Saturday, May 31, 2014

Free Concert With Country Star Jo Dee Messina!


  Tom Cotton's campaign is holding a free concert with country music star Jo Dee Messina on June 6th in El Dorado, Arkansas.

Reserve your free tickets at tomcotton.com/reserve. Also, get more details or purchase VIP tickets for preferred seating and entrance to a reception with Jo Dee Messina.
This will be a fun event for the whole family you won't want to miss! For more information, click above link or call Tom Cotton's office at  501-313-2914. 

Tags: Jo Dee Messina, free concert, El Dorado, Arkansas, Tom Cotton, AR  To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". This site is an Outreach of the ARRA News Service.

Friday, May 30, 2014

Arkansas Delegation Respond to VA Secretary Shinseki Resignation

  ARRA News Service - This morning, President Obama accepted Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki resignation. The Washington Times reports, "President Obama accepted the resignation Friday of Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki, amid a burgeoning scandal over delayed care for veterans at VA hospitals. In a hastily arranged statement after meeting with Mr. Shinseki at the White House, the president said he accepted the resignation “with considerable regret” and admitted that the decision was partly political. The president said Mr. Shinseki told him “that he could not carry out the next stages of reform without being a distraction himself. . . . VA Deputy Secretary Sloan Gibson, who has been in his post only three months, will take over on an interim basis."

Today, members of the Arkansas Congressional Delegation responded to the resignation of Department of Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki:

Congressman Tim Griffin (R-AR-02): “On May 12, I called for Secretary Shinseki’s resignation, and I welcome today’s announcement as a key step toward accountability and bold reform. Make no mistake, a new leader alone won't cure what ails the VA; the only cure is bold, innovative reform that will undoubtedly receive massive resistance from entrenched defenders of the status quo. But, the best interests of veterans must prevail. Many veterans and their families have already suffered too much, and it is essential that we reform this bureaucracy to ensure our veterans receive the treatment they need, have earned and deserve. Whatever is best for our veterans – not the federal bureaucracy – should be our priority. The VA has the budget and authority to provide our veterans with the best care, regardless of whether it is at a government or private hospital. I am committed to working with my colleagues to enact effective reforms to ensure mistreatment of our veterans never happens again and to keep our nation’s promise to take care of America’s heroes.”

Congressman Tom Cotton (R-AR-04) and U.S. Senate Candidate: "Secretary Shinseki's resignation is an overdue first step toward the reforms needed to get our veterans the care they deserve. I'm disappointed that, as usual, Senator Pryor stuck with President Obama until the very end, but even the President realized Secretary Shinseki needed to resign. Our veterans and all Arkansans need a senator who will lead, not one who will defer to Barack Obama."

U.S Senator John Boozman (R-AR) and member of the Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee: "The failures within our VA medical system pose a problem in need of an immediate solution and the President's ability to manage this crisis to this point has been nothing short of disappointing. The public, a large portion of the veterans’ community, and much of Congress lost faith in Secretary Shinseki's ability to make the necessary changes to fix the shortcomings that have cost our veterans timely medical care they need and earned. The administration must take quick action to regain that confidence, and up to now, a sense of urgency in the White House has been lacking to say the least.

While a leadership change at VA is in order, a new secretary alone will not absolve the President of his responsibility to ensure our veterans receive quality care in a timely manner. If there is a sense of complacency that has set in within VA, it is the President's responsibility to reverse that course which will require much more effort on his part than merely nominating a new secretary."

U.S. Representative Rick Crawford (R-AR-1): "I reluctantly joined the call for Gen. Shinseki’s resignation, knowing the General — who is a disabled war veteran — has provided decades of service to fellow veterans, including myself and my father. Nevertheless, the gross misconduct taking place at VA healthcare facilities has proven nothing short of egregious, and I fear Gen. Shinseki could no longer oversee the reforms needed to make this system reflective of the great service provided by our veterans.

Today, Gen. Shinseki dutifully submitted his resignation; a move which did not fix the problem at hand but provided recognition of the problem itself.

As President Obama searches for a new secretary to fill the General’s vacant position, we’re faced with the question of our commitment to fully resolving this issue. Do we welcome the new secretary and cite Phoenix as an anomaly in need of a fix, or do we stand ready to protect those men and women who once protected us?

I believe we cannot stop until every veteran and serviceman and woman knows they can rely upon a healthcare system at home; whether they live in Phoenix or Phillips County; Manhattan or Mountain Home."

Congressman Steve Womack (R-AR-3): "There are tremendous problems plaguing the VA and its ability to carry out one of the most important missions of our government – caring for our veterans. It's been determined that the VA’s problems are systemic, and while I’m encouraged that the administration is beginning to take responsibility for them, Secretary Shinseki’s resignation alone isn’t going to right the ship. I hope Acting Secretary Gibson will promptly get to the bottom of this, hold all involved accountable, and do everything in his power to repair the lack of trust our nation and veterans have in their health system.”

Reluctant Response:
U.S Senator Mark Pryor (D-AR): "Secretary Shinseki is a decorated war hero, and there's no question he cares deeply about our veterans after 40 years wearing our nation's uniform. I respect his service to our country, and I respect his decision today to step down as VA Secretary in light of the disturbing treatment of veterans at facilities in Arizona and elsewhere. It’s clear there’s a lack of integrity within the VA system and we need to fix it immediately. We have a long road ahead, but I will deliver on my promise to get to the bottom of this for Arkansas veterans."

Tags: Arkansas, Delegation, VA, Secretary Eric Shinseki, Resignation To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". This site is an Outreach of the ARRA News Service.

Thursday, May 29, 2014

Griffin Works to Provide Certainty to Taxpayers

 Says, ‘I will keep working to reform our tax code to boost economic growth and help America grow good-paying jobs’

WASHINGTON – Congressman Tim Griffin (AR-02), a member of the Ways and Means Committee, released the following statement after the committee considered six bills to permanently extend important provisions and implement reforms in our tax code:

“Permanently extending some tax provisions that have been temporarily extended year after year is an important step toward comprehensive tax reform. As these bills simplify our tax code and provide certainty to taxpayers, they also expand Americans’ opportunities to make charitable contributions, ensure conservation easements that will help hunters and farmers in Arkansas and encourage more capital investment in America’s businesses. I will keep working to reform our tax code to boost economic growth and help America grow good-paying jobs. We’ve made great progress on these bills in committee today, and I look forward to seeing these important provisions enacted.”

