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Press Office of Adam Bishop (R-IA)


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Bishop: Securing Our Agriculture Means Securing Our Economic Future

WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Senator Adam Bishop (R-IA) today introduced the Securing our Agriculture and Food Act. This bill would create a program within the Department of Homeland Security that will coordinate DHS efforts to protect American food, agriculture, and veterinary systems against terrorism and other serious threats to homeland security. Specifically, this program would:

  • provide oversight and management of DHS's existing agriculture and food security responsibilities;
  • provide oversight and integration of DHS activities related to veterinary public health, food defense, and agricultural security;
  • lead DHS policy initiatives related to overall domestic preparedness for, and response to, agricultural terrorism and other incidents;
  • coordinate with other DHS components on activities related to food and agriculture security and screening procedures; and
  • coordinate with appropriate federal departments and agencies.

"The Securing our Agriculture and Food Act is certainly important to Iowans and folks in other states that heavily rely on agriculture," Senator Bishop said. "But the truth is this bill is important to all Americans. Agriculture is a vital sector of the American economy, and it's crucial to every region of the United States -- from Georgia to Iowa to Hawaii. But aside from that, agriculture is an American tradition dating back to a time when our forefathers believed the farmer committed to his God, his family, and his free republic was the pinnacle of American virtue. Given the importance of agriculture to our national economy, and to shaping our national ideal of what it means to be American, I can't think of anything more worthy of being better protected by our government. Securing our agriculture means securing our economic future and securing the traditions in which American identity is rooted."

Senator Holly Hawthorne (R-AK)

@HollyHawthorne | Join the Freedom Caucus!

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Bishop Works to Facilitate Farmers' Access to Resources and Machinery

DES MOINES, IOWA - Speaking to a gathering of farmers in Des Moines, Iowa today, U.S. Senator Adam Bishop (R-IA) announced his sponsorship of the Facilitating Farmers' Access to Resources and Machinery Act. The bill would increase from $450,000 to $524,200 the amount of bond proceeds a first-time farmer may use to buy land for farming purposes, and in the future that amount would be adjusted annually for inflation. This bill would also repeal a burdensome limitation on using bond proceeds for used farm equipment, and change the definition of "substantial farmland" to determine farm size by reference to average rather than median size of a farm in the same county.

"We're not doing enough for farmers in America," Senator Bishop said, "but I'm committed to doing more, and I know my Republican colleagues are as well. This bill will do a lot toward helping first-time farmers be successful. It's time for us to stop insisting that every American high school graduate should build up tens of thousands of dollars in debt to earn a tech degree, then move to the coasts to slave away in competition for those much sought after tech jobs. Not only does that force our kids away from their homes and into big cities that impose higher costs of living, often with lower quality of life -- it leaves middle America emptied of younger Americans building families and keeping their home states and counties thriving. We need to rebuild the American heartland, and that starts by reinvigorating American farming and making sure we do everything we can to help out our first-time farmers. Young Americans should know they can make it in America as farmers again. This bill is a great start and it's my honor to sponsor it."

Senator Holly Hawthorne (R-AK)

@HollyHawthorne | Join the Freedom Caucus!

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Bishop Pushes for Crackdown on Technology Transfer to China

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today, U.S. Senator Adam Bishop (R-IA) introduced the China Technology Transfer Control Act. This bill would crack down on technology and intellectual property transfers to China that support Chinese military objectives, threaten the United States, or violate human rights and religious liberties. The bill would accomplish these aims by placing core technologies that are supported by Chinese industrial policy and threaten U.S. exports on the Department of Commerce's Export Control List, requiring companies to obtain licenses to export such technology to China. Sanctions would be imposed on foreign entities and individuals that violate these export controls. Importantly, the bill also requires the Secretary of State to identify exports that are used by the Chinese government to carry out violations of human rights and religious liberties for inclusion on the Export Control List.

"The Fair Trade with China Enforcement Act was a great first step in containing the economic and frankly military threat China poses to us and our interests abroad," Senator Bishop said to reporters on the Hill. "Let's keep the ball rolling. This bill would deprive China of technology and intellectual property it can and will use to threaten us and our interests, and to support their military objectives -- which are increasingly at odds with our own geopolitical objectives. And with this bill, we're done just talking about China's human rights abuses and violations of religious liberties. This bill will actually do something by imposing export controls on technology China uses to violate human rights and religious liberties. To truly put America first, we have to continue recognizing and opposing the rising threat China poses to our economic health and our interests abroad, not to mention our free and democratic values. We must not allow the rise of Chinese hegemony at the expense of America's decline."

