Vicky Hartzler

Vicky Hartzler

MISSOURI's 4th DISTRICT

Hartzler Bill to Memorialize Fallen Missouri Soldier Passes House

2018/07/16

Click here or on the image above to see Congresswoman Hartzler's speech on the House floor honoring Specialist Sterling Wyatt.

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today the U.S. House of Representatives passed Congresswoman Vicky Hartzler’s (MO-04) bill, H.R. 4960, which would honor the memory of Missouri-born Specialist Sterling William Wyatt by naming the downtown Columbia Post Office Building at 511 East Walnut Street after him.

 

“Over the past few months, I have had the privilege of hearing firsthand accounts of Sterling’s service and sacrifice and meeting with and getting to know Sterling’s wonderful parents, Randy and Sherry,” said Congresswoman Hartzler. “I am deeply moved and humbled by Sterling’s willingness to serve his country and, sadly, pay the ultimate sacrifice to preserve the freedoms we cherish. We are forever indebted to Sterling and his family for all they have given for our nation. It is my hope that by naming the downtown Columbia Post Office in his memory we will forever honor his life of selfless service and inspire future generations to serve others, as well. Everyone who passes by and enters its doors will see this brave soldier’s name and be reminded that freedom is not free.”

 

Born and raised in Columbia, Spc. Wyatt was an active participant in his youth group and church. He was also quite accomplished: he earned the rank of Eagle Scout, a first-degree black belt in taekwondo, and certification as a Certified Nurse Attendant all before graduating from Rock Bridge High School in 2009.

 

Soon after graduating, he joined the U.S. Army and was assigned to the 5th Battalion, 20th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division at Joint Base Lewis-McCord, Washington. He was later deployed abroad to serve his country. Tragically, at only 21-years old, Spc. Wyatt was killed on July 11, 2012 while on patrol in Kandahar, Afghanistan. His vehicle was attacked with an enemy improvised explosive device (IED).

 

Last fall, Cathy Rupard of Midwest Mailing Service in Columbia contacted Congresswoman Hartzler to recommend that the downtown Columbia Post Office be dedicated in memory of Spc. Wyatt. Her letter was accompanied by a separate letter of support from Tim Rich of Welcome Home, which provides transitional and emergency housing and other support services for homeless veterans. Upon receiving these letters from her constituents, Congresswoman Hartzler met with Spc. Wyatt’s parents, Randy and Sherry, to get to know Sterling through them and to verify their support of this effort to memorialize their son’s memory. They wholeheartedly lent their support, and the Congresswoman introduced this meaningful bill, shepherding it thru the legislative process in the House.

 

Spc. Wyatt’s awards and decorations include the Medal of Valor, Bronze Star, National Defense Service Medal, Afghanistan Campaign Medal with campaign star, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Army Service Ribbon, Overseas Ribbon, NATO Medal, Certificate of Achievement, and Combat Infantryman Badge.

 

This legislation now heads to the Senate for consideration.

 

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Interested members of the media may contact Anna Swick at anna.swick@mail.house.gov

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VICKY'S VIEW: Border Solutions

2018/06/29

Back to the Drawing Board: Solutions for the Border


For decades America has felt the repercussions of a failed, outdated immigration system that has rewarded those who enter this country illegally at the expense of those who have followed the law. This week and last week we voted on pieces of legislation that address illegal immigration where it starts – at the border – by allocating funding for a border wall and enhancing security measures that would drastically scale back illegal immigration into the United States. At the same time, these bills would have ended the visa lottery program and instead increased legal immigration for skilled workers needed in the United States. We can all agree that the separation of families at the border is upsetting, and this legislation would have put into law solutions that the President has advocated for. Finally, these measures would have provided renewable legal status for ‘dreamers’ who were brought to this country as children, helped stop further illegal immigration.

Unfortunately, after receiving no Democrat support in the House, both immigration reform bills fell short of passage.


Passage of these bills would have represented the most comprehensive immigration reform in thirty-two years, and I am disappointed that we missed this opportunity to address the illegal immigration problem in this country. Addressing illegal immigration begins with securing our borders, and the funding and security mechanisms within this legislation would have been a significant step in this direction. Although these bills were far from perfect, the reforms they would have provided are preferable to our broken system. The status quo only perpetuates this growing problem on our border, and inaction compounds the issue even further.


Next week we will regroup and see where to go from here. This issue is too important to give up on. I’m hopeful we will be able to advance at least some of these long-overdue measures.  

 

Arming our Troops: Doing the Responsible Thing

This week the House voted to fund our troops at $674.6 billion, a step towards restoring the readiness our troops have lost over the past several years. We were able to fund our troops at this level due to the two year budget agreement we voted for earlier this year (that I supported), temporarily ending the harmful spending caps on military funding.

