Last Thursday the President made it clear that we will not stand idly by while Bashar al-Assad barbarically uses chemical weapons to take the lives of innocent men, women, and children. President Trump’s decision to launch a targeted airstrike on the airfield where Assad launched the deadly chemical attack on Monday shows a strength and responsibility that we have not seen in eight years. While the complexity of the situation in Syria grows daily, I believe this is a solid first step and I look forward to working with the President and my colleagues in Congress to hold the Assad regime accountable for its heinous actions.
ABLE Act 2.0
As the proud father of a Down syndrome young man, I have been a tireless advocate for the disability community and worked to ensure they have the opportunities to achieve a bigger, brighter future. From the Family Opportunity Act to the ABLE Act, we have made immense strides to break through the glass ceiling for individuals with disabilities. This week I was proud to join my colleagues Congresswoman Cathy McMorris Rodgers, Congressmen Tony Cárdenas (D-CA), Chris Smith (R-NJ), and Jim Langevin (D-RI) in introducing a package of bills to enhance the Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) Act of 2014. The package includes the ABLE to Work Act, the ABLE Financial Planning Act, and the ABLE Age Adjustment Act.
Meetings with the Disability Community Global Down Syndrome Foundation
This week I met with the Global Syndrome Foundation for an update on some very promising new medical research for the Down syndrome community. Thanks to the work of scientists and participants at the Linda Crnic Institute for Down Syndrome, we are beginning to learn more about the immune system common characteristics of individuals with Down syndrome. I am excited about this research and working to ensure they have proper funding for these studies that could affect an even greater population of people with immune disorders.
There are hundreds of families that come through my office each year, and this week I was delighted to have one of my favorites in on Wednesday. The Holmes family has two beautiful daughters who come each year to advocate on behalf of NDSS. After our meeting, I had the opportunity to walk them through the U.S. Capitol and escort them to the NDSS awards ceremony and luncheon. At the ceremony, I was humbled to receive the 2017 NDSS Champion of Change Award. In addition, I am proud to announce that one of my team members, Emily Erb, received the Champion of Change Award as well for her work on these important issues. NDSS has been a tireless champion for families across the country and individuals just like my son, Alex, and I am honored to join them in their effort to make life better for all individuals with disabilities.
Congressman Sessions with the Holmes families receiving the Champion of Change Award
Texans in Washington Richardson Chamber of Commerce
Earlier this week I was delighted to spend time with North Texans representing the Richardson Chamber of Commerce. On Sunday night, I was able to spend time with the delegation at the Capitol and receive feedback on some of the important advocacy and legislative issues constituent companies face back home. Tuesday morning, I participated in a policy briefing with the Chamber and discussed how our new unified Republican government is working to roll back anti-business Obama era regulations, unleash the free market system, and promote economic growth. As a Member of Congress with a strong background in the private sector, I understand the need to get the federal government out of the way of private enterprise and I look forward to continuing to work with Texans and my colleagues in Congress to achieve that goal.
Congressman Sessions taking members of the Richardson Chamber of Commerce on a night tour of the U.S. Capitol
Texas Society for Respiratory Care Tuesday I met with respiratory therapists serving the North Texas area. We discussed their needs within their specialty, including those directly related to telehealth legislation that might be considered in the near future. I look forward to working with them and other respiratory specialists to ensure rural and underserved communities have access to critical respiratory care.
Congressman Sessions meeting with North Texan respiratory therapists
Consumer Technology Association
In Texas, Dallas is the leader in technology jobs, topping Houston (135,974 tech jobs), Austin (113,176), and San Antonio (35,200) by a significant margin. In fact, in just 2015-2016 alone Dallas companies hired 2,978 new workers in the tech sector, outperforming Austin in new hires by 2,000. This is a booming industry that continues to grow in North Texas and across the country.
This week The Consumer Technology Association came by my office with my friend Dan Pidgeon from Star Power in Dallas, Texas to discuss the importance of the technology industry to our North Texas home. We had a great discussion about my efforts to help the technology industry grow and thrive, including supporting legislation that the House passed this week, H.R.1343, Encouraging Employee Ownership Act of 2017. Currently, these small businesses face immense challenges raising capital since traditional lenders have greatly reduced their lending programs for small business. That is why I proudly supported this measure to eliminate obstacles that have hampered the ability of employers to attract and retain employees. There is so much talent and opportunity in this budding marketplace and this bill allows us to harness this opportunity and encourage businesses to grow and thrive.