Congressman Steve Cohen

Representing the 9th District of Tennessee

Voting for Music Modernization Act to Help Older Entertainers Get Deserved Compensation

April 16, 2018
Enewsletters

Dear Friend,

This week, I voted for the Music Modernization Act to help Memphis’ music economy and senior entertainers. I also renewed my efforts to protect Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation of the Trump-Russia connection, observed Holocaust Remembrance Day, was interviewed on national television about President Trump and impeachment, managed the House floor debate on an absurd GOP Balanced Budget Amendment, was recognized for my work on animal welfare and offered a health tip about fresh fruits and vegetables. Keep reading to learn more about my week and follow me on Twitter and Facebook to see more updates as they happen. 

Voting for Music Modernization Act to Help Older Entertainers Get Deserved Compensation
Renewing Efforts to Protect Special Counsel Robert Mueller
Observing Holocaust Remembrance Day
Talking to CNN’s Wolf Blitzer about Libby Pardon, Comey Memoir
Answering Questions About Impeachment on MSNBC
Managing Floor Debate on Phony Balanced Budget Amendment
Being Recognized for Support of Animal Rights
Doing Business with the Federal Government 
Signing Up for “Congress On Your Corner,” a Future Telephone Town Halls and this e-Newsletter
Weekly Health Tip
Quote of the Week


Voting for Music Modernization Act to Help Older Entertainers Get Deserved Compensation

On Wednesday, I was pleased to vote out of the Judiciary Committee a good compromise bill that has been long in the making and will help the Memphis music economy and many older musicians. The Music Modernization Act (H.R. 5447) updates several provisions of the copyright laws dealing with music licensing. The bill would close a loophole that prevents musicians who recorded before February 15, 1972 from receiving payments from the streaming of their recordings. Memphis has a rich music history, from W.C. Handy to the Grammy-winning “Uptown Funk” (recorded in Memphis’ Royal Studios). Too often, those who have given their talent to their musical art have not been properly compensated even as others have profited from their work. This bill will help a lot of older musicians and I look forward to its passage on the House floor soon. See my enthusiastic support for it here.


Renewing Efforts to Protect Special Counsel Robert Mueller

As the Ranking Member of the Judiciary Subcommittee on the Constitution and Civil Justice, I have been at the forefront of efforts to protect Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election. With the his tweets and mounting legal developments from the Special Counsel’s investigation, as well as other investigations, this erratic President’s intentions are unclear but troubling. I worked with my Judiciary Committee colleagues to merge my bipartisan Special Counsel Integrity Act with other proposals to craft a bill we expect will generate widespread support for protecting the rule of law. I joined my colleagues at a U.S. Capitol news conference Thursday morning where we introduced the Special Counsel Independence and Integrity Act. A bipartisan group of four U.S. Senators have introduced an identical measure.


Observing Holocaust Remembrance Day

Thursday evening, on Yom HaShoah, I went to the House floor for a speech to recall the horrendous events that took place 75 years ago and to vow as ever: never again. When I was a state senator in 1984, at the urging of my friend Ira Lipman, I sponsored and passed legislation to create the Tennessee Holocaust Commission and I served as an ex-officio member of the Commission for the remainder of my years in the Tennessee General Assembly. In my floor speech Thursday, I paraphrased for the House Record the lines from Elie Wiesel that close this newsletter below. See my remarks here.


Talking to CNN’s Wolf Blitzer about Libby Pardon, Comey Memoir

Shortly after President Trump pardoned former Vice President Dick Cheney’s chief of staff I. Lewis “Scooter” Libby, who was convicted of lying to the FBI, I went on CNN Friday afternoon to talk with Wolf Blitzer about that action and former FBI Director James Comey’s new memoir critical of the President. See my interview here.


Answering Questions About Impeachment on MSNBC

 

On Wednesday night, I was a guest on Lawrence O’Donnell’s “Last Word” on MSNBC where I was asked – on the day Speaker Paul Ryan announced his retirement – about growing Republican disillusionment with the President. See our exchange here.


Managing Floor Debate on Phony Balanced Budget Amendment

 


If it weren’t so cruelly cynical, it would be just another tired joke, but House Republicans were at it again Thursday, debating a Balanced Budget Amendment. I was asked to manage the Democratic members’ time for the floor debate and joined my colleagues in pointing out the absurdity of talking about balancing a budget immediately after the recent GOP Tax Scam that independent reviews indicate will lead to skyrocketing budget deficits. With control of the House, Senate and White House in Republican hands, the GOP’s professed desire to do something about deficits is not credible. The truth is that Republicans want to pay for the tax cuts for the very wealthy with cuts to social programs like Social Security Disability and Supplemental Nutrition Assistance (SNAP) and by sabotaging affordable health care.


Being Recognized for My Support of Animal Rights

 

On Wednesday evening, I was honored to be recognized as a “Humane Champion” for the eleventh straight year by the Humane Society of the United States at the U.S. Capitol for my support for animal welfare. My 2017 legislative record in support of animal rights and welfare earned a perfect “A+” rating, How we treat animals is a test of our character as a nation and I’m proud of my record.


Doing Business with the Federal Government

 


In an effort to ensure Memphis businesses are well-informed and competitive when trying to win contracts with the federal government, I will host my annual Federal Procurement Fair on Monday, April 23, at the University of Memphis FedEx Institute of Technology. The program – “Doing Business with the Federal Government” – will have on hand representatives of the General Service Administration, the Minority Business Development Agency, the U.S. Department of Transportation, the Tennessee Small Business Development Center and others. The event is designed to provide Memphis small business owners with information about the federal contracting process and the basics on doing business with the federal government. Contact my district office at 901-544-4131 for more details.


Signing Up for “Congress On Your Corner,” a Telephone Town Hall and this e-Newsletter


I enjoy meeting regularly with constituents in the district and helping get answers for them to questions about dealing with federal agencies. If you are interested in attending one of my “Congress on Your Corner” events, you can sign up here to receive notification.

For those who haven’t participated in a telephone town hall, it’s easy to sign up for them by usingthis form.  

If you would like to receive this weekly eNewsletter, or share it with others, you can do that withthis form.


Weekly Health Tip

I read with some concern a story in this week’s The Commercial Appeal about the pesticide residues found on certain fruits and vegetables tested by the consumer think tank The Environmental Working Group. Fresh fruits and vegetables are essential to good health, so this week I’m passing along some tips from the federal Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for keeping your food safe and nutritious.


Quote of the Week

“There may be times when we are powerless to prevent injustice, but there must never be a time when we fail to protest.” -- Elie Wiesel, December 10, 1986, The Nobel Peace Prize Lecture, Oslo, Norway.

 

As always, I remain,

Most sincerely,

Steve Cohen
Member of Congress