In 2017, nearly four times as many military personnel died in training accidents as were killed in combat. This tragic loss of American life is unacceptable. We can’t recruit young people to our military ranks, then send them out unprepared. I’m pleased that Congress is moving toward giving our men and women in uniform the tools they need to win on the battlefield.

Specifically, the bill provides dollars for additional F-18 Super Hornets to address the Navy’s strike fighter shortfall and fully funds the B-21 program (which will eventually replace the B-2 at Whiteman Air Force Base). The measure also supports the modernization of the B-2, A-10, and C-130H fleets.

 

 

Opioids Orphan our Nation’s Children

In March, the Department of Health & Human Services published a report showing the number of kids in foster care has risen by 10% in the last four years, a number that is sadly attributed to more parents dying of drug overdoses. In Missouri itself, nearly 50% of the children in foster care are there due to their parents abusing drugs.  

The victims of the opioid epidemic are not only limited to the users. This epidemic is a grave threat to our families. I am pleased that the House came together in a bipartisan fashion to pass more than 45 pieces of legislation this month to combat the opioid crisis. We must work together — all of us — to stop this devastating epidemic in its tracks. If you or a loved one need help, please access my drug free toolkit here.

 

Photos of the Week

Last Friday, I enjoyed seeing a restored Farmall H Tractor like the first tractor I learned to drive on our farm as a kid. It was fun to spend time at the 40th Annual Gas & Steam Engine Show in Adrian, MO. 

 

I was honored to meet former Attorney General Ed Meese on Tuesday.  He served in President Reagan’s Cabinet and serves as an example of conservatism, faithfulness to God, and public service.

 

It was great to meet with MFA Inc. on Tuesday in my office to discuss the Farm Bill and trade. Thank you for stopping by!

 

On Wednesday, it was great to meet with representatives from United States Chamber of Commerce to discuss trade issues facing America today. 

 

It was my honor to welcome Ella Bowles, the winner of the art competition I hosted in our district this year, to Washington on Wednesday. Her painting, “American Hometown” (directly above her head, with the red truck) is displayed in the underground corridor between the House office buildings and the Capitol for the rest of the year. Congratulations Ella!

 

On Wednesday I was honored to receive the Guardian of Seniors' Rights award from 60 Plus Association! I am grateful to have the opportunity to advocate for the senior citizens of our district.

 

 

A Dose of Good News

Click here or on the image above to see my speech on the House floor, congratulating the Knob Noster Lady Panthers. 
 

On May 19th, the Knob Noster Lady Panther track team won the 2018 Class II Missouri State Track Championship for the first time in the school’s history! Not only is this championship a first in the history of the high school, it is also the first time the school has won a women’s team state championship.

Additionally, team member Jessica Sader broke a state record for her 143 foot javelin throw at the meet. This throw broke her previous state record of 134 feet 6 inches. The team’s outstanding accomplishments mark a great milestone for the girls’ track team and its coaches, and it will be doubtless be a legacy that is cherished and heralded for years to come. 


Congratulations, Knob Noster High School Lady Panthers!  

 

The Good News about Tax Reform

 

 

#DrugFreeMO

 

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Hartzler Selected as Conferee for FY19 Defense Bill

2018/06/27

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today Congresswoman Vicky Hartzler (MO-04), Chairwoman of the Oversight & Investigations Subcommittee on the House Armed Services Committee, was named by Speaker Paul Ryan as a conferee on the Conference Committee for the FY19 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). As part of the committee, made up of leaders from the House and Senate, Hartzler will help to resolve the differences between the House and Senate versions of the 2019 defense authorization bill.

 

“Providing for a strong national defense is the primary obligation of the federal government. Each year, the conferees meet in a bipartisan fashion to negotiate the differences between the two defense bills. I look forward to working with my colleagues again this year to craft final legislation that restores readiness and ensures our military is better equipped to meet the multitude of threats we face today.”

 

The NDAA is the annual legislation that determines the policies and funding levels for the U.S. Department of Defense and other national security entities. Hartzler has served on the House Armed Services Committee since 2011. The subcommittee that she currently chairs, the Oversight and Investigations Subcommittee, oversees the Administration’s defense policies and ensures accountability within the Department of Defense.

 

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Interested members of the media may contact Anna Swick at anna.swick@mail.house.gov

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Hartzler Statement on House Consideration of Immigration Reform Bills

2018/06/27

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congresswoman Vicky Hartzler (MO-04) made the following statement today following her support of the Border Security and Immigration Reform Act (H.R. 6136) and her support of last week’s Securing America’s Future Act (H.R. 4760), two pieces of legislation representing the most comprehensive immigration reform in 32 years. These measures would provide much needed funding for border security, end the visa lottery program, increase legal immigration levels for skilled workers, end the family separation policy and address the Deferred Action for Child Arrivals (DACA) challenge that has been in a state of limbo for years. Receiving no Democrat support in the House, both immigration reform bills fell short of passage.

