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Congressman Albio Sires

Representing the 8th District of New Jersey

Washington Review, May 6, 2019

May 6, 2019
Washington Review

Last week in Washington, I voted to restore America’s commitment to the Paris Agreement on Climate Change, toured our local infrastructure with my colleagues on the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, and met with international stakeholders to inform our nation’s foreign policy.

Legislation

On Thursday, I voted in favor of H.R. 9, the Climate Action Now Act, introduced by Rep. Kathy Castor (D-FL). As a cosponsor of this legislation, I am dedicated to combatting the effects of climate change swiftly and decisively to mitigate its disastrous consequences. This bill requires the President to create a plan for the United States to meet its nationally determined contribution under the Paris Agreement on Climate Change. I was outraged by President Trump’s decision to withdraw our nation from this historic achievement and believe we must honor our commitment to the international community. H.R. 9 seeks to cut greenhouse gas emissions by at least 26% before 2025 and hold our partner nations accountable for their efforts as well. This legislation passed by in the House a vote of 231-190 and now awaits further action before the Senate.

Infrastructure

This past week, I joined a delegation of my colleagues on the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure to get a firsthand look at the state of our region’s most important pending infrastructure need – the Gateway Project. Led by Committee Chair Peter DeFazio (D-OR), the trip was a chance for my colleagues on the Committee to understand the importance of the priorities I fight for on behalf of the 8th District. I hope seeing the state of the Hudson River Tunnel and Portal North Bridge in person and learning its relationship to the region’s infrastructure network will compel action this year on this critical project. These projects are a necessary investment, not only in our local community, but the in the national economy as well.

Foreign Affairs

On Wednesday I attended a House Committee on Foreign Affairs hearing on the United States’ policy towards Russia. Global stability is threatened by Russia’s support for dictators in Syria and Venezuela as well as military aggressions in Eastern Europe. Later that day, I met with Assistant Secretary for International Narcotics and Law, Kirsten Madison, to receive updates on U.S. assistance programs in the Northern Triangle and emphasize my opposition to any drastic cuts. Our engagement through partnership and resources is vital to stability in the region

On Thursday, I sat down with Martha Bárcena, the Ambassador from Mexico to discuss economic engagement, the humanitarian crisis in Venezuela, and immigration. Strengthening the U.S.-Mexico relationship is fundamental to our national economy and security.