Congressman Thomas Massie http://wfpl.org en Majority of Kentucky Congressional Delegation Favor Budget Compromise http://wfpl.org/post/majority-kentucky-congressional-delegation-favor-budget-compromise <p>The majority of Kentucky's congressional delegates approved of a <a href="http://wfpl.org/post/house-approves-budget-deal-compromise-heads-senate">two-year budget agreement Thursday that will avoid a federal government shutdown</a>.</p><p>In a bipartisan 332-94 vote, House members favored a deal brokered by Republican House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan and Democratic Senate Budget Committee Chairwoman Patty Murray.</p> Fri, 13 Dec 2013 01:01:14 +0000 Phillip M. Bailey 7886 at http://wfpl.org Majority of Kentucky Congressional Delegation Favor Budget Compromise Kentucky Congressman Thomas Massie Objects to Plastic Gun Ban http://wfpl.org/post/kentucky-congressman-thomas-massie-objects-plastic-gun-ban <p>Kentucky Fourth District Congressman Thomas Massie says he was the sole voice vote against a 25-year ban on firearms that can evade metal detectors and X-ray machines.</p><p>First passed in 1988, the Undetectable Firearms Act is set to expire on December 9. It bans the possession, manufacturing and selling of any so-called <a href="http://www.npr.org/blogs/alltechconsidered/2013/11/14/245078880/plastic-guns-made-with-3-d-printers-pose-new-security-concerns">plastics gun, which can be built using 3-D printers</a> and can go undetected by security devices.</p> Wed, 04 Dec 2013 00:31:27 +0000 Phillip M. Bailey 7765 at http://wfpl.org Kentucky Congressman Thomas Massie Objects to Plastic Gun Ban Kentucky Officials Send Letter to DEA Urging Hemp Legalization http://wfpl.org/post/kentucky-officials-send-letter-dea-urging-hemp-legalization <p>A group of Kentucky officials have sent a letter to the Drug Enforcement Agency asking for clarity on a state law that would permit the cultivation of industrial hemp.</p><p>Agriculture Commissioner James Comer drafted the letter, which was co-signed by Sen. Rand Paul and Reps. Thomas Massie and John Yarmuth, as well as Kentucky Industrial Hemp Commission chairman Brian Furnish.&nbsp;</p> Wed, 27 Nov 2013 21:42:51 +0000 Jonathan Meador 7713 at http://wfpl.org Kentucky Officials Send Letter to DEA Urging Hemp Legalization Acknowledging GOP Will Be Blamed, Congressman Thomas Massie Describes Shutdown as 'Not a Big Deal' http://wfpl.org/post/acknowledging-gop-will-be-blamed-congressman-thomas-massie-describes-shutdown-not-big-deal <p>Rep.Thomas Massie acknowledges Republicans will face the brunt of the blame if the government shuts down at midnight.</p><p>But the freshman lawmaker from Kentucky&#39;s Fourth District says constituents have told him it is &quot;not a big deal&quot; if certain federal agencies and functions close.</p><p>&quot;I&rsquo;m certain we&#39;ll get blamed for it,&quot; Massie told WFPL this afternoon. &quot;But that&rsquo;s also (Senate Democratic Leader) Harry Reid&rsquo;s motive for running out the clock today. And they&rsquo;re hoping there is a shutdown for their own political gain.&quot;</p><p>On Monday afternoon, the <a href="http://www.upi.com/Top_News/US/2013/09/30/Senate-rejects-House-budget-bill-54-46/UPI-25581380521700/">Senate once again rejected a House spending bill</a> backed by Republicans, which sought to delay Obamacare by one year and repeal the medical device tax.</p><p>This was slightly different measure than an earlier GOP pitch to take out funding for the Affordable Care Act altogether.</p><p>Democrats have made it clear any efforts to undermine the health care law are a non-starter, however.</p><p>Polling figures show <a href="http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/09/30/us-usa-fiscal-poll-idUSBRE98T0J720130930">46 percent of Americans would blame congressional Republicans</a> if a shutdown takes place. The same survey finds 36 percent believe the Democrats and president would be responsible.</p><p>The political backlash isn&#39;t lost on a group of <a href="http://www.nationalreview.com/corner/359969/moderates-revolt-over-cr-jonathan-strong">moderate House Republicans who are reportedly planning a revolt</a> against GOP leadership and more conservative members.</p><p>Massie is part of a group in the House members who <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/09/27/ted-cruz-john-boehner_n_4004632.html">spoke with Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas</a> who strategized to oppose House Speaker John Boehner&#39;s plan. Asked about the impact on Kentucky, he told WFPL a partial shutdown will have limited real world effects. Mon, 30 Sep 2013 23:10:48 +0000 Phillip M. Bailey 7034 at http://wfpl.org Acknowledging GOP Will Be Blamed, Congressman Thomas Massie Describes Shutdown as 'Not a Big Deal' Kentucky Lawmakers Respond to President Obama's National Address on Syria http://wfpl.org/post/kentucky-lawmakers-respond-president-obamas-national-address-syria <p>Kentucky lawmakers in Washington are reacting to President <a href="http://wfpl.org/post/live-blog-obama-addresses-nation-syria">Obama's national address where he said he was asking Congress to postpone a vote on authorizing military strikes against Syria</a> as the U.S. pursues diplomatic solutions.