 

“For decades America has felt the repercussions of a failed, outdated immigration system that has rewarded those who enter this country illegally at the expense of those who have followed the law. These pieces of legislation address illegal immigration where it starts – at the border – by allocating funding for a border wall and enhancing security measures that would drastically scale back illegal immigration into the United States. At the same time, these bills would end the visa lottery program and instead increase legal immigration for skilled workers needed in the United States. We can all agree that the separation of families at the border is upsetting and this legislation would put into law solutions that the President has advocated for. Finally, these measures would provide renewable legal status for ‘dreamers’ who were brought to this country as children, help stop further illegal immigration, and end the threat of amnesty, which I oppose.”

 

“Passage of these bills would have represented the most comprehensive immigration reform in thirty-two years, and I am disappointed that we missed this opportunity to address the illegal immigration problem in this country.  Addressing illegal immigration begins with securing our borders, and the funding and security mechanisms within this legislation would have been a significant step in this direction. Although these bills are far from perfect, the reforms they provide are preferable to our broken system. The status quo only perpetuates this growing problem on our border, and inaction compounds the issue,” added Hartzler.

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Interested members of the media may contact Anna Swick at anna.swick@mail.house.gov

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House Advances More Initiatives to Combat Opioid Crisis

2018/06/22

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congresswoman Vicky Hartzler (MO-04) joined her colleagues in the House this week to pass 15 additional bills, complementing the more than 30 bills the House passed last week, to combat the opioid crisis with addiction treatment, prevention, and additional tools for law enforcement.

 

“The opioid crisis is severe and deserves our continued attention,” said Congresswoman Hartzler, who established a “Drug Free Missouri” initiative where she conducted 13 high school assemblies in Missouri’s Fourth District and compiled a “Drug Free Missouri” toolkit, outlining local resources for drug addiction. “In Missouri alone, there were over 900 opioid related overdose deaths in 2016.  That’s a rate of nearly 16 deaths per 100 people in Missouri.  In comparison, the national rate is about 13 deaths per 100,000 people. We must do all we can to reverse this trend,” added Hartzler.

 

Among the bills that passed this week were measures to address mental health care coverage for children, expand prescription drug disposal options, and improve opioid prescribing practices. To address mental health care coverage for children, the House approved a measure requiring state Children’s Health Insurance Programs (CHIP) to cover mental health benefits (including substance use disorder services for pregnant women and children) and preventing the imposing of limits on mental health treatment that are lower than limits placed on physical health care coverage.

 

Also included in this week’s measures was the IMD CARE Act, an important bill intended to address a Medicaid rule that has prevented beneficiaries from being able to access substance abuse treatment at inpatient facilities. Current law prohibits the use of federal funds to pay for treatment for Medicaid patients at inpatient mental health facilities that have more than 16 beds. This provision prevents individuals with addiction disorders from accessing the full continuum of care necessary to treat their addiction.  The IMD Care Act removes this exclusion and improves these individuals’ access to care.

 

These bills have now been referred to the Senate where they await further consideration.

 

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Interested members of the media may contact Anna Swick at anna.swick@mail.house.gov

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VICKY'S VIEW: Feeding America - Farm Bill Moves Forward

2018/06/22

Feeding America

I’m happy to report that the House passed a Farm Bill this week to ensure our farmers and ranchers have the ability to keep providing food for America. This bill strengthens safeguards for our food supply and improves public/private risk management programs that are vital to American agriculture. It will also reauthorize and strengthen Agriculture Risk Coverage and Price Loss Coverage programs, maintain crop insurance, and provide a safety net for farmers who are affected by unfair foreign trading practices. It would also establish new programs to protect the health of the nation’s livestock and improve assistance for specialty crops.

I was particularly pleased that a provision I authored to expand rural broadband was included in the final bill. My provision would free up more capital for broadband providers to use in rural areas and it would increase the speed requirements for the internet these providers supply to rural communities. Additionally, this Farm Bill would make a historic investment in getting able bodied working adults the skills they need to succeed, while modernizing SNAP requirements to help impoverished Americans rise out of the poverty.

Now that the House has passed its version of the bill, the Senate is expected to take up their version of the Farm Bill next week.

 

Opioid Abuse: Congress Continues Crackdown




Click here or on the image above to see what the House is doing this week to combat opioids.

The legislative crackdown on opioid abuse that the House of Representatives’ launched last week continued this week with more than a dozen additional bills designed to combat the scourge of opioid abuse.

