Chairman's Press


Alexander: There is No Excuse Whatsoever for Democrats to Block $1.1 Billion to Combat the Zika Virus

WASHINGTON, D.C., Sept. 6 - Senate health committee Chairman Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) today said "there is no excuse whatsoever for Democrats to block $1.1 billion to combat the Zika virus" after Senate Democrats voted against funding to protect babies from Zika-related birth defects for a third time. "You don't need money to fight mosquitos in the wintertime," Alexander said. "Republicans are eager to send help now while the mosquitos are out, and the only thing stopping us is a cynical and i… Continue Reading


Alexander: Tennessee Awarded $1 Million in Federal Grants to Help Prevent Opioid Abuse

MARYVILLE, Tenn., Aug. 31, 2016 - U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) today said Tennessee has been awarded $1 million in two federal grants to help prevent opioid abuse, including by raising awareness about the dangers of sharing medication and overprescribing of opioids. "Each year, more than 1,000 Tennesseans die from opioid abuse or overdose-this is an epidemic taking more Tennessee lives than car accidents or gunshots do. The way to fight this epidemic is not to wage a distant battle from … Continue Reading


Alexander: “Education Secretary Must Think He is the U.S. Congress as Well as Chairman of a National School Board”

*** "Last December, with broad support and the President's signature, Congress reversed the trend toward a national school board and restored control of public schools to states and communities. Now the Secretary is heading in the exact opposite direction. His proposed regulation would give Washington, D.C., control over state and local education dollars that it has never had before. Federal law gives him zero authority to do this. In fact, our new law specifically prohibits his doing this." - … Continue Reading


Alexander: Tennessee Insurance Commissioner Says State Obamacare Exchange Is “Very Near Collapse”

"Next year Tennesseans will be paying an intolerable increase-on average between 44 and 62 percent more for their Obamacare plans than they paid last year …. And if you, the policyholder, don't pay all of it, then you, the taxpayer, will, because a large portion of Obamacare premiums are subsidized with tax dollars." MARYVILLE, Tenn., Aug. 26-U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander today highlighted The Tennessean's Wednesday front-page headline, which read: "Very Near Collapse"-words used by Tenne… Continue Reading


Alexander: “Blacklisting” Regulations Will Bury Contractors Under Mountains of Paperwork, Prevent Some from Getting Work for Violations They Didn’t Commit

NASHVILLE, August 24, 2016 - Senate labor committee Chairman Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) today made the following statement on the administration's release of its final "blacklisting" regulations implementing the president's 2014 executive order: "These regulations will bury federal contractors and subcontractors under mountains of paperwork and then prevent some from getting work for a labor violation they didn't commit. Current law is already clear that when federal contractors violate labor la… Continue Reading


Alexander: Tennesseans Cannot Afford 44 to 62 Percent Obamacare Price Increases

NASHVILLE, August 23 - Senate health committee Chairman Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) made the following statement on the premium increases ranging from 44 to 62 percent made final today for all three plans on Tennessee's Obamacare exchange: "Tennesseans cannot afford 44 to 62 percent Obamacare price increases that will force them to make difficult decisions about their daily lives and their family budgets. They should not have to pay the price for a terrible health care law and the refusal by Demo… Continue Reading


Alexander: NLRB Decision to Allow Student Assistants to Unionize “May Destroy Programs that Have Helped Millions Afford an Undergraduate or Graduate Education”

NASHVILLE, August 23 - The chairman of the Senate labor committee today called the National Labor Relations Board's (NLRB) policy reversal to now allow "student assistants" at private colleges and universities to unionize a "shameless attempt to increase union membership that may destroy student assistant programs that have helped millions afford an undergraduate or graduate education." Chairman Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) said, "Today, the NLRB has again changed its policy to benefit unions by … Continue Reading


Alexander on FOX News Sunday: Tennessean’s Amazing Eyesight Recovery Underscores Need for Congress to Pass 21st Century Cures Now

"You would think that if President Obama, a Republican House, and a bipartisan Senate all are for this, we could get it done. That's why I'm optimistic." - Lamar Alexander NASHVILLE, August 21 - Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) today joined FOX News Sunday to underscore Tennessean Doug Oliver's amazing eyesight recovery and the need for Congress to pass 21st Century Cures now - unleashing biomedical innovation and giving more Americans access to more life-changing treatments and cures. Telling t… Continue Reading


Alexander: Tennessee an Example for All States, as 7 Out of 10 HS Seniors Filed Federal Student Aid Applications Last School Year

"Not only is Tennessee's free community college program a model for other states, but our state is setting an example for others with its assistance to students in filling out the complex, dreaded FAFSA so they can take advantage of Tennessee Promise." NASHVILLE, August 19, 2016 - U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) said Tennessee is "setting an example for all states," as 70 percent of Tennessee high school seniors filed a FAFSA form for financial aid last school year-more than any other stat… Continue Reading


Alexander: Vanderbilt “Front and Center” in President’s Precision Medicine Initiative

NASHVILLE, Tenn., August 18, 2016 - U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) today said the recent $71.6 million, five-year grant to Vanderbilt University Medical Center (VUMC) from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) puts Vanderbilt "front and center" in the president's Precision Medicine Initiative to drive treatments and cures tailored to individual's genomic makeup and to expedite research for rare diseases. "Vanderbilt is going to be storing the data and making it useful-helping researchers… Continue Reading