Rep. Griffin is an original cosponsor of H.R. 4718, which permanently extends a provision, commonly called bonus depreciation, that allows businesses to immediately deduct 50 percent of qualified purchased property. This bill also expands the definition of qualified property to include owner-occupied retail stores and lifts restrictions to allow for more unused corporate alternative minimum tax credits, which businesses can claim in lieu of bonus depreciation, to be used for capital investment.

Rep. Griffin is an original cosponsor of H.R. 2807, which permanently extends the deduction for charitable contributions by individuals and corporations of real property interests for conservation purposes.

Rep. Griffin is a cosponsor of H.R. 4719, which permanently extends the deduction for charitable contributions of food inventory. 

Below is a breakdown of the six bills and for more information, click here.

-          To permanently extend the deduction for charitable contributions by individuals and corporations of real property interests for conservation purposes.
-          Would make permanent the rule allowing some tax-free distributions from IRAs for charitable purposes.
-          Would permanently extend the deduction for charitable contributions of food inventory.
H.R. 3134: Charitable Giving Extension Act (Sponsored by Mike Kelly, R-Pa.)
-          Would allow individuals' charitable contributions made between the end of the tax year and the tax return due date to be treated as being made during the tax year.
-          Would modify the tax rate for excise tax on investment income of private foundations.
-          Would permanently extend a provision, commonly called bonus depreciation, that allows businesses to immediately deduct 50 percent of qualified purchased property.
-          Expand the definition of qualified property to include owner-occupied retail stores
-          Lifts restrictions to allow for more unused corporate alternative minimum tax credits, which businesses can claim in lieu of bonus depreciation, to be used for capital investment.

Tags: Tim Griffin, tax relief, certainty for taxpayers, To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". This site is an Outreach of the ARRA News Service.

Senator Pryor’s Outside Spending Deluge | New Rasmussen Poll on Arkansas U.S. Senate Race

  Largest single infusion of outside special interest money in Arkansas history 

This year, Arkansans are being subjected to the largest ever infusion of outside special interest money in state history. Senator Pryor’s outside special interest backers began an assault on Arkansas’s airwaves even before Tom Cotton announced his campaign for the U.S. Senate. The billionaires and outside special interest groups are worried that the Senate seat they want to buy for Senator Pryor is slipping away.

Senator Pryor is the most reliable vote in the Senate for their irresponsible agenda. Senator Pryor has cast votes for ObamaCare, radical activist judges, and multiple bailouts. He voted for Obama’s failed Stimulus and voted to gut Medicare by over $700 billion to pay for ObamaCare.

Every single one of these votes was a vote against the best interests of Arkansas and a vote for the reckless agenda of President Obama, Harry Reid and the out of state billionaires who fund them.  Senator Pryor is the only Arkansan in Congress to vote for ObamaCare.  

Senator Pryor is the best vote money can buy for these outside special interests and radical Washington liberals, and money is no object for them when it comes to funding Senator Pryor’s desperate ambition to stay in office.

Arkansans are being inundated with misleading ads and it’s important for them to know why. Senator Pryor votes with these outside special interest groups and against Arkansas. Senator Pryor’s irresponsible record hasn’t bought him much favor with Arkansas voters, so his outside special interest backers are going to stop at nothing to buy him Arkansas’s senate seat.

Group
Ad Buys
Patriot Majority  
(Harry Reid, Tom Steyer, Michael Bloomberg)
$1,021,267
Senate Majority
(Harry Reid, Tom Steyer, Michael Bloomberg)
$943,335
American Hospital Association
(Lobbied for ObamaCare)
$131,990
International Association of Fire Fighters
(Big Labor)
$124,985
TOTAL
$2,221,577



New poll out from Rasmussen Reports shows Tom Cotton leading Senator Mark Pryor in Arkansas's race for U.S. Senate. 

Tom Cotton: 47%
Senator Mark Pryor: 43%
Another Candidate: 4%
Undecided: 6%

Tags: Mark Pryor, Outside Liberal, money, Rasmussen Reports, poll To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". This site is an Outreach of the ARRA News Service.

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

The RPA Invites You to a Night with our Nominees!

   Little Rock, Arkansas —  The Republican Party of Arkansas invites you to join us on Friday, June 20 th at the Arkansas Sports Hall of Fame for our special event, “Let the Games Begin: A Night with our Nominees!”

RPA Chairman Doyle Webb issued the following the statement: “We are excited to bring our whole team together to honor our outstanding GOP nominees! It is going to be a fun night of unity, fellowship and ball park food! Let’s get ready to rumble to rally the Red Team to Victory in November!”

When: Friday, June 20 th at 6:30 pm
Where:  Arkansas Sports Hall of Fame Museum
            Verizon Arena, #3 Verizon Arena Way, North Little Rock, AR 72114
            (501) 663.4328
Details: Tickets are $50
RSVP to the RPA here or contact Alisha at alisha@arkansasgop.org

Tags: RPA Invite, Meet GOP , nominees, candidates, 2014 Election To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". This site is an Outreach of the ARRA News Service.

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

House Makes Progress on Important Legislation

Congressmen Tim Griffin (AR-2) and Rick Crawford (AR-1)
 took students from Harding University on a Capitol tour .
 by Congressman Rick Crawford (R-AR1):  Last week saw several major legislative pieces pass the House, including the Water Resources Reform Development Act of 2013 (more on that below), the Justice for Victims of Trafficking Act of 2014, the Department of Veterans Affairs Management Accountability Act of 2014, the USA FREEDOM Act, and the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2015.

I'm grateful my House colleagues put aside their ideological differences to move these bills along. I look forward to more progress this week!

