Holding a District Issues Meeting
This week I held my District Issues Meeting to discuss legislative priorities and the issues raised by my constituents. I also voted to send articles of impeachment against President Trump to the Senate; commended Virginia state legislators for their decisive vote to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment; questioned expert witnesses at a hearing on the climate crisis; attended a mural unveiling at Bruce Elementary School; and announced significant grants to institutions in the 9th Congressional District. Keep reading to learn more about my week and follow me on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram to see more updates as they happen.
Holding My District Issues Meeting
Voting to Send Articles of Impeachment to the Senate
Commending Virginia Legislators on Passing the Equal Rights Amendment
Questioning Expert Witnesses at a Hearing on the Climate Crisis
Honoring the Bruce 3 with Mural Unveiling
Co-Sponsoring the Most Bills that Became Law in 2019
Announcing $6.6 Million in Homelessness Assistance Grants
Noting $3.4 Million “Big Data” Grant to University of Memphis
Celebrating National Endowment for the Arts Grants
Weekly Health Tip
Quote of the Week
This morning, I held a District Issues Meeting with constituents in my office in the Clifford Davis-Odell Horton Federal Building downtown. I updated my constituents on my activities as a senior member of both the Judiciary and Transportation and Infrastructure Committees and expressed my concerns about the impetuous, lawless and reckless President I voted to impeach. Most if not all of the Ninth Congressional District residents who attended appeared to support my position. They also expressed interest in House Democrats’ actions regarding raising the minimum wage and protecting voting rights. We also talked about the need for an infrastructure bill to create good jobs building and improving roads, bridges, railroads, ports and airports. We discussed the need for better housing, solutions to the problem of student loan debt and the need to protect Social Security. We talked about Iran and agreed that, while General Qassim Suleimani was a bad person, killing him makes us less safe in the Middle East and exposes our soldiers to higher risks while giving ISIS a freer hand. It was a good meeting.
Impeachment trial managers walk articles to the Senate
On Wednesday, I voted to appoint seven House members to manage the prosecution of two articles of impeachment against President Trump in a Senate trial. This is a historic and solemn moment for our country. This is only the third time such a trial has been held in the Senate. See my statement on these developments here.
Both chambers of the Virginia General Assembly this week took historic votes to pass the Equal Rights Amendment, making it the crucial 38th state to ratify the measure that will enshrine equal rights for women in the U.S. Constitution. See my statement in a release from the House Judiciary Committee here.
On Wednesday, I questioned expert witnesses on the climate crisis at a House Committee on Science, Space and Technology hearing. I asked about the adverse health consequences of climate change and the impact of plastic pollution on our oceans. See my release about the hearing, and my exchange with the witnesses, here.
On Friday morning, I went to Bruce Elementary to honor the Bruce 3 -- Dwania Kyles, Harry Williams and Menelik Fombi -- students who integrated Bruce Elementary School in 1961. These students were part of the larger group of students, the Memphis 13, who integrated Rozelle, Gordon and Springdale that same year. I reminded the crowd of recently deceased Civil Rights leader and a dear friend of mine, Russell Sugarmon, and his involvement in integrating the schools, and why he should be remembered along with the Bruce 3. The new mural memorializes their courageous and historic role in integrating public schools. I was proud to speak to the Bruce students and celebrate this important chapter in Memphis and American history.
I co-sponsored the highest number of bills that were signed into law in 2019, a legislative analysis service announced this week. Among those measures were H.R. 1327, the Never Forget the Heroes Act, permanently authorizing the 9/11 Victims Compensation Fund; H.R. 3311, the Small Business Reorganization Act; H.R. 3151, the Taxpayer First Act; and H.R. 724, the Preventing Animal Cruelty and Torture Act. I will continue to support legislation that benefits Memphis and represents the interests and concerns of my constituents. See my release on the distinction here.
Earlier this week, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development released “continuum of care” grants for 27 Memphis homelessness assistance programs. See my release about the grants here.
On Tuesday, I announced that the University of Memphis will be receiving a $3.4 million grant to teach students to handle “Big Data,” an increasingly important skill in the modern economy. See my release about the grant here.
This week, the National Endowment for the Arts announced grants to three Memphis arts programs. See my release about those grants here.
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Weekly Health Tip
Half the people with glaucoma don’t know they have it. January is National Glaucoma Awareness Month, calling attention to a group of diseases that damage the eyes’ optic nerves that can result in blindness. African Americans and those with diabetes are at higher risk. See the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidance on glaucoma here.
“The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy. The true neighbor will risk his position, his prestige, and even his life for the welfare of others.” -- Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Strength to Love (1963).
I wish everyone a safe, thoughtful and productive Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. National Holiday and Day of Service on Monday.
As always, I remain
Member of Congress