Rob Woodall

Rob Woodall

GEORGIA's 7th DISTRICT

Washington Watch - 5/20/19

2019/05/20

HOUSE DEMOCRATIC LEADERSHIP DERAILS BIPARTISAN DRUG PRICING LEGISLATION

As many of you know, lawmakers have worked on both sides of Capitol Hill since the beginning of this year to advance solutions aimed at curtailing skyrocketing prescription drug costs – costs that too many of our friends and neighbors grapple with daily. The good news is that my colleagues on the House Energy and Commerce Committee passed a number of bills back in April to thwart the anti-competitive behavior that increased prices. Unfortunately, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Democratic Leaders chose last week to allow partisan politics to undermine those bipartisan successes that could have delivered solutions to hundreds of thousands of Americans who desperately need relief from costly prescription drugs. Rather than allow the consensus solutions package to move forward, the House Leadership added partisan bills to the package—bills to spend more money on the Affordable Care Act’s failing Navigator program, bills to roll-back the Trump Administration’s expansion of health plan choice, and bills to prohibit states like Georgia from implementing locally-based health solutions. 

While those added bills further the partisan Democratic message of “Washington knows best,” they do a disservice to American taxpayers. The added provisions seek to limit consumer choice while increasing spending on expired and failing programs. For that reason, I supported an amendment in the Rules Committee co-sponsored by Rep. Buddy Carter (R-GA) that sought to eliminate all of the toxic progressive provisions so that we could move forward with pushing the drug pricing solution bills towards the finish line.  I succeeded in passing the amendment out of the Rules Committee, but the Democratic leadership defeated it on the House floor, dooming the passage of the bipartisan drug pricing bills.  While I am certainly frustrated by the Democrats decision to unnecessarily stall good policy making in the name of partisan politics, you can be sure that I remain committed to finding a way to move bipartisan solutions forward to drive drug costs down for all Americans.

 

REP. WOODALL: CONGRESS NEEDS TO PASS A BIPARTISAN INFRASTRUCTURE DEAL

During Infrastructure Week, I spoke to both local and national media about the importance of rebuilding our nation’s crumbling transportation systems. In the Atlanta Journal Constitution, I published an op-ed about why I believe our nation should follow Georgia’s lead on infrastructure. I spoke about why the federal government should partner with state and local officials to efficiently use taxpayer money as well as raise awareness about the areas where both Democrats and Republicans agree. So many people are not optimistic about the future. We can get this done.

Click on the images below to hear why Congress needs to make targeted investments in our communities nationwide.

 

ENSURING SOLVENCY OF THE SOCIAL SECURITY PROGRAM

The most recent projection released by the Social Security Board of Trustees showed that the program will be forced to dip into the trust fund to cover the shortfall beginning in 2020, and will deplete the fund in 15 years, forcing a cut in benefits to Social Security recipients should we fail to institute further financing measures. It is not an exaggeration to say that we are approaching a crisis. That is why I was pleased when House Budget Committee Chairman John Yarmouth (D-KY) held a hearing entitled “Keeping Our Promise to America’s Seniors: Retirement Security in the 21st Century,” where Members were able to have a productive conversation with our witnesses about pathways forward for increasing the stability of the Social Security program. We found consensus regarding how vital it is to preserve the program, especially for the most vulnerable among us who have limitations on our ability to save for retirement outside Social Security.  On a bipartisan basis, we agreed that there is zero appetite for a short-term solution to prop up Social Security, and a strong shared desire to see a comprehensive solution that will increase the lifespan for this program for future generations.

 

OFFERING A BIPARTISAN SOLUTION FOR INTERNATIONAL ADOPTEES

For decades, federal law required American families who adopted children from abroad to go through a lengthy additional process to gain United States citizenship for their adopted children. Unfortunately, many families didn’t know about this extra step. They assumed that because they were U.S. citizens and because the government approved the adoption that the child was automatically given citizenship. So many families were caught in that trap that eventually this law was changed so that since 2001, all children adopted by U.S. families are given a certificate of citizenship automatically with their adoption visa. However, the law only applied to adoptees who were still under the age of 18 in 2000; it did not apply retroactively to those adoptees who faced the same dilemma but had aged into adulthood before the law took effect. This has resulted in tens of thousands of adoptees still lacking U.S. citizenship today, many of which didn’t know they lacked citizenship until well into their adulthood.

To fix this oversight, I have partnered with Representative Adam Smith (D-WA) to introduce the “Adoptee Citizenship Act,” to help the many American families still facing this serious problem.  This is a bipartisan, common-sense solution, and I am hopeful we will be able to get this bill to the President’s desk before the end of this Congress.

Watch my interview with KTN Atlanta regarding the “Adoptee Citizenship Act” by clicking the picture below.

 

CONSTITUENT SPOTLIGHT: CRAFTING SCIENCE-BASED POLICIES

Often, many of our debates in Congress focus on what is the appropriate role of government in our daily lives. How large or small a role should the Federal government have in the economy? Should there be a Federal curriculum standard? Or, where can the Federal government be the most appropriate leader? When it comes to the Federal government ensuring the safety and welfare of the American people, however, whether that is from “enemies foreign or domestic” or from hazards we may unknowingly experience in our everyday lives, we all agree that there is certainly a federal role to be played. An example that I hear about regularly is how we can protect human health, specifically relating to the use of pesticides.

Michael from Cumming:

I am writing today as a Farm Bureau member and constituent. I would like to bring two recent reviews of glyphosate done by EPA and Health Canada to your attention. Both regulatory agencies reaffirmed that the herbicide poses no risk to public health and is not likely to be carcinogenic, echoing the more than 40 regulatory agencies world-wide, that made the same determination.

I urge you to continue to support science-based regulation of pesticides by EPA and to support the foundation of pesticide law, the Federal Insecticide Fungicide and Rodenticide Act. Please oppose legislation that bans or restricts pesticide tools that protect our health, safety and sustainability.

Kathy from Suwanee:

Monsanto’s cancer-linked weed killer shouldn’t be anywhere near our food. But tests by EWG have already revealed shockingly high levels of glyphosate in popular oat-based cereals. Glyphosate is the most commonly used pesticide in the U.S., and it’s been linked to serious health risks like cancer. But right now, glyphosate is excluded from the routine pesticide monitoring conducted by the USDA. Americans have a right to know if we’re eating Monsanto’s cancer-linked weed killer. I urge you to support the Keep Food Safe from Glyphosate Act of 2019, introduced by Rep. Rosa DeLauro (D-Conn.).  

This bill would require the USDA to include glyphosate in its annual pesticide residue testing. It would also dramatically reduce the levels of glyphosate allowed on oats and ban the unnecessary use of glyphosate as a pre-harvest desiccant on oats. Experts agree this use is a major cause of glyphosate contamination in oat-based foods, like Cheerios and Quaker Oats.

Please vote YES on the Keep Food Safe from Glyphosate Act of 2019 and stand up for the health of all Americans.


I absolutely share both Michael and Kathy’s desire to preserve our environment and protect human health.  And even though they disagree on the policy outcome, both agree that facts and research—rather than political ideology—should drive how we craft America’s science policy.

Glyphosate is the most widely used herbicide in U.S. agriculture and has been studied for decades.  Glyphosate is used on more than 100 food crops and a number of non-agricultural products to protect crops and aid in greater production. As Michael mentioned, EPA recently announced that the federally required periodic review of glyphosate is underway and reaffirmed that glyphosate is noncarcinogenic and poses no risk to public health when used as directed. This is similar to the findings of the European Union, Canada, Japan, Australia, and New Zealand. While the EPA’s regular registration review process for glyphosate—which happens with all pesticides at least every 15 years—is not over, I trust the scientists involved and the process.  America has no problem banning dangerous chemicals nor any reluctance to rescind a certification if new science comes to light.  Public confidence in our regulatory agencies requires that the agency is strong enough to rely on sound science no matter which way or how hard the winds of public opinion are blowing.

 

RECOGNIZING ACADEMIC EXCELLENCE IN FORSYTH COUNTY

Even the most farsighted observers could not have predicted the advancements we have made in robotics and applied technologies in the past decade, and I am proud to serve as Chair of the bipartisan Congressional Robotics Caucus, along with Representative Mike Doyle (D-PA), to see how our work here in Congress can propel those technologies forward. Equally important is the role that our youngest generations will play in bringing these new technologies to fruition and deploying their usage in new ways. That is why it is so inspiring to see young folks, particularly in our community, excel in this field, and I want to congratulate two Forsyth County elementary students, Landon and Nathan, for receiving the STEM Research Award at the VEX IQ Robotics World Championship! Not many of us can say we carry the title of ‘World Champion’, but for Landon and Nathan, they are certainly worthy of that distinction. I know we are all proud of their work to increase response times for our first responders and emergency personnel.

