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  • Saving the oceans — one place where Congress can agree
    Posted in Opinion Pieces on June 7, 2019 | Preview rr
    Tags: Water Quality

    By Francis Rooney and Sheldon Whitehouse Human beings have not always been good stewards of our oceans. We have overexploited their natural gifts, polluted their waves with garbage, acidified them with carbon dioxide, and threatened their shores with offshore drilling. Thankfully, there is bipartisan support in Washington to take action. We come from different regions, backgrounds, and political parties. Yet we are united by our passion for keeping our coasts and oceans healthy. In New England, ... Read more

  • 75 Executives Lobbied Congress for a National Carbon Price. We Listened
    Posted in Opinion Pieces on June 1, 2019 | Preview rr
    Tags: Water Quality

    By Chris Coons and Francis Rooney Right before Memorial Day, over 75 businesses came to Capitol Hill to demand that their lawmakers establish a national carbon price. The participating business leaders collectively employ over 1 million U.S. workers and represent a combined market value of around $2.5 trillion—the largest group of businesses assembled on the Hill to advocate for climate legislation in a decade. In over 80 meetings with members and staff from both the House and Senate, these busi... Read more

  • Universities aren't Protecting Free Speech - So I'm Introducing Legislation to do it for Them
    Posted in Opinion Pieces on March 21, 2019 | Preview rr
    Tags: Education

    By Francis Rooney “I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.” This quote, attributed to Evelyn Beatrice Hall, is the embodiment of our First Amendment right to freedom of speech. Unfortunately, this constitutional right is under siege on university campuses across the country. Many colleges and universities use dangerous and insidious methods to suppress free speech. One example is “free speech zones”, which are specifically delineated areas on a campus w... Read more

  • Strengthen labor union reporting requirements to expose corruption
    Posted in Opinion Pieces on March 18, 2019 | Preview rr
    Tags: Economy & Jobs

    I have spent my entire private sector career and my time in Congress focused on improving the lives of American workers, and the new Democratic majority in the U.S. House of Representatives insists they share that goal. In the Committee on Education and Labor, on which I serve, they claim to do so by trying to strengthen the power of labor unions, which represent just over 6 percent of private sector workers in the U.S. The labor market has spoken and has decided that unions largely do not add v... Read more

  • China, Russia And Iran Use South American Upheaval To Gain A Western Foothold
    Posted in Opinion Pieces on March 4, 2019 | Preview rr
    Tags: Foreign Affairs

    America has taken the relative calm of the Western Hemisphere for granted. We have paid little attention to foreign influence from across the globe descending on the region and only now are we realizing the consequences. The growing presence of American adversaries such as Russia, China and Iran in Latin America alters the strategic landscape south of the United States and should serve as a wake-up call for United States engagement in Latin America. Russia has played a role in Latin America for ... Read more

  • Stay in Syria to counter Iran
    Posted in Opinion Pieces on February 1, 2019 | Preview rr
    Tags: Foreign Affairs

    Regardless of the past decisions which drew the United States into the conflict in Syria, we should not abandon our role in the fight against the Islamic State. A withdrawal would give back all that we have achieved and would be an abandonment of our Kurdish allies. The void we would leave will create space for other power players with interests adverse to ours, like Russia and Iran, to gain ground in the Middle East. The U.S.-backed Syrian Democratic Forces and the Kurdish Peshmerga have had gr... Read more

  • We must get rid of excess nitrogen in our water
    Posted in Opinion Pieces on September 7, 2018 | Preview rr
    Tags: Water Quality

    In the 20 months I have served as your Congressman, improving our water quality has been my top priority. We have achieved more tangible results in building the Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Plan (CERP) projects and the Herbert Hoover Dike than in all of the preceding 18 years since the CERP was enacted in 2000. Congress and the administration have supported our requests to fund the infrastructure necessary to clean up the Okeechobee Watershed and reduce harmful discharges into the river.... Read more

  • Sea-level rise must be taken seriously
    Posted in Opinion Pieces on August 13, 2018 | Preview rr
    Tags: Water Quality

    We, a United States Representative and a scientist from our regional state university, have come together to acknowledge that sea-level rise is an urgent problem for our community, but one that we must and can address. It's not uncommon to hear people mention that they are worried about the future, whether environmental, social or economic. Partisanship and polarization seem to dominate our political landscape right now, with little interest in debate or compromise, making it difficult to come t... Read more

  • Rep. Francis Rooney: Not all trade agreements are created equal
    Posted in Opinion Pieces on July 26, 2018 | Preview rr
    Tags: Economy & Jobs

    There are inequities in most trade agreements and they can always be improved, especially as new technologies evolve and the workplace needs change. Interconnected, globalized trade has increased the economies of both developed and developing nations, including the United States, and has drawn countries together through mutual self-interest, which enhances security and stability. Consumers benefit from more efficient supply chains and lower prices, and since we are a consumption- and service-dri... Read more

  • Time to Free Workers From Corrupt Unions
    Posted in Opinion Pieces on July 24, 2018 | Preview rr
    Tags: Economy & Jobs

    The recent Supreme Court ruling in Janus vs AFSCME ended a practice of abuse of public sector employees by their unions. The decision prevents unions from forcing the payment of dues by non-members and is a major victory for our civil servants. Now it is time to stop similar corrupt tactics used by unions to force private sector non-union employees to pay dues. Thanks to a hand-out by the Obama National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), unions can collect involuntary dues from former members who rec... Read more