Dear Tea Party Members & Friends ,
We discussed the efforts of this Administration to “Draft Our Daughters” on Monday’s Sentinel Strategy Call and I encourage you to please take action immediately to stop this misguided policy. As explained in yesterday’s excellent commentary in the Daily Signal, “Congress should act now to prohibit forcing women into combat, including through requiring them to register for Selective Service.” Sentinel Jude Eden, a sentinel who served in the Marines in Iraq and is regarded as an expert on the issue further states “Combat is not an equal opportunity for women because they don’t have an equal opportunity to survive.”
The House Rules committee is considering amendments to the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) – H.R. 4909. One of these amendments would require women ages 18-26 to sign up for the Selective Service which the government uses to draft individuals into military service when necessary.
The House Rules committee should fix the NDAA by striking this amendment from the bill before it reaches the House floor.
Please reach out to the Republican members of the House Rules committee, listed below, and ask them to strike the amendment.
Rep. Pete Sessions (TX-32) 202.225.2231 @PeteSessions
Rep. Virginia Foxx (NC-05) 202.225.2071 @virginiafoxx
Rep. Tom Cole (OK-04) 202.225.6165 @TomColeOK04
Rep. Rob Woodall (GA-07) 202.225.4272 @RepRobWoodall
Rep. Michael C. Burgess (TX26) 202.225.7772 @michaelcburgess
Rep. Steve Stivers (OH-15) 202.225.2015 @RepSteveStivers
Rep. Doug Collins (GA-19) 202.225.9893 @RepDougCollins
Rep. Bradly Byrne (R-AL-1) 202.225.4931 @RepByrne
Rep. Dan Newhouse (R-WA-4) 202.225.5816 @RepNewhouse
Also tweet to them by adding their twitter handle to this suggested tweet:
Say NO #NDAA Amendment drafting Women in #SelectiveService http://dailysign.al/1ZCnZCc
Please don’t hesitate to contact me with any questions or to let me know how it goes!
The recording of Monday’s call can be accessed HERE and extensive notes from the call are shown below.
Heritage Action for America
Florida Regional Coordinator
The House and Senate are both in session this week.
National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA): The House Rules committee is considering amendments to the House Armed Services Committee (HASC)’s recently passed authorization bill formally called the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) – H.R. 4909. In its current form, the NDAA is a mixed bag. On the positive side, the NDAA increases federal funding for the military (though it does so in a questionably manner) and includes an amendment, offered by Rep. Russell (R-OK), to prevent federal agencies from discriminating against religious organizations that are competing for a federal government contract or grant. On the negative side, the NDAA includes a controversial amendment to require women ages 18-26 to sign up for the Selective Service which the government uses to draft individuals into military service when necessary.
Drafting women into the military is the logical conclusion of the Obama administration’s ongoing efforts to deny the biological differences between the sexes, and the implication those differences have in terms of combat. According to former Marine Corps servicewoman and Sentinel Jude Eden, “Combat is not an equal opportunity for women because they don’t have an equal opportunity to survive.” The federal government should determine personnel decisions based on what’s best for our military, not what lines up with a liberal social ideology.
House Republicans in the Rules committee should take the necessary steps to fix the NDAA by striking the amendment that could force young women into the Selective Service, and ultimately a draft. House Republicans should also stop efforts from Democrats to remove the Russell amendment from the NDAA, which they will attempt to do when the bill comes to the House floor next week.
Read Sentinel Jude Eden’s Daily Signal blog on this issue by clicking here.
Puerto Rico: This Wednesday, the House Natural Resources Committee is set to unveil a “revised” proposal, known as the Puerto Rican Oversight, Management, and Economic Stability Act (PROMESA) – H.R. 4900, to address Puerto Rico’s $72 billion debt crisis. Unfortunately, the “revised” proposal will most likely fail to make any significant changes and will still grant an indirect bailout by allowing the island and their bondholders to go through forced bankruptcy proceedings.
Although Puerto Rico defaulted on a $370 million payment last week, it still has plenty of time to enact pro-growth reforms before higher payments are owed over the upcoming year. Changing the rules in the middle of the game should not be allowed. Puerto Rico has already been receiving billions of dollars of aid through a special tax provision given to American companies who operate on the island since 2010. But this aid and future potential bailouts have not and will not address the root of the problem on the island – a lack of economic growth. Congress should help Puerto Rico pursue pro-growth policy reforms that increase economic growth such as repealing the Jones Act and exempting Puerto Rico from the federal minimum wage. Pro-growth policy reforms are the only way to help get Puerto Rico on a fiscally sustainable path.