 

HONORING OUR LAW ENFORCEMENT AND SERVICEMEN AND WOMEN DURING NATIONAL POLICE WEEK

This past week was National Police Week, and I hope you will join me in honoring those heroes who have lost their lives in the line of duty along with recognizing those men and women who, each and every day, answer the most noble of callings to serve and protect our communities.

The debt we owe our men and women in uniform, and our servicemen and women, can never be repaid, but there are certainly ways we can aid their transition from our Armed Forces to civilian life. We are fortunate to have a multitude of companies and organizations in our state committed to going the extra mile to hire and serve our veterans, and in fact, the Gwinnett County Sheriff’s Department is working to expand employment opportunities for veterans after their service. Gwinnett County Sheriff Butch Conway recently partnered with the U.S. Army through its Partnership for Youth Success (PaYS) Program which works with the public sector and private companies to provide job interviews and potential employment to soldiers after completing their first term of enlistment and reservists completing their basic training and job training. You can read more about that partnership below, and while it is important we pay tribute to the sacrifice and service of all our law enforcement during National Police Week, I hope we continue to show that appreciation every day.

 

THE WEEK AHEAD

As I’ve been saying seemingly week in and week out, the House is gearing up again to move another deeply partisan bill; one which could have brought us together had the House Democrat majority decided that policy was more important than politics. That bill is H.R. 1500, and while it proports to reform the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), it’s really another attempt by House Democrats to change the rules in the middle of the game because they don’t like President Trump. When the Dodd-Frank Act was first passed, Republicans warned that the CFPB was given too much power and was too independent of Congressional oversight. Democrats rejected those concerns when President Obama was in charge of the CFPB, but now that President Trump is in charge, House Democrats seem to have seen the light. H.R. 1500 is an attempt to stop President Trump from being able to use the same powers President Obama did. That may be good partisan politics, but it’s certainly not good public policy.

The good news is that the House Ways and Means Committee is eschewing that kind of rank partisanship at the moment and is bringing a bipartisan retirement savings bill to the floor. H.R. 1994 expands opportunities for hard-working American families to increase their retirement savings and improve the portability of retirement savings vehicles. We all know how important it is for Americans to save for their own retirement, especially given the growing stress on the Social Security trust funds. I’m pleased that we’re having this bipartisan conversation, and I congratulate the leaders of the Ways and Means Committee for taking this bold step forward. I hope that as this bill comes to the House floor, it will retain its bipartisan consensus.  

Sincerely,

Rob Woodall

Member of Congress

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Representatives Woodall and Smith Introduce Bipartisan Legislation to Improve International Adoption

2019/05/14

WASHINGTON, DC – Today, U.S. Representatives Rob Woodall (R-GA) and Adam Smith (D-WA) introduced the Adoptee Citizenship Act of 2019, which provides a much-needed fix to the Child Citizenship Act of 2000.

Families who adopted children from abroad were previously required to go through a lengthy and costly process to naturalize and gain United States citizenship for their adopted children. The Child Citizenship Act of 2000 eliminated the need for adoptive families to apply to naturalize their newly-adopted children. However, the Child Citizenship Act of 2000 only applied to adoptees who were under the age of 18 when it was enacted; it did not apply retroactively to those adoptees who faced the same dilemma but aged into adulthood before the law took effect.

Representatives Woodall and Smith’s legislation would correct this problem by providing automatic citizenship to foreign-born children lawfully adopted by American families who turned 18 years old before the effective date of the Child Citizenship Act of 2000.

“It is estimated that between 25,000 and 49,000 children adopted to the U.S. between 1945 and 1998 lack U.S. citizenship. Most of them did not become aware of their lack of citizenship until well into their adulthood,” said Congressman Woodall. “The Korean American community is home to tens of thousands of adoptees that lack eligibility for U.S. citizenship despite their legal entry and life-long residency here. Our legislation will provide a solution to close this loophole and grant the adoptees the right to citizenship they deserve." 

“I am proud to introduce the bipartisan Adoptee Citizenship Act of 2019 to help achieve the vision of the original Child Citizenship Act of 2000, which sought to ensure that adopted children and biological children are treated equally under U.S. law. By closing an existing loophole in the Child Citizenship Act, this bill will extend citizenship to thousands of foreign born adoptive children who have joined their forever families here in the United States," said Congressman Smith. "Unfortunately, not all adoptees were able to benefit from the Child Citizenship Act when it originally passed, as it was limited to apply only to minors age 18 and under. Adopted individuals should not be treated as second class citizens just because they happened to be the wrong age when the Child Citizenship Act became law.”

"We thank Congressman Woodall for supporting the Adoptee Citizenship Act of 2019 as an original co-sponsor. The continued bipartisan support for this issue is a testament to its humanitarian nature. Due to a bureaucratic loophole, tens of thousands of intercountry adoptees who were promised a home here in the United States decades ago have been left hanging,” said Wonseok Song, Executive Director of the Korean American Grassroots Conference. “Thanks to Congressman Woodall's compassion and collaboration across the aisle, we are one huge step closer to addressing the problem. The Korean American community is home to the greatest number of impacted adoptees, and KAGC along with its partner organizations is committed to shedding a light on this critical, yet overlooked issue."

"Passing the Adoptee Citizenship Act of 2019 will establish equality among adoptees and their families, prevent deportation, and promote economic stability. Citizenship recognition also fosters emotional healing for transracial adoptees who are not accepted as Americans,” said Joy Alessi, Program Director for the Adoptee Rights Campaign. “A proud partner of the Korean American Grassroots Conference, the Adoptee Rights Campaign thanks Representative Rob Woodall for his leadership of this important legislation."

Congressman Woodall represents the Seventh Congressional District of Georgia, which includes significant portions of Forsyth and Gwinnett counties. He currently serves on the Rules Committee, the Transportation & Infrastructure Committee, and the Budget Committee.

 

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Washington Watch - 5/13/19

2019/05/13

HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY

I hope everyone had a Happy Mother’s Day! Yesterday, we celebrated the unconditional love my mom and mothers throughout the world have for their children. Mothers come in many forms -- birth mothers, step mothers, adoptive mothers, godmothers, and those special women in our lives who have stepped-up to act like a mother and guide us through life.  I’d like to thank my mom and every Georgia mom who is a guiding light for their family.

 

REP. WOODALL IN AJC OP-ED: LOOK TO GEORGIA’S SUCCESS AS A MODEL FOR INFRASTRUCTURE REFORM

This week, community leaders, stakeholders, and policy experts from around the country are gathering in Washington, D.C., for the 2019 Infrastructure Week to discuss innovative solutions in the name of improving our nation’s infrastructure systems – which includes roads, bridges, ports, railroads, and airports – and to ensure that these systems can meet the demands of today’s users and future generations. As I’ve previously shared, one my favorite things about working on the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee is that most of the policy decisions that come out the Committee tend to do so in a bipartisan manner, and the good news is that I cannot find a single lawmaker who doesn’t want to craft solutions that will make smart, targeted investments in communities across the country.

In fact, I recently highlighted in an Atlanta Journal-Constitution opinion piece how our great state of Georgia serves as a model for transportation reform, and I believe it is critical for lawmakers to examine the successes of their respective states and then work to follow their lead. I look forward to doing just that as Congress begins examining our critical infrastructure systems, and I hope you’ll take the time to read my opinion piece in the AJC and to share your thoughts with me.

 

REP. WOODALL: “ENDING THIS BORDER CRISIS IS GOING TO SAVE CHILDREN”

I had the pleasure of appearing on “Making Money” hosted by Fox Business’ Charles Payne.

As elected representatives, it’s our job to bring people together to move America forward, and we can. President Trump said in his State of the Union address that he wants to preside over the highest level of legal immigration in history. We can all agree that immigration built America and that immigration is the key to growing America for generations to come, but we should also be able to agree that violating immigration law is wrong. Click on the image below to watch our full interview.