WRRDA Legislation Places Value on Nation’s Water Resources


“A river is more than an amenity, it is a treasure.” – United States Supreme Court Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes

Holmes made this statement more than 80 years ago giving the High Court’s verdict resolving a dispute between New Jersey and New York over the Delaware River and its tributaries. When making the remark, Holmes knew an important fact: whether it’s the Columbia River in the Pacific Northwest, the Hudson or Delaware Rivers in the Northeast, the “Mighty” Mississippi River in the central U.S., the Great Lakes bordering the U.S. with Canada, or the more than 12,000 miles of oceanic coastline, our nation’s waterways serve a vital role to citizens who have access to them and should be valued as such.

But despite having a wealth of water resources, our country has let its waterways and ports get overlooked in favor of other projects. As the years have passed, we’ve seen the fruits of those decisions as infrastructure repairs have mounted and important projects have languished.

Fortunately, my House colleagues on both sides of the aisle recognized the need to do something quickly to secure our country’s competitiveness, prosperity, and economic growth. In an overwhelming 412 to 4 vote, we passed the House and Senate Conference Report to H.R. 3080, known as the Water Resources Reform and Development Act of 2013 (WRRDA).

This legislation deauthorizes $18 billion of inactive projects, accelerates new project delivery while increasing transparency, streamlines environmental reviews, protects communities, improves economic competitiveness, and most importantly, creates jobs.
As a member of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, I had the privilege of helping push WRRDA to passage while also making sure our treasures in the First District don’t get overlooked.

For example, WRRDA includes a provision allowing rural water projects to qualify for long-term, low-interest Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Authority (WIFIA) loans. Arkansas’ First District houses two large-scale agricultural irrigation projects which address regional aquifer depletion — Grand Prairie and Bayou Meto. WIFIA loans will speed up the completion of these projects which divert surface water used for agricultural irrigation, taking pressure off the depleting aquifers. Maintaining this critical water source will protect Arkansas as a leader in production agriculture for many generations.

Speaking of agriculture, WRRDA included an important provision for on-farm fuel storage; addressing EPA’s overreaching Spill Prevention, Control, and Countermeasure (SPCC) regulations. Under SPCC, EPA has required farmers and ranchers to make costly infrastructure investments to oil storage facilities greater than 1,320 gallons. WRRDA’s provision ups that limit to 6,000 gallons, which isn’t the 10,000 gallon limit I’ve sought with my bipartisan FUELS Act (H.R. 311), but it does provide a starting place for future discussions on this issue.

And a starting place is really what WRRDA is all about.

It doesn’t provide a fix-all for problems years in the making, but it does state the U.S. is ready to place value on its water resources in a transparent, fiscally responsible, and common-sense way. And that statement moves us closer to treating those resources as the treasure they are.

Tags: Congressman, Rick Crawford, Arkansas, AR-1, legislation, WRRDA, water resources To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". This site is an Outreach of the ARRA News Service.

Pryor Stands Idly By Instead of Fighting for Arkansas Veterans

  Apparently to Senator Pryor and his fellow Democrats in the Senate cleaning up corruption at the Veteran’s Administration is just going to have to wait. Last Wednesday the House of Representatives passed with strong bipartisan support the Veterans Affairs Management Accountability Act (H.R. 4031) -- a bill that would bring more accountability to the VA. Shockingly, however, Senate Democrat’s chose to block this important legislation from even coming to the Senate floor.

“Senate Democrats’ obstruction of legislation that would hold VA managers accountable and protect the brave men and women who have sacrificed so much for our freedom is appalling,” said RPA Chairman Doyle Webb. “Even as we were heading into the Memorial Day holiday Senator Mark Pryor did not stand up for Arkansas’s Veterans by demanding that the liberal leaders allow this important legislation a vote. It is beyond shameful that Pryor will stop at nothing to put Harry Reid’s agenda above that of Arkansas.”

Background:
Last Week, Senate Democrats Blocked Legislation To Give VA Secretary Eric Shinseki More Power To Hold Employees Accountable. “Senate Democrats on Thursday blocked a bill designed to give Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki more leeway to fire senior department executives he believes are responsible for long wait times and care problems at VA medical facilities.”  (Jacqueline Kilmas, “Senate Democrats block bill to give Eric Shinseki more power to fire at Veterans Affairs,” Washington Times, 5/22/14)

Veterans will likely have to wait until the end of year for changes. “The appropriations bill likely won’t be signed into law until late this year…” (Leo Shane III, “Senate Joins Effort to Simplify Firing VA Executives,” Army Times<, 5/22/14)

Tags: Mark Pryor, not fighting for Veterans To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". This site is an Outreach of the ARRA News Service.

Asa Hutchinson Says Crime is a Challenge Arkansas Must Face

 Asa Hutchinson Says Crime is a Challenge Arkansas Must Face
Crime Impacts Personal Safety and Hurts Job Creation
Pledges More Resources And Greater Accountability

Little Rock - Asa Hutchinson, former federal prosecutor and Republican nominee for Governor, announced today that he would take action to make Arkansas families safer and to reduce the problem of violent crime and drugs as part of his focus on job creation and economic development.

Hutchinson described the problem in terms of both public safety and as a challenge to economic growth.
“We know crime is more than a news story when a person worries about a home invasion; or a neighborhood bank robbery.  You also have the frustration of business owners and economic developers unable to hire new employees because of illegal drug use. This reality makes it doubly difficult for Arkansas to accomplish its goals in terms of economic growth and job creation.  Too often, when a violent crime occurs, we see early release from prison as a factor or drugs and many time it is both.”To illustrate the challenge for Arkansas, Hutchinson cited statistics from local news sources, including the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. By the end of April, Little Rock has already had twenty-two killings, with eleven taking place that month alone. According to the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, only two months since 1993 have matched this level of violence.

There are five areas that Hutchinson asserts we must address in order to reduce the negative impact of crime and drugs on our streets. The emphasis of a Hutchinson administration will range from increased enforcement efforts to improved drug education and treatment efforts.  They include:
1. Improved accountability and supervision for parolees who are released from prison.
2. More resources for state law enforcement and drug task forces to go after violent criminals and those who threaten society. These new resources range from increased personnel in drug enforcement to funding of necessary additional prison space.
3. Support for proven and effective reentry programs for those who have paid their penalties and desire to get a job, support their families and meet their obligations to their communities.
4. Offer technical and expert assistance to local schools in the area of school security and safety for the protection of our children.
5. Increased funding for drug treatment courts that have proven to be successful in changing lives from drug addiction and crime to responsibility.
Go to AsaForGovernor.com to read Asa’s complete policy proposal.

