LATEST SENATOR DONNELLY
Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Joe Donnelly, today in the Senate Agriculture Committee, asked Hoosier and Assistant to the Secretary of Agriculture for Rural Development, Anne Hazlett, about the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s ability to improve addiction and substance abuse prevention programs and treatment access in rural communities. Donnelly, along with Senate Agriculture Committee Chairman Pat Roberts (R-KS) and Senator Luther Strange (R-AL), recently announced a bipartisan package of legislation aimed at combatting substance use disorders in rural communities. The bills would direct a pair of USDA programs to focus on providing facilities and access to telemedicine needed to prevent and treat substance use disorders, including the opioid epidemic.
Washington, D.C. – Josh Minkler was confirmed unanimously this afternoon to serve as U.S. Attorney in the Southern District of Indiana. Senators Joe Donnelly and Todd Young released the following statement.
“Josh has served in the U.S. Attorney’s office for more than 20 years and has earned a reputation as a tough prosecutor, who has a heart for the communities he serves. His unanimous confirmation is evidence that he has garnered respect from both sides of the aisle.”
Minkler has served as the interim U.S. Attorney since June 2015. Prior to that, he served 21 years as Assistant U.S. Attorney in the Southern District. A Muncie native, Mr. Minkler received his B.A. from Wabash College and his J.D. from Indiana University Maurer School of Law.
After Calling for Increased Sanctions, Donnelly Welcomes President Trump’s New Sanctions on North Korean Trade
Indianapolis, Ind. – U.S. Senator Joe Donnelly today lauded the announcement of new sanctions by President Trump and his administration on North Korea’s financial institutions and trade activities. Donnelly has called for increased sanctions to counter North Korea’s weapons program and crack down on those enabling the rogue regime—and the President’s latest actions are in line with the Senator’s push. As Ranking Member of the Banking Committee’s National Security and International Trade and Finance Subcommittee, Donnelly recently co-led a hearing with Subcommittee Chairman Senator Ben Sasse (R-NE) to assess U.S. and international sanctions against North Korea and China in relation to North Korea’s nuclear missile program, and to push the Administration on its options to expand sanctions. And Donnelly and Sasse recently continued their calls for increased sanctions on both North Korea and China, designed to crack down on North Korea’s weapons program.
Donnelly said, “Continuing to step up sanctions on North Korea is vitally important. Individuals, companies, and financial institutions that facilitate trade with North Korea must be held accountable to ensure that Kim Jong Un and his regime understand that their provocations are unacceptable and must stop. These sanctions from President Trump are in line with the bipartisan efforts Senator Sasse and I have been working on in the Senate Banking Committee, and I will continue pushing for efforts to ensure that our country and our allies are enforcing these sanctions and holding people accountable.”
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Washington, D.C. —U.S. Senator Joe Donnelly released the following statement on the latest partisan Senate health care proposal to repeal the health care law, the Graham-Cassidy bill, which is expected to be voted on in the Senate next week.
Donnelly said, “I’ve said from the beginning that we can improve our health care system by working together, Democrats and Republicans. The Graham-Cassidy proposal, like previous partisan efforts to repeal the health care law, would harm Hoosiers—forcing people to lose coverage, raising health care costs for seniors, ending the bipartisan HIP 2.0 program as we know it, and it could jeopardize critical protections for folks with pre-existing conditions. I hope that we can return to the bipartisan effort I have been actively involved in to stabilize the insurance markets.”
The Graham-Cassidy proposal would turn Medicaid into a per-capita cap system, which would result in Indiana losing federal funding and could result in people losing coverage or paying more for coverage. And it would end HIP 2.0 as we know it, which Donnelly worked with then-Governor Mike Pence to establish through the Affordable Care Act. Nearly 400,000 Hoosiers use HIP 2.0 to access health care and it’s a program that has been critical to Indiana’s efforts to address the opioid epidemic.
According to a report from Avalere released today, Indiana would lose $7 billion in federal funding between 2020-2027 and $74 billion between 2020-2036.
Senate consideration of the Graham-Cassidy proposal will come the same week as the September 27th deadline for insurance companies to finalize their 2018 insurance rates. According to Indiana insurers, the combination of legislative uncertainty created by efforts to repeal the health care law and the Administration’s failure to commit to making Cost Share Reduction (CSR) payments is likely to result in 15% cost increases in 2018. For months, Donnelly has been calling on the Administration to commit to making the CSR payments and has been actively engaged in bipartisan efforts in the Senate to stabilize the insurance markets.
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senator Joe Donnelly, member of the Senate Banking Committee, and U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown, ranking member of the Senate Banking Committee, urged the Federal Reserve to explore and devote resources to supplement federal government efforts to combat the nation’s opioid epidemic.