From the Cannon Rotunda, Rep. Woodall discusses the ongoing crisis at the border

 

INCREASING ACCESSIBILITY IN THE LEGISLATIVE PROCESS

I had the pleasure of ending last week with a hearing in the House Select Committee on the Modernization of Congress entitled “Opening Up the Process: Recommendations for Making Legislative Information More Transparent.” Our witness panel included Deputy Clerk for the U.S. House of Representatives Mr. Robert Reeves, leader of Demand Progress Mr. Daniel Schuman, founder of GovTrack.us Dr. Joshua Tauberer, and University of Maryland professor Dr. Frances Lee. Much of the hearing was focused on how technology can aid both Members and constituents in learning about and understanding legislation being considered, and Committee is focused on that goal.  Dr. Lee spoke about how transparency misapplied is used by special interests to exploit and manipulate the legislative process.  The Committee is also committed to curbing those unintended consequences.  Universally, our witnesses observed that the 24-hour news cycle and a camera in every committee room and every back pocket has led to an explosion of “messaging speeches” at the expense of “collaborative discussion,” and our witnesses observed that this was never the intended goal.  I spoke to Dr. Tauberer and Mr. Schuman about ways we can bridge transparency and productivity while maintaining the integrity of the legislative process. If you would like to see our exchange, click the photo below.

On the bipartisan Modernization Committee, Rep. Woodall seeks answers on the benefits of making legislative information more accessible

 

CONSTITUENT SPOTLIGHT: NEGOTIATING A BETTER DEAL WITH CHINA

Despite several rounds of negotiations, the United States and China remain in a trade dispute. The most recent chapter in this trade war was this past Friday when talks between our two countries broke down without a deal, and in response President Trump raised tariffs from 10 percent to 25 percent on $200 billion worth of goods from China and has instructed our trade officials to prepare $300 billion more. In retaliation, China raised tariffs on more U.S. good this morning. Residents in Forsyth and Gwinnett counties have written to me both in support and opposition to the Administration’s tariffs:

Ivan from Lawrenceville:

America's steel and aluminum industries are under attack from unfairly traded imports. President Trump took action after the Commerce Department's nearly 11-month investigation found that surging imports threatened to impair our economic and national security.

Communities across America are hurting and key defense industrial base capabilities are at risk. Traditional trade measures are not up to the task and years of global talks have accomplished little but empty promises. We need bold action to support American steel and aluminum.

I'm asking you to stand with steel and aluminum workers, and oppose any legislation that undermines the Section 232 tariffs that are a critical step to restoring sanity to global markets and putting our world-class manufacturers on a level playing field.

From David from Cumming:

Who knows what will happen on this trade deal. "If" the President's self-imposed trade war fails I am AGAINST any bailouts for U.S. farmers or any other impacted industry. The President built this mess and he can fix it. Taxpayers do not. If the President doesn't fix it he will be judged in the 2020 election. Any bailout would be nothing more than a political move to gain votes. That is totally unacceptable and corrupt. Thank you for your time.


According to reports, our response came after China failed to live up to its previous commitments to put in place laws ensuring intellectual property rights, stopping forced technology transfers, and reducing the subsidies that give Chinese businesses an unfair advantage.  While there is no future date set to continue negotiations, both President Trump and Chinese officials have expressed their optimism that a deal will happen. No deal is better than a bad deal, whether that is with North Korea and nuclear weapons or with China on trade. For far too long, China has been allowed to break the rules of international trade and take advantage of companies around the globe. A fair deal is in the best interest of both of our economies, and I am confident that we will find that middle ground.

Undeniably, America companies and America workers are hurt by a trade war, and they are also hurt by China’s unilateral breech of intellectual property laws and its industry subsidies.  As we work to curb the abuses—not just on behalf of America but on behalf of the world with encouragement from trade negotiators across the globe— pleasure know that short-term pain for our farmers, business owners, and manufacturers will hopefully give way to long-term economic gains from a more fair trade policy.

 

CELEBRATING NATIONAL SMALL BUSINESS WEEK

The important role local industry plays in fostering a vibrant, prosperous community is undeniable, and every time I meet with these industry leaders at home and on Capitol Hill, I can assure you they don’t take that responsibility lightly. Each and every business is critical to the success of our Seventh District community, and we are so fortunate to have a multitude of small businesses, manufacturers, non-profits, and more who are excelling in their respective fields.

The Gwinnett Chamber of Commerce recently recognized some of these organizations for their outstanding contributions and service to our state across several industries, including agriculture, education, engineering, healthcare, hospitality, and information technology. The 2019 Overall IMPACT Regional Business Award was presented to Jacobs, a design firm located in the metro-Atlanta area, and you can read more about this year’s winners by clicking the link below.

 

RECOGNIZING STUDENT ACHIEVEMENT IN OUR COMMUNITY

With this school year drawing to a close and graduation for the Gwinnett and Forsyth class of 2019 fast approaching, it is important that we continue to uplift our students and recognize their success, as our community would not be what it is without their efforts. Joining those individuals just recently recognized for outstanding achievement are two Forsyth County students. In case you missed it, Mason Sheffield, a senior at North Forsyth High School, received top honors at Georgia FFA’s Agricultural Proficiency Awards for his extensive work with eastern hemlock tree conservation. He will move on to compete at the national competition in Indianapolis this fall.  Hannah Lee, who is a junior at Lambert, was selected to join National Youth Orchestra as one of its featured oboists. She is one of roughly 100 students nationwide selected for this honor, and one of three in our state.  The orchestra is set to perform at Carnegie Hall and across Europe this summer. These are certainly remarkable achievements, and should you come across more exciting stories in our community, I hope you will share those with me.

 

THE WEEK AHEAD

This week the House will consider a number of highly controversial bills, including H.R. 5 and H.R. 987, which will unfortunately deepen partisan divides in the House and be dead on arrival in the Senate. These measures—like so many before them in 2019—are being brought to the floor for the purpose of creating election sound-bites instead of creating public policy.  I keep saying it because it’s true: I’m disappointed that House Democratic Leadership is continuing to pursue a far-left partisan political agenda instead of working together with the Senate, the White House, and House Republicans to bring solutions to the American people.  I don’t expect the Democratic majority to write the same bill that I would, but I do expect it work toward solutions.  To solve a problem, a bill must pass the House, pass the Senate, and be signed by the President.  Anything that fails that test is just a messaging exercise.  I know it to be true that America has a long list of shared problems that we could be solving together.  Just last week at the Rules Committee I talked with my friends at the Energy and Commerce Committee about the problems of balance billing and high deductibles for out-of-network emergency room coverage – two issues that I know we have common ground on – but instead of moving those bipartisan fixes, we’re once again going to focus on divisiveness. I know that we can do better, and I will continue asking my colleagues to join me in getting things done for families across America.

Sincerely,

Rob Woodall

Member of Congress

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Washington Watch - 5/6/19

2019/05/06

HISTORIC JOB NUMBERS DRIVING THE ECONOMY

By any assessment, economists’ projections of 190,000 jobs added and a 3.8% jobless rate for April are positive, but according to the latest jobs report, our economy preformed even better than those expectations. We added 263,000 jobs in April and dropped our unemployment rate to 3.6%, the lowest it’s been since 1969! Wages also grew last month, bringing the average hourly earnings to $27.77.

While the new House majority hasn’t yet focused on much more than partisan messaging bills, America continues to reap the benefits of the economic policies passed by President Trump and the last Congress.  The new majority in House of Representatives can continue the positive economic legacy of the past few years.  President Obama and numerous Republican Congresses were able to work together, and I know that Nancy Pelosi and Donald Trump can do the same.  There are Members on both sides of the aisle who are driven to find solutions, and I look forward to working with them to further strengthen our nation.

 

REP. WOODALL WARNS  “MEDICARE FOR ALL” MISLEADS AMERICA

Last week, the House Committee on Rules held the House’s first legislative hearing on H.R. 1384, the “Medicare for All Act of 2019.” The Rules Committee is a unique committee in the U.S. House of Representatives because it is usually the final destination before legislation advances to the House floor for a vote.  The Speaker of the House is able to direct each movement of this one committee, so for the Rules Committee to hold the very first legislative hearing on “Medicare for All” indicates that government-run health care is the Democratic Party's highest priority in the 116th Congress.

At the hearing, House Republicans revealed that “Medicare for All” puts Medicare as we know it at risk.  It is “Medicare” in name only.  It requires at least $10,000 per person tax increases per year; it outlaws employer sponsored insurance, which would take policies away from 150 million Americans; and it eliminates Medicare Advantage, which serves millions of America’s seniors. Click on the image below to watch my interaction with the panel.

Rep. Woodall joined his colleagues in raising concerns about a one-size-fits-all, government-run health care system

Health care solutions are only possible when Republicans and Democrats work together to tackle the complex issues that affect our communities. We need to remember that there is more that unites America than divides us. I went on Varney & Co. to discuss how Republicans are committed to strengthening Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid. You can watch our full interview by clicking on the image below. 

 

GEORGIA DELEGATION JOINS CONGRESSMAN WOODALL IN HOSTING GWINNETT CHAMBER OF COMMERCE

Last week, I welcomed the Gwinnett Chamber of Commerce to our nation’s capital for its annual advocacy trip.