Tags: Asa Hutchinson, Candidate for Governor, Arkansas, 2014 Election, policy addressing crime in Arkansas To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". This site is an Outreach of the ARRA News Service.

Sen. Mark Pryor Parroting President Barack Obama

by Club for Growth

Tags: Mark Pryor, parroting, words, beliefs, Barack Obama To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". This site is an Outreach of the ARRA News Service.

Monday, May 26, 2014

Arkansas Voter Enthusiasm Favors the GOP!

  Doyle Webb, Chairman, RPA: The RPA salutes all of the Arkansas GOP men and women who offered themselves to our country and state by serving in our Armed Forces and giving the ultimate sacrifice so that we might enjoy the freedoms our Creator has endowed us with. I also want to take this opportunity to thank each of our candidates, their families, and their campaigns for their hard work and countless sacrifices to better the Republican Party here in Arkansas during the 2014 Arkansas Primary.

Tuesday was truly a great day to be a Republican! For the first time since Reconstruction, Republicans in Arkansas out-voted Democrats in a statewide primary election. Arkansas voters cast 176,783 Republican primary ballots to the Democrats' 150,101. That's a 32.4% increase in GOP primary voting from 2010. Even more impressive is the fact that Arkansas Republicans surpassed even their 2012 primary total by 18.3%. Voter enthusiasm clearly favors our Republican candidates!

Top to bottom we have the strongest ticket Republicans have ever fielded in Arkansas. The RPA congratulates all of our Republican candidates who will be joining Tom Cotton on the GOP ticket as our 2014 nominees for the General Election! Our Party is committed to moving forward from this primary election united. Our team will ensure that Tom Cotton will be victorious and be part of the new majority to reverse the failed policies of Barack Obama.

We applaud Asa Hutchinson on being our gubernatorial nominee who will lead our Legislature and create a better business environment and economy for Arkansas.

We also look forward to rallying behind French Hill and Bruce Westerman and sending them to join Congressmen Crawford and Womack in Washington as they fight for the everyday, hardworking Arkansans.

Congratulations to all of our nominees for Constitutional office. For the first time in history the Republican Party will hold the Constitutional majority by electing Tim Griffin Lieutenant Governor, our first Republican Attorney General, keeping Mark Martin as our Secretary of State, Dennis Milligan as Treasurer, Andrea Lea as our State Auditor and re-electing John Thurston to the office of Land Commissioner.

For our state legislative races, we are very proud of our nominees and confident that we will elect even more conservative representatives and senators to grow our majorities in both the Arkansas House and Senate.

November is going to be a GREAT time to be a Republican in Arkansas, but we need your help. Ensure we can elect all of these outstanding nominees and make history by giving to the Republican Party today!

Thank you for your support and have a wonderful Memorial Day!

Tags: IDoyle Webb, Chairman, Arkansas, Republican Party,  Memorial Day  To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". This site is an Outreach of the ARRA News Service.

Pryor Maintains Silence On The VA Scandal As Senate Dems Block VA Accountability Act

 Multiple news outlets come up empty trying to get Senator Pryor to address the failures at the VA
"U.S. Sen. Mark Pryor's staff members did not say whether he thinks Shinseki should resign."Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, 5/22/14
"A spokesman for Sen. Mark Pryor (D-Ark.) did not immediately return a request for comment."Huffington Post, 5/22/14
Yes? No? Maybe? How hard should it be to get an answer from a U.S. Senator who sits on the VA Appropriations Subcommittee about whether or not the head of the VA should resign?
In the wake of disturbing allegations that misconduct occurred at 26 VA facilities across the country, the U.S. House of Representatives took action yesterday to address the crisis at the VA. The House passed The VA Management Accountability Act, which gives the Secretary of Veterans Affairs more power to fire or demote VA officials who engage in misconduct or don't do their job. That legislation passed with overwhelming bipartisan support on a vote of 390-33. 
It stands to reason that a bill passed with 390 votes in the House would easily sail through the U.S. Senate, right? Not so fast. When Senator Marco Rubio requested consent to take up and pass The VA Management Accountability Act in the Senate, only Democrats objected. Does Senator Pryor agree that The VA Management Accountability Act should have been blocked? If not, then why won't he stand up to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and demand a vote before taking a 10-day vacation for Memorial Day?
U.S. Senate candidate Tom Cotton issued the following statement regarding the VA crisis:  
"I learned a simple standard for leadership in the Army: you are responsible for everything that your organization does or fails to do. Secretary Shinseki should resign, and President Obama should be held accountable for his failures in leadership. While I am proud that the House took swift action to begin addressing the VA's failures, I'm appalled that Senate Democrats chose to block a vote on a bill that received 390 votes in the House and then leave for a 10-day vacation. The Senate should pass these VA reforms so that the President can sign them into law immediately. The time for studies and reports is over, and this crisis shouldn't take months to address."

Tags: Sen Mark Pryor, VA scandal, silence To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". This site is an Outreach of the ARRA News Service.

Friday, May 23, 2014

Griffin Takes Action to Protect Americans’ Privacy and Civil Liberties

 Says, ‘Federal government overreach in its surveillance of innocent American citizens is a violation of the Fourth Amendment and is unacceptable’

WASHINGTON – Congressman Tim Griffin (AR-02) issued the following statement today after voting to support the Uniting and Strengthening America by Fulfilling Rights and Ending Eavesdropping, Dragnet Collection, and Online Monitoring (USA FREEDOM) Act (H.R. 3361):

“While I fully support the intelligence professionals who work tirelessly to track threats and keep Americans safe, we must ensure Americans’ privacy and civil liberties are protected and preserved. Federal government overreach in its surveillance of innocent American citizens is a violation of the Fourth Amendment and is unacceptable. I will keep working to stop abuse of the Patriot Act. Although today’s bill includes compromises with the intelligence community to maintain our national security, I continue to support its goal to provide greater transparency and accountability to government security practices.”