I want to share with you some of the bills that my colleagues and I passed:

-      H.R. 5590, The Opioid Addiction Action Plan, requires the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services to develop an action plan to recommend changes to the Medicare and Medicaid programs to enhance the treatment and prevention of opioid addiction;

-      H.R. 5773, amends the Social Security Act to require Medicare prescription drug plans to establish drug management programs for at-risk beneficiaries and to require electronic prior authorization for covered part D drugs;

-      H.R. 5676, the Stop Excessive Narcotics in our Retirement (SENIOR) Communities Protection Act, would lead to the suspension of payments to a pharmacy under the Medicare prescription drug benefit and Medicare Advantage prescription drug plans pending the investigation of a credible allegation of fraud by the pharmacy;

-      H.R. 5775, amends the Social Security Act to require Medicare Advantage plans and part D prescription drug plans include information on the risks association with opioids;

-      H.R. 5762 authorizes a Joint Task Force to use the Department of Homeland Security’s border security operations to detect, interdict, disrupt, and prevent opioids from entering the United States illegally;

-      H.R. 6110, helps close gaps in care for pain management and to help expand access to non-opioid alternatives while expanding addiction treatment for those suffering from mental or behavioral health issues.

This bipartisan legislation, passed this week, bring to more than 50 the number of bills passed this month in the effort to fight opioid abuse. This is not the  end of the effort to address the opioid epidemic. But clearly, we are headed in the right direction.

                                                                                               

Photos of the Week

On Tuesday, I was pleased to meet with Alzheimer’s Association advocates from the Show Me State to discuss legislation and research of Alzheimer’s disease.

 


It was great meeting with the National Association of Mutual Insurance Companies in my DC office on Wednesday, thank you for visiting!

 


I enjoyed meeting with Sustainable Ozarks Partnership in my office on Wednesday about the Fort Leonard Wood four county region of the district and ways we can collaborate to support the Fort.

 

Thursday morning I participated in an important Armed Services hearing about our adversaries’ theft of U.S. technology and intellectual property. In the hearing we discussed the breadth of this problem and how we must modernize to prevent it moving forward.

 

A Dose of Good News

The good news about the tax reform plan passed six months ago keeps coming! The National Association of Manufacturers' (NAM) quarterly outlook survey, published this week, finds 95.1 percent of manufacturers surveyed said they have a positive outlook for their companies – a record high in the past 20 years.

The survey also found that among medium-sized manufacturers, 95.8 percent of those surveyed have a positive outlook.

This optimism isn’t only good for Americans in the manufacturing industry. Manufacturers are also projecting wage growth to rise at its fastest pace in 17 years.

 

 

The Good News about #TaxReform

 

 

#DrugFreeMO

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2018 Farm Bill Passes the House

2018/06/21

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congresswoman Vicky Hartzler (MO-04) made the following statement upon the House’s passage of the 2018 Farm Bill.

 

“Missouri farmers work hard every day to feed the world, and they need the certainty that this farm bill provides. This bill ensures the American consumer continues to enjoy the safest, most abundant food supply in the world by strengthening safeguards and improving public/private risk management programs that are vital to American agriculture. In addition, the Farm Bill makes significant investments in rural broadband, promotes trade, invests in research and development, and expands conservation acreage.

 

“This bill contains historic improvements to the SNAP program to help recipients break the cycle of poverty by improving work opportunities for able-bodied adults receiving federal nutrition assistance. This bill promotes work and individual success while empowering those dependent on government assistance. These common-sense improvements will reduce unemployment and help people move from dependency to independence and self-sufficiency,” said Hartzler. 

 

Specifically, the Farm Bill:

 

  • Maintains crop insurance and reauthorizes and strengthens Agriculture Risk Coverage and Price Loss Coverage programs.
  • Streamlines existing work requirements for able-bodied SNAP recipients, providing them with work training to increase SNAP recipients’ opportunities and help them move from government assistance to a good paying job.
  • Expands access to working land programs, increases acreage for Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) ground to 29 million acres, and includes language Rep. Hartzler authored to allow grazing on CRP lands.
  • Authorizes substantial funding for the expansion of rural broadband.
  • Establishes new programs to protect the health of the nation’s livestock.
  • Improves assistance for specialty crops and reduces fraud in organic imports.
  • Helps beginning farmers and ranchers establish themselves in agriculture.

 

The Senate is expected to take up their version of the Farm Bill next week.

 

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Interested members of the media may contact Anna Swick at anna.swick@mail.house.gov

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Hartzler Statement on President’s Immigration Executive Order

2018/06/20

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congresswoman Vicky Hartzler (MO-04) made the following statement about the executive order President Trump signed today on immigration:

 

“I’m pleased that President Trump has addressed the upsetting issue of children being separated from their parents at the border. Although this practice has been going on since the Obama Administration and was put in place with the intent of keeping children out of adult detention areas for extended periods of time, it is clear we need to modify this policy.