On Wednesday, I arranged for the Gwinnett Chamber to visit the White House, and meet with Kevin Hassett, Chairman of the White House Council of Economic Advisers. At their meeting, Chairman Hassett explained how President Trump is committed to cutting burdensome government regulations that stifle job creation and innovation and how that will bolster businesses in Georgia.

Rep. Woodall and the Gwinnett Chamber on the steps of the Dwight D. Eisenhower Executive Office Building

On Thursday, the Gwinnett Chamber met with Senator Isakson, Senator Perdue, and Congressman Hice to discuss how health care, transportation, and education all contribute to a strong business environment in Georgia’s Seventh Congressional District and throughout the state.

The Gwinnett Chamber of Commerce meets with Senators Isakson and Perdue

Representative Hice speaks to the Gwinnett Chamber

Later in the day, I introduced the Gwinnett Chamber to Ben Gilbert, a Senior Cybersecurity Adviser for the Department of Homeland Security, who talked about how cyber threats are increasing every day and how the federal government is addressing this security challenge to prevent hacking and letting personal information fall into the wrong hands.

Ben Gilbert addresses the Gwinnett Chamber of Commerce

 

BIPARTISAN CONGRESSIONAL REFORM COMMITTEE HOLDS HEARING

I’ve said in the past that if you really want to know how to reform places like the Pentagon, don’t ask someone who works there now; ask someone who left just yesterday! The same could be said about the House of Representatives, and that’s why we held a former Members day hearing at the Select Committee on the Modernization of Congress. We were fortunate enough to have before the Select Committee former Representatives Tom Davis, Vic Fazio, Martin Frost, Reid Ribble, Tim Roemer, and Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, who combined have over a century’s worth of experience in this institution. They spoke to us about everything ranging from structuring the Congressional calendar and committee assignments to staff retention and technological upgrades. I had a chance to speak with them about how we got to the place we are and the different proposals that could be achieved this Congress to reverse some of the negative trends we’ve seen over the years.

 

CONSTITUENT SPOTLIGHT: THE PARIS CLIMATE AGREEMENT

As you all may be aware, on June 1, 2017, President Trump announced the United States would not adhere to the requirements set by the Paris Climate Agreement. However, the U.S. could not technically withdraw before November 4, 2020, according to the terms of the accord, which is 5 years after enactment of the Agreement. The focus of last week’s legislative activity in the Capitol was a bill called H.R. 9, the “Climate Action Now Act,” to reverse that action. This bill would prohibit President Trump from taking any action to withdraw the United States from the “Paris Agreement,” and would direct the President to develop a plan for the United States to meet the emission targets agreed to by President Obama. Constituents have written to me both in support and opposition to the bill:

Earl from Buford:

The Climate Action Now Act would ensure that the United States meets its commitment to cut global warming pollution by at least 26 percent by 2032 as part of the international Paris Climate Agreement. The science of global warming is clear -- we have no time to spare, and the stakes could not be higher. We must ratchet down carbon pollution from the burning of fossil fuels as soon as possible.

I urge you to vote for the Climate Action Now Act - H.R. 9.

Kate from Suwanee:

I am writing to urge you to vote “no” on the Climate Action Now Act (H.R. 9). The Climate Action Now act stops President Trump from completing the U.S.'s withdrawal from the Paris Climate Agreement by prohibiting federal funds from being used to do so. This bill also includes language forcing the President to create a plan for how the U.S. will meet the strenuous and unrealistic pollution reduction goals agreed to in the Paris Agreement by President Obama. On top of costing the country $3 trillion, it also will significantly reduce employment.

Please vote in the best interest of the American economy and oppose H.R. 9.


Despite my opposition, H.R. 9 passed the House by a vote of 231 to 190.  I am a member of the bipartisan Climate Solutions Caucus. This bipartisan group of legislators is dedicated to finding viable solutions to our climate problems without sacrificing American prosperity and innovation. That goal is exactly why I believe H.R. 9 was the wrong path forward on combatting climate issues.

Specifically, H.R. 9 requires a plan to cut greenhouse gas emissions by 26%-28% below 2005 levels by 2025 and confirmation that other parties to the agreement with major economies are fulfilling their announced contributions. However, estimates from the Heritage Foundation say that pursuing such a plan would result in an overall average shortfall of nearly 400,000 jobs; an average manufacturing shortfall of over 200,000 jobs; a total income loss of more than $20,000 for a family of four; an aggregate gross domestic product (GDP) loss of over $2.5 trillion; and increases in household electricity expenditures between 13% and 20%. This negative hit to our economy sacrifices our prosperity.

The United States is already leading the world in reducing greenhouse gas emissions, and that’s without us being part of the Paris Agreement. In fact, according to the International Energy Agency, the United States’ emissions remain around the same level today as they were in 1990 (14% below their peak in 2000), making it the largest absolute decline among all countries. Last year, an EPA report found that the combined emissions of the six main kinds of pollutants decreased by 73%, even as the U.S. economy grew substantially over the past nearly 50 years. Without the Paris Agreement, the U.S. is doing a tremendous job addressing climate change.  

Then why not re-join the Agreement and do even better? Because the Agreement isn’t binding and the rest of the world isn’t really committed to it. The reality is that the vast majority of signatories of the Paris Agreement are off-target in meeting their emissions goals. In fact, countries like China, India, and Russia have increased greenhouse gas emissions even though they’re signatories to the Agreement. Together, China and India accounted for nearly half of the increase in global carbon emissions in 2017 according to BP’s Statistical Review of World Energy. The fact is, even if the United States and the rest of the developed world cut their carbon dioxide emissions to zero, it would still not offset the emissions from China, India, and the developing world. The non-binding Paris Agreement does nothing to bring a reduction in emissions to the countries where it matters most. We can continue to reduce our emissions and advancing clean energy technologies without subjecting ourselves to plans that disadvantage our country, economy, and citizens. I am committed to pursuing those effective paths forward.

 

U.S. NEWS AND WORLD REPORT LISTS SEVENTH DISTRICT SCHOOLS AS TOP SCHOOLS NATIONWIDE

I know none of us are surprised that our communities’ reputation of excellence in education extends far beyond our home, and in case you missed it, I want to highlight U.S. News & World Report’s latest rankings which recognized the best high schools across the country. Among the more than 17,000 public high schools listed in this report, the Gwinnett School of Math, Science and Technology in Lawrenceville was ranked as the number 6 high school in the country! What’s more, several schools from Forsyth County were ranked in the top 15% of schools nationwide, including Lambert which was recognized in the top 1% of schools. Keep up the good work!

 

FORSYTH COUNTY FIRE DEPARTMENT TO CONTINUE ANNUAL BENEFIT THIS MAY

The Forsyth County Fire Department is joining more than 100 fire departments across our state in holding an annual drive to benefit the Georgia Firefighters Burn Foundation. You may have already seen them out in the community this past weekend, and if you are interested in taking part, you can find them at local storefronts this upcoming Friday and Saturday, as well as May 18th and 19th. I know we are all grateful for those who work so hard to give back to our friends and neighbors, and you can learn more about this fundraiser in our area by clicking the link below.

 

THE WEEK AHEAD          

This week the House will once again consider a disaster relief bill, H.R. 2157. This bill is similar to previous disaster aid bills that have passed the House, though this one also includes funding for midwestern states that have been hit by this spring’s floods, as well as additional money for Puerto Rico. Unfortunately, the bill’s sponsor, House Appropriations Committee Chairwoman Nita Lowey (D-NY) chose not to include some important provisions for farmers in Georgia and other southern states that could have helped them better recover from Hurricane Michael. While this bill isn’t everything that Georgia’s farmers need, I’m happy that we’re talking about their needs once again on the House floor. I also look forward to working with my colleagues in the Senate as they plan to move another, complementary disaster aid bill that will hopefully get the support of the White House and bring the essential aid that is needed to our neighbors in south and middle Georgia.

In addition, the House will vote on H.R. 986. This bill is an attempt by some to take away health insurance options from Americans in an effort to bolster House Democrats’ one-size-fits-all narrative that single-payer health care is the only solution to our heath care challenges. The Trump Administration has allowed innovative health insurance plans, like short-term plans, to be offered as an affordable way for folks to attain basic insurance while they are in a period of transition. More choice should be a bipartisan goal. Unfortunately, this bill turns its back on that bipartisanship with a blatantly political attempt to take away choice and affordability.

Sincerely,

Rob Woodall 
Member of Congress

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Georgia Delegation Joins Congressman Woodall in Hosting Gwinnett Chamber of Commerce

2019/05/03

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Representative Rob Woodall welcomed the Gwinnett Chamber of Commerce to our nation’s capital for its annual advocacy trip.

