Chairman's Press

03.19.14

Senators Urge Further Clarity and Transparency from FDA on Medical Mobile Apps

Washington, DC - A bipartisan group of senators is urging the FDA to provide further clarity and transparency in its policy regarding medical mobile apps. Senators Michael Bennet, Orrin Hatch, Tom Harkin, Lamar Alexander, Mark Warner, and Richard Burr urged the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to further clarify rules for medical software application developers to promote innovation and keep consumers safe in light of changing technologies. In a joint letter to the FDA, the senators stated… Continue Reading


03.14.14

Alexander Statement on President’s Overtime Directive

Washington, D.C., March 14 - U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), the senior Republican on the Senate labor committee, today released the following statement on the president's order to change overtime rules: "The president's directive-combined with his support for a minimum wage hike, his executive order increasing minimum wage for federal employees and federal contractors, and the heap of mandates from his health care law-seems engineered to make it as unappealing as possible to be an empl… Continue Reading


03.14.14

Alexander: Proposed Gainful Employment Rule “Will Weaken Both Choice and Access”

KNOXVILLE, Tenn., March 14 - U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), the senior Republican on the Senate education committee, today released the following statement on the administration's proposed gainful employment rule: "To take 841 pages of regulations to define two words in the higher education law shows exactly what is wrong with Washington and its desire to overregulate institutions of higher education. This proposed rule will weaken both choice and access for some of our most disadvant… Continue Reading


03.13.14

Bipartisan Bill to Help American Families Access Safe, Affordable, and Quality Child Care Clears Senate

WASHINGTON, D.C.-Bipartisan legislation to help American families access safe, affordable, and quality child care has cleared the Senate with strong support from senators on both sides of the aisle. U.S. Senators Tom Harkin (D-IA), Lamar Alexander (R-TN), Barbara Mikulski (D-MD), and Richard Burr (R-NC) released the following statements today after the Senate passed the Child Care and Development Block Grant (CCDBG) Act of 2014, a bipartisan reauthorization that will improve the quality of child… Continue Reading


03.13.14

Alexander: FDA “Off to a Fast Start” in Implementing New Law to Clarify Oversight of Compounding Pharmacies

*** "Now that the legislation has established who is on the flagpole, FDA and states can take the action necessary to ensure compounded drugs are safe in the facilities that they regulate." -Lamar Alexander Washington, D.C., March 13 - At a Senate health committee hearing today with Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Margaret Hamburg, U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), the committee's Senior Republican, praised the Food and Drug Administration's "fast start" in implementing the new… Continue Reading


03.13.14

Alexander, Thune, Hatch, 22 GOP Colleagues Call on Administration to Immediately Rescind Rule Giving Unions a Carveout from Obamacare

Senators say they will consider options such as the Congressional Review Act to prevent the rule from taking effect WASHINGTON, March 13 - Senators Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), Orrin Hatch (R-Utah), John Thune (R-S.D.) and 22 of their Republican colleagues today called on the Obama administration to immediately rescind its rule creating an unwarranted special carveout for some unions from Obamacare fees. In a letter to Office of Management and Budget Director Sylvia Burwell, the senators write: … Continue Reading


03.12.14

Alexander: Minimum Wage Hike “a Stale, Bankrupt, Ineffective Policy” That Will Destroy 500,000 Jobs

*** "There are better ideas: reform refundable tax credits to benefit all low-income workers, replace long-term unemployment compensation with job training, change Obamacare's work week definition from 30 hours to 40 to encourage full-time jobs, and use existing federal education dollars to give children of low-income families a $2,100 scholarship to choose a better school." -Lamar Alexander Washington, D.C., March 12 - At a hearing today of the Senate labor committee, U.S. Senator Lamar Alexa… Continue Reading


03.06.14

GOP Senators Call For Details on Administration Plan to Grant Exemptions from Electronic Health Records Regulations

