521 Dirksen Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510
In what has been called one of the worst Supreme Court rulings since the founding of our nation, the 2010 Citizens United decision gutted 100 years' worth of laws attempting to limit corruption in our political system.
In 1963, Congress passed the Equal Pay Act making equal pay for equal work the rule of law. Yet 51 years later, pay discrimination continues to shortchange working North Carolina women and their families.
To ensure we keep our promise to current and future veterans, I immediately joined my colleague Sen. Mark Pryor in introducing a bill last month to restore veterans' pension cuts before they take effect in December 2015. I will seek every avenue possible to pass this legislation so tens of thousands of retirees do not lose an average of $80,000 over the course of their lifetimes.
No parent should have to worry about his or her child's health and safety at school. I am pleased that at a time of extreme partisanship in Washington, my colleagues put politics aside to pass a commonsense law that will help avoid a preventable tragedy and allow parents and teachers to focus instead on ensuring our kids get the education they need to prepare for challenges that lie ahead.
With families still struggling to make ends meet, our men and women in uniform should not face financial ruin the payday lenders so often inflict. I will continue working to rein in unscrupulous lending practices and protect hard-working North Carolinians.
I come from a family of lifelong hunters, and I'm committed to protecting and growing the time-honored traditions of sportsmen and women in our state. The SPORT Act combines the best ideas from Republicans and Democrats to enhance opportunities for hunting, fishing and shooting while strengthening our economy. I will continue to work with all stakeholders in North Carolina and my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to move this legislation forward.
These kinds of smart job-training programs and industry partnerships targeted at reducing the skills gap will be critical to combating unemployment and getting our state's economy back on track. I'll continue to fight to ensure that North Carolina's community colleges have the resources to prepare our workers for jobs that are available today.
We need Congressman Watt at the Federal Housing Finance Agency. I know he will work successfully with Congress to strengthen the backbone our housing system. He deserves an up or down vote, and I will continue to advocate for his confirmation to this critical post.
Since VAWA first passed in 1994, domestic violence has decreased by 53 percent nationally. As a mother of two daughters, I'm committed to continuing these efforts to protect survivors and prevent future crimes. October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month, but this problem demands our attention 365 days a year.
Since VAWA first passed in 1994, domestic violence has decreased by 53 percent nationally. As a mother of two daughters, I'm committed to continuing these efforts to protect survivors and prevent future crimes.
No parents should experience the pain of losing a child, especially when that death could have been prevented. In the Senate, I am working to ensure that parents can rest easier and our kids can grow to lead full and healthy lives.
Getting North Carolinians back to work is my top priority, and I was thrilled to announce recently that Robeson Community College will receive a $3.4 million grant to help train workers for jobs that are available now. This grant will help RCC, one of our state's outstanding community colleges, teach much-needed skills to workers who have struggled to find a job for far too long.
The bipartisan 2013 Senate farm bill is a true win for North Carolina's farmers and our economy. The crop losses our farmers are experiencing demonstrate the need for sound crop insurance policies. I urge the House to pass the bipartisan, common-sense farm bill the Senate approved nearly three months ago. Our farmers have waited long enough.
I was sad to hear last week about the passing of Henry Cuningham, the Observer's longtime military editor and founder of its weekly Military section. North Carolina is the most military-friendly state in the nation, and Henry's coverage of our armed forces was immensely valuable to the brave service members who call North Carolina home.
Making sure the families of our active duty soldiers and veterans are given the tools to thrive is a top priority for me. I am committed to honoring their service and making sure we live up to our end of the bargain in the Senate by placing a priority on these tax credits that our military families rely on.
It is unacceptable that veterans make up 13 percent of the homeless population around the country, and I'm pleased that organizations in North Carolina, such as the United Way of Forsyth County, will receive a total of $6 million in grants to increase housing for our veterans. North Carolina is the most military-friendly state in the country, but we must ensure we're also the most veteran-friendly state as well.
At a time when the students in North Carolina already graduate owing an average of $23,000 in debt, I could not sit on my hands while students are forced to pay thousands more in interest. Compromises are too few and far between in Washington these days, and I am proud to support this bipartisan bill that will bring immediate relief to millions of students.
Nearly five years have passed since taxpayers bailed out Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the entities at the heart of our nation's broken housing finance system. Despite broad bipartisan agreement that the system needs to be fixed, Congress has yet to act.
Yet another deadline has come and gone with Congress failing to act. This time, the fallout from the political paralysis in Washington will land squarely on students and middle-class families who rely on federal Stafford loans to afford college. Because Congress did not act, 176,000 North Carolina students and 7.4 million students nationwide will see interest rates on their federal Stafford loans double from 3.4 to 6.8 percent. This effectively sticks our students with nearly $1,000 a year in additional student loan costs.
America and North Carolina are better, stronger and safer because of the contributions of our brave men and women in uniform. As someone from a military family, this is more than just policy; it's personal. I know the sacrifices they and their families make, and I will always fight to ensure we are honoring their service in word and deed.
521 Dirksen Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510
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Greensboro, NC 27408
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Raleigh, NC 27601
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