Senate Labor Committee Republicans Call on Administration to Reject “Time-Wasting” Data Collection Proposal

WASHINGTON, August 16 - Senate labor committee Chairman Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), Senator Johnny Isakson (R-Ga.) and Senator Pat Roberts (R-Kan.) sent a letter to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) requesting the agency to disapprove the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission's (EEOC ) proposal to collect compensation and hours worked data from 61,000 private-sector employers. The senators wrote to express doubt that collecting this information will meet EEOC's stated goal of identifyi… Continue Reading


Alexander Condemns Senate Democrats For Blocking $1.1 Billion in Zika Aid

WASHINGTON, August 13 - Senate health committee Chairman Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) made the following statement after the Secretary of Health and Human Services formally declared the Zika virus a public health emergency in Puerto Rico: "In July, Senate Republicans attempted to pass a bill that would have provided $1.1 billion to fight Zika by supporting research, vaccine development, mosquito control and social services in affected areas. Unfortunately, Senate Democrats decided to vote against … Continue Reading


Alexander: Obamacare Continues to Spiral Out of Control, Leaving Tennessee Families Facing Unprecedented Insurance Rate Hikes

"Today's unprecedented news that two of the state's biggest health insurers are asking for a second opportunity to increase their rates to stay in business in Tennessee - on top of double digit increases requested earlier this year- is only the most recent proof that Obamacare is spiraling out of control. How can anyone continue to defend this law while they watch it wreak havoc on family budgets - stealing money hardworking Tennesseans had set aside to buy a home or send their child to college … Continue Reading


Senate Education Committee Leaders Urge Secretary King to Provide More Time for States to Develop Their New Accountability Systems

"We believe the timeline we put forth … is what Congress intended when we wrote the new Every Student Succeeds Act. We have heard from teachers, principals, school leaders, district superintendents, chief state school officers, researchers, parents, and other stakeholders that the timeline we set forth in this letter will lead to more effective implementation of the new law." WASHINGTON, August 1 - Senate education committee leaders today requested changes to the Education Department's p… Continue Reading


Alexander: “Mother May I?” Era in K-12 Education Ends Today

WASHINGTON, August 1 - With the expiration today of No Child Left Behind waivers, Senate education committee Chairman Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) marked August 1, 2016 as "the end of the 'Mother May I?' era in K-12 education." "Today, the national school board era has come to an end. Today, the "Mother May I?" conditional waivers era in our nation's schools has come to an end. And, as of today, the Education Secretary is required by the law to keep his hands off of our nation's classrooms," said … Continue Reading


Alexander: FDA is Exactly Right to Keep Your Fitbit, Weight Watchers App Free of Government Red Tape

WASHINGTON, D.C., July 28 - Senate health committee Chairman Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) today said the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is "exactly right to keep your Fitbit or Weight Watchers app free of unnecessary government oversight and red tape." "The recent surge of innovative fitness trackers and mobile health apps is good news for Americans who want to take an active role in monitoring and improving their own health," said Alexander. "I'm glad to see that the FDA recognizes this and h… Continue Reading


Alexander: New Law Gives Tennessee Boost on Front Lines of Opioid Epidemic

WASHINGTON, July 25 - Senate health committee Chairman Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) today said bipartisan opioids legislation signed into law by President Obama will provide a "substantial boost to states like Tennessee, which are on the front lines of our nation's opioid epidemic." "Each year, more than 1,000 Tennesseans die from opioid abuse or overdose-this is an epidemic taking more Tennessee lives than car accidents or gunshots do. The way to fight this epidemic is not to wage a distant battl… Continue Reading


Tennessee Gets Federal Boost to Fight Opioid Epidemic

WASHINGTON, July 14 - United States Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) today urged the President to sign the bipartisan conference committee report to reform opioid programs sponsored by Senators Portman (R-Ohio), Ayotte (R-N.H.), Whitehouse (D-R.I.) and Klobuchar (D-Minn.) which passed the United States Senate yesterday. Speaker Ryan signed the conference committee report in a ceremony this morning. "Each year, more than 1,000 Tennesseans die from opioid abuse or overdose-this is an epidemic ta… Continue Reading


Alexander: Senate Democrats Block $1.1 Billion to Help Save Babies from Zika-Related Birth Defects

"It is inexplicable that Senate Democrats are blocking a bill that would provide millions of dollars to hospitals, public health departments, community health centers, and health care providers in Puerto Rico, simply because some of the money is directed to providers that the Puerto Rican government has deemed Medicaid-eligible in Puerto Rico." WASHINGTON, D.C., July 14, 2016 - U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) said that Senate Democrats blocked $1.1 billion in emergency funds to help save… Continue Reading


Alexander: The 4 Areas of Proposed Accountability Regulation Most in Need of Overhaul

"I am focused on four areas of the regulation that seem to the most in need of overhaul: the timeline for new state accountability systems, the summative rating system, the requirement for evidence of state academic standards, and the return to high stakes federal tests." WASHINGTON, D.C., July 14 - Chairman Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) today identified four areas most in need of overhaul in the Department of Education's first proposed rule on the new law to fix No Child Left Behind - the timeline… Continue Reading

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