</p><p>Since the president first said he was seeking congressional approval for a limited attack on the Assad regime, members of the state's federal delegation have voiced either opposition or skepticism to the plan.</p><p>Poll numbers show the <a href="http://www.cnn.com/2013/09/09/politics/syria-poll-main/">vast majority of Americans oppose</a> U.S. intervention.</p><p>The president acknowledged the public's war weariness but outlined his rationale for why he believes the U.S. should get involved. At least one lawmaker was pleased with Obama's primetime address for clearing a path to diplomacy.</p><p>From Democratic Congressman John Yarmuth:</p><blockquote><p>"It is in our national interest to delay a vote on military action against the Syrian government while we pursue diplomatic opportunities to force the Assad regime to surrender its chemical weapons. I strongly support this approach and, like all Americans, will continue to monitor these developments as the international community re-evaluates its responsibilities in Syria."</p></blockquote><p>Others remained oppose to the idea of U.S. intervention, even as reports reflect the <a href="http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2013/09/10/putin-chemical-weapons-united-nations-obama/2794529/">Russian government is persuading the Syrian government</a> to release their chemical weapon stockpiles to avert U.S. strikes. Wed, 11 Sep 2013 02:44:00 +0000 Phillip M. Bailey 6797 at http://wfpl.org Kentucky Lawmakers Respond to President Obama's National Address on Syria Congressman Hal Rogers Wants 'Precise' Details Before Favoring Syria Strike http://wfpl.org/post/congressman-hal-rogers-wants-precise-details-favoring-syria-strike <p>Kentucky's longest serving member of Congress wants more details from President Obama before supporting the administration's resolution seeking military action against the Syrian government.</p><p>"The ongoing civil war in Syria is heartbreaking, but I have great reservations about intervening in Syria," says Congressman Hal Rogers, who was first elected in 1980.</p><p>Speaking at a news conference in St. Petersburg, Russia, the president announced he will <a href="http://wfpl.org/post/obama-has-no-intention-strike-syria-if-congress-says-no">address the nation from the White House next week</a> to make his case for intervention before the American public.</p><p>For the most part, Kentucky's federal delegates in the House and Senate are leaning against the mission.&nbsp;</p><p>Congressman John <a href="http://wfpl.org/post/congressman-john-yarmuth-unconvinced-obama-administrations-argument-attack-syria">Yarmuth, the lone Democrat, says he remains unconvinced</a> by the Obama administration's argument.</p><p>Republican congressmen Andy Barr and Ed Whitfield have both voiced opposition while Brett Guthrie said via Facebook he would "listen carefully" as the administration makes its case.</p><p>Senate Republican Leader Mitch <a href="http://wfpl.org/post/mcconnell-make-syria-decision-coming-days-feels-certain-about-no-boots-ground">McConnell has been noticeably absent from the debate</a>. But in a recent public appearance, McConnell said he would announce his position in "the coming days."</p><p>While Rogers, who chairs the powerful appropriations committee, told WFPL he has serious doubts about the mission, the GOP lawmaker also indicated he is open to being persuaded by Obama's argument. Fri, 06 Sep 2013 16:02:06 +0000 Phillip M. Bailey 6739 at http://wfpl.org Congressman Hal Rogers Wants 'Precise' Details Before Favoring Syria Strike Kentucky Lawmakers React to President Obama Seeking Military Action Against Syria http://wfpl.org/post/kentucky-lawmakers-react-president-obama-seeking-military-action-against-syria <p>Most Kentucky federal lawmakers are praising President <a href="http://wfpl.org/post/president-obama-speak-syria">Obama's decision to seek congressional authorization before taking military action against Syria</a>, which the administration says has used chemical weapons against civilians and rebel forces.</p><p>Obama says the administration has intelligence that the Syrian regime claimed the lives of 1,429 people with chemical attacks, and that a limited and tailored air strike is necessary.</p><p>Speaking from the Rose Garden, Obama said he reached out to leaders in Congress including Senate Minority Mitch McConnell, R-Ky, who had requested a conference call with the White House to brief senators on Saturday.</p><p>From McConnell's office:</p><blockquote><p>"Today the President advised me that he will seek an authorization for the use of force from the Congress prior to initiating any combat operations against Syria in response to the use of chemical weapons. The President’s role as commander-in-chief is always strengthened when he enjoys the expressed support of the Congress."</p></blockquote><p>Congressman John Yarmuth, D-Ky., who is often a supporter of the president's agenda, urged the Obama administration to outline its case for bombing Syria, and advised they seek approval from lawmakers.