Rep. Griffin is an original cosponsor of H.R. 3361, the USA FREEDOM Act, which passed the House by a vote of 303-121.

The USA FREEDOM Act, introduced by Patriot Act co-author Rep. Jim Sensenbrenner (WI-05):
-          Prohibits the bulk collection of all records under the Patriot Act, Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) trap and trace and National Security Letters (NSL)
-          Requires the federal government to now use “specific selection terms” to prevent bulk collection while preserving traditional intelligence authorities
-          Ensures Americans’ phone records stay with providers instead of the government and that records not containing foreign intelligence are destroyed
-          Implements minimization procedures to prevent innocent Americans’ records from being gathered
-          Creates a panel of five experts to help ensure that the FISA Court considers privacy concerns
-          Expands existing reporting requirements under FISA
-          Requires new reviews and public disclosure of FISA orders

The Fourth Amendment to the United States Constitution states: “The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.” 
-------------
Congressman Tim Griffin was re-elected as the 24th representative of Arkansas’s Second Congressional District on November 6, 2012.  For the 113th Congress, he is a member of the House Committee on Ways and Means while also serving as an Assistant Whip for the majority.  In the 112th Congress, he served as a member of the House Armed Services Committee, the House Committee on Foreign Affairs and the House Committee on the Judiciary. Tim Griffin is a candidate for Arkansas Lt. Governor in the 2014 Election.

Tags: Tim Griffin, Protect American's Privacy and Civil Liberties To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". This site is an Outreach of the ARRA News Service.

Encouraging Facts: The Republican Path To Victory in 2014

Ward Baker, NRSC Republicans are on offense in 2014. NRSC Political Director, Ward Baker, gives an update on the GOP’s efforts to expand the map and win the Senate majority.

One person doesn’t win a campaign. Watch the Path To Victory video above and find out where to get involved to help Republicans win in November!

Tags: 2014 elections, U.S Senate, Path to Victory, NRSC To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". This site is an Outreach of the ARRA News Service.

Lt. Col. Allen West Endorses Tom Cotton For U.S. Senate

Allen West Endorsement of Tom Cotton:

Tags: Allen West, endorsement, Tom Cotton, Arkansas To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". This site is an Outreach of the ARRA News Service.

Just Another Democrat Obamacare Lie - We Can Fix-It! - Mark Pryor Leads The List

by Bill Smith, ARRA News Service - Democrats are covering their former lies about Obmacare with another massive Obamacare lie – they are claiming that they intend to “fix it.”

The Senate Democrats who support Obamacare simply cannot be believed when they claim they want to “fix it” because:
  • They broke it.
  • They told us we could keep our plans.
  • The do-nothing Senate does nothing on health care.
  • They often admit they love Obamacare as-is.
Sen. AL Frankin, Minnesota
As evidence for not believing them, consider the Senate inaction on over 40 House-passed bills fixing the worst elements of the law and has passed no bills of its own. Even the handful of Democratic senators who have introduced bills (including Hagan, Begich, and Manchin) have exerted no real pressure on their leadership to schedule a vote. Moreover, adding a “copper plan” with even higher deductibles will appeal to exactly zero consumers and do nothing to fix the real problems millions of Americans are suffering.
Sen. Kay Hagan, North Carolina
Additionally, consider the compelling video evidence of the Democrats’ continued support for the law exactly as-is: President Obama’s enthusiastic “mission accomplished” type remarks at his Rose Garden presser, an exchange in which HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius was asked point blank in congressional testimony whether she would propose any legislative changes, and a recent television appearance in which DNC Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman-Schultz was unable to identify a single element of Obamacare that she would change.
Mary Landriew, Louisiana
Consider also the many past and ongoing statements of elected Obamacare supporters for proof of their actual support for the law as-is, as well as a growing number of House-passed bills to fix the worst elements of Obamacare on which the Senate refuses to act.

Why won’t the Senate act to restore the 40 hour workweek, as Senator Mark Begich, for instance, has specifically promised to do? Jimmy Hoffa, Jr. has said that Obamacare’s 30-hour workweek breaks the back of the middle class. The House-passed bipartisan bill to restore the workweek has not received so much as a committee hearing in the Senate.

Jean Shaheen, New HampshireWhy won’t the Senate act to delay the individual mandate? The most widely hated aspect of the law, the mandate punishes millions of Americans for being unable or unwilling to buy into the Obamacare disaster. Many businesses have already received a two-year reprieve from their mandate, but individuals cannot get a Senate vote on even a one-year reprieve.

Why won’t the Senate act to protect taxpayers from being forced to bailout insurance companies? The House is expected to soon consider a no-bailouts bill and Senator Marco Rubio has been pressing for a Senate
Mark Warner, Virginia vote for six months. How can any Obamacare supporter credibly claim to want to “fix” Obamacare if they won’t close a loophole that could funnel billions of dollars directly from taxpayers to the biggest insurance companies?

Are we left to conclude that  that’s exactly what Obamacare supporters want? After all, the insurance industry wrote the law, lobbied for its passage, funds key liberal think tanks, and now enjoys a government-mandated customer base for its expensive products and direct bailout payments.
Kirsten Gillibrand, New York
Millions of Americans are suffering the disastrous consequences of this law, and the same Senate Democrats who thwart any attempt to fix the worst elements of the law are out on the campaign trail claiming that, if reelected, they will fix it. It’s a slap in the face of their constituents and all of us. We can't allow this to go unchallenged.

Either Senate Democrats immediately undertake in earnest honest, open floor debate to reopen health care reform in a bipartisan fashion, or their “fix it” lies will be continue to be just another Obamacare lie.
The Truth: They Are not going to Fix IT!

Tags: Senate Democrats, Mark Pryor, Arkansas, AL Frankin, Minnesota, Kay Hagan, North Carolina, Mary Landriew, Louisiana, Jean Shaheen, New Hampshire, Mark Warner, Virginia, Kirsten Gillibrand, New York, Obamacare, Lies, more lies, the big lie, We can fix it,video To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". This site is an Outreach of the ARRA News Service.

