Dear Friend,

The coronavirus pandemic continues to ravage our country, with nearly 150,000 Americans dead, one in five workers unemployed, and no end in sight. It didn’t have to be this way. We’ve known since at least March that a national testing strategy would be key to protecting public health and safely reopening the economy, but the Trump administration has still failed to develop one. Months ago the House passed the Heroes Act, another comprehensive relief package that would strengthen testing and tracing and provide needed relief for individuals, families, and businesses on the frontlines. I continue to push for the Senate to act immediately on this bill. 

Here’s more about what I’m working on: 

Portland Will Not Be A Prop for the Trump Campaign

ImageFederal officers sent to Portland by Donald Trump have illegally detained people and targeted protestors with impact munitions and tear gas—and Trump is using these terrifying images in his campaign ads. I have called for these federal agents to leave Portland and I am demanding answers about their actions. After my colleagues and I called for action, the Inspectors General for the Department of Homeland Security and Department of Justice launched investigations. I’m also leading an effort through the appropriations process to defund this overreach by federal agents, and I have called for Acting DHS Sec. Wolf to resign. Thousands of peaceful protestors have poured into the streets to speak out against these abuses and say loudly and clearly that Black Lives Matter. We will not stand for this.  


Connecting With You

ImageEarlier this month I held three telephone town hall meetings to hear directly from the people I’m honored to represent. More than 7,500 people joined the meetings to raise urgent concerns about the economy, help for working families, reopening schools, housing, and many more topics. I understand the frustration and anger that many people feel after waiting for weeks or months for the Oregon Employment Department to process their claims. The House passed the Heroes Act to extend the additional $600/week in unemployment benefits, which are a vital lifeline for more than 500,000 Oregonians and their families. I called on the Senate to take action immediately on this critical legislation. I have also called for an extension to the eviction moratorium for people in federally-owned housing. Oregonians are still protected through September, but with 1 in 3 people in the US unable to pay their rent or mortgage in July, the housing crisis will only increase in severity.

Putting Kids and Families First

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Here’s how one mom described the child care crisis to me: “if child care crumbles, if it even gets a fraction more difficult to find, then our collective ability to work crumbles too." This week the House will vote on two bills to address the child care crisis, and I’ll keep pushing for action. Thanks to the national and local leaders who joined me for a terrific discussion about how to solve this crisis; you can watch it here. I also recently released an in-depth report about the state of child care in Oregon and across our country. It includes many stories from local parents, providers, and workers. You can read it here

Parents are also wrestling with uncertainty over whether and how schools will reopen. The decision to reopen schools must be based on science and local conditions, and must make the health and safety of students, teachers, staff, and families the top priority. The Trump administration wants to force all schools to reopen soon, which ignores science and would be dangerous for many students, educators, and families. When schools can safely reopen, they will need our help. Our public schools and districts need substantial, additional funding to make sure they can equitably serve students and keep everyone in the school building safe. The House passed the Heroes Act to make a $58 billion investment in K-12 schools. The Senate must immediately pass this legislation to invest in our students and our future. 


Moving Forward, with a Climate Action Plan 

ImageRecently the House passed the Moving Forward Act, a climate-centric infrastructure package that will help rebuild and invest in roads, bridges, transit systems, schools, child care, housing, broadband access, and more. It will create millions of jobs & advance policies to address the climate crisis. As Co-Chair of the House Oceans Caucus, I’m pleased that the Moving Forward Act will make robust investments in coastal restoration and resilience projects. And with more than 30 million Americans unemployed, I’m pleased that the Moving Forward Act includes my bill to help people who have historically faced barriers to employment, particularly women and people of color, access support services and Registered Apprenticeships.

After more than a year of hearings, roundtable discussions, meetings with stakeholders, and input from thousands of community members and leaders from Oregon and around the country, I joined my colleagues on the Select Committee on the Climate Crisis in releasing our comprehensive plan, Solving the Climate Crisis: The Congressional Action Plan for a Clean Energy Economy and a Healthy, Resilient, and Just America. Our Climate Action Plan sets our nation on a path to reach net-zero emissions no later than mid-century and net-negative thereafter. Importantly, it focuses on the needs of frontline communities, accelerating our transition to a 100 percent clean energy economy, and creating opportunities for good-paying jobs. I am convening discussions with leaders across Northwest Oregon and you can follow along on social media using #OregonClimateAction

In Case You Missed It

  • My bipartisan Edith’s Bill will help older Americans targeted by financial scammers to recoup their financial losses so they can age with dignity.  
  • Last week the House passed the landmark Great American Outdoors Act, which provides permanent and full funding for the Land and Water Conservation Fund and will address the maintenance backlog at National Parks and public lands. This historic bill will help mitigate the climate crisis, protect the natural areas that make our landscapes special, and make access to the outdoors more equitable. 
  • partnered with Senator Elizabeth Warren to re-introduce the bipartisan Retirement Savings Lost and Found Act to protect Americans’ retirement savings as the move between jobs by creating a national, online “lost and found" for Americans to track their retirement accounts. 
  • I introduced a resolution expressing the sense of the House that all young children and families should have access to high-quality child care that is affordable for families. I was pleased to be joined by 20 of my colleagues.
 

   

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