Chairman's Press

11.06.15

Alexander Statement on the 50th Anniversary of the Higher Education Act

WASHINGTON, D.C., Nov. 6 - Senate education committee Chairman Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) today made the following statement on the 50th anniversary of the signing of the Higher Education Act this Sunday, Nov. 8: "Fifty years ago, President Lyndon B. Johnson signed into law the original Higher Education Act, which gave millions of students the opportunity to attend the college of their choice, earn a degree and get a leg up into the middle class. Today, our students have access to the best col… Continue Reading


11.02.15

Hatch, Alexander Press Administration on Failed Obamacare Co-Ops, Question Accounting Methods

WASHINGTON - Today, Senate Finance Committee Chairman Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) and Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee Chairman Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) sent a letter to Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) Acting Administrator Andrew M. Slavitt questioning the administration on the financial viability and accounting methods of Obamacare's Consumer Operated and Oriented Plans (CO-OPs). The letter comes a day after Arizona announced its CO-OP would be removed… Continue Reading


10.29.15

Alexander: Federal Government Must Make It Easier for States Like Tennessee to Help the Nearly 1 in 5 American Adults with Mental Illness

"Already, there is an enormous response to try to help: at the state level, through the private sector, and from the federal government. As a former Governor, I know that states have traditionally been on the forefront." - Lamar Alexander WASHINGTON, D.C., Oct. 29 - Senate health committee Chairman Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) today said that the federal government must make it easier for states and communities to identify and help the nearly one in five American adults suffering from mental illne… Continue Reading


10.28.15

Alexander: Tennessee’s 23 Percent Rate Hike in Obamacare “Benchmark” Plans “Will Put a Dent in Tennesseans’ Family Budgets”

WASHINGTON, D.C, October 28 - U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) today said that the 23 percent rate increase for Tennessee's "benchmark" health care plan under Obamacare will "hurt those Tennesseans that this law was intended to help." Alexander, chairman of the Senate health committee, continued: "Tennesseans who buy Obamacare's 'benchmark' plan will see their premiums rise next year by 23 percent-that will put a dent in family budgets even though the president promised Obamacare would lower… Continue Reading


10.28.15

Alexander Statement on “Nation’s Report Card” Results

WASHINGTON, D.C., October 28 - Senate education committee Chairman Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) made the following statement on results released today from the 2015 National Assessment of Education Progress (NAEP), often called the "Nation's Report Card": "Today's results from the Nation's Report Card are disappointing news for our country's students and show that the No Child Left Behind federal law and waivers are no longer helping our students improve their performance. Our fourth graders are d… Continue Reading


10.28.15

Republicans Call on Administration to Halt Harmful Opioid Rule

WASHINGTON - Today, a bicameral group of 23 Republican lawmakers sent a letter to the Office of Management and Budget, calling on the Administration to pull a pending rule that would reverse course on curbing opioid drug abuse. Under the 2012 proposed rule, innovations for abuse-deterrent formulations would be subject to additional rebate obligations under the Medicaid program, thereby penalizing innovation in a field that is markedly important to the fight against prescription drug abuse. "We… Continue Reading


10.28.15

Franchisees Across the Country Slam Labor Decision that Threatens to “Steal the American Dream from Owners of the Nation’s 780,000 Franchise Businesses”

WASHINGTON, D.C., October 28 - Franchisees across the country are urging Congress to roll back the National Labor Relations Board's (NLRB) recent "joint employer" decision, which the chairman of the Senate labor committee says "threatens to steal the American dream from owners of the nation's 780,000 franchise businesses and millions of contractors." Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) said, "The NLRB's new joint employer standard would make big businesses bigger and the middle class smaller by d… Continue Reading


10.26.15

Alexander: America Needs a “Breakthrough” on Medical Devices

"Memphis-area medical devices are the top export of the region, accounting for $3.2 billion of the region's $11.3 billion in exports. The Memphis area and the state of Tennessee are at the forefront of this technology that is so crucial to improving Americans' health and quality of life." MEMPHIS, Oct. 26 - U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) today said that America's patients need a "breakthrough" in the medical device industry after touring Smith & Nephew, a medical device company in M… Continue Reading


10.24.15

Alexander Statement on the President's Remarks Today about "Over-Testing"

NASHVILLE - U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander, chairman of the Senate education committee and a former U.S. education secretary, released the following statement on the president's remarks today about "over-testing" in K-12 education: "The president is on the right track, but the real reason we have too many tests is that we have too many federal mandates. The best way to have fewer and better tests is for the president to sign Senate-passed legislation to fix No Child Left Behind and give more flex… Continue Reading


10.23.15

Senate, House Education Chairs Demand Administration End “Unprecedented Overreach” into College Accreditation Process

WASHINGTON, D.C. October 23 - The chairmen of the U.S. Senate and House education committees today called on a federal agency with authority over consumer financial products to immediately halt its "unprecedented" investigation into a college accreditor. Senate chairman Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) and House chairman John Kline (R-Minn.) sent a letter to Richard Cordray, director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, following recent reports that the agency has initiated an investigation in… Continue Reading


10.22.15

Alexander: Senate Passes Bill To Address Tennessee's Tenfold Increase in Infants Born Addicted to Drugs

