Rob’s Rundown: Week of March 11 – March 15, 2019

March 15, 2019 | Rob's Rundown

This week, Senator Portman delivered remarks on the Senate floor announcing his decision to vote in favor of the resolution of disapproval regarding the administration’s national emergency declaration. Portman said he agrees there is a crisis at the southern border and supports the president’s border security plan.  He also outlined how the president can access sufficient funding to implement his border security plan (1) without setting a bad precedent counter to our Constitution, (2) without tying up the needed funds for the border in the courts, and (3) without taking funds away from important military construction projects from our troops – including a number of important projects in Ohio.

Also this week, Portman praised the president for signing into law his bipartisan Migratory Birds of the Americas Conservation Act and legislation to provide greater funding certainty to the Ohio & Erie Canalway National Heritage Area. The administration also included funding in the president’s FY 2020 budget request for the final installment of $120.9 million to upgrade the National Air and Space Intelligence Center (NASIC) located at the Wright-Patterson Air Force Base. The budget request also included additional funding for the Abrams Main Battle Tank and Stryker combat vehicle. Critical work is done on both systems at the Joint Systems Manufacturing Center (JSMC) in Lima, and Portman has secured additional funding for both over the last several years. Portman also spoke out on efforts to cut funding for the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative, saying he would again fight to preserve the program and its funding.

Finally, Portman introduced several bipartisan bills this week, including the Jumpstart Our Businesses By Supporting Students (JOBS) Act, which would expand Pell Grant eligibility and increase access to short-term job training programs for low-income students; the Housing for Homeless Students Act, which would help ensure students, including veterans, who have experienced homelessness or are currently homeless, can access affordable housing while pursuing their education; the Higher Education Access and Success for Homeless and Foster Youth Act, which would help homeless and foster students get the support they need to access and succeed in higher education; and the Pension Accountability Act, which would help protect Ohioans from having their hard-earned pensions cut with no say in the process.  

For a more detailed look at Senator Portman’s week, please see the following:  

Monday, March 11 

Portman Statement on the Administration Proposal to Cut Great Lakes Restoration Initiative Funding

Portman released the following statement on the Trump administration’s FY 2020 budget request to cut funding for the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI) by 90 percent, saying he would again fight to preserve the program and its funding:

“For the past few years, no matter whether it was a Republican or Democratic-led administration, there have been attempts to cut or eliminate funding for the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative. And every year, we have successfully defeated those efforts and ensured that this critical program receives full funding. The Great Lakes Restoration Initiative has been a successful public-private partnership that helps protect both our environment and our economy. It has been a critical tool in our efforts to help protect and restore Lake Erie. I have long championed this program, and I will continue to do everything I can to protect and preserve Lake Erie, including preserving this critical program and its funding.” 

Tuesday, March 12

At Hearing, Senator Portman Questions USTR Lighthizer on China, Misuse of Section 232 Trade Remedy

Portman questioned U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer about timing on securing a trade agreement with China. Portman also highlighted the negative impact that misuse of Section 232 of the Trade Expansion Act of 1962 could have on auto manufacturing in the United States. Portman has introduced bipartisan legislation – the Trade Security Act – to rein in misuse of the 232 statute and ensure that this trade remedy tool is only used for genuine national security purposes.

Excerpts of his questioning can be found here and a video can be found here

President Signs Into Law Portman’s Bipartisan Migratory Birds Legislation

President Trump signed into law Portman’s bipartisan legislation – the Migratory Birds of the Americas Conservation Act (S. 310) – which will reauthorize the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s program to promote the long-term conservation, education, research, monitoring, and habitat protection for more than 380 species of migratory birds. Portman introduced the bill with Senator Ben Cardin (D-MD), and it was approved by the Senate and House as part of a larger lands package that includes more than 100 public lands and natural resource bills.  Portman issued the following statement:

“Hundreds of bird species migrate through Ohio each year, making Lake Erie one of the most popular destinations for birdwatching.  Birding contributes more than $20 million to Ohio’s tourism industry and attracts visitors from across the world each year.  Protecting and conserving these bird populations is critically important and I am pleased the president to signed this legislation into law today.”