The Senators stated, “We are writing to urge the Federal Reserve System to commit resources to research, analyze, recommend policy responses, and engage community and business leaders to address this national emergency.”
The Senators noted in the letter the economic impact the opioid epidemic is having on local economies and communities and urged the Federal Reserve to further research this area in order to formulate policy responses to reduce and prevent further opioid use.
“This is not just a public health and law enforcement matter. This is an economic matter,” the Senators wrote. “We believe the Federal Reserve System, including the research departments at the Board and regional Reserve Banks, is in a unique position to help policymakers better understand the impact of the opioid epidemic on labor force participation rates, full employment, and on overall economic activity in communities.”
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Washington, D.C. – Tonight, the Senate passed the bipartisan national defense bill which includes Donnelly’s measure requiring the Department of Defense bring to Congress a clear, comprehensive strategy to confront the threat posed by North Korea. The Fiscal Year 2018 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) passed the Senate by a vote of 89-8 and must now be reconciled with the version passed by the House of Representatives. The NDAA has been signed into law the last 55 consecutive years.
The national defense bill also includes a number of provisions and efforts led by Donnelly to recognize and support critical contributions that Hoosiers make to national security and, at Donnelly’s request, includes $8.5 billion for missile defense system upgrades.
Donnelly, a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, said, “The security threat posed by North Korea is real and increasing. The Senate-passed defense bill includes my critical amendment requiring a comprehensive strategy for confronting the North Korean threat. This bipartisan bill would help keep our nation safe, while providing our servicemembers at home and abroad with the tools they need to fight and win on the battlefield and come home safely. And this legislation would support Indiana’s critical role in our national defense and support the Hoosier men and women who serve in uniform.”
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U.S. Senator Joe Donnelly spoke today on the Senate floor as part of his effort to secure a vote on his End Outsourcing Act, a portion of which he has introduced as an amendment to the national defense bill that the Senate is currently considering. The Donnelly amendment would require companies bidding for federal defense contracts to disclose the outsourcing of American jobs and allow contracting officers to take into consideration a company’s outsourcing practices when awarding federal contracts.
U.S. Senator Joe Donnelly released the following statement after having dinner with President Trump.
Donnelly said, “I had another good conversation with President Trump about my proposal to address the outsourcing of American jobs. I am pleased he remains supportive of my proposal, and I believe that tax reform should include measures to support companies that invest in our workers and penalize companies that ship American jobs to foreign countries. I am hopeful we can work together to encourage domestic investments that benefit American workers.”
Donnelly introduced the End Outsourcing Act in January, and his legislation would support companies that invest in American workers and penalize corporations that outsource jobs. In February, in a meeting at the White House, Donnelly discussed the End Outsourcing Act with President Trump and the President expressed his support for the proposal. In May, at a Senate Banking Committee hearing, Donnelly asked Treasury Secretary Mnuchin about stopping outsourcing, and pushed for the President’s support for policies to protect American workers. Donnelly met with Treasury Secretary Mnuchin in June to discuss the End Outsourcing Act.
To protect American workers, U.S. Senators Joe Donnelly (D-IN) and Susan Collins (R-ME) announced the reintroduction of their Forty Hours is Full Time Act, which would change the definition of a “full-time employee” under the Affordable Care Act to someone who works an average of 40 hours per week.
Employers across our country continue to make decisions to cut employees’ hours due to how the health care law currently defines a “full-time employee” – as someone who works an average of 30 hours per week. Employers are making the law’s 30-hour standard part of their business planning, and as a result, employers nationwide are cutting their workers’ hours to 29 hours a week or fewer. The bipartisan legislation would help employees impacted by the current definition of a full-time worker and allow employers to better plan for the future by using the more commonly accepted definition of “full time”: someone who works 40 hours.
Donnelly said, “I believe that we can work together to fix issues with the health care law and improve our health care system. I have heard from part-time workers across many industries, like school cafeteria managers to grocery store employees to adjunct professors at colleges, that have seen their hours cut to comply with the health care law. In Indiana, common sense holds that a full-time employee is someone who works an average of 40 hours a week, and the health care law should reflect that. I’m proud to partner with my friend and colleague Senator Collins to reintroduce the Forty Hours is Full Time Act, and I am hopeful the Senate will consider this bipartisan bill soon.”
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Granger, Ind. — U.S. Senator Joe Donnelly today released the following statement following reports of North Korea’s nuclear test.
Donnelly said, “North Korea’s provocative tests are a threat to the U.S. and the entire global community. I reiterate my urgent call that North Korea’s unacceptable actions be met by a comprehensive U.S. strategy that involves our allies from around the world. It is also long past time for China to step up to seriously and credibly confront the North Korean threat, a topic I will be pressing this week as the Senate Banking Committee examines sanctions enforcement on both North Korea and China.”
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