 

“For decades, America has felt the repercussions of a failed, outdated immigration system that has rewarded those who enter this country illegally at the expense of those who have followed the law. It has been over thirty years since meaningful immigration reform has been signed into law and now is the time to fix this system. I am hopeful we can come together on legislation that fixes the problem and that is just and fair.”

 

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Interested members of the media may contact Anna Swick at anna.swick@mail.house.gov

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VICKY'S VIEW: Remembering One of Our Own

2018/06/15

Confronting the Drug Epidemic

This week, the House addressed opioid abuse with a line-up of more than 30 bills to confront this epidemic.  

 

Click here or on the image above to see the story of Samantha Huntley, who fell victim to opioid abuse.

On Wednesday, I spoke at a press conference addressing the House’s efforts to confront opioid abuse and I shared the story of Samantha Huntley, a Kickapoo cheerleader from Springfield who died of a heroin overdose when she was 20. I shared the same story with the rest of the House on Thursday. Samantha’s story is a tragic one— she died much too young and with too much promise. Samantha was in a car crash when she was 16, broke her back in three places, and was prescribed opioids by her doctor to handle the pain. After he stopped prescribing them, Samantha began doing heroin. When she was in the deepest throes of her addiction, she told her mom it was like two different people lived inside of her— she wanted to escape the grip of addiction, but sadly, ultimately failed. She overdosed in her bedroom at home, three days after returning from drug rehab. It is a story I will never forget. 

I “met” Sam through her mom, Julie Oziah-Gideon, at the high school assemblies I held in conjunction with my second annual Drug Free Missouri Week. Julie spoke alongside motivational speaker Tom Krause and me, telling students about Sam’s story. The assemblies were well-received, but all involved acknowledged more could be done to fight drug abuse in our communities.

The House took action the last two years when it passed almost $4 billion in funding to combat opioid abuse and this week when we passed over 30 bills tackling the opioid crisis. Part of this strategy involves providing law enforcement with the tools they need to get dangerous drugs out of our schools and communities. This includes the interception of illicit opioids at international mail facilities as well.

But a crackdown by authorities is only part of the answer. In the House we are working to improve access to treatment and recovery services, encourage non-addictive opioid alternatives to treat pain, and measures to address high prescribing rates while enhancing drug monitoring programs. See more about the bills we have passed this week at opioidcrisis.gop.

Opioids have been wreaking havoc on Americans and communities for far too long. In 2018, more than 2 million Americans suffered from addiction to opioids. Sadly, more than 64,000 Americans died from overdoses in 2016. One hundred and fifteen people in the United States die from opioid overdoses every day. Hopefully, the actions Congress took this week will start reversing this tragic trend and future Samanthas will get to live.

 

Providing Veterans with the Best Health Care Available

 

Click here or on the image above to see me speak about my bill at the House Veterans Affairs Committee legislative hearing on Wednesday. 

Since first coming to Congress in 2011, I have made it a priority to serve our veterans. As such, I have written legislation to make the Veterans Administration (VA) more competitive in recruiting top-quality physicians to care for our men and women who have served. This bipartisan bill, the VA Hiring Enhancement Act, H.R. 5521, authorizes the VA to begin recruiting and hiring medical residents on a timeline that is more competitive with the private sector. This bill also does away with non-compete agreements for private physicians if they are being considered for positions within the Veterans Health Administration, so the VA can hire the best health care professionals to serve those who have served us. Our veterans have served us; it is time for us to provide them with the best health care available. Achieving that includes eliminating the barriers that stand in the way of the VA recruiting the best people.

On Wednesday, the House Veterans Affairs Committee held a hearing to review my bill - I am excited to see it progress forward. With this bill, we are getting closer to increased quality of veteran care.

 

North Korea: Historic Progress

The world stopped and watched this week as President Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un met in Singapore – the first meeting between sitting leaders of both countries. 


This summit has brought about renewed optimism that the Korean Peninsula could be on the way to peace and stability. South Korean President Moon Jae-In released a statement, on Facebook, expressing that optimism: “The June 12 Sentosa Agreement will be recorded as a historic event that has helped break down the last remaining Cold War legacy on earth.” He added, “It is a great victory achieved by both the United States and the two Koreas, and a huge step forward for people across the world who long for peace.”

CNN agreed this event was monumental. Anchor Alisyn Camerota said, “The devil will be in the details, but for the moment, it’s a historic day and he’s achieved more than any other U.S. sitting President at least with this historic summit and handshake.”

President Trump’s goal is, of course, a complete, verifiable, irreversible denuclearized North Korea, and only time will tell whether North Korea, a long-time international threat, will honor its pledge to abandon its nuclear program. There is much work to be done in the months and years ahead to ensure North Korea pursues the path of peace and prosperity, but the Singapore Summit has been a good start.

Photos of the Week

Thank you, Governor Parson, for hosting the Missouri delegation Monday morning to discuss how we can work together to move Missouri forward.

