November 23, 2020

Weekly Column: Thanksgiving 2020

This Thanksgiving has me thinking back over all this year has brought-both the enormous challenges and the progress. Like so many Americans do during Thanksgiving, I am counting my blessings, and I look to this ending year and the year ahead with an expectation fueled by American resilience seen in all corners of our great country. I am thankful for living in this free country, for our Constitution, which gives us so many rich blessings. Not the least of these blessings are our personal freed… Continue Reading

November 16, 2020

Weekly Column: 2020 Spirit Of Freedom Awardees

In Idaho, we do not have to look far for good works. So many Idahoans work hard to lift burdens and brighten the days of others. This year's Spirit of Freedom: Idaho Veterans Service Award recipients are a reminder of the great Idahoans who make our state such a wonderful place to live. The Spirit of Freedom: Idaho Veterans Service Award is presented in two categories: veterans and volunteers who assist veterans. Their examples of selfless service are beyond worthy of recognition and are a t… Continue Reading

November 09, 2020

Weekly Column: Veterans Day: Working Together For Idaho Veterans

It is a great benefit to our state that more than 115,000 veterans choose to make Idaho their home. Idaho veterans offer a helping hand to their fellow veterans, military families and broader communities time after time. I look to Idaho veterans, the veterans organizations they lead and the veterans program staff they work with for their helpful insight in ensuring federal programs truly support their service while deployed and when they return home. I am proud to lead a collaborative effor… Continue Reading

November 02, 2020

Weekly Column: Voting: Self-Governance In Action

Self-governance guides our nation. Our country's Founders affirmed its central role in the formation of our country in the Declaration of Independence when they asserted that to secure our freedoms our government must derive its just powers from "the consent of the governed." Voting is an important way we participate in our system of self-governance. As our nation's 33rd President Harry S. Truman put it, "It is not the hand that signs the laws that holds the destiny of America. It is the han… Continue Reading

October 26, 2020

Weekly Column: Supporting Women Veterans

I am grateful to Idahoans who share their views with me about issues or legislation needing congressional attention. Bob and Carmelita Jones with the Idaho Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) and its Auxiliary recently asked that I consider co-sponsoring S. 514, the Deborah Sampson Act. This legislation, which is also supported by other veterans service organizations, would improve support for women veterans. Following up on this request, I looked into the issue and the legislative remedy and co-s… Continue Reading

October 19, 2020

Weekly Column: The Abraham Accords Peace Agreement--A Historic Achievement

One of the greatest world challenges of our time, without a doubt, has been the pursuit of peace in the Middle East. Although we have seen progress at various times, lasting, concrete peace has eluded world leaders, and its attainment has eclipsed administrations. The recent Abraham Accords Peace Agreement is a significant step in bringing this important part of our world closer together, and it is worthy of commendation. On September 15, 2020, the Abraham Accords Peace Agreement was signed … Continue Reading

October 12, 2020

Weekly Column: The Congressional Award--Challenging Youth

Young people throughout our communities working to earn the Congressional Award are challenging themselves, learning from their achievements and inspiring their peers to contribute to community and national efforts. I had the opportunity recently to congratulate four young Idahoans, who are 2020 Congressional Award Gold Medal recipients, for the time they are spending bettering themselves and our communities. In order to earn Congressional Award Gold Medals, youth dedicate more than 800 hours… Continue Reading

October 05, 2020

Weekly Column: Advancing Emergency Wildfire Legislation

The 2020 wildfire season has been one of the most active on record. So far, 44,174 wildfires have burned 7.1 million acres, with over five million acres in California, Oregon and Washington alone. In Idaho, 15 wildfires have burned more than 200,000 acres so far. The damage these fires have caused is disastrous. Thousands of people have lost their homes and property. Numerous communities have been destroyed. Millions of people have spent weeks breathing air choked with smoke and ash. And,… Continue Reading

September 28, 2020

Weekly Column: Honoring America's Missing Servicemembers

I call attention to National POW/MIA Recognition Day through Senate statements each year to honor America's prisoners of war (POW)s and missing in action (MIA), commend those keeping attention on our missing servicemembers and embolden those who are working hard to bring our missing servicemembers home. We cannot let up in bringing home all our nation's heroes. The following is the text of my recent Congressional Record Statement: Mr. President, in honor of National POW/MIA Recognition… Continue Reading

September 21, 2020

Weekly Column: From The Mailbag--Utilization Of Clean Energy Sources

As participants in the decisions made in Congress, Idahoans contact me with valuable input about the issues our country faces. Realizing that many may not have the chance to contact me, I post information about various issues of importance on my website, http://crapo.senate.gov. One of the issues Idahoans have contacted me about recently is the utilization of clean energy sources. The following is my response: As Co-Chairman of the Senate Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Caucus, I am a… Continue Reading