President Signs Into Law Portman, Brown Measure to Protect the Ohio & Erie Canalway & Support Northeast Ohio Jobs

President Trump signed into law legislation introduced by U.S. Senators Rob Portman (R-OH) and Sherrod Brown (D-OH) to provide greater funding certainty to the Ohio & Erie Canalway National Heritage Area, which spans more than 110 miles between New Philadelphia and Cleveland, and ensure it can continue to draw investment, and support local jobs, tourism and economic development in northeast Ohio. Portman and Brown’s measure was included as part of a broader public lands package that was signed by President Trump.

“I’m pleased the president signed this legislation into law today.  It is a victory for our efforts to protect the Ohio & Erie Canalway National Heritage Area and ensure that it continues to attract jobs and investment,” said Portman. The canal holds great significance to the state of Ohio, from helping our early towns and communities prosper to linking our state to the rest of the nation and I am proud to be one of the 2.5 million visitors who enjoy the canal’s towpath trail each year.”

Wednesday, March 13 

Portman, Heinrich Launch Bipartisan Artificial Intelligence Caucus

U.S. Senators Rob Portman (R-OH) and Martin Heinrich (D-NM) announced the formation of the bipartisan Senate Artificial Intelligence (AI) Caucus.

AI is a transformative technology with implications spanning a number of fields including transportation, health care, agriculture, manufacturing, and national security. The AI Caucus will help connect members and staff with AI experts in private industry, academia, and the executive branch.

“AI is likely to be one of the most transformative technologies of all time,” said Portman. “AI is a mix of promise and pitfall, which means, as policymakers, we need to clear-eyed about its potential. I’m pleased to launch the AI Caucus with Senator Heinrich to ensure that Congress is home to the substantive conversations necessary to make responsible policy about emerging technology and ensure AI works for, and not against, American citizens and U.S. competitiveness.”

Portman, Brown, King Introduce Bipartisan Bill to Ensure Students Aren’t Forced to Choose Between Housing and Education

U.S. Sens. Rob Portman (R-OH), Sherrod Brown (D-OH), and Angus King (I-ME) introduced bipartisan legislation, the Housing for Homeless Students Act, that would update current law to ensure students, including veterans, who have experienced homelessness or are currently homeless, can access affordable housing while pursuing their education. The legislation would also benefit youth who age out of foster care who experience higher rates of homelessness and unemployment. Right now, individuals pursuing full-time education are not eligible for the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) program and can lose access to scholarships and grants if they switch to part-time education in order to retain access to affordable housing.

“It is in all of our interests to help homeless kids and veterans find housing,” said Senator Portman. “Students shouldn’t have to choose between stable housing and going to school full-time. By giving low-income students access to affordable housing while they attend school, we can help to ensure that they are able to graduate, pursue their dreams, and achieve their God-given potential.”

On Bloomberg, Portman Discusses Trade with China, Mexico & Canada, and the Administration’s Budget Proposal

In an interview with Bloomberg’s Daybreak, Portman discussed timing on securing a trade agreement with China and by Congress should approve the U.S.-Mexico-Canada (USMCA) trade agreement.  Portman also discussed the administration’s budget proposal.

Excerpts of his interview can be found here and a video can be found here.

Portman, Murray, Clark, Young Reintroduce Legislation to Provide Support for Homeless Students and Former Foster Youth in Higher Education

Portman and Patty Murray (D-WA), ranking member of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee, and Representatives Katherine Clark (D-MA) and Don Young (R-AK) reintroduced the Higher Education Access and Success for Homeless and Foster Youth Act today to help homeless and foster students get the support they need to access and succeed in higher education. 

“Kids in foster care face an uphill battle when they pursue higher education.  It is in all of our interests to help these kids who have aged out of the foster care system or have experienced homelessness and ensure that services for them are a priority in existing federal programs,” said Senator Portman. “I’m proud to reintroduce this common-sense legislation to remove unnecessary barriers and make college more affordable for these youth.  It will support college retention, and greater success in higher education to allow these young people to graduate, pursue their dreams, and achieve their God-given potential.”

Portman Praises Administration Proposal for Final Installment of Funding for Wright Patterson Air Force Base’s National Air and Space Intelligence Center

Portman praised the Trump administration’s FY 2020 budget request for the final installment of $120.9 million in funding to upgrade the National Air and Space Intelligence Center (NASIC) located at the Wright-Patterson Air Force Base. Portman has repeatedly supported the funding through the annual appropriations and authorization processes.  The FY 2019 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) conference report authorized $182 million for phase one and two of the NASIC modernization effort.  Congress appropriated $61 million for phase one of the project last year.

