April 01, 2022

New Dem Weekly Wrap 4/1/2022

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New Democrat Coalition Leaders Meet with President Biden and Senior White House Officials

  • This week, New Democrat Coalition Chair Suzan DelBene (WA-01) and Vice Chairs Scott Peters (CA-52), Dr. Ami Bera (CA-07), Sharice Davids (KS-03), and Ann Kuster (NH-02) met with President Biden and senior administration officials at the White House to discuss the Coalition’s priorities for the remainder of the 117th Congress.
  • In the meeting, New Dem Leaders underscored the importance of taking urgent action to pass:
    • A final bipartisan innovation bill that strengthens global supply chains and eases inflation
    • A strong budget reconciliation bill that does a few things well for longer with a focus on lowering costs for families, reducing drug prices, and tackling climate change
    • And bipartisan legislation to lower gas prices, increase public safety, and create opportunities for all Americans. 
  • You can find a readout of the meeting here and read a transcript of New Dem Leaders’ remarks after the meeting here

New Dem Chair Statement on President Biden’s Fiscal Year 2023 Budget Proposal

  • Following President Biden’s announcement of his fiscal year 2023 budget proposal, Chair DelBene released a statement emphasizing that the budget reflects New Dems’ top priorities such as lowering costs for Americans, improving public safety, investing in our global security, and responsibility reducing the deficit over the long term. 
  • The statement reads in part, “As the Majority Makers in Congress, New Dems know that legislative action is the best way to create long-term, durable policies that expand opportunity for every American. New Dems look forward to working closely with the Biden administration, Congressional leadership, and our colleagues to pass a budget that reflects the priorities of the American people.”
  • Read the full statement here.

More on what New Dems have been up to below.  

New Dems in the News

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“There may be slim majorities, but we still have an important opportunity to make long-term change” Chair DelBene via Politico

New Dems “sought to appeal to Biden’s history as a legislator, urging him to continue banging heads together in Congress until a reconciliation bill passes. ‘Clearly, the president may be able to take actions, but we feel that for long-term durable policy, Congress needs to act,’ New Dem leader SUZAN DELBENE (D-Wash.) told Playbook on Wednesday night. ‘We have the House, the Senate and the White House. There may be slim majorities, but we still have an important opportunity to make long-term change. This whiplash of things going back and forth [via executive action] doesn’t really help over the long term.’” 

New Dems Meet with White House via Punchbowl 

On Wednesday, Punchbowl previewed that New Dems were heading to the White House in the afternoon. “Rep. Suzan DelBene (D-Wash.), the chair of the New Democrat Coalition, and the caucus’ vice chairs will head to the White House to meet with senior administration officials about their priorities for the rest of the Congress and their strategy for the midterms.” 

New Dems Support Biden’s Budget to Lower Costs and Reduce the Deficit via The Washington Post 

“Some found reasons for optimism in the Biden budget plan. ‘This budget calls for lowering costs for consumers, increasing public safety, investing in our global security, and responsibly reducing the deficit over the long-term,’ said a statement from the New Democrat Coalition, a group of centrist House Democrats.” 

 

NDC HIGHLIGHTS:

Bill Action

Biden Requests Federal Funding for Kilmer’s Pilot Program to Spur Economic Growth and Create Jobs

NDC Chair Emeritus Derek Kilmer’s (WA-06) Recompete pilot program, based on the NDC-endorsed Rebuilding Economies and Creating Opportunities for More People Everywhere to Excel Act (RECOMPETE Act) was included in President Biden’s Fiscal Year 2023 budget. This bipartisan legislation will create jobs and opportunities in persistently distressed communities using flexible grants that address local needs. 

House Passes Craig’s Bill to Cap Insulin Copays at $35 per Month

Rep. Angie Craig’s (MN-02) bill, H.R. 6833, the Affordable Insulin Now Act, passed the House. This legislation will cap the out-of-pocket cost of insulin at $35 per month, lowering drug costs for hardworking families who are currently paying high costs for insulin and other diabetic treatments.

House Passes Sewell Legislation to Help Part-Time Workers Save for Retirement

Rep. Terri Sewell’s (AL-07) bill, H.R. 2944, was included in the SECURE Act 2.0, which passed the House this week. Rep. Sewell’s bill makes it easier for part-time workers to start contributing to their employer’s 401k plan. The legislation incentivizes saving by lowering the number of years of service required for part-time workers to make retirement contributions. 

 

House Passes Williams Legislation to Increase Access to Care

Rep. Nikema Williams’ (GA-05) bill, the Care is an Economic Development Strategy (CEDS) Act, passed the House. This legislation will require Economic Development Districts to show in their Comprehensive Economic Development Strategies how they will increase access to care-based services, including childcare.

New Member Legislation

Fletcher Introduces Bipartisan Legislation to Implement National PFAS Study
Rep. Lizzie Fletcher (TX-07) introduced the Federal PFAS Research Evaluation Act to implement a federal per-and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) study to uncover the health hazards PFAS exposure presents to communities. This legislation requires federal agencies with existing PFAS research to work with the National Academies of Science to conduct a two-phase study on PFAS exposure and toxicity, and to develop a federal research and development plan to address PFAS exposure. 

Davids and Gottheimer Introduce Bipartisan, Bicameral Legislation to Combat Opioid Misuse Among Student Athletes
NDC Vice Chair Sharice Davids (KS-03) and Rep. Josh Gottheimer (NJ-05) introduced the Student Athlete Opioid Misuse Prevention Act address the ongoing opioid crisis among youth. This bipartisan legislation would expand prevention programs and improve mental health supports for student athletes. 

Kilmer Introduces Bipartisan Legislation to Improve Federal Government Efficiency, Save Taxpayers Money

NDC Chair Emeritus and Chairman of the Modernization Committee Derek Kilmer (WA-06) introduced the Improving Government for America’s Taxpayers Act to drive better implementation of recommendations from the U.S. Government Accountability Office and improve government efficiency. This bipartisan legislation would direct the GAO to streamline the recommendations process and identify Congressional oversight actions that can help agencies implement open priority recommendations. 

  

NDC Member Actions 

Schneider Leads Members of Congress Urging Biden Administration to Prioritize, Welcome More Ukrainian refugees to the United States

NDC Leadership Member Brad Schneider (IL-10) led a bipartisan group of 60 Members of Congress in writing to President Biden urging him to build on the humanitarian efforts already underway to help Ukrainians by allowing for the expedited resettlement of Ukrainian refugees in the U.S. 

Plaskett Appointed to Congressional Black Caucus Foundation’s Board of Directors

NDC Leadership Member Stacey E. Plaskett (VI-AL) was appointed to the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation’s (CBCF) Board of Directors this week.

Of the appointment, Rep. Plaskett said, “As a newly appointed member of the CBCF board of directors, I am charged with the CBCF’s mission of advancing the global Black community by developing leaders, informing policy, and educating the public. I am honored and look forward to excellent collaboration with my fellow colleagues (academics, business leaders and elected officials) to advocate for equitable policies in the legislative process and leveraging my role as a Member of Congress to advance the vision of this amazing organization.” 



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