On Wednesday, Representative Woodall arranged for the Gwinnett Chamber to visit the White House, and meet with Kevin Hassett, Chairman of the White House Council of Economic Advisers. At their meeting, Chairman Hassett explained how President Trump is committed to cutting burdensome government regulations that stifle job creation and innovation and how that will bolster businesses in Georgia.

 

Rep. Woodall and the Gwinnett Chamber on the steps of the Dwight D. Eisenhower Executive Office Building

On Thursday, the Gwinnett Chamber met with Senator Isakson, Senator Perdue, and Congressman Hice to discuss how health care, transportation, and education all contribute to a strong business environment in Georgia’s Seventh Congressional District and throughout the state.

 

The Gwinnett Chamber of Commerce meets with Senators Isakson and Perdue

Representative Hice speaks to the Gwinnett Chamber

“Under Dan Kaufman’s leadership, the Gwinnett Chamber of Commerce has done incredible work promoting small businesses, bolstering our local entrepreneurs, and making Georgia’s 7th Congressional District the best place to pursue the American Dream,” said Congressman Woodall. “It was an honor to host the Gwinnett Chamber for its annual trip, and I look forward to partnering with the Georgia congressional delegation to continue promoting policies that support quality jobs in Gwinnett County and further reduce unemployment in the region.”

“I was proud once again to welcome the Gwinnett Chamber of Commerce to Washington, D.C.,” said Senator Johny Isakson. “It’s always beneficial to hear directly from community leaders advocating for their priorities with one shared voice to ensure we can continue to work on their behalf in Congress.”

“It’s no secret Georgia is the best state in the country in which to do business, and our chambers deserve much of the credit for that success,” said Senator David Perdue. “Local business leaders understand the impact of important policy decisions better than anyone. Groups like the Gwinnett Chamber know that Washington must work at a business-pace in order for Georgia to continue benefiting from pro-growth policies. Together, we will work to advance our Georgia priorities and get government out of the way, so we can unleash our full economic potential.”

“It was great to see some familiar faces from the Gwinnett County Chamber of Commerce on Capitol Hill today,” said Congressman Jody Hice. “They represent more than 2,500 businesses that are helping our local communities thrive and are an integral part of making Georgia the best state in the country to do business. I always enjoy speaking with the Chamber about strategies to maintain and expand opportunities in the state of Georgia so that areas like ours continue to flourish.”

“I want to thank the Gwinnett Chamber of Commerce for visiting us on Capitol Hill this week. Local small businesses are the backbone of our communities," said Congressman Hank Johnson. "Like the Chamber, I believe that job growth in the district is connected to and reliant on investments in our infrastructure that provides reliable transportation for our constituents and allows every element of our economy to thrive and grow.”

“For nearly a decade, Congressman Woodall has supported small businesses, local entrepreneurs, and Gwinnett County. I would like to thank the Congressman for all that he has done to champion policies that grow and expand Georgia’s vibrant economy,” said Dr. Dan Kaufman, President and CEO of the Gwinnett Chamber of Commerce. “The Chamber appreciates everything Congressman Woodall has done to make our trip to Washington a major success.”

The attendees from the Gwinnett Chamber included Dan Kaufman, president and CEO of the chamber, Nick Masino, the incoming chamber president, and other members of the chamber’s board of directors; state Sen. Brandon Beach; Lawrenceville Mayor Judy Johnson; Lawrenceville City Manager Chuck Warbington; Gwinnett County Commissioner Glenn Stephens; and representatives from the Gwinnett County Department of Transportation, Atlanta Regional Commission, North Fulton Community Improvement District, Gwinnett County Board of Commissioners, Jackson Electric Membership Corporation, Georgia Power, Partnership Gwinnett, Gwinnett County Department of Water Resources and Gwinnett Medical Center, among others.

Congressman Woodall represents the Seventh Congressional District of Georgia, which includes significant portions of Forsyth and Gwinnett counties. He currently serves on the Rules Committee, the Transportation & Infrastructure Committee, and the Budget Committee.

 

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At Rules Committee Hearing, Rep. Woodall Warns About the Economic Consequences of “Medicare For All”

2019/04/30

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, the House Committee on Rules held the House’s first legislative hearing on H.R. 1384, the “Medicare for All Act of 2019.” The Rules Committee is a unique committee in the U.S. House of Representatives because it is usually the final destination before legislation advances to the House floor for a vote. For the Rules Committee to hold the very first legislative hearing on Medicare for All indicates that government-run health care is the Democratic Party's highest priority in the 116th Congress.

At today’s hearing, House Republicans revealed that Medicare for All puts Medicare as we know it at risk. It requires $10,000 per person tax increases per year; it outlaws employer sponsored insurance, which would take policies away from 150 million Americans, and it eliminates Medicare Advantage, which serves millions of America’s seniors. U.S. Representative Rob Woodall joined his colleagues in raising concerns about a one-size-fits-all, government-run health care system that would cost the American taxpayer trillions of dollars and eliminate insurance that families have chosen. 

Click here or on the image below to watch Congressman Woodall’s interaction with the panel.

Background

  • While no version of Medicare for All has yet received a score from the Congressional Budget Office, Senator Bernie Sanders’ Medicare for All legislation, which is less expansive than H.R. 1384, received estimated scores from two outside groups. In 2016, the Urban Institute calculated that Senator Sanders’ healthcare proposals would increase federal spending by $32.6 trillion over ten years, and separately, in June 2018, the Mercatus Center estimated that Medicare for All could increase federal spending by as much as $38 trillion over ten years.
  • H.R. 1384 is supported by National Association for the Repeal of Abortion Laws (NARAL) because it requires coverage of comprehensive reproductive care, including abortion, and nullifies important pro-life riders like the Hyde Amendment and the Weller Amendment, which have been federal law for many years.

Congressman Woodall represents the Seventh Congressional District of Georgia, which includes significant portions of Forsyth and Gwinnett counties. He currently serves on the Rules Committee, the Transportation & Infrastructure Committee, and the Budget Committee.

 

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District Connection - 4/29/19

2019/04/29

GDP GROWTH EXCEEDS EXPECTATIONS

On Friday, we learned that Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth for the first quarter of 2019 soared high above expectations. GDP grew by 3.2%, far past the expected 2% or less that many experts predicted. Pro-growth policies like the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act free American workers and businesses to prosper and grow. We must not take economic growth for granted, however. With oil prices rising and consumers feeling it at the pump, Congress and the White House must come together to continue streamlining regulatory burdens and foster innovation.

 

REP. WOODALL VISITS WITH STUDENTS AT ACADEMY DAY

This two-week district work period has been eventful and full of visits with local health care providers, Rotary clubs, amazing student artists, and more, but the work period culminated with my annual Military Service Academy Day at Dobbins Air Reserve Base, where I had the pleasure of meeting our nation’s future leaders. Georgia’s Service Academy Day is one of the largest events of its kind, and I’m always so proud and honored to join Senator Johnny Isakson, Senator David Perdue, other Representatives from across our great state, and of course our men and women in uniform, in meeting and speaking with the many talented young adults from across the state who want to serve our county and defend our freedom, as well as pursue their educational dreams at one of our top-notch military academies. Academy Day is such a wonderful opportunity for prospective students and their families to visit with representatives from all five of our prestigious service academies in one location to learn more about each academy’s admissions process, student life, and ask any outstanding questions. Seeing the excitement and dedication in the eyes of these young men and women as they speak with admissions officers, members of our Armed Forces, and other prospective students, always serves as a reminder to me that America’s brightest days are ahead of her. Undeniably, mapping out your future after high school is no easy task, but doing so while knowing that you want to serve your country requires courage, commitment, and, patriotism, all of which were prominently on display in each of the students I visited with.

Rep. Woodall greets students who would like to serve

Each year, I have the honor of appointing the best and brightest from our community to attend one of our service academies. I have no doubt that this year’s class of appointees will go on to accomplish great things at their respective academies, and I always enjoy monitoring their progress along the way. In fact, two appointees from our community were recently voted among their peers to serve as captains of the Naval Academy’s football team. So not only are these young men and women pursuing their dreams and representing the communities, they are selflessly and bravely serving their country, and it’s an honor to watch them do just that.

If you have a family member or know of a student who is interested in learning more about attending one of our service academies, please do not hesitate to reach out to my Lawrenceville office, as my team and I would be more than happy to answer any questions and connect you with service academy representatives.

Click on the image below ot watch WSB-TV's coverage of the event. 