</p><blockquote class="twitter-tweet"><p>The President made the right decision to come to Congress on the use of force in <a href="https://twitter.com/search?q=%23Syria&amp;src=hash">#Syria</a>. I look fwd to this critical debate.</p>— Rep. John Yarmuth (@RepJohnYarmuth) <a href="https://twitter.com/RepJohnYarmuth/statuses/373870983465013249">August 31, 2013 Sat, 31 Aug 2013 20:40:40 +0000 Phillip M. Bailey 6683 at http://wfpl.org Kentucky Lawmakers React to President Obama Seeking Military Action Against Syria Congressman John Yarmuth Calls for More Accountablity at NSA http://wfpl.org/post/congressman-john-yarmuth-calls-more-accountablity-nsa <p>Despite objections from the Obama administration, Democratic Congressman John Yarmuth joined a bipartisan effort to limit the Nation Security Agency's ability to gather Americans telephone records.</p><p>The House ultimately rejected the amendment co-sponsored by Republican Justin Amash and Democrat John Conyers in a 205-217 vote, but this <a href="http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/wonkblog/wp/2013/07/25/justin-amash-almost-beat-the-nsa-next-time-he-might-do-it/">could be just the beginning of legislative attempts</a> to curtail the intelligence agency.</p><p>Since agency contract employee Edward Snowden leaked details of a massive data collection program, the NSA has been criticized by libertarian-leaning conservatives and liberals for some time.</p><p>Appearing on MSNBC, Yarmuth says he isn't pleased with how the information came to light, but says there is considerable concern among lawmakers regarding privacy rights.</p><p>Watch:</p><p><iframe allowfullscreen="" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/xptzKGBICsM" frameborder="0" height="360" width="540"></iframe></p><p> Fri, 26 Jul 2013 00:00:01 +0000 Phillip M. Bailey 6251 at http://wfpl.org Study: Immigration Reform Would Boost Kentucky Revenues By $23 Million http://wfpl.org/post/study-immigration-reform-would-boost-kentucky-revenues-23-million <p>A <a href="http://www.itep.org/immigration" target="_blank">study by the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy</a> estimates Kentucky stands to gain $23.2 million in increased revenue should Congress pass a comprehensive immigration reform bill.</p><p>The 50-state analysis assumes that a pathway to citizenship for the 11 million undocumented immigrants in the country will be included in any legislative package.</p><p>That would add around 80,000 new Kentuckians who would fully participate in the state and local tax systems.</p><p>According to the study, those immigrants who are living in the U.S. illegally are already paying $10.6 billion a year in state and local taxes nationwide, which is $58.8 million in Kentucky.</p><p>Supporters of immigration reform argue the added revenue demonstrates creating legal channels for the undocumented helps immigrant and native households, especially in poorer states.</p><p>"Some people would be surprised by how much undocumented immigrants already pay in taxes, including sales, property and income. But immigration reform would increase those contributions especially with income tax by creating a legal path for full compliance," says Anna Baumann, a research associate with the Kentucky Center for Economic Policy, a non-partisan group that studies economic issues in the state. Wed, 10 Jul 2013 16:14:10 +0000 Phillip M. Bailey 6065 at http://wfpl.org Study: Immigration Reform Would Boost Kentucky Revenues By $23 Million House Immigration Bill Coming Early Next Week, Congressman John Yarmuth Says http://wfpl.org/post/house-immigration-bill-coming-early-next-week-congressman-john-yarmuth-says <p>Kentucky &nbsp;Congressman John Yarmuth says a comprehensive immigration reform bill will be introduced in the House early next week.</p><p>The Democratic-controlled Senate version of the bill passed by a comfortable bipartisan margin last Thursday after months of debate.</p><p>But Speaker John Boehner has made it clear the Senate version means nothing to the Republican-controlled House, where many lawmakers have described the pathway to citizenship provisions for the estimated 11 million undocumented immigrants as nothing more than amnesty.</p><p>The speaker has has also made it clear he will not bring any measure to the House floor unless it receives support from the majority of the GOP caucus.</p><p>Yarmuth, a Democrat, is a member of the a bipartisan work group crafting the bill. He says the group has finished a draft that Democratic and GOP lawmakers in the so-called ‘Gang of 7’ are reviewing.</p><p>"We still have the strong support and encouragement of Speaker Boehner as well as Leader (Nancy) Pelosi, so I think we’re all committed to perusing this process. And we think that ultimately the vehicle that we come up with will be the vehicle that ends up passing the House," he says. Mon, 01 Jul 2013 12:00:00 +0000 Phillip M. Bailey 5965 at http://wfpl.org House Immigration Bill Coming Early Next Week, Congressman John Yarmuth Says