As we begin 2021, my staff and I are focused on setting our policy priorities and hitting the ground running in the 117th Congress. Below, you will find my policy priorities as we head into the new year.
As the Republican Leader of the Seapower and Projection Forces Subcommittee, I have the privilege of fighting to give back to our men and women in uniform every day. We need to ensure we are adequately addressing growing global threats and continuing the progress we have made in improving military readiness. Not only is a strong national defense important to keep our nation safe, it is also important for the economy of Virginia.
It is undeniable, COVID-19 has impacted our health, economy, and response systems. I graduated from Virginia Tech with a degree in Biology, earned a master’s degree in public health, and spent 26+ years working for the Virginia Department of Health. Throughout my career, I have been committed to protecting Virginians and raising awareness about how public health issues impact us all. The COVID-19 outbreak underscores the importance of not only focusing on public health, but also the need to fix our broken healthcare system. Individuals and families should have the ability to make decisions for themselves based on what best fits their needs, wants, and budget – not what is dictated to us by the Government. And while we still have a long way to go on our road to recovery, I am committed to getting results and providing assistance to our nation’s small businesses, hard working Americans, and our frontline workers who are keeping our nation safe and operational.
The scope of the underserved people in our area is staggering, but I am proud to say that since I’ve been in office, we have made great strides. I will continue to work on critical legislation to help close the digital divide, support vital grant applications from our localities, and work directly with the FCC and internet service providers to bring greater coverage to people in our area as I have done in past years.
As a lifelong conservationist, I am committed to the preservation of our public lands, wetlands, and vast natural resources. I want clean air, clean water, and environmental protection, but those things do not have to be achieved at the expense of jobs, prosperity, and national security. We can protect our environment by promoting policies encouraging clean energy – like nuclear, hydropower, natural gas, wind, and solar. I will continue advocating for our environment in Washington and will advocate for commonsense approaches to our natural world.
Strengthening America’s education system is important in fostering innovation and promoting our economic security. We must prepare our students for the demands of our current society and provide unemployed Americans with an outlet to reintegrate into the workforce. I will continue my work in Congress to prioritize workforce development by promoting CTE and STEM programs, partner with schools and local businesses to address the skilled worker shortage, and increase access to dual enrollment CTE training courses so students can work toward credentials while still in high school.
Our men and women in uniform have earned their benefits through sacrifice, service, and hardship, and these benefits must be protected. Whether it is accessing health care, employment, educational opportunities, or just support within our communities, our veterans deserve our unequivocal commitment to ensuring their successful transition to civilian life. I was proud to advocate for the new VA health clinic coming to the Fredericksburg region in the coming years, and I will continue to support our veterans in Congress through legislation that puts them and their benefits first.
I look forward to serving you for another two years and working to make life better for all Virginians!