Legislative Update for Week Ending August 9, 2013

Legislative Update for Week Ending August 9, 2013

This week, Members of Congress returned to their home states and districts to begin the month-long August recess. In addition, The Senior Citizens League (TSCL) saw a number of cosponsors sign on to key bills.

August Recess Begins

On Monday, Members of the House and Senate traveled to their home states and districts for the first week of the August recess. They are expected to return to Capitol Hill on Monday, September 9th. In the meantime, many Members of Congress will attend local events and hold town hall meetings, giving constituents an excellent opportunity to voice their concerns and have their most pressing questions answered.

The following Members of Congress, among others, will hold town hall meetings this week: Sens. Deb Fischer (NE), Michael Enzi (WY), Mark Begich (AK), Mike Johanns (NE), and David Vitter (LA), and Reps. Tom Cole (OK-4), Blake Farenthold (TX-27), Jeff Miller (FL-1), Markwayne Mullin (OK-2), Steve Pearce (NM-2), Aaron Schock (IL-18), Adrian Smith (NE-3), Todd Young (IN-9), Tammy Duckworth (IL-8), Loretta Sanchez (CA-46), Justin Amash (MI-3), Kevin Brady (TX-8), Paul Broun (GA-10), Randy Neugebauer (TX-19), Phil Roe (TN-1), Steve Womack (AR-3), Jim Langevin (RI-2), Tom McClintock (CA-4), Lynn Westmoreland (GA-3), and Lynn Jenkins (KS-2). For details, or to see if your Members of Congress have scheduled town halls, contact their local offices.

TSCL urges you to make the most of the August recess by attending town hall meetings. For a list of sample questions to ask, click HERE.

Key Bills Gain Support

TSCL also saw two key bills gain support this week. One new cosponsor – Rep. Mike McIntyre (NC-7) – signed on to Rep. Peter DeFazio’s (OR-4) Consumer Price Index for Elderly Consumers (CPI-E) Act (H.R. 1030), bringing the total up to nineteen. If signed into law, Rep. DeFazio’s bill would base the Social Security cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) upon the spending patterns of seniors. Currently, the COLA is based upon the way young, urban workers spend their money – a method that underestimates the spending inflation seniors experience each year.

In addition, five new cosponsors signed on to the Preventing and Reducing Improper Medicare and Medicaid Expenditures (PRIME) Act (S. 1123 and H.R. 2305) this week. The cosponsor totals are now up to twenty-three in the Senate and thirty-two in the House. If signed into law, the comprehensive bill would take a number of steps to prevent fraud, waste, and abuse within the two programs – a problem that TSCL believes must be addressed in order to ensure that scarce program dollars are being spent properly. The new cosponsors are: Sens. Bill Nelson (FL), Jeane Shaheen (NH), and Susan Collins (ME), and Reps. Walter Jones (NC-3) and Rodney Davis (IL-13).

TSCL enthusiastically supports the CPI-E Act and the PRIME Act, and we were pleased to see support grow for both of them this week.