Lois Frankel

12/11/2019 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 12/11/2019 19:21

DEMOCRATIC WOMEN’S CAUCUS AND THE DEMOCRATIC POLICY AND COMMUNICATIONS COMMITTEE LEAD 84 CONGRESSWOMEN IN DEMANDING SENATE ACTION ON KEY LEGISLATION IMPACTING WOMEN AND THEIR[...]

WASHINGTON, DC - Co-Chairs of theDemocratic Women's Caucus (DWC) Representatives Brenda L. Lawrence (MI-14), Lois Frankel (FL-21) and Jackie Speier (CA-14), Vice Chairs Representatives Veronica Escobar (TX-16) and Deb Haaland (NM-01), and House Democratic Policy and Communications Committee (DPCC) Co-Chair Debbie Dingell (MI-12) led 84 Congresswomen in a letter demanding Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to act on bipartisan legislation that benefits American women and their families. Several Congresswomen marched with the DWC and DPCC from the House Floor to Senator McConnell's office today and hand-delivered the letter, including: Democratic Caucus Vice Chair Katherine Clark (MA-5) and Steering and Policy Committee Co-Chair Rosa DeLauro (CT-3).

'House Democratic Women are not only fighting for the economic opportunity and the health of individuals, but we are also fighting for legislation that would empower women globally, combat the climate crisis, support women servicemembers and veterans, provide equality for all, and ensure women and families are able to live free from violence. For too long, women and their families have been held back. House Democrats recognize that when women and girls have equal access to the tools needed to succeed, communities across our country are more prosperous. It is time for Senate Republicans to stop obstructing and expeditiously take action on House-passed legislation that would strengthen the well-being of more than half of all Americans. Women and girls deserve better,' the Congresswomen wrote.

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Complete text of the letter to Senator McConnell is attached and below.

December 11, 2019

The Honorable Mitch McConnell

Senate Majority Leader

S-230 United States Capitol

Washington, DC 20510

Dear Senator McConnell,

We write to urge swift Senate action on House of Representatives-passed legislation that would directly benefit women and their families across this country. In 2018, a record number of women, including a historic number of women of color, were elected to Congress. In the first year of the 116th Congress, the 90 women in the Democratic Women's Caucus have spearheaded a legislative agenda to strengthen the health, economic security, and the well-being of our communities.

The House has passed more than 275 bipartisan pieces of legislation that continue to languish in the Senate. For example, in a bipartisan vote, the House passed H.R. 1585, the Violence Against Women Act, landmark legislation that responds to our nation's crisis of domestic and dating violence, sexual assault, and stalking. In March, the House passed H.R. 7, The Paycheck Fairness Act, legislation to ensure equal pay and promote economic security for families by breaking patterns of discrimination and strengthening the Equal Pay Act. Despite being breadwinners in most families with children, women who work full-time and year-round still only make 80 cents on the dollar for men's earnings. This disparity is even greater for women of color. H.R.582, the Raise the Wage Act, which passed out of the House with bipartisan support, would increase the federal minimum wage. By raising the minimum wage to $15 an hour by 2025, the legislation would give 33.5 million Americans a pay increase, including one in four women workers.

In addition, the House has passed legislation that strengthens healthcare by protecting Americans with pre-existing conditions and lowering prescription drug costs. However, Senate Republicans have refused to act. H.R. 986 and H.R 987, two bills that strengthen health care and reverse the Trump Administration's sabotage of the Affordable Care Act, passed out of the House in May of 2019. Women and families deserve action to address the maternal mortality crisis, lower health care costs, and expand access to care, including reproductive health care.

House Democratic Women are not only fighting for the economic opportunity and the health of individuals, but we are also fighting for legislation that would empower women globally, combat the climate crisis, support women servicemembers and veterans, provide equality for all, and ensure women and families are able to live free from violence. For too long, women and their families have been held back. House Democrats recognize that when women and girls have equal access to the tools needed to succeed, communities across our country are more prosperous.

It is time for Senate Republicans to stop obstructing and expeditiously take action on House-passed legislation that would strengthen the well-being of more than half of all Americans. Women and girls deserve better.