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Boozman-Authored Provisions Included in Water Resources Agreement on Way to the President

 WASHINGTON – A major water resources and development agreement, which includes several provisions authored by Senator John Boozman (R-AR), cleared a final hurdle this afternoon when it was overwhelmingly approved by the U.S. Senate.


The Water Resources Reform and Development Act (WRRDA) passed by a vote of 91-7. Having been overwhelmingly approved by the House of Representatives earlier this week, the bill will now go to the President to be signed into law.

Boozman, a member of the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works which has jurisdiction over WRRDA, was unable to vote on the agreement as he is in Arkansas recovering from heart surgery. However, he released the following statement in support of the bill’s passage:  “I am pleased that Congress passed this important bill to address our nation’s infrastructure needs. WRRDA will improve our nation’s water resources policy by reforming the Corps of Engineers to increase transparency, reduce flood risks and improve the reliability of our water supply and hydropower. Additionally, like all thoughtful infrastructure investment, this bill will create jobs. It is my hope the President quickly signs it into law.”

Several provisions authored or supported by Boozman made it into the final agreement:
·         Improves River Ports in Arkansas: The bill guarantees adequate funding for river ports in Arkansas from the industry-supported Harbor Maintenance Trust Fund. This funding is collected through a small tax on imports, but until a Boozman-supported provision was added to the bill, little if any of the funding was coming to maintain facilities in Arkansas. Arkansas farms and factories use the river to ship goods to and from our state. Without well-maintained ports, Arkansas products will become more expensive and less competitive as we try to increase exports.

·         Extends America the Beautiful National Parks and Federal Recreational Lands Pass Program: Boozman authored language in the bill allowing the Corps to participate in this Pass Program in the same manner as the National Park Service and the Forest Service. 

·         Provides Park Passes for Active-Duty Military Personal and Dependents: Language authored by Boozman provides free annual passes to active duty military personnel and dependents. These military families will now be treated the same at Corps-operated sites as at other federal recreation sites.

·         Improves Dam Safety: A Boozman-authored provision extending the National Dam Safety Program—which provides grants to improve state dam safety programs through training, technical assistance, inspection, and research—was included in the bill. Dams throughout Arkansas provide water for homes, farms, and factories, as well as opportunities for fishing and other types of recreation while reducing the risk of flooding.

·         Protects Farmers from Excessive EPA Regulation of small Above Ground Storage Tanks: The bill permanently prevents the EPA from imposing heavy-handed regulations on small above ground storage tanks on farms and ranches. The bill also provides safeguards to ensure that the regulation of medium-sized storage tanks on farms and ranches will be developed thoughtfully and in cooperation with the Department of Agriculture. Boozman actively supported the inclusion of these provisions.

·         Assures Water Cost Transparency: Boozman authored a provision that requires the Corps of Engineers to explain the rationale for the water rates that it charges to utilities. The Corps sells water to utilities and municipalities that provide water to hundreds of thousands of Arkansans. This Boozman-authored provision will require the Corps to provide a detailed accounting of the costs associated with providing this water, so that customers will know whether or not their current water rates are justified.

·         Finding Beneficial Uses for Excess Water: Boozman authored a provision that requires the Corps of Engineers to work with water districts that are under contract to purchase more water than they can use. In many cases, the Corps sells water to utilities on long-term contracts based on predictions of future population growth. If this growth fails to occur, the costs can skyrocket for families, businesses, and farmers. Under the Boozman-authored language, the Corps will work with water districts in this predicament to open new markets so that the excess water can be put to a beneficial use elsewhere.

·         Enhancing Cooperative Joint Management: The bill includes language authored by Boozman to the management of Corps recreation facilities, providing a better experience for Arkansans who visit Corps parks for recreational purposes.


·         Project Deauthorization: The bill is made more fiscally-responsible by providing for the “deauthorization” of $18 billion of older, inactive projects. Boozman worked to ensure that this provision was carefully crafted so that important long-term projects, like the Arkansas River 12-Foot Channel, which have received significant previous support, will remain authorized.

·         Providing Adequate Levels of Service: With a tight budget, the Corps has been reducing levels of service at locks and dams. This threatens to interrupt shipments on our rivers. The most important thing we can do is provide adequate funding to operate the facilities that the taxpayers have already paid to construct. Boozman also supported a provision in WRRDA to allow the Corps to work with non-federal partners to accept contributed funds to increase lock operations.

·         Arkansas River Advisory Committee: The bill creates a McClellan-Kerr Arkansas River Navigation System Advisory Committee. This stakeholder advisory committee will provide recommendations to improve the efficiency, reliability, and availability of the navigation system.

In addition, Boozman worked with his colleagues to include a number of significant reforms that cut bureaucracy, reduce costs, make projects more efficient, and minimize delays.  Significant portions of the bill are also designed to expand public-private partnerships.

Tags: Senator John Boozman, Water Resource Agreement, passed To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". This site is an Outreach of the ARRA News Service.

NDAA Supports Our Troops and Their Essential Benefits

 Also establishes new criteria to allow for the awarding of Purple Hearts to Pvts. Long and Ezeagwula
           
WASHINGTON – Congressman Tim Griffin (AR-02) issued the following statement after House passage of the FY2015 National Defense Authorization Act (H.R. 4435):

“This year’s NDAA provides essential funding for our military, grants our troops a much-deserved pay increase, rejects President Obama’s proposed cuts to TRICARE and commissary benefits, preserves military housing allowances, requires religious protections for military chaplains and servicemembers, works to prevent sexual assaults and addresses the growing threats posed by cyber attacks.  It also establishes new criteria to allow for the awarding of Purple Hearts to Pvt. William Long and Pvt. Quinton Ezeagwula, the victims of the 2009 Little Rock Recruiting Station shooting.  I was proud to vote for this bipartisan bill that supports our brave servicemembers and their families.”