 

ANNOUNCING THE WINNER OF THE 2019 CONGRESSIONAL ART COMPETITION AND CONSTITUENTS’ CHOICE AWARD

I recently hosted my annual Congressional Art Competition Exhibition and Reception at The Jacqueline Casey Hudgens Center for Art & Learning in Duluth. We truly have the best students in Forsyth and Gwinnett counties. It always makes me proud to celebrate the creativity and talent of our high school artists. Thank you to everyone who participated in this year’s competition.

Jacob Yu, from Collins Hill High School, came in first place with “Knock Knock.” The first-place entry will be hung for a year in the U.S. Capitol, along with works by other student artists across the country.

Ashley Kim, from Peachtree Ridge High School, came in second place with “The Aftermath.” Deborah Kug, also from Peachtree Ridge High School, came in third place with “Georgia.” For the first time, I posted all of the entries online before the competition and introduced the “Constituents’ Choice Award” to allow residents in Georgia’s Seventh Congressional District to select a winner. This year’s Constituents’ Choice Award went to “A Martyr” by Rachel Long from Parkview High School.

Jacob Yu’s “Knock Knock” came in first place

Rachel Long’s “A Martyr” won the Constituents’ Choice Award

Rachel Long receives the very first “Constituent Choice” award

 

ENSURING EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITIES FOR PEOPLE OF ALL ABILITIES

When most of us think of Goodwill Industries International Inc., we rightly think of their retail stores and donation centers, but what we might not realize is that Goodwill does so much more. Since its founding over a hundred years ago, Goodwill has provided various resources to underserved populations. Even today, Goodwill offers skills training and employment opportunities for youth, seniors, veterans, the disabled, and special needs individuals. They help folks reach their highest potential, allowing them to work towards self-sufficiency and independent lifestyles. Whether it’s offering English language classes or teaching the skills for a career in IT or banking, Goodwill is there for those who need it. That is why I was honored to receive Goodwill’s 2019 Policymaker Leader Award. Goodwill has done – and continues to do – great work for our community, and I am proud to partner with them to ensure everyone with the desire to work and contribute to their community has the tools to do so.

 

CONSTITUENT SPOTLIGHT: AID FOR OUR NEIGHBORS

2018 was a tragic year for many parts of the country, with 14 separate billion-dollar disaster events with a total coast of $91 billion according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). From Hawaii to California to Georgia, families and businesses across the country are still recovering from these terrible disasters. Here in Georgia, farmers have struggled to recover from Hurricane Michael, which destroyed billions of dollars’ worth of crops. Here is what I’ve heard from constituents about the situation:

Kate from Suwanee:

Why aren't the farmers in South Georgia not receiving much needed disaster relief so that they can plant?

Debra from Lawrenceville:

Representative Woodall, I was in southwest Georgia over the weekend and saddened to hear repeatedly from friends and residents of Colquitt, Donalsonville, Blakely and Bainbridge, that federal assistance promised after the hurricane has not met expectations of businesses, homeowners and the area as a whole. Though these communities have bent over backwards to help out their neighbor, their homes and businesses remain covered with blue tarps, pecan groves lay in ruins, cotton fields remain unpicked and unplowed while waiting. This region relies on agriculture to employ the residents and it is big business for our state. When can they expect to have promises fulfilled. Now we have another disaster in other communities in Georgia and in neighboring Alabama. How are those residents to believe any of President Trump's promises made in the past few days, when promises made months ago have not been fulfilled? As a Georgia citizen, this affects our economy and the GDP of the USA.

Ming from Duluth:

As a Feeding America supporter, I'm asking you to support the disaster relief bill in Congress that includes Nutrition Assistance Program (NAP) funding for Puerto Rico. NAP funding will ensure that those still suffering from the effects of Hurricanes Irma and Maria in 2017 can meet their basic food needs. Unlike the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), which serves the 50 states and has special provisions to provide food aid after a disaster, Puerto Rico's nutrition aid through NAP is a fixed block grant program. That means that when disasters or hard times strike, Congress must approve additional funds in order to meet the nutrition needs of those struggling to feed their families.

The President and Congress provided additional NAP funding immediately after the hurricanes to better meet increased food needs and to slightly expand the program to more needy households, including many workers. The NAP funding has run out, forcing Puerto Rico's Department of the Family to cut spending on basic food aid by $100 million per month. The forced direct cuts to food assistance are affecting more than 1.3 million Puerto Ricans, including more than 300,000 children, who receive NAP benefits. Benefits will remain at these reduced levels until policymakers approve additional disaster relief.

We are urging you to support the disaster bill to ensure that states and Puerto Rico will receive the aid they need. This support must include the full $600 million in proposed NAP funds to Puerto Rico so that millions of Americans can access the food they need.


As Debra pointed out, the devastation to the farms in South Georgia is not just a Georgia problem. Agriculture is Georgia’s number one industry, and Georgia is the number one producer of peanuts and pecans in the United States. Our state is the second largest producer of cotton, has the fourth largest amount of total forest land area, and 24.4 million acres of available timberland for commercial use. All of these agricultural industries have a prominent presence in the areas affected by Hurricane Michael, and the effects of the hurricane will be felt across the country.

In Congress, the Georgia Delegation has been diligent in advocating for disaster relief. As a delegation, we united to ask House Leadership to move legislation to provide relief for not only Georgia, but for other areas impacted by hurricanes, wildfires, flooding, and other natural disasters during 2018 before the end of last Congress.  Representatives Austin Scott and Sanford Bishop, who represent Georgia’s 8th and 2nd Districts respectively, have offered amendments to bills on the House floor to provide that aid. However, policy disagreements unrelated to Georgia have stopped this much needed aid. Last year, it was the disagreement over border security funding. This year, Senate Democrats refused to accept a compromise solution offered by Georgia Senators Johnny Isakson and David Perdue. It is time to put politics aside and help the businesses and farms that have been devastated and the families left without homes. In the next couple weeks, the House will likely consider a Democrat proposed disaster relief package that will include help for all those affected by the 2018 disasters and the assistance for Puerto Rico that Ming wrote in about. It is my hope that the House can have a frank discussion, free of unnecessary politics, as it considers this proposal, and finally get Georgia families the help that they need.

Click on the image below to read about how the Georgia Congressional Delegation has unified to help our farmers.

 

LOCAL STUDENTS CONTINUE TO EXCEL

Thanks to the dedicated student body we have in Gwinnett and Forsyth counties, it’s always easy and exciting to share their stories of success. Our students are continually being recognized for their hard work, and one such example can be found at South Forsyth High School, where Alyssa Freyman was recently selected as the 2019 Georgia Champion Journalist. Alyssa was recognized by the Georgia Scholastic Press Association and the Journalism Education Association for her work as the Editor-in-Chief of her school’s newsite, The Bird Feed, and received our state’s highest honor in the competition. Additionally, Brookwood High School placed first at the Georgia Science Olympiad, earning the top spot amongst 30 competing teams from across our state. They will go on to represent Georgia at the national competition in New York next month. Our reputation of excellence in scholastics would not exist without their hard work, so please join me in congratulating these students!

 

FORSYTH COUNTY NON-PROFIT RECOGNIZED FOR WORK HERE AT HOME

We all know the critical role that the specialized care and support services our community’s non-profits play in better serving our friends and neighbors, and there is no shortage of philanthropic efforts in the Seventh District. For over 40 years, one such organization, The Place of Forsyth,  has excelled in serving individuals in our area who have experienced financial hardship and are in need of emergency assistance. This group was once again recognized for their good work, and I know we are all honored to have such passionate leaders in our community who have lent their time and energy to ensuring this program’s continued success.

 

THE WEEK AHEAD

You may remember that when President Trump took office, one of his first actions was to announce the withdrawal of the United States from the Paris Climate Agreement. This non-binding agreement was signed during the Obama Administration, but it was never ratified by the Senate, meaning that while it is not a formal treaty with enforceable provisions, it voluntarily commits each party to the agreement to determine, plan, and regularly report on the contribution it is making to mitigating climate change. Now, the Democrat-led House is attempting to force the President to put us back in the agreement with H.R. 9 this week. I support shared efforts to combat pollution and climate change, and I support U.S leadership in every global effort. But H.R. 9 isn’t the way to accomplish that goal. A non-binding, unenforceable agreement that hurts our economy and raises domestic energy prices while allowing the world’s biggest polluters – China most especially – to continue their profligate polluting ways isn’t a serious attempt at fundamental or lasting change. We can do better.