 

It was a pleasure talking with young leaders of American House Council Tuesday afternoon about their equestrian activities and the benefits of equine therapy for veterans.

 

American Foundation for Suicide Prevention made the time to stop by my Washington office Tuesday to discuss the epidemic of suicide in our country, and how it impacts Missouri residents. I so appreciated hearing their stories.

 

On Wednesday I had a great meeting with Ameris from Bunceton High School, who was on a Close Up trip to Washington D.C. 

 

It was great to meet with H.R. Block on Wednesday about the products and services they provide to Missouri’s Fourth District. Thank you for stopping by!

 

A big thanks to Heartland Credit Union Association for making the time to stop by my Washington D.C. office on Wednesday!

 

Later on Wednesday, Missouri Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Violence took the time to stop by my office to discuss preventing and addressing domestic and sexual violence in Missouri.

 

I was so glad to get the chance to speak with students from Missouri Electric Cooperative when they were in D.C. on Wednesday.

 

I had a great meeting Wednesday with SourceAmerica to discuss employment opportunities for Americans with disabilities. Thank you for stopping by!

 

On Thursday morning I participated in an important House Armed Services Committee hearing on Navy and Air Force depot policy issues and infrastructure concerns.

 

In March I introduced a bill that would allow the Department of Justice and the Department of Homeland Security to detect, track, and engage with drones that pose a security risk. On Thursday, Dedrone met with me and discussed why this bill is so crucial to national security.

 

I enjoying being with my team at the Congressional Baseball Game on Thursday! It was a year ago yesterday when a deranged gunman shot Steve Scalise & hurt others. I’m so thankful Rep. Scalise was with us Thursday, starting at 2nd base! #GodIsGood

 

The Good News about Tax Reform

There is more good news this week regarding the tax reform package that is helping to send out economy soaring.

The National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) reports small business optimism rose in May to its highest level in more than 30 years. Reports of pay increases also hit record highs – and the new tax law is being credited as one of the reasons. The NFIB report states: “The new tax code is returning money to the private sector where history makes clear it will be better invested than by a government bureaucracy. Regulatory costs, as significant as taxes, are being reduced.”

 

#DrugFreeMO

 

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Hartzler, 55 Members Ask HHS to Investigate Planned Parenthood Cover-Up of Child Sex Abuse

2018/06/08

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congresswoman Vicky Hartzler (MO-04) and fifty-five other members of Congress called on the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) yesterday to investigate Planned Parenthood after a report came out last week chronicling a longstanding pattern of the organization’s failure to report the sexual abuse of minors.

 

“It is unthinkable that Planned Parenthood would perform an abortion on a young girl with no questions asked,” Congresswoman Hartzler said. “The thought makes me shudder. It is alarming that an organization with a signature pattern of failure to report child sexual abuse continues to receive taxpayer money. We need to investigate how widespread Planned Parenthood’s complicity truly is; this abuse needs to stop.”

 

Live Action released a report and documentary series last week that included accounts from victims who had been to Planned Parenthood, former Planned Parenthood employee testimonies, state health department reports and undercover footage. The report details the long history the organization has of looking the other way when girls who are likely victims of sex abuse, as young as 12 and 13, are brought in for an abortion.

 

Live Action President and Founder Lila Rose stated, “When a child is the victim of sexual abuse by a family member or the victim of a pimp who has forced her into a life of sex-slavery, she deserves to be protected, not to be victimized again by an abortion facility that willingly turns a blind eye to her torture. We are grateful that so many members of Congress are pushing to initiate an investigation into Planned Parenthood and help put an end to this horrific cycle of abuse.

 

“The fact that Planned Parenthood has for decades participated in the ongoing abuse of children proves that its priority is selling abortions, not caring for the most vulnerable of girls. Planned Parenthood’s culture of cover-up must end, the cycle of abuse of innocent children must end, and Planned Parenthood’s half a billion dollars in annual federal funding must end. Taxpayers cannot be forced to subsidize these abuses of children.”

 

See the full letter below (or click here) that Congresswoman Hartzler and her colleagues sent to HHS yesterday.

 

June 7, 2018

 

Alex M. Azar II

Secretary

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

200 Independence Avenue, S.W.

Washington, DC 20201

 

Dear Secretary Azar,

 

We are writing to express deep concern with a recent report compiling several court cases, state health department reports, and testimonials from former Planned Parenthood employees that highlight multiple instances where Planned Parenthood facilities across the country have repeatedly and deliberately failed to report the suspected sexual abuse of minors in their care. As you know, Planned Parenthood is the largest recipient of Title X family planning funds, receiving about $60 million annually. In light of this report and the influx of federal resources to this organization, we respectfully request that you investigate Planned Parenthood, as well as other current Title X recipients to determine how widespread the failure of abuse reporting is.