Heritage Action will review final proposed language on Wednesday. A House floor vote is expected by the end of this three week long session. You can find the latest Puerto Rico write-up on the HUB here and a sharable write-up on Heritage Action’s website here.
First Amendment Defense Act (FADA): Across the countrystate legislators and governors are considering bills that would protect individuals, organizations, and businesses who believe marriage is the union between one man and one woman. Unfortunately, under opposition from liberal special interest groups and big business, many state governments are scared to pass such legislation. House Republicans in Washington, D.C. have an opportunity to provide leadership and political cover for state governments by passing FADA.
FADA has the support of 167 members yet House Leadership has failed to consider the bill in committee or schedule a vote on the House floor. Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-UT), chairman of the House – Oversight and Government Reform committee, has expressed a willingness to hold a hearing on FADA, but has not promised a markup of the bill that is essential for passage.
A common argument made against FADA is that the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution already protects the federal government from discriminating based on religion. Why pass another unnecessary federal law?
Unfortunately, because of the Obergefell v. Hodges Supreme Court ruling last summer, individuals and organizations are potentially subject to federal discrimination based on their beliefs in traditional marriage. The government admitted this would be an issue during the hearing. In oral arguments before the Supreme Court, Justice Samuel Alito asked Solicitor General Donald Verrilli whether a university or college might lose its nonprofit tax status if it doesn’t abandon its views on marriage as the union of husband and wife. Verrilli’s response was telling: “It’s certainly going to be an issue. I – I don’t deny that. I don’t deny that, Justice Alito. It is – it is going to be an issue.”
FADA is necessary to prevent this very situation from occurring. FADA would prevent the federal government from discriminating against individuals, associations, or businesses, such as churches and religious colleges, by denying a tax exemption, grant, contract, license, or certification because they believe marriage is a union of one man and one woman.
Heritage Action created a website calling on Congress to pass FADA, H.R. 2802, and listing the members of Congress who cosponsored the bill. Please visit the page here and urge your member to encourage Chaffetz and Leadership to move the bill through committee by scheduling a markup and House floor vote. Heritage Action also created a website with a list of members who haven’t co-sponsored FADA which you can find here. For the full list of members on the House – Oversight and Government Reform committee click here.
Read and share our FADA FAQs Sentinel brief by clicking here.
Budget/Appropriations: Despite continuing efforts from House Leadership to pass a budget at higher spending levels agreed to under last year’s Boehner-Obama budget deal, no budget will come to the House floor for a vote. This represents a huge win for the conservative grassroots and conservative members of Congress who demanded a return to the lower spending levels established under the Budget Control Act (BCA) of 2011.
Instead of writing and passing a conservative budget, Republican Leadership is moving ahead with appropriations bills to fund the government. Congress should only pass individual appropriations bills that adhere to a top-level spending cap of $1.04 trillion established under the BCA, include conservative policy riders, and don’t fund liberal programs.
Cotton Amendment to Energy-Water Appropriations Bill: The Senate will attempt to end debate on the Energy-Water appropriations bill tonight at 5:30 pm for the third straight time. Holding up the 60 votes needed for cloture is Senator Tom Cotton’s (R-Ark.) anti Iran nuclear deal amendment, which would prohibit the use of funds from the Energy Department to purchase heavy water from Iran. (Heavy water is a byproduct of nuclear fuel processing.) If cloture is invoked, Senate Democrats will not be able to block a vote on the Cotton Amendment, which has overwhelming support and would serve as a staunch, bipartisan rebuke of President Obama’s Iran nuclear agreement. Taxpayer dollars should not be used to fund the President’s unconstitutional and foolish Iran nuclear agreement.
Supreme Court Vacancy: Senator Jeff Flake (R-AZ) was recently interviewed on “Meet the Press” and asked about the confirmation of Judge Merrick Garland to the Supreme Court if Republicans lose the White House.
Sen. Flake gave this response, “I think Republicans are more than justified in waiting. That is following both principle and precedent. But the principle is to have the most conservative, qualified jurists that we can have on the Supreme Court, not that the people ought to decide before the next election. I’ve never held that position. If we come to a point, I’ve said all along, where we’re going to lose the election, or we lose the election in November, then we ought to approve him quickly.”
Sen. Flake is entirely wrong. Senate Republicans decided to take a stand of #NoHearingsNoVotes to respect the process of allowing the American people, not a lame duck President, to decide the future of the Supreme Court through the presidential election.
Please reach out to Sen. Flake and ask him to reconsider his position on this very important issue. Watch his full interviewhere.
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