NASIC’s main campus facilities are overcrowded and require modernization to meet today’s missions. With significant total force growth that has outpaced their facility growth, NASIC has been forced to utilize antiquated World War II-era facilities on base and temporary structures. This investment in NASIC infrastructure will provide the command with much-needed secure spaces that meet the demands of the growing workforce and the associated information technology requirements of modern facilities. Portman released the following statement:

The mission of NASIC at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base is critically important and I’m pleased that the president’s budget supports funding these important facility upgrades to continue NASIC’s vital work. These new facilities are critical for NASIC to fulfill its increasingly important intelligence analysis mission for our Air Force and national policymakers.”

At Senate Foreign Relations Committee Hearing, Portman Questions Experts on Confucius Institutes

Portman questioned experts about the lack of transparency and reciprocity in Confucius Institutes—which are located at more than 100 American colleges and universities and have received more than $158 million in support from the Chinese government.  These Confucius Institutes are controlled, funded, and mostly staffed by the Chinese government.  Last month, Portman chaired a Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations (PSI) that examined these institutes and China’s impact on the United States education system.  Prior to the hearing, Portman unveiled a new bipartisan report that details the lack of transparency in how American colleges and universities manage Confucius Institutes.  The report also details China’s one-sided treatment of U.S. schools and key State Department programs in China, and documents the lack of oversight by the Departments of State and Education of U.S. Confucius Institutes.

Excerpts of his questioning can be found here and a video can be found here

Portman Praises Trump Administration Plan to Increase Funding for Modernizing Stryker Vehicles, Boosting Production of Abrams Tanks

Portman praised the Trump administration FY 2020 budget request for additional funding for the Abrams Main Battle Tank and Stryker combat vehicle. Critical work is done on both systems at the Joint Systems Manufacturing Center (JSMC) in Lima, which Portman has visited various times. The budget requests $1.753 billion to upgrade 165 tanks and increase the rate of production of the newest upgraded Abrams tanks in Lima to ensure that our armored formations have the most cutting-edge capabilities. This is a $226 million increase from last fiscal year. The budget also requests $550 million in funding to modernize 152 Stryker combat vehicles, a significant increase over last year’s appropriated level of $265 million. Portman released the following statement:

“In today’s dangerous global security environment, it is critical that we give our troops the tools they need to accomplish our national security objectives. The National Security Strategy identifies great power competition with Russia and China as our nation’s greatest security challenge, and in order to effectively address and deter these significant threats, our troops require state-of-the-art combat vehicles. Manufactured at the Joint Systems Manufacturing Center in Lima, the Stryker combat vehicle is the Army’s most versatile and deployable combat vehicle and the Abrams Main Battle Tank is the world’s most capable battle tank. I’m pleased the Trump administration supports increased funding for important upgrades that must be made to Stryker combat vehicles and increasing the rate of production of the Abrams tank. As the budget cycle progresses, I will continue to urge colleagues to authorize and appropriate the funding needed to ensure our forward deployed soldiers have the vehicles they need to be effective and keep them safe.”

Thursday, March 14

On Senate Floor, Portman Outlines His Support for President’s Border Security Plan, Opposition to National Emergency Declaration

Portman delivered remarks on the Senate floor announcing his decision to vote in favor of the resolution of disapproval regarding the administration’s national emergency declaration. Portman said he agrees there is a crisis at the southern border and supports the president’s border security plan.  He also outlined how the president can access sufficient funding to implement his border security plan (1) without setting a bad precedent counter to our Constitution, (2) without tying up the needed funds for the border in the courts, and (3) without taking funds away from important military construction projects from our troops – including a number of important projects in Ohio.

Transcript of his remarks can be found here and a video can be found here.

Portman, Kaine Introduce Bipartisan JOBS Act to Help  Workers Access Training for In-Demand Career Fields

Senators Portman and Tim Kaine co-chairs of the Senate Career and Technical Education (CTE) Caucus, introduced the Jumpstart Our Businesses By Supporting Students (JOBS) Act, a bill that would help students access training for the 7.3 million vacant jobs that are unfilled in part due to a shortage of qualified workers. The JOBS Act would close this “skills gap” by expanding Pell Grant eligibility to cover high-quality and rigorous short-term job training programs so workers can afford the skills training and credentials that are in high-demand in today’s job market. Under current law, Pell Grants – needs-based grants for low-income and working students — can only be applied toward programs that are over 600 clock hours or at least 15 weeks in length, even though many job training programs are shorter term. The legislation updates an earlier version of the bill that Portman and Kaine introduced in the 115th Congress.  

