CD01 Staff for Bridenstine

Congressman Bridenstine has made the following statement concerning comments made by audience members at a recent town hall event:
A public figure cannot control what people say in open meetings.  I obviously did not condone and I do not approve of grossly inappropriate language.  It is outrageous that irresponsible parties would attribute another person’s reckless remarks to me. 
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bridenstine200300I voted No today on HR 2642 the Agricultural Act of 2014, the so-called Farm Bill.  

When the first Farm Bill was presented to the House last June, 62 conservatives took a stand that we would not vote for the bill that combined food stamps (the “nutrition title”) and farm subsidies.  House leadership responded and returned two bills separating food stamps from farm subsidies.  Although the revised bills were far from perfect, they were a step in the right direction and I voted to pass each bill — H R 2642 and H R 3102 — separately in the House. 

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In his State of the Union Address the President said his Administration’s energy policy is creating jobs and that oil and gas production is booming.  But that’s only half true, the last half. 
The President’s policies inhibit U.S. energy production and transportation at every turn.  The U.S. oil and gas production boom is occurring on private and state lands, not on lands and offshore areas under federal control.
Moving oil from producing areas in Canada and the U.S. to domestic refineries is vital, but we lack adequate pipeline capacity.  Moving crude oil via rail car, the only alternative, is much more expensive and less safe.  The President’s failure to even mention the Keystone-XL Pipeline in his speech is especially problematic. 
It’s long past time for the Administration to approve construction of the Keystone Pipeline to move crude oil south from Canada into the U.S. and create high paying jobs. more

The much-hyped bipartisan Ryan-Murray budget “deal” struck late last year increases the national debt $6.4 trillion over the next ten years. It does nothing to change the trajectory of our growing debt at a time when it is among the greatest national security threats facing our nation. The “deal” also increases near term federal spending with a promise of future cuts (dubious) while raising taxes on airline passengers. Worse, it features a cut in pension benefits to current military members and veterans who earned those pensions in measures of blood and sweat. I voted against it. 
Now that it has passed, Congress will vote to appropriate (spend) money under the Ryan-Murray budget “deal.” This $1 trillion omnibus spending package is 1,582 pages of legislative text that was released on Monday night for a vote on Wednesday.
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Statement from Congressman Bridenstine:
Today a federal judge, Terence Kern, in Tulsa, wrongly declared that Oklahoma’s constitutional amendment protecting the institution of marriage violates the federal Constitution.  The amendment to the State constitution was approved by 75% of voters in 2004. 
Under the limited federal powers enumerated in Article I Section 8 of the U.S. Constitution and the 10th Amendment, which recognizes that powers not delegated to the federal government are retained by the states and the people, a federal judge has no place to dictate the terms of marriage in Oklahoma.  The State Constitution overrides a federal judge’s personal opinion.
In his decision Kern called the ban an “exclusion of just one class of Oklahoma citizens from a governmental benefit.”  Marriage is not a “governmental benefit.”  Marriage is the foundational institution in our culture which recognizes the very unique and complimentary contributions men and women make in the raising of children. 
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As a Navy pilot who flew combat missions in Afghanistan (2002) and Iraq (2003) and now as a Member of Congress, I cannot react to the news of Al Qaeda in Iraq’s resurgence in Fallujah and Ramadi with anything but frustration and anger.  
Frustration – because so much American blood was spilled wresting these cities from insurgents. Anger – because the Obama Administration put ideology and politics above the national interest. Our policy in Afghanistan must be more responsible than our policy in Iraq. more

