On Tuesday evening, Kelley and I joined Americans from all across the nation in the U.S. Capitol Rotunda to pay our respects to former President George H.W. Bush. The 41st president lived a remarkable life, and our thoughts and prayers go out to his family during this time.
(Dr. Paul Pays Respect to Former President George H.W. Bush – Dec. 4, 2018)
Below, you can find out more about my week in Washington.
Dr. Rand Paul Blasts TVA for Proposed Closure of Western Kentucky Coal-Fired Plant
For the past several months, my staff and I have actively engaged in discussions with Kentuckians, officials in Muhlenberg County, and the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) regarding the status of Unit 3, the last coal-fired unit at the Paradise Fossil Plant.
Throughout discussions regarding TVA’s entire generating fleet being placed under review, no mention of a potential retirement of Paradise Unit 3 was made. Recently, however, TVA issued a draft Environmental Assessment on the potential retirement of the Paradise Fossil Plant.
I condemned the move in a statement on Tuesday and called for action to help protect Kentuckians’ livelihoods from federal overreach:
“It is absolutely unacceptable that unelected government bureaucrats can single-handedly decide which types of energy Kentuckians’ hard-earned tax dollars should support and ultimately be allowed to determine the fate of entire local economies without any accountability.
“Not only are the livelihoods of the over 130 Kentuckians employed at Unit 3 at stake, but also at risk are the trucking companies who bring coal into the plant, as well as the many related businesses and industries in Muhlenberg County. While the need to maintain a diversified energy production fleet that is efficient and profitable is understandable, the federal government has no business picking winners and losers in Kentucky’s energy sectors.
“When I met with Kentucky State Representative Melinda Gibbons Prunty, community leaders, and other fellow Kentuckians in Central City in October, I listened to their concerns about Paradise and promised to advocate on their behalf, which is why I will be filing a comment to TVA’s draft Environmental Assessment and sending a letter to the TVA Board along with other members of the Kentucky delegation. I strongly urge all Kentuckians to join us in filing comments.”
Kentuckians may submit comments directly to TVA HERE.
Dr. Rand Paul Addresses Rare Disease Workshop
This week, my staff attended an event in Louisville that focused on helping Kentucky’s rare disease patient community and providing information on treatments. While I was unable to attend, this is an issue I have championed in Washington, so I was happy to appear via video to update these Kentuckians on my work for them in this area.
As part of my responsibilities in the Senate, I serve as chairman of the Subcommittee on Children and Families for the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee. I mentioned in my video that this allows me to hold hearings on certain issues. In the fall, I reported, I held a hearing that focused on expediting treatments to patients battling rare diseases, where I brought patient advocates, fellow physicians, and industry professionals from the U.S. and Europe to Capitol Hill to discuss what Congress can do to improve the sluggish regulatory process that currently leaves the needs of many patients unmet.
One of my top priorities is ensuring government doesn’t stand in the way of the needs of Kentuckians, as I talked about in my video, and I am honored to fight on their behalf in Congress.
You can find my full address to the workshop HERE.
Dr. Rand Paul: “We Need to Fix Our Broken Prison System”
In a recent video update, I spoke about the growing support for prison and criminal justice reform in Washington, an issue that has been very important and close to me during my time on Capitol Hill.
Quite simply, we need to fix our broken prison system. Too many are put away for too long and then released with too little rehabilitation and training. The First Step Act addresses each of these concerns, and it’s time for action!
I reiterated in the video that the people of Kentucky are calling for reform, with a poll earlier this year revealing that 82% of Kentuckians polled – across party lines – think our criminal justice system “needs significant improvements,” while 89% believe our system should set “rehabilitating inmates to become productive, law-abiding citizens” as its main goal.
I believe this bipartisan bill, which also has President Trump’s support, will pass overwhelmingly if Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell allows it to receive a vote, which I have urged him to do, and I will continue to speak up for action.
You can watch my entire video HERE.
Dr. Rand Paul Meets with Kentuckians
I enjoyed spending some time on Monday with Churchill Downs CEO Bill Carstanjen and other representatives of Churchill Downs to learn about the latest news and developments at their company.
On Wednesday, I had the honor of meeting with representatives of the American Legion. Paris, Kentucky’s, Randall Fisher, an Air Force veteran, serves as the Legion’s Legislative Chairman, where he continues his long career of helping and advocating on behalf of those who have served our nation.
In addition to a great discussion on each of our experiences working at VA hospital centers, we also covered topics including ensuring Congress fulfills its constitutional responsibilities regarding war, as well as my efforts to expand access to more treatments for those retired service members struggling with injuries and chronic conditions.
(L-R: Dr. Paul with Representatives of Churchill Downs and The American Legion – December 3, 5, 2018)
On Tuesday, I held a short press conference concerning CIA Director Gina Haspel briefing a limited group of senators on Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s role in the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi. As I said in a separate statement, “Do you want to know what the deep state is? The CIA Director is coming to the U.S. Senate and only briefing a select few members of the Senate. Why shouldn’t every senator know what is going on? The deep state wants to keep everyone in the dark. This is just ridiculous!”
You can find a clip from my press conference HERE.
Have an Issue or Concern?
If you are a Kentucky resident and need assistance with a federal agency, please feel free to contact my Bowling Green office at 270-782-8303. One of my staff members will be more than happy to assist you.
Stay in Touch with Dr. Paul on Social Media
You can stay up to date on my latest news and activities by visiting my Senate website, www.paul.senate.gov, or my official Facebook and Twitter pages. You can watch my Senate floor speeches and press interviews at my YouTube channel HERE.