“We must do a better job of ensuring that more Americans have the skills that match the jobs that are available today, and part of that is making sure our students are job-ready after graduation,” said Portman. “We’ve got a lot of great job training programs in Ohio, but some students need help getting access to them. The JOBS Act expands Pell Grant eligibility to help students get the job training they need for careers that will give them economic security and help them join the workforce. It is a commonsense proposal that has the support of the Trump Administration and congressional leaders on both sides of the aisle. I look forward to moving this bill forward as we work to reauthorize of the Higher Education Act this year.” 

Friday, March 15

Portman, Brown Introduce the Pension Accountability Act to Provide Ohio Retirees a Fair Vote on Pension Cuts

Senators Portman and Brown introduced the Pension Accountability Act (S. 833) to help protect Ohioans from having their hard-earned pensions cut with no say in the process. The bill aims to give workers and retirees a seat at the table when a looming multiemployer pension bankruptcy may require major pension cuts.

The Senators both opposed the Multiemployer Pension Reform Act (MPRA), enacted in 2014, and are working together to replace it with a comprehensive, bipartisan solution. Unfortunately, MPRA did virtually nothing to prevent the pending insolvency of the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC), which is projected to become insolvent in 2025. PBGC Director Tom Reeder recently testified that the PBGC’s net deficit in 2026 would be only one percent smaller if eligible plans could not use MPRA to reduce benefits.

The Pension Accountability Act is a targeted, technical fix to amend the voting procedures under the MPRA to help Ohio workers who are being shut out of the reform process.  Under the law, severely underfunded multiemployer pension plans within 20 years of insolvency may apply to cut pension benefits if the MPRA cuts would have more than a 50 percent chance of preventing plan insolvency, among other requirements. Earlier this year, both the Southwest Ohio Regional Council of Carpenters Pension Plan and the Toledo Roofers Local No. 134 Pension Plan were deemed to satisfy the requirements for MPRA, and began the voting process by mailing ballots to plan participants. Over 5,000 Ohio carpenters are in the Southwest Carpenters Plan, and retirees could experience pension cuts as much as 70 percent by April 1st.

“I am pleased to reintroduce the Pension Accountability Act, and I appreciate Senator Brown joining me on this common-sense fix to the MRPA voting process as we work toward a broader solution,” Senator Portman stated. “Ohio workers have worked hard for years, played by the rules, and paid into their pensions for decades. As a matter of basic fairness, they deserve a role in determining how to bring these pensions to solvency, and this bill ensures they have a voice in this process.” 

Portman, Brown Request Applications for U.S. District Court Vacancies in the Southern and Northern Districts of Ohio

Portman and Brown today began accepting applications to fill the vacancies on the U.S. District Courts for the Southern and Northern Districts of Ohio.  The Southern District vacancy was created when the Honorable Michael Barrett took senior status on February 15, 2019.  In the Northern District, the Honorable Jack Zouhary has announced his intention to take senior status on June 30, 2019.

The Southern District has court locations in Cincinnati, Columbus, and Dayton and serves more than five million Ohioans in 48 counties. The Northern District has court locations in Akron, Cleveland, Toledo, and Youngstown and serves approximately 5.9 million citizens of the 40 northernmost counties in Ohio.  Portman and Brown will soon announce a bipartisan commission that will assist them in evaluating applicants. 

Applicants can download applications here or request them by emailing Ohio_Nominations@portman.senate.gov.  Applicants must email the completed application to Ohio_Nominations@portman.senate.gov by 5 p.m. EST on Tuesday, April 16, 2019.  