 

As you know, since 1999, federal law has annually included the expectation that all recipients of federal Title X family planning funds follow all state laws requiring the reporting of suspected child sexual abuse, rape, and incest:

 

“Notwithstanding any other provision of law, no provider of services under Title X of the Public Health Service Act shall be exempt from any State law requiring notification or the reporting of child abuse, child molestation, sexual abuse, rape, or incest.”

 

The Department of Health and Human Services’ (HHS) Office of Population Affairs reminds Title X recipients of the need to follow state reporting requirements annually in its grant announcements. The requirement is also reiterated in the latest Office of Population Affairs Title X manual from April 2014.

 

We know that reporting cases of abuse or suspected abuse is of increasing concern to your agency. In HHS’ recently published proposed rule governing the Title X family planning program, a new provision was incorporated to “address explicitly the requirement for Title X projects to comply with all State and local laws regarding the notification or reporting of crimes involving sexual exploitation, child abuse, child molestation, sexual abuse, rape, incest, intimate partner violence, and human trafficking.” This new provision interprets federal appropriations law so as to require Title X recipients to report on intimate partner violence as well as instances of human trafficking for all ages. This is in addition to reporting on sexual abuse cases involving minors.

 

Despite the increased attention to combatting sexual abuse, the cases detailed in the enclosed report demonstrate that Planned Parenthood has continuously embraced a culture of turning a blind eye to suspected abuse. Rather than reporting suspicious incidents to authorities as state law often requires, Planned Parenthood has chosen repeatedly to perform abortions on children as young as 12 and 13 years old and then return these young clients to their abusers. The following cases document how Planned Parenthood’s failure to report has allowed abusers to get away with years of additional, ongoing abuse of their victims.

 

  • Washington, 2014: George Savanah had repeatedly raped his daughter and impregnated her when she was 14, 16, and 17 years old. Each time he got her pregnant, he took her to Planned Parenthood and forced her to get an abortion. Planned Parenthood repeatedly failed to report the suspicious incidents to authorities, even though the victim was a minor.
  • Colorado, 2012: Timothy David Smith had been sexually abusing his stepdaughter for seven years. When she became pregnant at 13, he took her to Planned Parenthood. Planned Parenthood performed an abortion without notifying the child’s parents and without reporting the suspected abuse as required by Colorado law. Planned Parenthood then sent the child back home with Smith, where he continued to rape and abuse her. 
  • Ohio, 2004: Denise Fairbanks had been sexually abused by her father since she was 13. When she became pregnant at age 16, he took her to Planned Parenthood and forced her to have an abortion. Denise told the staff that she was being forced to have sex, but they ignored her pleas and refused to report the incident to authorities. After the abortion, Denise was sent back home with her father, where he continued to abuse her.

 

Despite the evidence that reporting problems seems to be a pervasive part of the organization’s culture, Planned Parenthood facilities continue to receive Title X funding.

 

The report’s findings suggest that abusers feel comfortable taking their victims to Planned Parenthood. We are therefore requesting an investigation into Title X recipients, particularly Planned Parenthood, to determine how widespread this failure is and if there are other instances where Planned Parenthood failed in its duty to report suspected child abuse to local authorities and to HHS.

 

We specifically request the following information from HHS:

 

  • All records (including from regional offices) regarding any and all incidents of Planned Parenthood Title X recipients’ failure to report suspected sexual abuse of minors in their care;
  • A record of the steps taken to bring the recipient into compliance each time it was discovered that a Planned Parenthood Title X recipient failed to report suspected abuse, and documentation of the consequences for each recipient that refused to come into compliance; and
  • Data from Planned Parenthood Title X facilities for the past 10 years showing in the aggregate how many children below their particular states’ age of consent received services that would indicate they were sexually active (such as abortions and tests or treatments for sexually transmitted infections), as well as the number of reports of suspected child sexual abuse Planned Parenthood made to law enforcement during that same period.

 

Thank you for your attention to this pressing matter and we look forward to receiving your response.

 

Sincerely,

 

Rep. Vicky Hartzler

Sen. Joni K. Ernst

Rep. Christopher H. Smith

Rep. Mark Walker

Rep. Diane Black

Rep. Bill Flores

Rep. Roger Williams

Rep. Ted Budd

Rep. Walter B. Jones

Rep. Randy Weber

Rep. Pete Olson

Rep. Mike Kelly

Rep. Steve King

Rep. Ralph Norman

Rep. Steve Pearce

Rep. Ann Wagner

Rep. Jody B. Hice

Rep. Ralph Abraham, M.D.

Rep. Roger Marshall, M.D.

Rep. Robert Aderholt

Rep. H. Morgan Griffith

Rep. Keith Rothfus

Rep. Francis Rooney

Rep. Bob Gibbs

Rep. David Rouzer

Rep. Andy Harris, M.D.

