Today, Congresswoman Barbara Lee reiterated her commitment to fighting poverty and creating opportunity, restoring income equity and promoting global peace and national security as she introduced a number of bills at the start of the 113th Congress. Barbara Lee introduced the Poverty Impact Trigger Act, the Income Equity Act, the Responsible End to the War in Afghanistan Act, the Repeal of the Authorization for Use of Military Force, and legislation to support non-military foreign assistance programs.
In the coming months, Congresswoman Lee will introduce legislation to establish a national strategy to cut poverty in half over the next decade, establish a new Department of Peace, provide for more mental health school counselors, support a living wage, expand support for Community Oriented Police Officers, fight HIV/AIDS domestically and internationally, pursue smart security solutions to global affairs and continue to push for racial and economic equality in the United States.
"I am honored and privileged to represent the residents of California's 13th Congressional District. With that honor comes the responsibility to bring their ideas to Washington and to fight for them on all fronts," said Congresswoman Lee. "As the debate around our fiscal environment continues, I am hopeful that we can create a more productive environment in the House so we can create jobs and continue to rebuild this economy and the American Dream for all."
"Congresswoman Lee continues, "Our nation faces many challenges and a budget with the right priorities, like investing in job creation and education and protecting our safety net programs, like SNAP, can help lift millions of Americans out of poverty and into the middle class, which is the best deficit reduction plan that exists.
"As the income gap between the poor and very rich continues to widen we need to do everything we can to create fairness within our tax code while continuing to grow our economy for all. This can be done by reducing incentives for excessive executive compensation and closing tax loop holes for big oil and corporations who ship jobs and profits overseas.
"After 10 years and $600 billion invested in an unstable country, it is past time to end the war in Afghanistan. This war has taken the lives of more than 2,000 members of the armed services and wounded another 18,000. Now that the President has accomplished every goal that was originally set in Afghanistan and it is widely accepted that there is no military solution in the country, it is past time to bring home our brave men and women home."
A selection of legislation introduced today by Congresswoman Lee:
Income Equity Act - Amends the Internal Revenue Code to deny employers a tax deduction for payments of excessive compensation to any full-time employee and requires these employers to file a report with the Secretary of the Treasury on excessive compensation.
Poverty Impact Trigger Act - Amends Rule XXI Rules of the House of Representatives (Amends Rule XXI) to make it out of order to consider a public bill or joint resolution authorizing an appropriation of $10 million or more, without an accompanying Congressional Budget Office (CBO) Poverty Impact Division impact statement. It also amends the Congressional Budget Act of 1974 to establish the CBO Poverty Impact Division to prepare and submit poverty impact statements to the chair of House committees.
Responsible End to the War in Afghanistan Act - States that it is the policy of the United States to ensure that funds made available for operations of the Armed Forces in Afghanistan are to be used only for providing for the safe and orderly withdrawal of all U.S. military personnel and Department of Defense (DOD) contractor personnel in Afghanistan. Allows such funds to be obligated and expended only for such purpose.
Repeal of the Authorization for Use of Military Force - Repeals the Authorization for Use of Military Force (P.L. 107-40) and states that the Authorization for Use of Military Force has been used to justify an open-ended authorization for the use of military force and such an interpretation is inconsistent with the authority of Congress to declare war and make all laws for executing powers vested by the Constitution in the U.S. government.
Expressing the sense of Congress that the United States should provide, on an annual basis, an amount equal to at least 1 percent of United States gross domestic product (GDP) for nonmilitary foreign assistance programs - This bill recognizes the importance of foreign assistance programs in promoting national security, demonstrating the American people's humanitarian spirit, and improving U.S. credibility in world affairs.
During the 113th Congress, Rep. Lee will continue to serve on the House Appropriations Committee and will also serve on the House Budget Committee and the Steering and Policy Committee (complete list below). In these positions she will continue to work to lift millions of Americans out of poverty, ensure that our country's budget is both fair and balanced and strengthen our national security by rethinking and streamlining our defense spending, and reinvest in the future of all Americans.
Congresswoman Lee will represent the new 13th Congressional District of California. The 13th district, which was developed by the non-partisan Citizens Redistricting Commission following the decennial census, is comprised of Alameda, Albany, Berkeley, Emeryville, Oakland, Piedmont, and San Leandro. Residents are encouraged to use the "Find your Rep" app at www.house.gov to determine their Representative in Congress.
Most recently, Lee represented the 9th Congressional District of California, which at the time included many of the communities she will now represent but also the unincorporated areas of Ashland, Cherryland, Fairview, and Castro Valley. Those areas will now be represented by newly elected Rep. Eric Swalwell.