September 21, 2018
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Tell senators to VOTE NO on Supreme Court nominee
The Senate Judiciary Committee postponed its vote on Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh after receiving serious allegations of sexual assault — another important reason his nomination should not go forward. As of this writing, it is unclear whether the Committee will hold a hearing on the allegations. “Our nation’s students — including those who have experienced sexual harassment and assault — are taking note of how the Senate collectively responds to these allegations,” said NEA President Lily Eskelsen Garcia. We oppose Kavanaugh for many well-documented reasons. His extensive record shows that he is not a fair-minded constitutionalist — someone who will fight for equality and justice for all. Of particular concern to educators, he is likely to uphold vouchers to private religious schools and declare protections for pre-existing conditions and other key provisions of the Affordable Care Act unconstitutional. As a judge, he has consistently voted to reverse rulings that protect workers' safety, privacy, and rights to organize and bargain collectively — and would do the same on the Supreme Court. The last thing we need is another partisan justice who sides with big corporations over protecting health care, civil rights, and treating working people fairly. Click on the take action button and tell your senators to VOTE NO on Kavanaugh's nomination to the Supreme Court.
Senate passes FY2019 funding bill; House to vote this week
By a vote of 93-7, the Senate passed the FY2019 Labor-HHS-Education appropriations bill approved by the conference committee; the House is expected to vote this week. Shortly after the Senate acted, President Trump issued a veiled veto threat in a tweet. The Senate bill slightly increases funding for key programs like Title I, IDEA, and Pell grants. Nevertheless, huge funding gaps remain. Public schools now get 19 percent less for Title I students than they did in 2010. The federal share of IDEA funding is just 14.6 percent, far short of the promised 40 percent. Nearly 51 million children attend public schools, the highest number in many years, and one in five live in poverty.
Cheers and Jeers
Representative Linda Sánchez (D-CA) and Representative Mark Pocan (D-WI) for leading the Strengthening Social Security Act, which they plan to introduce next week. The bill would increase benefits, ensure the cost of living adjustment (COLA) adequately reflects the cost of living, and improve the financial condition of the Social Security trust fund. The list of cosponsors, which continues to grow, includes Representatives Keith Ellison (D-MN), Mark Takano (D-CA), Bonnie Watson Coleman (D-NJ), Raúl Grijalva (D-AZ), Brenda Lawrence (D-MI), Jan Schakowsky (D-IL), Marc Veasey (D-TX), Grace Napolitano (D-CA), Chellie Pingree (D-ME), Mike Capuano (D-MA), Adriano Espaillat (D-NY), Gene Green (D-TX), Norma Torres (D-CA), and Jerry McNerney (D-CA)