On Tuesday morning the House Rules Committee will be center stage as we hold the first – and likely only – House hearing on H.R. 1384, the “Medicare For All Act.” You’ve probably heard a lot about “Medicare For All,” since it’s supported by a number of Democratic Presidential front-runners, and hopefully you know by now that it’s a misnomer; it really means Medicare for none! H.R. 1384 will eliminate Medicare as you know it. That’s right. Should this bill become law, your Medicare would disappear. Your employer-provided insurance would be outlawed. Medicare as you know it, Medicaid, TriCare, and all private insurance would be canceled in favor of one, single-payer, federally-controlled, national health plan that every American would be forced to use. Just as the Affordable Care Act promised to be cost-effective and let you keep your doctor and your health insurance – which proved to be the “lie of the year” in 2013, Medicare For All is poised to be a future “lie of the year” should it ever become law.  

We have many opportunities to unite and create better health outcomes for American families.  I regret that rather than being able to focus on those goals, the Democratic House Leadership is more interested in creating wedge issues that solve nothing and only serve to divide.  America deserves better, and Congress can do better.  I expect you will hear exactly that message this week from Republicans and moderate Democrats who are discouraged by the distraction of an increasingly radical Democratic left wing.

I will be working to refocus the House away from these divisive issues and back toward solutions, like aid to our South Georgia families hit by disaster. I tell you regularly that I know that Congress can unite to do better for America. I am not alone in this belief. It is one that productive Democrats and Republicans share, and we will continue to work to get there.

Sincerely,

Rob Woodall
Member of Congress

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Congressman Woodall Announces Winner of Congressional Art Competition and Constituents’ Choice Award

2019/04/23

LAWRENCEVILLE, GA – Recently, U.S. Representative Rob Woodall hosted his annual Congressional Art Competition Exhibition and Reception at The Jacqueline Casey Hudgens Center for Art & Learning in Duluth. Jacob Yu, from Collins Hill High School, came in first place with “Knock Knock.” Ashley Kim, from Peachtree Ridge High School, came in second place with “The Aftermath.” Deborah Kug, also from Peachtree Ridge High School, came in third place with “Georgia.” For the first time, Congressman Woodall introduced the “Constituents’ Choice Award” to allow residents in Georgia’s Seventh Congressional District to select a winner. This year’s Constituents’ Choice Award went to “A Martyr” by Rachel Long from Parkview High School.

Jacob Yu’s “Knock Knock” came in first place

Rachel Long’s “A Martyr” won the Constituents’ Choice Award

“We truly have the best students in Forsyth and Gwinnett counties. It always makes me proud to celebrate the creativity and talent of our high school artists,” said Congressman Woodall. “Thank you to everyone who participated in this year’s competition.”

Congressman Woodall addresses the attendees at this year’s reception

The first-place entry will be hung for a year in the U.S. Capitol, along with works by other student artists across the country.

Congressman Woodall represents the Seventh Congressional District of Georgia, which includes significant portions of Forsyth and Gwinnett counties. He currently serves on the Rules Committee, the Transportation & Infrastructure Committee, and the Budget Committee.

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District Connection - 4/22/19

2019/04/22

CELEBRATING PASSOVER AND EASTER WEEKEND

For millions of Americans around the world, the past few days and upcoming week are special and represent a holy season. As friends, family, and loved ones come together to celebrate Passover and Easter, we can reflect as a nation on the strength we draw from the diversity of our neighbors and fellow Americans. It’s been a privilege to spend this past week reflecting on this time with those in the exceptional communities of Georgia’s 7th District.

Whether you are observing Passover or Easter, let us recognize and be thankful for our First Amendment freedom to practice our religious faiths peacefully within our communities. We are blessed to live in a country that was created to represent the religious diversity of its people. While I am proud to share my faith with others, I am even prouder to share my faith in the American people and in a Constitution that allows us the freedom to celebrate our differences together. Happy Easter and a Blessed Passover to you all! I am honored to have the chance to represent each of you.

 

REP. WOODALL: REPUBLICAN AND DEMOCRATIC LEADERS MUST NOT BREAK THEIR PROMISES TO GEORGIA

Last week, I had the pleasure talking to CBS 46’s Vince Sims about what the Georgia Congressional Delegation is doing to secure disaster relief for our farmers, why Congress needs to vote on a budget resolution, and how we can prioritize legal immigration and border security.

Click on the image below to watch our exclusive interview.

 

MEETING WITH COMMUNITY LEADERS

Every time Congress is out of session, I return home and meet with constituents from across the district. It is a pleasure to personally connect with and reach out to those in the community. This is not only a chance for me to share what I do on your behalf in Washington, but it is also an opportunity for me to see what is happening in the community, hear what worries each of you, and learn about all the good that occurs in our district. Some of the best places to do this are at the local meetings of community organizations like the Kiwanis and Rotary Clubs, and last week, I spoke with the Lawrenceville Rotary, North Gwinnett Kiwanis, and Duluth Kiwanis clubs. We spoke about how the 116th Congress has started off, what we hope to achieve in the remainder of the Congress, and how to give back to the district. These organizations pride themselves on serving their communities, and they are the places where people of all types can come together to make our tomorrow better than today. At these meetings, I heard how each group is helping our neighbors through things like giving scholarships to students, feeding the hungry, and working towards preventing addiction, homelessness, and other problems. I am privileged to return to Congress with these uplifting stories from our community.

 

Rep. Woodall answers questions about the legislative priorities of the 116th Congress

I make it a point when I am here at home to visit with leaders who can help to define the challenges and solutions in federal regulations.  For example, I had a wonderful visit with Sawnee Electric Membership Corporation (EMC) about what the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee is doing and can do to support Georgia and our local area’s economic development.  As member-owned cooperatives, Sawnee and Jackson EMCs—and Oglethorpe Power—hear directly from citizens about ways to work better together to grow and to serve our communities.  As you have heard me say regularly, I don’t have to have all the answers; I simply need to be willing to listen to those in our community with knowledge and experience.  Together, we produce better public policy.

A senior member on the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, Rep. Woodall has prioritized local issues in Washington, D.C.

A good example of that partnership is in health care.  I am a lawyer, not a doctor.  But we have amazing health professionals in our district, from those in private practice to those who work at our major hospitals to those teaching at our institutes of higher education.  When Congress is talking about funding Graduate Medical Education (GME), I call on our local experts for ideas about how we can do better.  Gwinnett Medical Center (GMC), for example, invited me into its Simulation Lab last week to see firsthand how it is utilizing health care simulators and technology to practice high-risk techniques, or even techniques that would be too uncomfortable for a patient to endure repeatedly, in a controlled setting. As many of you are likely aware, several high-risk professions utilize simulators in some form or fashion, including aerospace, maritime operations, and even across our military, and so it makes sense that our healthcare professionals would do the same.  These technologies are increasingly being integrated into GME curriculums and hospital settings across the country, and it’s amazing to see how our health care providers, staff, and medical residents are using these simulators to establish safe protocols, refine techniques, and keep their clinical reasoning sharp, improving the quality of care delivered and improving outcomes.  Thank you to GMC and the Simulation Lab team for taking the time to help me learn more!

Rep. Woodall visits with Gwinnett Medical Centers Simulation Lab staff members

 

CONSTITUENT SPOTLIGHT: FOREIGN AID AND CENTRAL AMERICAN IMMIGRATION
 
As our immigration issues continue to dominate the headlines and Congressional inaction on serious reform remains distant, the Trump Administration has sought out other ways to address the increasing number of people coming to our Southern border—over 100,000 in March alone. As you know, many of those seeking to enter the U.S. through our Southern border do not necessarily originate from our immediate neighbor to the South, but come from a region called the “Northern Triangle,” comprised of El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras. President Trump announced last month that in an effort to encourage those nations to partner with the U.S. to address migration from this region, he would be cutting our aid to those countries until the partnership improves.  My bosses and your neighbors are both for and against the President’s plan:
 
Courtney from Suwanee:
Donald Trump has announced an end to humanitarian aid to El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras. As a constituent, I urge you to make sure that Congress blocks this act of cruelty. In effect, Trump claims that by making these Central American countries even worse places to live he will somehow stop people from leaving them. He claims to be saving money, but is not cutting off funding to murderous police and militaries that contribute heavily to making these countries difficult places to remain in. Congress must keep actual aid, not military "aid," in place.
 
Marian from Cumming:
Please co-sign the Berta Caceres act which would stop American taxpayer dollars going to support Honduran police and military which are committing human rights abuses.


Foreign aid is an important tool in pursuing our foreign policy and national defense goals, and I absolutely believe that we have an obligation to help those who cannot help themselves. That said, when providing aid to countries that are consistently failing their people, we must look critically at where the aid is going to ensure it is truly beneficial. Too often we have seen taxpayer dollars mismanaged. For the countries of the “Northern Triangle” where violence and drug trafficking is growing, it is essential that we ensure our financial assistance is actually going to combat drug production, human trafficking, and criminal gangs.  Congress has already taken a stand, conditioning 75 percent of the aid to El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras on the Secretary of State certifying that these governments have taken the necessary steps to combat corruption, human trafficking, drug trafficking, and to improve the human rights of their people.

