May 27 2014
This week, the House approved the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2015. The NDAA is the annual mechanism that ensures that our nation’s military is sufficiently equipped to protect us at home and abroad. As we approach Memorial Day, I was proud to vote in favor of this important bill to support those who have selflessly sacrificed for our nation.
In addition to addressing military readiness, supporting our men and women in uniform, and prioritizing many other critical policies, I am particularly pleased that the NDAA will allow the victims and families of the 2009 Fort Hood attack to be eligible to receive the Purple Heart Medals that they deserve. To read the NDAA, click here.
The USA FREEDOM Act
Over the past few years, we have seen a vibrant debate over the importance of striking an appropriate balance between protecting every Americans’ civil liberties and providing our intelligence agencies with the tools necessary to ensure our national security. This week the House passed the USA FREEDOM Act, legislation that reforms intelligence-gathering programs to end bulk collection of Americans’ telephone and electronic communication records, implements limits on what information the federal government can gather, and provides more transparency for the American people. I’m pleased that these reforms go even further to secure the civil liberties of the American people than President Obama’s plan and was proud to support the USA FREEDOM Act this week.
Veterans Affairs Accountability Act
In response to the recent news of mismanagement at the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), the House passed the Department of Veterans Affairs Accountability Act of 2014 this week. This important bill would give the VA Secretary greater authority to fire employees and remove them from SES service due to poor performance.
The VA scandal highlights a systemic lack of accountability that cannot be tolerated. The reports of preventable veteran deaths and allegations of “secret” wait lists are unconscionable. Our VA serves millions of brave men and women who have sacrificed for our nation and they deserve the highest standard of medical care and family support services available. I will continue to support efforts to uncover the truth about these unacceptable incidents and increase transparency to prevent further abuse.
Welcoming TX-32 Students
This week, I had the opportunity to welcome students from Akiba Academy of Dallas and Lakewood Elementary to Washington. I enjoyed talking to them about my role as a Member of Congress and the importance of serving others.
Congressman Sessions with Lakewood Elementary students
Congressman Sessions with Akiba Academy of Dallas students
North Texas’ students are the future of our community, state, and country. I always enjoy meeting with them, and I'm pleased that they had the opportunity to visit the U.S. Capitol this week.