The NDAA, H.R. 4435, passed the House by a vote of 325-98. It authorizes $521.3 billion in spending for national defense and an additional $79.4 billion for Overseas Contingency Operations. It is consistent with the House budget agreement, H.Con.Res. 96, which passed on April 10, 2014.

This NDAA rejects the President’s proposed cuts to military commissary benefits, and Section 632 requires an independent review to find efficiencies in the commissary system. On February 5, 2014, Rep. Griffin introduced The Save our Military Shopping Benefits Act, H.R. 3996, to prevent the Department of Defense from closing or reducing operations of commissary stores and exchanges on military installations within the U.S. through 2016.

Section 571 of the NDAA would establish new criteria for awarding the Purple Heart to members killed or wounded in attacks inspired or motivated by foreign terrorist organizations.  This would allow for awarding the medal to members of the Armed Forces who were killed or wounded in the attacks on Fort Hood and the Little Rock recruiting station, both in 2009. Since his election to Congress, Rep. Griffin has sought to have the Purple Heart awarded to these individuals and supported the inclusion of this language in the NDAA.

Tags: NDAA, FY2015 National Defense Authorization Act, H.R. 4435, supporting troops To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". This site is an Outreach of the ARRA News Service.

RGA Challenges Mike Ross to Defend His Liberal Record

 WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Republican Governors Association today issued a challenge to Mike Ross, Democrat candidate for Governor of Arkansas, to publicly defend his record as a far-left, big spending, big government ally of Washington liberals like Nancy Pelosi.

In the weeks since the Republican Governors Association began airing advertisements in the Arkansas governor’s race, Ross seems to have spent more time hemming and hawing about the ads than touting his own record.

Today, the Republican Governors Association challenges Mike Ross to point out exactly which claims included in the advertisements he’s decrying “misrepresent the facts,” “distort the truth,” or “lie” about his record: MikeRossChallenge

“If Ross’ background differs from what the ads have exposed as much as he claims, it’s time for him to follow through on his accusations and say specifically which statements inaccurately portray the record he has amassed,” said RGA Communications Director Gail Gitcho. “We are confident that, while the reality of his ultra-liberal record may not jive with the façade of independence he’s using to dupe voters, he’ll find the ads to be completely truthful and accurate.”

Tags: RGA, Mike Ross, Liberal Record, progressive democrat  To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". This site is an Outreach of the ARRA News Service.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Sen. Mark Pryor and Harry Reid Controlled Senate Doesn’t Represent Us Anymore



To change America's course and preserve America's greatness, we must change Washington by electing selfless leaders who truly care about what's best for our families.
We need leaders who are more like you and me - honest and hardworking. We need patriots who will fight day and night to strengthen our nation. Most of all, we need people who will look us in the eye and tell us the truth, even when they disagree with us.
By now you probably know where Tom Cotton stands on most issues, but you may not know about Tom Cotton as a person.  Learn more about this small-town Arkansan who went to Harvard and joined the Army infantry to serve our country. Now he’s speaking up for us as a Representative in Congress. Tom Cotton's Story!
The sad fact is that Washington doesn’t represent us anymore. It’s become corrupted by special interests and lifelong politicians with selfish agendas. It’s time to take back our country by electing people with integrity to the U.S. Senate who aren't afraid to stand up to both parties in Washington - people like Tom Cotton.
Running this ad on this site was NOT paid for! It was run because this site agrees that re-election of Mark Pryor would hurt both Arkansas and America.

Tags: Mark Pryor, re-election, hurts america, Arkansas, 2014 Elections, Elect Tom Cotton To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". This site is an Outreach of the ARRA News Service.

Pryor‘s Plan: Tax and Regulate Small Businesses To Death

 Mark Pryor's Disastrous Actions —  Small business is the engine that powers America’s economy, but a quick look at Senator Pryor’s voting record shows he has hurt Arkansas small businesses by drowning them in tax increases and strangling them with regulations. Pryor has consistently rubber-stamped President Obama’s drastic tax hikes and harmful regulations.

Bill Smith, ARRA News Service noted,  " When business pay higher taxes, prices go up and all Americans pay higher prices. Arkansans a cannot afford higher prices.  Liberals love big government and your money.  And Washington's run-away agencies from the IRS to DHHS to the VA are prime example of big spending and Washington Democrats desire to continue its funding of failing programs."

In 2012, Pryor voted to raise taxes on an estimated 2.1 million small business owners. A study conducted by Ernst & Young predicted that Pryor’s tax increase would cost the nation’s economy an estimated $200 billion in economic output and could destroy as many as 710,000 jobs.

As if raising taxes on small businesses weren’t bad enough, Senator Pryor has made things even worse by helping President Obama layer more red tape on American small businesses, costing them nearly $70 billion per year. During President Obama’s first term, 131 major regulations were issued, including costly EPA regulations that Senator Pryor has supported.
RPA Communications Director Holly Wilson said: “It’s not surprising that Senator Pryor is out-of-touch with the needs of small businesses. After spending the last 24 years running for government office, he probably can’t remember the last time he spent a day working in the private sector. When it comes to keeping taxes low and cutting red tape that hurts small businesses, Senator Pryor consistently stands with President Obama, not with Arkansas.”

Throughout National Small Business Week, The Arkansas GOP has repeatedly pointed out Senator Pryor’s out-of-touch record when it comes to helping small businesses. Whether it’s his vote for Obamacare or his blind loyalty to Big Labor, Senator Pryor has proven he doesn’t have Arkansas small businesses in mind.