September 14, 2020

Weekly Column: Backing Those Leading The Pandemic Fight

Health care workers, businesses and individuals across our country have been working hard to treat those impacted by the pandemic and ensure our nation's recovery. We must make certain that those who act lawfully to meet the needs of our communities are not subject to frivolous lawsuits for their good actions. More than 200 organizations representing American businesses nationwide, including farm families, small businesses, physicians, hotels, trucking associations, manufacturers, grocers, di… Continue Reading

September 07, 2020

Weekly Column: Setting The Record Straight On The United States Postal Service

Most of the inaccurate, partisan narrative regarding allegedly new changes at the United States Postal Service (USPS) are part of long-term efforts from multiple administrations to improve its solvency. The Postal Service is not being disassembled and no efforts are underway to hinder the efficient handling of election mail. The Postal Service can effectively handle the increased volume of ballots facilitated via mail expected from the COVID-19 pandemic. The Administration's actions, most o… Continue Reading

August 31, 2020

Weekly Column: Making Medical Innovation More Affordable

Now, maybe more than ever, as Americans face months of dealing with the impacts of the pandemic, and we anxiously await effective vaccines and treatments to advance, we must be thorough in considering all cost drivers affecting the affordability of medical care. Over the past months, Congress has dedicated and the Administration has directed considerable resources to our health care providers on the frontlines of the fight against the pandemic. We also must make certain that as innovative medi… Continue Reading

August 24, 2020

Weekly Column: Highlighting Idaho's Pandemic Heroes

Idahoans have met the challenges of the pandemic with thoughtful, determined efforts to help others. Instead of being overwhelmed by circumstances, Idahoans were busy assisting others and shining bright lights of hope through these difficult times. Since the threat became apparent, individual Idahoans have worked together to help meet the needs of vulnerable residents. Here are just a few examples: Families across the Treasure Valley who opened their homes to foster veterans with medical … Continue Reading

August 17, 2020

Weekly Column: From The Mailbag--COVID-19 Effects On The Postal Service

As participants in the decisions made in Congress, Idahoans contact me with valuable input about the issues our country faces. One of the issues Idahoans have contacted me about is the 2019 novel coronavirus, COVID-19, and the United States Postal Service (USPS). The following is my response: I share your support for reliable and efficient mail service. The COVID-19 pandemic continues to spread across the U.S. and affect all aspects of American life. The outbreak has infected over 5 million… Continue Reading

August 10, 2020

Weekly Column: Making The National Suicide Hotline More Accessible

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports: "Suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in the United States. One person dies by suicide every 11 minutes. In 2017, 10.6 million American adults seriously thought about suicide, 3.2 million made a plan, and 1.4 million attempted suicide. People who have experienced violence, including child abuse, bullying, or sexual violence are at higher risk for suicide." Idahoans have shared stories with me about the tragic loss of friends … Continue Reading

August 03, 2020

Weekly Column: Providing For Our National Defense

One of the most critical jobs of Congress is providing for our national defense, and this is the 60th consecutive year that Congress has fulfilled its constitutional duty. Our country's Founders delineated this responsibility in Section 8 of our Constitution, providing Congress with the power to fund the common defense of the United States. Congress has been moving forward with enacting the Fiscal Year 2021 National Defense Authorization Act (FY21 NDAA) to support our nation's servicemembers a… Continue Reading

July 27, 2020

Weekly Column: Advocating For A Third Federal Judge For Idaho

The U.S. Senate Committee on the Judiciary held a hearing on June 30, 2020, to discuss the Judicial Conference of the United States' most recent recommendations for more federal judgeships. The Judicial Conference has recommended a third judgeship for Idaho consistently since 2003. As a member of the Committee, I reiterated the need to put aside partisan differences and create a third federal district judgeship in Idaho to meet this increasing judicial need. As I stressed during the hearing, … Continue Reading

July 20, 2020

Weekly Column: Civil Forfeiture Reform--Restoring Constitutional Protections

Requiring Americans to prove their property should not have been taken by the government, rather than the government proving guilt, undermines our system of justice. Commonsense restraints must be instituted to protect against civil asset forfeiture abuses. I am again backing legislation to address problems with civil asset forfeiture. According to a March 2017 U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) Inspector General report, the Department seized more than $28 billion over the past ten years via as… Continue Reading

July 13, 2020

Weekly Column: Justice For Missing, Murdered Native Women

A 2016 report from the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) indicates that more than four in five American Indian and Alaska Native women and men experience violence in their lifetimes; American Indian and Alaska Native women are also two times more likely than other groups to experience rape or sexual assault; and They are two and a half times more likely to experience violent crimes in their lifetimes. While recognizing information on the number of missing Native Americans in the Unit… Continue Reading

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