July 22, 2014 SIGN IN | REGISTER
Join the Roll Call Book Club July 23 for a discussion with Brigid Schulte, author of "Overwhelmed." Click here to register.

Guest Observer Archive

What Washington Can Do to Prevent Train Tragedies | Commentary

A lot has been written in this newspaper about how little Congress is accomplishing this summer. But there is something important Washington could do before the August recess without any congressional action — demand safer standards for hauling crude oil.

The True Patriotic Response to our Growing Tax Crisis | Commentary

On Tuesday, the Senate Finance Committee is scheduled to hold a hearing that will examine a critical issue impacting the long-term health of the U.S. economy – our international tax system. Dubbed “Love it, Leave It or Reform It!” the committee promises to delve into the specific issue of corporate tax inversions, which describes a practice whereby companies reincorporate in a foreign country.

Rural America: The Forefront of Innovation | Commentary

The productivity and growth of rural America are essential to the overall economic well-being and prosperity of our country. These regions are critical to our sustainability and should not be neglected when considering policies that promote job creation, investment and innovation. While Ohio’s 5th District boasts more than 60,000 manufacturing jobs, it is also the largest agricultural district in the state. Ensuring our rural areas are accounted for, especially when examining ways to tap our country’s technological potential, must be a top priority.

The Inconvenient Truth About BPA's Safety | Commentary

The North American Metal Packaging Alliance Inc. appreciates the continued focus on public health expressed by the authors of new legislation regarding food additives. However, in the case of Bisphenol A, we strongly believe the concerns of Sen. Edward J. Markey, D-Mass., and his House colleagues are misguided, and the legislation unnecessary. The proposed bill may do more to push America backward in public health than to advance consumer safety.

Should Congress Come to Puerto Rico's Rescue? | Commentary

Puerto Rico’s government is at serious risk of defaulting on its debt. If that happens, the ball will be in the court of the U.S. Congress to decide whether and how to bail it out. This matters not just to the people of Puerto Rico; it has serious implications for the U.S. economy and our commitment to ensure our local governments live up to the rule of law.

How Congress Can Fix the Student Debt Crisis | Commentary

As Congress works to reauthorize the Higher Education Act and strengthen student loan policies, the challenges are daunting:

The Two Budgeteers: All for One in Effort to Update Budget Act | Commentary

Since ratification of the constitutional authority given to Congress to tax and spend in 1788, our government has struggled to manage the federal budget. After numerous failed budget concepts and commissions, the Budget Act was finally enacted in 1974 to establish the modern-day budget process. Almost exactly 40 years since the Budget Act was signed into law, there is growing consensus among policymakers and budget observers that the system no longer functions as intended.

A View From Vienna on Extending the Iran Negotiations | Commentary

Critics of U.S. negotiations with Iran over its nuclear program were quick to jump on comments made by Secretary of State John Kerry that Washington and Tehran still need to bridge some gaps in order to reach a comprehensive nuclear agreement. But that is not the full story.

Prescott Grant May Leave Marine Mammals Stranded | Commentary

At Tuesday’s congressional briefing on marine mammal strandings, Congressmen William Keating, D-Mass., and Jared Huffman, D-Calif., spoke to approximately 80 congressional staffers and others about how crucial The John H. Prescott Marine Mammal Rescue Assistance Grant Program is for conducting important marine mammal rescue work and government-mandated research not only for their states, but nationwide.

Congress May Decide the Fate of the Historic U.S.-Africa Summit | Commentary

In less than a month, Washington will play host to roughly 50 African heads of state, hundreds of cabinet-level ministers, and over a thousand American and African business leaders and investors. It will be a truly historic moment. More importantly, it will be an unparalleled opportunity to advance U.S. strategic interests on the African continent — spanning from Cairo to Cape Town. While President Barack Obama will be hosting this summit, in some ways, Congress will decide whether it will be a success.

All Americans Benefit From Senate Rules Reform | Commentary

What do Richard Boulware, a federal judge in Nevada; Nina Pillard, a judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit; and Melvin Watt, director of the Federal Housing Finance Agency, have in common?

Lawmakers Search for Problems Instead of Solutions, Contradict FDA on Food Safety | Commentary

With three weeks left in the work period before Congress leaves for its long summer recess, the Senate is likely to leave nearly 300 House bills aimed at spurring economic growth gathering dust on Leader Harry Reid’s desk.

Protecting the Care of Our Veterans | Commentary

Over the past several months, we have heard the reports that veterans may have died waiting for care at the Phoenix Veterans Affairs hospital.

Remove Barriers to Colon Cancer Prevention Service for Seniors | Commentary

Seniors in our districts and across the country depend on Medicare to cover important cancer prevention tests, such as colonoscopies. With the current Medicare reimbursement rules, many seniors may opt to forgo this potentially lifesaving test due to their inability to pay for the unexpected co-pay for the removal of any polyps discovered during the procedure.

The Magic Formula to Requesting Time and Setting Up Events With Congress | Commentary

For most Americans, August means more time at the beach, afternoons on the golf course and maybe a family reunion. For Congress, it means dozens of meetings with constituents back home.  One of the perpetual myths about Congress is that recess is some kind of vacation (imagining legislators streaming from the Capitol to get to the kickball field). According to a Congressional Management Foundation survey of members of the House, the average work week for a…

The Magic Formula to Setting Up Events With Congress | Commentary

For most Americans, August means more time at the beach, afternoons on the golf course and maybe a family reunion. For Congress, it means dozens of meetings with constituents back home.

Retired Military Leaders Urge Congress to Reject Efforts to Undo Antiquities Act | Commentary

U.S. Presidents have enjoyed and successfully implemented the privilege of designating national monuments for more than 100 years. To date, 15 presidents on both sides of the aisle have used their authority under the Antiquities Act, granted to the president by Congress, to protect scenic wonders and historic sites like the Grand Canyon and the Statue of Liberty — places that have become symbols of America’s beauty and freedom around the world.

Choking Off Fraud | Commentary

Networks come in many forms. There are highways for commuting, broadband Internet for web surfing, wireless communications for text messages and phone calls — all constituting infrastructure that underlies vital daily activities. As valuable as they are, these networks can also be used for crime — drunk driving on our roads, predatory online activities, violent threats communicated over a call or text. Because of the unquestionable utility of our nation’s networks, law enforcement pursues such crime directly — and not the innocent and uninvolved infrastructure over which the crime occurs.

Placing the Health and Well Being of Patients First | Commentary

Every day many Americans have to weigh how they spend each dollar.

New EPA Clean Air Rule Is a Moral Imperative for Future Generations | Commentary

While many of my colleagues are focused on the endless and overheated political debate surrounding the newly proposed Environmental Protection Agency rule on reducing carbon emissions, when you remove the rhetoric and weigh the plain facts, this decision rests on two primary questions: (1) What kind of planet will we leave to future generations? (2) Do we have the backbone to put public health ahead of profit?

SIGN IN




OR

SUBSCRIBE

Want Roll Call on your doorstep?