Portman Praises Transatlantic Community Sanctions on Russia

Portman praised the United States, EU, and Canada for taking coordinated action in response to Russia’s continued aggression against Ukraine and imposing sanctions on individuals who orchestrated the unprovoked and illegal November 25 attack on three Ukrainian naval vessels near the Kerch Strait. Portman released the following statement: 

“I fully support the Administration’s sanctions against those individuals and entities that were involved in the sham elections in Eastern Ukraine, the illegal annexation of Crimea, and their most recent transgression: the unprovoked and illegal attack against Ukrainian naval forces near the Kerch Strait on November 25th. I am pleased that these sanctions are being implemented in coordination with our Transatlantic allies, demonstrating our united resolve against Russia’s aggression against Ukraine, which has now entered its sixth year. The United States and our allies must continue to stand with Ukraine and assist them as they fight to preserve their independence against repeated Russian interference.  I have stood solidly with Ukraine--supporting them during their Revolution of Dignity in 2014 and since then working with my Senate colleagues to provide them with the support they need to defend their sovereign territory, promote the rule of law, and strengthen their democracy.” 

At Hearing, Secretary Mnuchin Agrees Tax Reform is Working to Boost Jobs, Wages & Investment

At a Senate Finance Committee hearing, Portman questioned Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin on a host of topics, including IRS reform, retirement security, and tax reform, which the secretary agreed is making a positive difference for families and small businesses across the country. Portman has been to more than two dozen roundtable discussions as part of his tax reform tour across Ohio.

A transcript of his remarks can be seen here and a video can be found here. 

On Social Media

 

 

 

  

Great Lakes restoration nearly cut in President Donald Trump's budget

Ohio lawmakers are fuming over President Trump’s plan to gut federal funding for cleaning up toxic pollution and combating invasive species in the Great Lakes.

As he’s done twice before, the President practically dropped the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative from his budget proposal unveiled Monday. Lawmakers from both parties panned the move, which slashes funding by 90 percent — from $300 million to $30 million.

“At a time when our government should be investing in job creating policies that improve America’s infrastructure, natural resources, and clean energy future, the Trump Administration is once again heading in the wrong direction,” said Toledo Rep. Marcy Kaptur, a Democrat whose district snakes along Lake Erie from Toledo to Cleveland.

Miss Kaptur described Mr. Trump’s plan to reduce funding for the Great Lakes as “reckless” and said it jeopardizes the world’s largest freshwater system. The initiative has helped fight algal blooms and Asian carp, two major threats to Lake Erie.

Democrats, including Miss Kaptur, blasted the entirety of Mr. Trump’s 2020 spending wish list, which includes an additional $8.6 billion for a wall at the Mexican border and deep cuts to safety-net programs — proposals that stand little chance in a Democrat-controlled U.S. House.

“For the past few years, no matter whether it was a Republican or Democratic-led administration, there have been attempts to cut or eliminate funding for the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative. And every year, we have successfully defeated those efforts and ensured that this critical program receives full funding,” said Republican Sen. Rob Portman of Ohio.

“The Great Lakes Restoration Initiative has been a successful public-private partnership that helps protect both our environment and our economy. It has been a critical tool in our efforts to help protect and restore Lake Erie.”

U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown (D., Ohio) said, “Instead of investing in Ohio communities so they can grow and create jobs, President Trump is asking Ohioans to pay for permanent tax cuts for millionaires by slashing the programs that hardworking families rely on.”

Congress has repeatedly fended off efforts to dry up the Great Lakes initiative, a program that started in 2010 under President Barack Obama and has received bipartisan support from Midwestern lawmakers.

Like Mr. Trump, Mr. Obama came under fire for trying to cut Great Lakes funding, which has remained at $300 million annually. In his last budget, Mr. Obama sought to eliminate $50 million from the initiative; in his 2012 plan, he proposed cutting $125 million.

The Great Lakes aren’t the only environmental target in the President’s budget. His proposal also reduces by 90 percent a similar program for Maryland’s Chesapeake Bay and eliminates all U.S. Environmental Protection Agency clean-up funding for bodies of water including the Gulf of Mexico, Long Island Sound, and San Francisco Bay.

In a statement to The Blade, a Trump Administration official said protection efforts at places such as Lake Erie are best left to local groups.

“The budget retains funding for the continuation of long-term federal monitoring efforts in the Great Lakes and Chesapeake Bay watersheds, including monitoring for algal blooms and invasive species, while eliminating funding for local ecosystem protection activities,” the official said.

“These programs perform local ecosystem protection and restoration activities, which are best handled by local and state entities. State and local groups are engaged and capable of taking on management of clean-up and restoration of these water bodies.”

U.S. Rep. Bob Latta (R., Bowling Green) said the President’s request marks the beginning of the budget process, and he expects that Great Lakes funding will remain intact.

