Washington Review, September 17, 2018
Last week, the House Foreign Affairs Committee conducted oversight of the Trump Administration, including its relationship with Russia. Additionally, I met with the New Jersey Commissioner of Education, medical research advocates from Hoboken, the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen, and others to discuss the impact of their work in the 8th District.
New Jersey Commissioner of Education, Dr. Lamon Repollet, met with me to discuss his work at the Department of Education and how my work in Washington can deliver the best outcomes for New Jersey students.
I also met with Silvana Lopes Costa, a research scientist from Kessler Foundation in Hoboken, and Victoria Gemme, from the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation to discuss my efforts to properly fund the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and how the NIH impacts their work. In Congress, I am a strong advocate for the importance of medical research and innovation. Most recently, I joined my colleagues in requesting that the Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, HHS and Education fully fund the NIH at $38.4 billion in fiscal year (FY) 2019.
The Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen also visited my office in Washington to update me on the critical work they carry out on behalf of thousands of transportation workers nationwide.
Marina Litvinenko tragically lost her husband Alexander, a Russian defector, after he was poisoned in 2006. A public inquest determined that not only was Alexander killed by two Russian agents, but there was a high probability that Vladimir Putin approved the operation. Now, Marina Litvinenko endures harassment from Russian television outlets, such as RT and Channel One, that openly lie about who was responsible for the poisoning. Marina and her husband’s friend, Alexander Goldford, met with me in Washington to discuss their new libel law suit against these stations, which are part of Putin’s propaganda machine.
Last week, the House Foreign Affairs Committee convened twice to consider the conduct and policies of the Trump Administration. First, my colleagues and I focused on an expansive consideration of the Administration’s sanctions policies throughout the world, including for countries like Venezuela, Nicaragua, and North Korea. Sanctions can be a powerful tool for the United States, but only if used as part of a broader, cohesive foreign policy. Erratic, reckless actions won’t further our nation’s foreign policy goals and, in the end, will damage our international standing.
Later that day, the Committee held a markup for H.Res.1017, which would have required the President and Secretary of State to submit copies of all communications between President Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin’s meeting in Helsinki, Finland to the House of Representatives. This measure would have provided much needed transparency for the American people. Unfortunately, this measure was defeated by the Republicans on the Committee.
Thank you for reading the Washington Review. Again, hearing from my constituents enables me to be a better representative of the 8th District. For regular updates, you may stay in touch by leaving comments on my Facebook, Twitter, and website.