News from Representative DeGette

       

Dear Friend,

This week, while President Trump and his GOP allies in Congress worked to set our country back, we were also moving forward on some important issues.

In a reckless move, on Tuesday the President announced he will let sanctions go forward against Iran -- a blow both to U.S. international leadership and global stability. This decision will breach our agreement with several of our country’s allies and Tehran. Although the agreement wasn’t perfect, we shouldn’t walk away by defaulting on our obligations under it; instead, the United States must work with other countries toward fulfilling the goal of a non-nuclear Iran.

On Wednesday, the Energy and Commerce Committee voted to advance two bipartisan bills I authored. The Over-The-Counter Monograph Safety, Innovation and Reform Act (H.R. 5333) gives the Food and Drug Administration new tools to streamline how the agency reviews more than 300,000 over-the-counter medicines in the monograph pathway system, providing the first update to this process in more than 40 years. And the Alternatives to Opioids (ALTO) in the Emergency Department Act (H.R. 5197) expands the ALTO program, which was piloted in 10 Colorado emergency departments, clearing the way for other facilities in the state and across the country to try out initiatives that limit opioid prescriptions.

But this is only a start, particularly in the long battle ahead to end opioid abuse. The epidemic is decades in the making, the result of multiple failures along the drug supply chain, which my colleagues and I have uncovered in our ongoing investigation. On Tuesday, I questioned a panel of drug distribution company executives about how this happened, and what we learned will influence our response to this deadly epidemic. 

While many of my colleagues and I are working to strengthen investments in people and priorities, President Trump is undermining them. This week, in a desperate attempt to appear fiscally responsible, he requested his GOP allies in Congress strip $15 billion from previously approved spending bills. Among the cruel cuts: $7 billion for the Children’s Health Insurance Program, which provides coverage to millions of children from low-income homes. Other reductions are proposed for public housing, environmental protection, and more. While the president splurges on lavish golf weekends and members of his Cabinet are living the good life on the taxpayers’ dime, the most vulnerable among us stand to suffer. Why do Trump and his cronies expect everyone to sacrifice except themselves?

I’m now back home in Colorado for  meetings with members of our community. This morning, I hosted a roundtable with local stakeholders to determine the best ways to lower the unacceptably high lead levels in some Denver households' drinking water, a result of corrosion of lead household pipes. I requested this meeting while in Denver last Friday and was pleased to see so many involved in this problem come together quickly to find solutions.

Later, my tortilla-rolling skills were put to the test when I once again competed in the Tortillas for Tepeyac event for Denver’s Clinica Tepeyac. I had a wonderful time, but then again, I’m always pleased to roll up my sleeves, in Congress or in tortilla dough, to promote vital community health centers.  

And as we look toward Mother’s Day this Sunday, I’d like to honor all the mothers in Colorado, across America and around the world. Our job isn’t always easy and it’s never done, but the hard work and sacrifice are always worth it in our efforts to love, nurture and instill good values in the children we raise. We can and should support this important role by ensuring that all women receive equal pay, economic opportunity, access to reproductive rights, and more, because families thrive when women thrive. This weekend I’ll be thinking about my own mother, who lives on through the lessons and values she passed along to me, and spending time with my own daughters. Being their mom remains the greatest joy of my life.

As always, you can visit my website, where you can read my positions on issues and learn about the different ways my staff can assist you. While you’re there, be sure to visit the “Contact” page and send me an email about what matters most to you and your family. Finally, be sure to share this email with your friends, family, and neighbors so that they too can be a part of this important dialogue.

Sincerely,

Diana DeGette
Member of Congress

 

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