As Marian mentioned, my friend Rep. Hank Johnson (D-GA) has introduced the “Berta Caceres Human Rights in Honduras Act” to suspend all security assistance to Honduras until it has met certain requirements. Further, last month then-Secretary of Homeland Security Kirstjen Nielsen met with the security ministers of the “Northern Triangle” countries to sign a Memorandum of Understanding to unify our efforts in combating human trafficking, criminal organizations, and other security matters.  While I believe we can use foreign aid to incentivize good policies, President Trump has shown that he is looking at every dollar for better results.  I expect the U.S. will continue partnering with the governments of El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras and will continue working to improve the livelihood of all our peoples.

 

FORSYTH SCHOOLS NAMED AS GEORGIA “LIGHTHOUSE SCHOOLS TO WATCH”

Our community is second to none when it comes to excellence in education, so it should come as no surprise that our educators and students are, once again, being recognized for their hard work. South Forsyth Middle School was recently named a “Georgia Lighthouse School to Watch” for 2019, joining only a handful of schools in our state and across the country in receiving this honor, including Liberty Middle School in Cumming, which was re-designated with this recognition this year. For those of you not familiar with the Georgia Lighthouse Schools to Watch program, this program is a state-level partnership that identifies high-achieving middle schools which excel in the areas of academic excellence, developmental responsiveness, social equity, and organizational structures and processes. I hope you will join me in congratulating these schools on this incredible achievement!

 

MILITARY SERVICE ACADEMY DAY THIS COMING SATURDAY

You’ll find no shortage of individuals in our community who are willing to devote their time and their talents in service to our country. I see that enthusiasm each year in the faces of young folks during Service Academy Day, and I know that will be equally true of this year’s upcoming Academy Day this Saturday, April 27th.

I know we are all inspired by those who make the sacrifice to serve our country in our Armed Forces, and as such, I want to share a great story about U.S. Navy Petty Officer 3rd Class Krystal-Monaes Johnson, a Lawrenceville native, who currently serves aboard the U.S.S. Theodore Roosevelt based in San Diego, which you can find below. I know we are all grateful for her service and sacrifice, and if you are interested in attending Academy Day on April 27th, you can find those details HERE.

 

THE WEEK AHEAD: CONTINUED DISCUSSIONS OF THE MUELLER REPORT
 
As Congress takes this week to continue our annual Easter/Passover district work period, the news of the week is going to continue to be the Mueller Report. It’s clear from the reporting and reactions already made by Members of Congress and political pundits, that there are two keenly different views of the report. If you’re inclined to support the President, you likely see the report as a complete exoneration of the President. After all, the report says clearly, “…the investigation did not establish that members of the Trump campaign conspired or coordinated with the Russian government in its election interference activities.” If you’re inclined to oppose the President, however, you likely see the report as a call for Congress to further investigate possible obstruction of justice by President Trump as the report states, “[t]he evidence we obtained about the President’s actions and intent presents difficult issues that prevent us from conclusively determining that no criminal conduct occurred. Accordingly, while this report does not conclude that the President committed a crime, it also does not exonerate him.” So in the end, the American people have been left with a murky outcome and two points to consider:

  1. there was absolutely a concerted effort by the Russian government – begun in 2014 – to interfere in the 2016 Presidential election;
  2. there was no collusion, coordination, or conspiracy by the President or his campaign with the Russian government in this effort; and

I am certain there will be myriad opportunities for partisanship as Congress addresses each of these points, and that’s unfortunate. I had hoped that the report would provide the confidence to bring us together, not push us farther into our partisan corners, but some partisans simply don’t want that outcome. While all Americans should be pleased that the partisan accusations of coordination or conspiracy between the Administration and the Russian government have been definitively debunked and rejected, and even as the most partisan elements of the Democratic party continue investigating the President, we cannot lose focus on the truly bad actor in this story: Russia. Every American knows now beyond a shadow of a doubt that the Russian government worked to involve itself in the President election. The Mueller Report clearly shows that whatever efforts the Obama Administration took from 2014 to 2016 didn’t subdue Russia, so now we must take stronger action. I hope that securing our elections is something that everyone – Democrats and Republicans – can agree should be priority number 1 for this Congress. We all need to keep our eyes focused on what I believe the most important conclusion was from this report: safeguarding our elections from malign foreign influence. Everything else is secondary to the preservation of our Republic – a Republic that is grounded in free and fair elections.
 
As this discussion continues, I urge you to make your voice heard. Please let me know what you think about the Mueller Report and how we should ensure that foreign influence in our elections never happens again by visiting my website at http://woodall.house.gov/contact or by emailing me at woodall@mail.house.gov.

Sincerely,

Rob Woodall 
Member of Congress

 

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Representatives Woodall and Scott Team Up to Advocate for Georgia Farmers

2019/04/17

LAWRENCEVILLE, GA – Last week, the House Rules Committee met to consider H.R. 2021, the “Investing for the People Act.” Representative Austin Scott (GA-08) testified about his amendment to H.R. 2021, which would have provided emergency disaster assistance funding to farmers, ranchers, and others who were harmed by 2018 natural disasters.

In October, Hurricane Michael devastated parts of South and Middle Georgia. Since then, the entire Georgia Congressional Delegation has worked to secure federal assistance for not only Georgia, but for other areas impacted by hurricanes, wildfires, flooding, and other natural disasters during 2018. Unfortunately, the Senate failed to advance disaster aid legislation due to ongoing policy disagreements. Representative Scott’s amendment was a new attempt to secure disaster aid following continued obstruction by Senate Democrats who refuse to support the compromise legislation drafted by Georgia’s Senators Isakson and Perdue. 

“Georgia is the number one producer of peanuts and pecans in the United States. Our state is the second largest producer of cotton, has the fourth largest amount of total forest land area, and 24.4 million acres of available timberland for commercial use in our country,” said Congressman Woodall. “Farmers from California to New York and all the way down to Georgia work day and night to fill the refrigerators for all Americans. Each year, our farmers take enormous risks on our behalf, and as Americans, we should do everything we can to stand behind these hardworking men and women who are willing to put their family’s well-being on the line.”

“For months, I have received calls from farmers and the lenders they rely on that the financial impacts from Hurricane Michael were becoming increasingly more difficult to bear. The truth is, if Hurricane Michael had hit Americans who weren’t farmers or farmers who aren’t Americans, the stories of Washington’s apathy to get this done would be the front page of every paper,” said Congressman Austin Scott. “For months, we have stressed the magnitude of the damage to our colleagues, and for months we were promised that this was a priority for the White House and Congressional leadership from both sides of the aisle. Those were nothing but empty promises. American farmers work day-in and day-out to feed and clothe America and the world, and I will continue fighting for them until the White House and Congress keep the promises we made to them.”

Click here or the image below to watch Representative Scott’s testimony and Representative Woodall’s motion to include the disaster relief amendment in H.R. 2021.

Rep. Woodall introduced a motion to include Rep. Scott’s amendment to help Georgia farmers in H.R. 2021

Congressman Woodall represents the Seventh Congressional District of Georgia, which includes significant portions of Forsyth and Gwinnett counties. He currently serves on the Rules Committee, the Transportation & Infrastructure Committee, and the Budget Committee.

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Contact Information

1725 Longworth HOB
Washington, DC 20515
Phone 202-225-4272
Fax 202-225-4696
woodall.house.gov

Rob Woodall serves the 7th district of GA in the U.S. House of Representatives and serves on the House Committee on Rules, the House Budget Committee, and the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform. Rob also serves as Chairman of the Republican Study Committee’s Budget and Spending Task Force.

Rob was born and raised in Georgia, graduated from Marist School in 1988, attended Furman University for his undergraduate degree and received his law degree from the University of Georgia

Rob first came to public service as a staffer for then Congressman John Linder serving as his Chief of Staff and was elected to Congress in 2010.

Rob’s political philosophy is guided by the principles of freedom, and his proudest accomplishment is helping Seventh District families one at a time through casework and creating a Congressional office that functions for the people.


Serving With

Buddy Carter

GEORGIA's 1st DISTRICT

Drew Ferguson

GEORGIA's 3rd DISTRICT

Austin Scott

GEORGIA's 8th DISTRICT

Doug Collins

GEORGIA's 9th DISTRICT

Jody Hice

GEORGIA's 10th DISTRICT

Barry Loudermilk

GEORGIA's 11th DISTRICT

Rick Allen

GEORGIA's 12th DISTRICT

Tom Graves

GEORGIA's 14th DISTRICT

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