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Congresswoman Betty McCollum's eNewsletter

January 21, 2011

House Republican Study Committee Calls for Elimination of Funding for Central Corridor
The House Republican Study Committee, which includes Congresswoman Michele Bachmann (MN-06) and Congressman John Kline (MN-02), called for $2.49 trillion in cuts to transportation infrastructure, education, public safety, and other non-defense discretionary funding over the next decade.

These cuts include an elimination of the New Starts Transit Program, which invests $2 billion annually in urban transit projects nationwide. The New Starts Transit Program is the source of federal funds for the Central Corridor light rail project. Slashing this program would eliminate the $450 million federal share of the Central Corridor. The Republicans' proposal threatens to destroy hundreds of much-needed jobs in Minnesota, and it will wipe out a generation of economic development opportunities for the east metropolitan area.

House Republican Majority Votes to Repeal Health Care Rights
Keeping their promise to the Tea Party, House Republicans passed legislation to repeal the health care reform law by a vote of 245 to 189. In their proposal, Republicans have no plan to replace the patient protections and access to preventive care for children and seniors that would be eliminated by this bill. A Washington Post poll this week has only 18 percent of Americans agreeing with the Republican repeal plan.

Health care reform affects all segments of the United States - veterans, seniors, Native Americans, low and middle class families, small business owners, minorities, and many more. Any rollback of patient protections would put power back into the hands of insurance companies and not the American people. Congresswoman McCollum remains absolutely committed to protecting health care rights for all Americans.

"Defending patient protections for all Americans is a priority for me. I will continue to fight against all Republican efforts to repeal health care reform," said Congresswoman McCollum.

The most important voices in this debate are of the people who have benefited from health care reform. Congresswoman McCollum is asking Minnesotans join her in this debate by submitting their stories about how health care reform has helped them. These individual stories will better illustrate the consequences of repeal.

Congresswoman McCollum Accepts New Appropriations Subcommittee Assignments
This week, Congresswoman McCollum announced her subcommittee assignments on the House Appropriations Committee in the 112th Congress. This committee is responsible for funding the federal government. Congresswoman McCollum will remain the Subcommittee for the Interior and Environment, and she is a new member of the Subcommittee for Military Construction, Veterans Affairs, and Related Agencies.

"As a member of the House Appropriations Committee I have an obligation to work to make smart and fiscally responsible investments that will strengthen our country and fulfill the promises we've made to our citizens," said Congresswoman McCollum. "My subcommittee assignments in the 112th Congress will allow me the opportunity to work to protect our national parks, ensure Americans have clean air and water, and that quality health care for veterans and Native Americans is accessible. These are important issues for Minnesota and I am determined to keep the focus on ensuring the federal government meets its obligation to our families, our veterans, and our environment."

In Response to Arizona Tragedy, Congresswoman McCollum Supports Gun Control Legislation
Less than two weeks after the violent shooting in Arizona, Congresswoman McCollum signed onto the Large Capacity Ammunition Feeding Device Act (H.R. 308). This legislation will ban high-capacity ammunition magazines such as those used to shoot Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords. Going a step further, H.R. 308 also closes a loophole in the previous ban in which magazines manufactured before the law went into effect could still be sold or transferred.

"Once again, another senseless act of gun violence demonstrates that we need comprehensive gun safety laws," said Congresswoman McCollum. "Allowing previously-banned models of military style assault guns back onto America's streets is simply wrong, and I will support legislation that bans these unnecessary weapons."