Senator Holly Hawthorne (R-AK)

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Bishop Introduces Bill to Protect Children from Online Predators

WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Senator Adam Bishop (R-IA) today introduced the Protecting Children from Online Predators Act, a bill aimed at reducing the vulnerability of children featured in videos recommended by video hosting services such as YouTube. The bill would prevent video hosting services from recommending videos that primarily feature minors, but not videos that simply show minors in the background. Such videos would still be available through search results, and this bill would also exempt professionally produced videos, such as videos that have been aired on broadcast or cable television.

"We really need to be doing more to protect our kids on the internet," Senator Bishop said to reporters on the Hill. "We can't let video hosting services like YouTube be used by predators to victimize American children. We have to make it harder for predators to find videos that feature children, because right now in many cases those videos will just automatically appear for them according to tracking of their preferred type of video. This bill will put a stop to that, and impose tough criminal and civil penalties on companies that don't comply with these new protections. No one wants to fight a war against YouTube or any other video hosting service, but we're going to have to insist -- by law -- that they do more to protect our kids."

Senator Holly Hawthorne (R-AK)

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Bishop Takes Aim at Federally Subsidized Higher Education Monopoly

WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Senator Adam Bishop (R-IA) has introduced a pair of bills that take aim at what he calls "the federally subsidized higher education monopoly." The first bill, the Break the Higher Education Monopoly Act, would extend federal Pell grants to cover apprenticeship and certification programs recognized by a new federal alternative certification process. Meanwhile, the Skin in the Game Act would require higher education institutions -- colleges and universities -- to pay half the cost if students default on student loan debt accumulated to attend their institutions. The bill would also prevent colleges and universities from passing these costs onto students by raising tuition or other fees. Both bills would represent the first time in decades the federal government has made any serious effort to create alternative paths to the American Dream for high school graduates and end the federally guaranteed stranglehold of colleges and universities.

"For generations, we've been telling young Americans a lie," Senator Bishop told a small gathering of higher education reform activists and reporters. "We've been telling them the only path to success in America is to pursue a four year degree at a college or university. It's hammered into their minds long before high school, and so when they graduate they head off to college -- and more often than not, they take on debt to do it. The colleges and universities love it, they've been continually raising their costs and letting students take on more and more debt to pay for it. If they default on that debt, it can ruin their future, while leaving taxpayers to foot the bill for federally guaranteed loans. This is wrong, and it's wrong precisely because the whole system is built on a lie. Did you know you can make more than $70,000 a year installing and repairing elevators? That's just one of the many great jobs available to people that doesn't require a college degree. It's a job a young man, or a young woman, who likes working with their hands could pursue. It just requires an apprenticeship. But Pell grants don't pay for apprenticeships, and we don't encourage appenticeships. It's time for that to change.

"The Break the Higher Education Monopoly Act will finally end the federally subsidized higher education monopoly," Senator Bishop continued. "It will extend Pell grants so young Americans can use them to pay for approved apprenticeship and certification programs. They can join the workforce much more quickly, and in many cases make more money than their college-educated peers, and they can do it at a fraction of the cost. They can begin a great career, get married, and start a family years earlier. They'll be further along than their peers who graduate from college. That's step one in righting the wrongs of this higher ed monopoly the federal government has enabled. Step two is finally making colleges and universities put some skin in the game, requiring them to pay half the cost when their former students default on their loans -- without passing costs on to current or future students. Maybe when colleges and universities have to pay some of the costs of student loan default, instead of passing the costs to taxpayers, they'll be more inclined to lower tuition and fees. These two bills together will finally break the stranglehold colleges and universities have over the future of America, and I hope to see them receive bipartisan support and become law sooner rather than later."

Senator Holly Hawthorne (R-AK)

@HollyHawthorne | Join the Freedom Caucus!

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Bishop: Senate Democrats Need to Take Economics 101

WASHINGTON, D.C. - After delivering remarks in support of the State-Based, Market-Oriented, Prescription Drug Negotiatons Act of 2016 on the Senate floor, U.S. Senator Adam Bishop (R-IA) told reporters on the Hill that remarks by Senate Democrats demonstrate a poor understanding of basic economics. He highlighted that the bill aims to reduce prescription drug prices by allowing health insurers greater negotiating power with prescription drug companies.

"What Senator Powell and Senator Ward have demonstrated in the course of this debate is they badly need to take an Economics 101 class," Senator Bishop said. "They keep going on and on about how profit is bad, but what they apparently don't understand is competing profit motives have great potential to drive prescription drug prices down. It's really pretty basic: Sure, health insurers and drug companies are both driven by profit. But in the case of prescription drug prices, they're in competition with each other. What this bill will do is strengthen the hand of health insurers to negotiate lower prescription drug prices, which they'll want to do because it means less expenditure -- more profit -- for them. In turn, reduced prescription drug prices will benefit everyday Americans who badly need prices to fall. It's a market-based solution that will deliver real results for American families, and it would be a shame to see it fall by the wayside just because Senate Democrats don't grasp basic free market economics. My message to Senator Powell, Senator Ward, and other Senate Democrats is they should educate themselves, and then they should vote Aye."