Congressman Bridenstine commented on his vote against the Ryan-Murray budget deal:
The Ryan Murray budget deal does not address our long term fiscal crisis.  The U.S. debt and deficit must be dealt with in a meaningful way now.  To put this bill into perspective, the Congressional Budget Office optimistically estimates $6.3 trillion (with a T) of new debt over the next 10 years.  This bill would reduce the deficit by only $7 billion (with a B) during the same time.  That’s only one tenth of one percent.  The $23 billion deficit reduction reported in the media does not include $8 billion in additional interest payments or $8 billion for a Medicare amendment.  Even the full $23 billion would shave off less than four tenths of one percent of the debt increase. 
These very small savings are too distant to be realistic – deficit reductions are not achieved until nine years in the future and then only if a future Congress is more disciplined than this one.  
In short, the Ryan-Murray budget kicks the can down the road and scuttles any real entitlement or fiscal reform for another two years.  This deal separates Members of Congress further from the responsibility of controlling the budget. 
Two achievements of this problematic bill are new spending and additional taxes.  There is an added tax on airline travelers, and the revenue goes into the general revenue.  As such, it is not a “fee” for the TSA as claimed.  It is a tax.
Sheryl Kaufman, Communications Director
Phone: 202-225-2211
Email Address:
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Today, the House passed HR 3521 – the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Major Medical Facility Lease Authorization Act.   This bill is critical for veterans in the First District.  HR 3521 authorizes funding for 27 major VA facilities, including the proposed 140,000 square foot Tulsa Community Based Outpatient Clinic (CBOC). 
Congressman Jim Bridenstine said:
I am proud to support this critical legislation.  A new outpatient clinic is a top priority for veterans in the First District. As a combat veteran, I know the importance of accessible outpatient clinics that provide high-quality services.  If signed into law, HR 3521 would authorize the proposed Tulsa CBOC, a new facility that would greatly expand the square footage and clinical services offered to veterans by replacing the existing Tulsa Outpatient Clinic and Tulsa Behavioral Medicine Clinic.  HR 3521 is a sound legislative solution that also protects taxpayers against incurring excessive risk.
Congressional authorization of such VA clinic projects is generally routine and not controversial.  In March 2013, however, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) expressed concern that the clinic leases exposed taxpayers to excessive risk and violated House and Senate budget rules.  HR 3521 is a bipartisan compromise that should satisfy CBO’s concerns by creating a new revolving fund to protect taxpayers in cases of contract cancellation.  While passage in the House is good news, the Senate must pass this bill before the President can sign it into law.
Sheryl Kaufman, Communications Director
Phone: 202-225-2211
Email Address:
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The Weather Forecasting Improvement Act (H.R. 2413), sponsored by Congressman Jim Bridenstine (R-Oklahoma), advanced from House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology on Thursday with strong, bi-partisan support.  The legislation makes the protection of lives and property the top priority of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). 
Congressman Bridenstine emphasized, “H.R. 2413 makes the protection of lives and property the top priority of NOAA, and follows through on that commitment by prioritizing funding and other resources on severe weather detection and forecasting – while not increasing overall spending.”
While the bill passed out of the Environment Subcommittee in June on a party line vote, a comprehensive amendment developed by Bridenstine, Subcommittee Chairman Chris Stewart (R-Utah) and Ranking Minority Member Suzanne Bonamici (D-Oregon) allowed the bill to be reported out of the full committee with unanimous support.  Most significantly, the amendment further encourages NOAA to utilize private sector resources when implementing its new priority of protecting people and property from severe weather systems.
The centerpiece of this bill is a codification and expansion of NOAA weather research activities, specifically directing the agency to place “priority emphasis on development of more accurate and timely warnings and forecasts of high impact weather events that endanger life and property.” The bill also codifies an existing technology transfer initiative carried out jointly between the Office of Oceanic and Atmospheric Research and the National Weather Service aimed at ensuring “continuous development and transition of the latest scientific and technological advances into NWS operations.”
The bill creates a Tornado Warning Extension Program, the goal of which shall be to “develop and extend accurate tornado forecasts and warnings beyond one hour in order to reduce loss of life, injury, and damage to the economy.” It also requires NOAA to prepare a program plan detailing the research and development activities and the associated budget resources necessary to successfully realize the tornado forecasting improvements.
The bill also directs NOAA to systematically evaluate the combination of observing systems necessary to meet weather forecasting data requirements, and develop a range of options to address potential data gaps.  It further specifies that one component of this planning effort shall include Observing System Simulation Experiments (OSSEs) to quantitatively assess the relative value and benefits of potential observing capabilities and systems.
Finally, the bill clarifies that NOAA is not prohibited from obtaining weather data through contracts with commercial providers, and directs NOAA to prepare a report assessing the range of commercial opportunities for obtaining cost-effective space-based weather observations.
Congressman Bridenstine said, “Millions of Americans, both in government and private industry, have dedicated their careers and lives to the mission of providing their fellow citizens with accurate, timely weather forecasts, and the technology this bill advances will greatly assist their efforts.  In particular, I have seen first-hand the capabilities of phased array radar in the American military, and I am certain that it will help lead America’s weather forecasting efforts towards the goal of having zero preventable deaths occur as a result of a severe weather system like a tornado.
“The passage of this bill out of the Science Committee is a victory for Oklahomans and all Americans who live in tornado-prone areas.  I will be urging the House leadership to bring it to the floor for passage as soon as possible.”

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The Weather Forecasting Improvement Act (H.R. 2413), sponsored by Congressman Jim Bridenstine (R-Oklahoma), advanced from House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology on Thursday with strong, bi-partisan support.  The legislation makes the protection of lives and property the top priority of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). more