Rep. Jim Banks

Rep. Tom Cole

Rep. Richard Hudson

Rep. Barry Loudermilk

Rep. Glenn Grothman

Rep. Brian Babin, D.D.S.

Rep. Gus M. Bilirakis

Rep. Tim Walberg

Rep. Blaine Luetkemeyer

Rep. Jackie Walorski

Rep. Ron Estes

Rep. Michael C. Burgess, M.D.

Rep. Claudia Tenney

Rep. Steve Chabot

Rep. Steve Russell

Rep. Rick Crawford

Rep. Lou Barletta

Rep. Ken Buck

Rep. Ted S. Yoho, DVM

Rep. John Rutherford

Rep. Earl L. “Buddy” Carter

Rep. Sean P. Duffy

Rep. Debbie Lesko

Rep. Doug LaMalfa

Rep. Doug Lamborn

Rep. Mike Johnson

Rep. Marsha Blackburn

Rep. Mia Love

Rep. K. Michael Conaway

Sen. James Lankford

 

-30-

Interested members of the media may contact Anna Swick at anna.swick@mail.house.gov

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(July 16, 2018) Bill to Honor Spc. Sterling Wyatt

2018-07-16 21:41:36


(June 14, 2018) Hartzler Floor Speech on Samantha Huntley

2018-06-15 17:50:48


(June 12, 2018) Reaction to North Korea Summit

2018-06-14 19:39:52


(June 13, 2018) House Veterans Affairs Committee Legislative Hearing

2018-06-14 14:20:01


(June 11, 2018) Hartzler Meets with Governor Parson

2018-06-13 19:42:25


(May 22, 2018) Rep. Hartzler Speaks in Support of FY19 NDAA

2018-05-23 15:40:53


(April 17, 2018) Interview on the Farm Bill with RFDTV

2018-04-30 13:41:56


(March 14, 2018) Honoring Slain Clinton Police Officer Christopher Ryan Morton

2018-03-15 21:41:36


(Dec. 14, 2017) Hartzler Congratulates University of Central MIssouri Jennies on NCAA Div II Win

2017-12-15 21:59:23


(Dec. 6, 2017) Hartzler Supports Police Protecting Children Act

2017-12-08 18:36:38


(Nov. 14, 2017) Hartzler Praises 2018 NDAA Bill

2017-11-14 22:37:00


Rep. Hartzler on Right to Try Act

2017-11-14 17:21:08


Rep. Hartzler Reflects on Veterans Day

2017-11-09 16:48:56


Hartzler Recognizes Fort Leonard Wood Soldiers on House Floor

2017-10-13 19:20:46


Rep. Vicky Hartzler's Weekly Newsletter Update - Oct. 14

2017-10-12 19:54:50


Rep. Hartzler Gives Testimony on Opioid Crisis

2017-10-11 18:55:54


Newsletter: Budget Passes, House Makes a Stand for Life

2017-10-06 16:31:39


Rep. Hartzler on Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act

2017-10-05 14:28:41


Securing the Peace After the Fall of ISIL

2017-10-04 16:26:30


Rep. Vicky Hartzler on Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act

2017-10-04 15:42:45


Contact Information

1023 Longworth HOB
Washington, DC 20515
Phone 202-225-2876
Fax 202-225-2695
hartzler.house.gov

Vicky Hartzler is the Representative for Missouri’s 4th Congressional District, having been elected to that position on November 2, 2010.

She was born October 13, 1960 in Cass County, was raised on a farm in Archie, and lives with her husband, Lowell and daughter, Tiffany, on a working farm in Cass County. She is a graduate of both the University of Missouri-Columbia and Central Missouri State University (now University of Central Missouri) graduating summa cum laude with a B.S. in Education from MU and a M.S. in Education from Central Missouri.

She was first elected to political office in November of 1994 as the State Representative from Missouri’s 124th District. She served three terms, leaving in January of 2001. Prior to her time in politics Vicky taught family and consumer sciences for 11 years in Lebanon and Belton.

In 2004, she served as spokesperson for the Coalition to Protect Marriage, a state constitutional amendment which passed resoundingly and led to Missouri recognizing traditional marriage as a union of a man and a woman. In 2005, she was appointed as Chair of the Missouri Women’s Council, serving for two years.

Vicky and Lowell Hartzler own a company with three farm equipment stores in the 4th District.

The Hartzler family lives near Harrisonville in Cass County.


Serving With

Ann Wagner

MISSOURI's 2nd DISTRICT

Blaine Luetkemeyer

MISSOURI's 3rd DISTRICT

Sam Graves

MISSOURI's 6th DISTRICT

Billy Long

MISSOURI's 7th DISTRICT

Jason Smith

MISSOURI's 8th DISTRICT

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