"This bill will help ensure that federal programs are more effective in preventing and treating opioid use disorders among pregnant women to increase their chances of having healthy children." - Lamar Alexander WASHINGTON, D.C., October 22 - Citing a tenfold increase in Tennessee of infants suffering health problems from drugs like painkillers and heroin, the chairman of the Senate health committee today urged House lawmakers to act quickly to pass legislation approved by the Senate that would … Continue Reading


10.21.15

Alexander Commends Health Secretary Burwell for Listening to Knoxville-Area Concerns about Epidemic of Painkiller Abuse

"This is a direct response to the concern that State Representative Bill Dunn, law enforcement officials, doctors and community leaders in Knoxville had about whether the patient satisfaction survey actually encouraged the overprescribing of painkilling opioids." - Lamar Alexander WASHINGTON, D.C., Oct. 20 - U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) today commended U.S. health department Secretary Sylvia Burwell for listening to Knoxville-area concerns about painkillers, following news that the pres… Continue Reading


10.06.15

Alexander: Rushing Stage 3 Rule of Electronic Health Records Program a “Disservice to More than 500,000 Doctors, Thousands of Hospitals and Millions of Patients”

"The administration has a tin ear. We asked: 'Why spend a year modifying rushed up mistakes? Why not spend a year getting it right in the first place?' They listened but they did not hear." - Lamar Alexander WASHINGTON, D.C., October 6 - The chairman of the Senate health committee today said that in rushing its rule for the third stage of the electronic health records program, the administration "is doing a disservice to more than 500,000 doctors, thousands of hospitals, and millions of patie… Continue Reading


10.06.15

Alexander Calls on Democrats to Help Reverse Labor Decision that Will “Steal the American Dream” From Owners of 780,000 Franchise Businesses, Millions of Contractors

"It is the biggest attack on the opportunity for small businessmen and women in this country to make their way into the middle class that we've seen in a long, long time." - Lamar Alexander WASHINGTON, D.C., October 6 - The chairman of the Senate labor committee today urged Senate Democrats to support legislation to roll back a recent National Labor Relations Board decision he said may "steal the American dream from owners of the nation's 780,000 franchise businesses and millions of contractor… Continue Reading


10.02.15

Alexander Statement on Secretary Arne Duncan

WASHINGTON, D.C., Oct. 2 - Senate education committee Chairman Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) today made the following statement on the announcement that Education Secretary Arne Duncan will step down in December: "Arne Duncan was one of the president's best appointments. He has a big heart, cares about children, and I have enjoyed working with him. When we disagree, it is usually because he believes the path to effective teaching, higher standards, and real accountability is through Washington, DC,… Continue Reading


10.01.15

Alexander to Administration: 5 Reasons to Take More Time Before Making Final the Stage 3 Rule for the Electronic Health Records Program

"Making [this program] succeed is essential to the biomedical research and innovation legislation we hope to finish this year." - Lamar Alexander WASHINGTON, D.C., Oct. 1 - Senate health committee Chairman Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) today gave administration officials five reasons to take more time before making final the stage 3 rule of the federal government's program to require doctors and hospitals to create electronic health records systems "The whole purpose of this program is to benefit… Continue Reading


09.30.15

Committee Passes Alexander, Murray Bill to Help Prevent Suicide, Increase Early Identification of Mental Illness

WASHINGTON, D.C., September 30 - The chairman and ranking member of the Senate health committee today urged Senate passage of their legislation to extend programs to help prevent suicide among youths, ensure the nation's health care system is better prepared to provide support to children and families in the wake of traumatic events, and equip teachers and others to recognize and understand mental illness. The Senate health committee today passed their bill, the Mental Health Awareness and Impr… Continue Reading


09.30.15

GAO Report: Government’s Electronic Health Records Program Actually Slowing Down Data Sharing Between Doctors and Hospitals

WASHINGTON, D.C., Sept. 30 - A study done by the Government Accountability Office (GAO), known as the "Congressional Watchdog," revealed that the federal government's program to require doctors and hospitals to adopt electronic health records systems is actually standing in the way of interoperability-that is, the critical exchange of data and communication between electronic health records systems. The GAO conducted the study at the request of Senate health committee Chairman Lamar Alexander (… Continue Reading


09.30.15

Alexander: Senate Advances Bill That Would Address Tennessee's Tenfold Increase in Infants Born Addicted to Drugs

"This bill will help ensure that federal programs are more effective in helping pregnant women struggling with opioid use disorders, so that they get the help they need and have healthy babies." - Lamar Alexander WASHINGTON, D.C., September 30 - Citing a tenfold increase in Tennessee of infants born addicted to, or suffering health problems from, drugs like painkillers and heroin, the chairman of the Senate health committee today urged full Senate passage of legislation he says would "help p… Continue Reading


09.29.15

Senate Committee Chairmen Urge Administration to Immediately Adopt Stage Two Modifications for Electronic Health Records Program, Make Rules for Stage Three Final No Sooner Than 2017

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Two Senate committee chairmen urged the administration to immediately adopt stage two modifications for the federal government's program to require doctors and hospitals to create electronic health records systems and make the rules for stage three final no sooner than January 1, 2017. The call from U.S. Sens. John Thune (R-S.D.) and Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) comes as a bipartisan group of 96 Republicans and 20 Democrats in the House of Representatives in a separate letter t… Continue Reading

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