Background:
In July 2012, Pryor Voted To Increase Taxes On Single Filers Making Over $200,000 And Joint Filers Making Over $250,000. “Passage of the bill that would extend the 2001 and 2003 tax cuts for one year on taxable income of up to $200,000 for single filers or up to $250,000 for joint filers. The bill would set the tax rate for adjusted gross income above $250,000 at 33 percent and for adjusted gross income above $400,000 at 35 percent. It also would expand the child tax credit and extend the college tuition tax credit and the earned income tax credit. It would set tax rates for long-term capital gains and dividends at 20 percent. The bill also would allow a business property deduction of $250,000 and extend the alternative minimum tax provisions for 2012 income.” (S. 3412, CQ Vote #184: Passed 51-48: R 0-46; D 50-1; I 1-1, 7/25/12, Pryor Voted Yea)

In December 2010, Pryor Voted For Cloture On A Bill That Would Have Let The Republican Tax Cuts Expire On Income Up To $200,000 For Individuals And $250,000 For Joint Filers. “Motion to invoke cloture (thus limiting debate) on the Reid, D-Nev., motion to concur in the House amendment to the Senate amendment with a further Baucus, D-Mont., substitute amendment no. 4727 that would make permanent the 2001- and 2003-enacted tax cuts on income up to $200,000 for individuals and $250,000 for married couples filing joint returns. The extensions would include current lower tax rates for capital gains and dividends, elimination of the ‘marriage penalty’ and an expansion of the increased child tax credit. It also would extend unemployment insurance benefits for 13 months.” (H.R. 4853, CQ Vote #258: Motion rejected 53-36: R 0-31; D 52-4; I 1-1, 12/4/10, Pryor Voted Yea)

Ernst & Young Determined The Tax Hike Would Impact 2.1 Million Business Owners

A 2012 Ernst & Young Study Determined Would Impact 2.1 Million Business Owners. “Commissioned by a host of pro-business advocacy groups, Ernst & Young conducted this latest study in an effort to predict the long-term economic impact of letting the top rates increase at year’s end — and the findings stand in stark contrast to the repeated assurances from Democrats that their proposal would have minimal effect on small business owners. Researchers determined the plan would actually subject 2.1 million business owners to higher rates; specifically, those who pay pass-through taxes, like most partnerships, LLCs and S-Corporations.” (J.D. Harrison, “Obama Plan To Lift Top Tax Rates Would Plague Millions Of Small Businesses, Study Warns,” The Washington Post, 7/17/12)

The Ernst & Young Predicted The Tax Increase Would Cost The United States An Estimated $200 Billion In Economic Output And 710,000 Jobs. “The result, less capital in the hands of business owners and diminished labor supply, would cost the United States an estimated $200 billion in economic output and 710,000 jobs.” (J.D. Harrison, “Obama Plan To Lift Top Tax Rates Would Plague Millions Of Small Businesses, Study Warns,” The Washington Post, 7/17/12)

An NFIB Poll Showed 75 Percent Of Small Businesses Pay Taxes At The Individual Rate

According To An NFIB Small Business Poll, 75 Percent Of Small Businesses . . . Must Pay Tax On Their Business Income At The Individual Rate. “According to an NFIB National Small Business Poll, 75 percent of small businesses are structured as pass-through entities (S corporations, limited liability companies, sole proprietorships or partnerships) that must pay tax on their business income at the individual rate.  Most small businesses do not pay the corporate tax.” ( NFIB, Accessed 8/28/13)

“NFIB Advocates To Keep Tax Rates Low Because Of The Many Operational Challenges Small Business Owners Face. Many small business owners struggle to keep a steady cash flow, which is needed to not only run their business, but also support their families. One in five small businesses has a continuing cash-flow problem, a common challenge among businesses of all sizes.” ( NFIB, Accessed 8/28/13)

“High Tax Rates Mean Less Money That Small Business Owners Have To Reinvest Back Into Their Business.” ( NFIB, Accessed 8/28/13)

Annual Regulatory Costs Increased By A Total Of Nearly $70 Billion During President Obama’s First Term. “Those costs are on the rise. Annual regulatory costs increased by more than $23.5 billion during President Barack Obama’s fourth year in office—and by a total of nearly $70 billion during the first term. While historical records are incomplete, that magnitude of regulation is likely unmatched by any Administration in the nation’s history. And, despite a much-touted initiative to weed out unnecessary regulations, only two major rule changes reduced regulatory burdens in 2012.” (James L. Gattuso and Diane Katz, “Red Tape Rising: Regulation In Obama’s First Term,” Heritage Foundation, Backgrounder #2793, 5/1/13)

During President Obama’s First Term, 131 Major Regulations Were Issued. “From the beginning of the Obama Administration through 2012, a staggering 131 major regulations that increase regulatory burdens have been issued, with costs approaching $70 billion a year. While the President has acknowledged the need to rein in regulation, little has been done to address the problem. Instead, it is getting worse.” (James L. Gattuso and Diane Katz, “Red Tape Rising: Regulation In Obama’s First Term,” Heritage Foundation, Backgrounder #2793, 5/1/13)

Pryor Voted Against A Joint Resolution That Would Have Nullified An EPA Rule Regarding Cross-State Air Pollution. “McConnell, R-Ky., motion to proceed to the joint resolution that would nullify the EPA rule regarding regulation of cross-state air pollution.” (S. J. Res. 27, CQ Vote #201: Motion rejected 41-56: R 39-6; D 2-48; I 0-2, 11/10/11, Pryor Voted Nay)

The Cross-State Air Pollution Rule Is Most Expensive Regulation Ever Imposed By The EPA On Coal-Fueled Power Plants.  “The EPA today announced its final ‘Cross-State Air Pollution Rule,’ despite an analysis showing that the regulation, in combination with other EPA rules, would be among the most expensive ever imposed by the agency on coal-fueled power plants, dramatically increasing electricity rates for American families and businesses, causing substantial job losses.”  (Press Release, “EPA Finalizes Expensive New Regulation,” American Coalition For Clean Coal Electricity, 7/7/11)

Tens Of Thousands Of Megawatts Of Coal-Fired Power Has Gone Offline And More Is Expected As Plants Across The Country Are Closing Rather Than Paying For Equipment To Control Pollution. “The move comes as other fossil fuel-fired plant operators across the country are shuttering plants rather than pay for equipment to control the pollution. Already tens of thousands of megawatts of coal-fired power has gone offline and more is expected.” (Julie Wernau, “Ameren To Shutter 2 Coal Plants In Illinois,” The Chicago Tribune , 10/4/11)

[Sources: News Reports and Republican Party of Arkansas]

Tags: Mark Pryor, plan, tax, regulate, small businesses To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". This site is an Outreach of the ARRA News Service.