News from Representative DeGette

       

Dear Friend,

With your ideas in mind from another spirited community forum and a panel discussion about water policy and conservation in Colorado, I spent this week in Washington, where I worked to push back on many of the cruel and reckless policies of the Trump administration while also moving some bipartisan objectives forward.

House Republican leaders have quashed our best chance at enacting comprehensive immigration reform this year, including passage of a DREAM Act, by ensuring that our discharge petition fell just short of the threshold of support needed to send legislation to the floor. I am proud to be the first Democrat to have signed on to this petition, and despite its failure, I will continue working in a bipartisan manner to move our nation forward to a more just immigration policy that strengthens our communities and keeps families together.

Meanwhile, Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced on Monday that domestic abuse and gang violence will no longer be grounds for asylum, blocking entry to the U.S for countless refugees from around the world. I strongly oppose this heartless and cruel policy. Our country must remain a haven to those in desperate need of safety and security, most of whom are women and children. This administration's lack of empathy knows no bounds.

I’m also supporting the Keep Families Together Act, which will be introduced in the House next week. This bill will prohibit the Department of Homeland Security from separating children from their parents, except in very narrow, extraordinary circumstances where it is in the children’s best interest, and independent child welfare officials will oversee each such case. It will also tightly limit criminal prosecution of those who seek asylum. We can't let the inhumanity of family separation at the border continue, and I urge my colleagues to pass this bill which will help put a stop to it. 

The Federal Communications Commission’s repeal of Net Neutrality went into full effect on Monday, meaning internet providers now have more control over what content you can see online and how quickly you can access it. But our fight to protect the free and open internet isn’t over. The Senate has voted to restore these rules, and I support similar legislation in the House. I’ve signed a discharge petition to bring it up for a vote. Net Neutrality is essential to promoting freedom of expression, competition and economic growth on the internet, and we must save it. 

There was cause for celebration in the diabetes community this week when the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services announced that coverage of Continuous Glucose Monitoring (CGM) supplies would be allowed for people who link them to smartphones, tablets and other personal electronic devices to share data and alerts with other people. As co-chair of the Congressional Diabetes Caucus, I am extremely heartened by this good news. CGM shouldn’t have to mean being connected to only one kind of device to transmit data and alerts. This welcome change in policy means freedom from needless worry for all involved.

On Thursday, the Energy and Commerce Committee's Environment Subcommittee held a hearing on protecting chemical facilities from terrorism. I questioned a panel of experts about measures to safeguard nearby residents against toxic emissions from these facilities, including Suncor's refinery near Elyria-Swansea, a potential hazard for thousands. Since many of the neighborhoods that border these places are low-income and communities of color, it means that protecting those who live there isn't just about safety -- it's also a matter of environmental justice. I hope our committee works in a bipartisan manner to achieve progress on this priority.

On Tuesday, I was pleased to talk with members of the Colorado Business Roundtable who were in town for their annual Colorado Capital Conference. We discussed the bipartisan initiatives that members of our state’s delegation to Congress have undertaken together. The issues on which we’ve found common ground range from preserving the state’s protections for marijuana use and sales to advocating for a spaceport operator’s license. Our diverse and dynamic state is best served by a variety of smart ideas and the bipartisan cooperation necessary to make them a reality.

Bipartisan camaraderie, as well as competition, were also on display this week at the 2018 Congressional Baseball game. Since 1909, this beloved event has brought Republicans and Democrats in Congress together to enjoy the most American of pastimes. My staff and I attended the game on Thursday night, and while nothing compares to cheering on the Rockies at Coors Field, we still had a wonderful time rooting for my colleagues on the Democratic team. We beat the Republicans in a 21-5 rout, but no matter the score, this fun event always serves a reminder that friendly competition is often the best unifier.  

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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