9 million loans that supported over 51 million American jobs have been approved. That’s 51 million Americans who would otherwise be forced onto unemployment or unable to make ends meet. While the overwhelming majority of feedback we’ve heard from businesses who have received PPP loans has been positive, no government program is perfect. In the case of PPP, the biggest need for improvement is in the loan forgiveness process.
Recently, I wrote a letter to the Treasury Department and Small Business Administration urging them to simplify the loan forgiveness process for the smaller businesses who received Paycheck Protection Program loans up to $150,000, which represents 87 percent of all PPP recipients. These loans played a critical role in helping them stay afloat in the precarious economic climate, but the forgiveness process has proved burdensome and expensive in some cases. Some estimates indicate the current forgiveness reporting requirements will cost $2,000-$4,000 for each business, requiring 20 -100 hours to complete – time and money that should be spent on business sustainability and growth. It is so important that we streamline the forgiveness process so that these businesses can make up for lost revenue and get back to serving their communities.
The PPP has been able to help millions of small businesses continue operations, but many of them are still suffering from months of losses earlier this year. There is still $138 billion in unused funds that has already been allocated to the PPP, but just this week Senate Democrats unanimously blocked a bill that would give small businesses access to this funding. I am confident we are on that path to full recovery, but in the meantime please continue supporting your local restaurants, coffee shops, florists, barbers and hardware stores. While I am proud to have been named a Guardian of Small Business, it is important to remember that small businesses have been the real guardians of our jobs, economic success, and the economic freedom throughout our great history.Read More
2230 Rayburn HOB
Washington, DC 20515
As the Congressman from the 3rd Congressional District of Missouri, Blaine is committed to representing the interests of the hard-working people by being a strong voice for them in Washington, D.C.
Representing the 13 counties that make up the 3rd Congressional District of Missouri, Blaine is a native of St. Elizabeth, Mo. He has lived in the district with his family for four generations and he operates a 160-acre farm there.
Along with his strong agriculture background, Blaine was also a small businessman, having been in the banking and insurance business. He has also served as a bank regulator for the state of Missouri earlier in his career.
From 1999 to 2005, Blaine was a Missouri State Representative and served as Chairman of the Financial Services Committee and was elected by his colleagues to serve as the House Republican Caucus Chairman. After leaving office, he was appointed by Gov. Matt Blunt to serve as the Director of the Missouri Division of Tourism.
Blaine was first elected to Congress in November 2008, and was re-elected in 2010, 2012, 2014, and 2016.
In the 115th Congress, Blaine serves as a member of the House Financial Services Committee and as Chairman of Financial Institutions and Consumer Credit Subcommittee. In addition, Blaine serves as vice chairman of the House Small Business Committee.
In the 113th Congress, Blaine was ranked Missouri’s most effective lawmaker. The Legislative Effectiveness Project, run by professors at the University of Virginia and Vanderbilt University, measures how successful a given representative is at getting things done. The average score for any given member in the 113th Congress was 1.0. Blaine received a 2.344.
Blaine is a member of the Knights of Columbus, Eldon Chamber of Commerce, Missouri Farm Bureau, National Rifle Association and a lifelong member of St. Lawrence Catholic Church. He is a graduate of Lincoln University in Jefferson City, Mo., where he earned a degree with distinction in political science and a minor in business administration.
Blaine and his wife, Jackie, have three children and six grandchildren.
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Ranking 2nd in America for completed apprenticeships for the 2nd year in a row, MO is showing the rest of the count… https://t.co/SoOveZhX80
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Reauthorizing NDAA is one of Congress’ most important jobs each year. I am honored to have been chosen to be a co… https://t.co/5JjbDJB6AH
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Reminder for Missouri non-filers who haven’t received an EIP payment - the registration deadline has been extended… https://t.co/MxDrHFEci1