Senator Holly Hawthorne (R-AK)

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  • 3 weeks later...

Bishop Elected Senate Majority Whip

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Speaking to reporters on the Hill, U.S. Senator Adam Bishop (R-IA) announced today that he has been elected Senate Majority Whip, with unanimous support within the Senate Republican caucus. He emphasized that his focus will be on re-electing a Republican Senate majority and preparing for a productive 115th Congress.

"I'm honored and humbled to serve as Senate Majority Whip," Senator Bishop said. "In the days and weeks ahead, I'll be working with Senator Pinnacle, the Majority Leader, to ensure a Republican majority is returned to the Senate and to plan for a productive session ahead. As Senator Pinnacle has been making clear in the press and on the campaign trail, Republicans are committed to working for the American people, not special interests on either the left or the right. Our direction isn't going to be going off the rails to one extreme of the ideological spectrum or the other. Our direction will be forward. Republicans will move America forward by honoring the values that make America great -- abiding faith, thriving families, and unyielding freedom. It's time for a new generation to embark on the next chapter of American exceptionalism. I'm excited to be a part of that and I look forward to getting to work right away."

Senator Holly Hawthorne (R-AK)

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  • 3 weeks later...

Bishop Responds to Tillman Veto of Kate's Law

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Speaking to reporters on the Hill, U.S. Senator Adam Bishop (R-IA) expressed his disappointment in President Christina Tillman's decision to veto Kate's Law. Kate's Law passed both chambers of Congress with bipartisan support, receiving the unanimous backing of Senate Republicans who were joined by seven Senate Democrats to pass the bill. If enacted, the bill would strengthen provisions of immigration law related to the reentry of illegal immigrants who have previously been deported, particularly criminal offenders. Kate's Law is named for Kate Steinle, who was shot and killed in San Francisco, California on July 1, 2015 while in the company of her father. The man charged with the shooting, José Inez García Zárate, is an illegal immigrant and repeat criminal offender who has previously been deported five times.

"I sincerely hope this wasn't retribution for the Senate rejecting the President's nomination of John Alexander for Attorney General, as some in the media are speculating," Senator Bishop said. "That would be a slap in the face to the family and friends of Kate Steinle and other Americans whose lives have been taken by illegal immigrants, many of whom live in states that gave the President their votes and their trust last year. It's really unthinkable the White House would politicize something so serious, but it's hard to understand what exactly would motivate President Tillman to veto a commonsense bill to crack down on illegal reentry by criminal offenders, a bill that has twice received bipartisan support. The President tweeted that comprehensive immigration reform is coming, but a tweet was the first the Senate Majority Leader and I have heard about it. If President Tillman wants to pass comprehensive immigration reform through a divided government, there needs to be bipartisan consultation. We need to see a demonstration of good faith, and signing Kate's Law would have been a great start. I can promise the American people this: If Senate Democrats introduce a partisan bill on the President's behalf that would throw open our borders and endanger American families, communities, or jobs, it's going to be dead on arrival."

Senator Holly Hawthorne (R-AK)

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  • 2 weeks later...

Bishop Announces Support for the FAMILY Act

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Speaking to reporters on the Hill, U.S. Senator Adam Bishop (R-IA) announced support for the FAMILY Act, a bill sponsored by Senate Minority Leader Robert Powell (D-CO) to create a federal family and medical leave program. Senator Bishop also noted his respect for the position taken by Senate Majority Leader Grant Pinnacle (R-AR) that the bill's costs should be more carefully examined. Nonetheless, Senator Bishop emphasized his belief that the benefits of the bill will exceed the costs.

"I have the utmost respect for Senator Pinnacle, and I understand his view on this," Senator Bishop said. "Senator Powell and other Senate Democrats could certainly have done a better job explaining the fiscal implications of the bill. That said, I believe the benefits of the family and medical leave program will greatly outweigh the costs. This is a bill that is going to benefit families, communities, and ultimately the overall economy. When families are happy and healthy, productivity increases, because Americans with strong families want to work hard to achieve the American Dream for their families. For too long now, we've been neglecting the role the federal government should have in promoting family values. As we watch too many families fall apart in our communities, we instinctively know something isn't right, that something at the core of our culture is rotten. We have to restore a sense that family comes first. This bill is a step in the right direction toward accomplishing that, and I'm proud to reach across the aisle and lend a hand in support."

Senator Holly Hawthorne (R-AK)

@HollyHawthorne | Join the Freedom Caucus!

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