“Cuts to GLRI will harm efforts to restore habitats, prevent invasive species, and clean up areas of concern for Lake Erie. This program has been targeted for cuts before, including under President Obama, and I have consistently worked with a bipartisan group of my colleagues to ensure full funding is maintained,” he said. 

(Great Lakes restoration nearly cut in President Donald Trump's budget. Toledo Blade. March 11, 2019.)  

Senate votes to terminate Trump’s national emergency

Congress handed President Donald Trump a pair of stinging defeats Thursday, with Sen. Rob Portman joining a majority of senators to reject the president’s emergency declaration to pay for a wall on the Mexican border and the House urging public release of the final report expected to be filed this spring by Special Counsel Robert Mueller.

Portman, R-Ohio, joined 11 fellow Republicans on a measure to kill Trump’s plan to declare a national emergency so he can find the money to build a wall on the U.S.–Mexico border. Sen. Sherrod Brown, D–Ohio, also voted to reject the emergency.

Portman’s vote — which he had not announced before Thursday afternoon — came hours after the House voted 420–0 on a non–binding resolution calling on U.S. Attorney General William Barr to make public Mueller’s investigation into possible collusion during the 2016 campaign between Russian intelligence officials and members of Trump’s campaign.

The Senate’s 59–41 vote on the emergency will likely provoke the first veto of Trump’s presidency. In fact, he tapped out a one word tweet after the Senate vote: “VETO!”

A few minutes later Trump added: “I look forward to VETOING the just passed Democrat inspired Resolution which would OPEN BORDERS while increasing Crime, Drugs, and Trafficking in our Country. I thank all of the Strong Republicans who voted to support Border Security and our desperately needed WALL!”

The House backed its version of the proposal in late February, with Ohio Democrats unanimously supporting the measure and Ohio Republicans in unanimous opposition.

But even though Trump’s veto likely will be sustained, the votes Thursday were the first major rebukes of the president by Republicans since he took office in January of 2017.

Alex Conant, a Republican consultant in Washington, said the Senate vote “is more concerning for the White House in part because it will force a veto. It also shows there are an increasing number of Republican senators who are seeking small ways to distance themselves from Trump.”

Portman said while a wall is necessary and the border crisis is a humanitarian crisis, he could not back what he called an “unprecedented” use of presidential power.

Instead, he suggested Trump use a different pot of money that would not require taking money from military construction projects, as the Trump emergency declaration would do.

“I believe that the president’s use of the national emergency declaration to access already approved military construction project funding in this case is wrong,” Portman said.

He added that Trump’s emergency declaration “opens the door for future presidents to implement just about any policy they want and take funding from other areas Congress has decided on without Congress’s approval.”

“Each one of us in this body has sworn an oath to support and defend the Constitution of the United States,” he said.

Portman had suggested alternative solutions to pay for the wall, such as using money designated to fight drugs or organized crime in addition to the $1.4 billion Congress approved for the wall earlier this year.

In mid–February, Trump announced he’d use $3.6 billion in military construction dollars in addition to other money appropriated by Congress last year to pay for the wall. Among the allocations potentially affected: $61 million to replace a World War II–era National Air and Space Intelligence Center at Wright–Patterson Air Force Base near Dayton.

Portman’s vote to terminate the emergency came hours after every House Republican and Democrat from Ohio called for release of the Mueller report in a nearly unanimous vote; four GOP lawmakers voted “present.”

Rep. Troy Balderson, R–Zanesville, called the Mueller resolution “a no-brainer: make the Mueller report public so Americans can get answers and move forward.”

Mueller, the former director of the FBI, has to file a report to U.S. Attorney General William Barr into whether there was collusion during the 2016 campaign between Russian intelligence officials and members of Trump’s campaign to damage the candidacy of Democrat Hillary Clinton.

Rep. Steve Stivers, R-Upper Arlington, said he looks “forward to reviewing” Mueller’s report, adding “Congress and the public have the right to see the report; today’s overwhelmingly bipartisan vote reaffirms that, and moves us one step closer to putting these questions to rest.”

When Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., asked senators to bring the Mueller resolution to the Senate floor, Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C. objected.

Graham said he would withdraw his objection if Schumer permitted floor vote on a resolution urging a special counsel be named to investigate the FBI’s inquiry in 2016 into Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton’s e-mails.

(Senate votes to terminate Trump’s national emergency. Columbus Dispatch. March 14, 2019.) 

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