WASHINGTON, March 6 - Senators Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), John Thune (R-S.D.), Richard Burr (R-N.C.), Tom Coburn (R-Okla.), Mike Enzi (R-Wyo.) and Pat Roberts (R-Kan.) today called on the administration to provide details on its plan to grant health care providers exemptions from new electronic health records regulations instead of granting additional time as groups nationwide have requested. Health care providers across the country are struggling to meet the requirements of Stage 2 of the new … Continue Reading


03.04.14

Alexander: Obama 10-Year Budget Never Balances, Adds $8 Trillion to Federal Debt

*** "If we don't make tough decisions now, we'll have let America slip from the hands of the 'greatest generation' to the 'debt-paying generation' with nothing to show for it but the bill." - Lamar Alexander WASHINGTON, March 4 - U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) today said President Obama's proposed 10-year budget for 2015 "never balances" and does not do enough to address "runaway entitlement spending" that is driving the federal government's debt, which is more than $17 trillion. "Pre… Continue Reading


02.27.14

Alexander Opposes Obama Nominee for Surgeon General

Washington, D.C., Feb. 27 - U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), the senior Republican on the Senate health committee, today voted against moving President Obama's nominee for surgeon general, Dr. Vivek Murthy, out of committee and to the Senate floor. "The surgeon general is known as 'the nation's doctor.' He leads a professional corps of 6,800 commissioned public-health officers. Dr. Murthy is obviously talented, but his experience does not measure up to the stature and leadership expected… Continue Reading


02.27.14

Alexander Highlights Success of Programs for Students with Disabilities at UT-Chattanooga, Vanderbilt at Senate Hearing

*** "One of the great advantages of our system of higher education is that our government support follows the student to the institution of their choice. So, a student with a disability can select a college campus that's a friendly environment." -Lamar Alexander Washington, D.C., Feb. 27 - At a Senate hearing today, U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), the senior Republican on the Senate education committee, highlighted the success of programs for students with disabilities at the Universit… Continue Reading


02.26.14

Harkin, Alexander Co-Host Monthly Lecture Series on Deaf Community and Culture

WASHINGTON, D.C.-Last evening, U.S. Senators Tom Harkin (D-IA) and Lamar Alexander (R-TN) co-hosted the first in a series of monthly lectures for senators and their staff on the deaf community and its culture. The lectures will take place over the next five months and are intended to help senators and their staffers expand their knowledge of deaf culture and learn some basic phrases in American Sign Language (ASL) to more effectively communicate with deaf and hard-of-hearing visitors to their o… Continue Reading


02.25.14

Alexander on Small Business Premium Increases Under Obamacare

Washington, D.C., Feb. 25 - U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), the senior Republican on the Senate health committee, today released the following statement on the Obama administration report that 65 percent of small businesses will see health insurance premiums increase under Obamacare: "Now even the Obama administration admits that Obamacare will increase costs for two out of three small businesses, likely causing more employees to lose the insurance they were promised they could keep." … Continue Reading


02.21.14

Alexander Statement on Obama Administration Proposed Medicare Advantage Cuts

NASHVILLE, Feb. 21 - U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn., the senior Republican on the Senate health committee, today released the following statement on the Obama administration's proposal to reduce Medicare Advantage payments: "This is dismal news for seniors who choose Medicare Advantage, more than one in four of everyone using Medicare. It is one more broken promise to Americans who were told that if they liked their health care plan they could keep it." ###… Continue Reading


02.21.14

Alexander Statement on UAW Appeal of Chattanooga VW Vote

NASHVILLE, Feb. 21 - U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn., the senior Republican on the Senate labor committee, today released the following statement on the UAW's appeal to the National Labor Relations Board of last week's election at the Chattanooga Volkswagen plant: "Labor laws are written to allow employees to decide whether they want a union, not to ensure that unions win. For thirty years, tens of thousands of new auto jobs have raised Tennessee family incomes and our workers have deci… Continue Reading


02.20.14

Alexander Statement on President Obama’s Failure to Include Chained CPI in Budget

Nashville, Feb. 20 - U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), the senior Republican on the Senate health committee, released the following statement on the White House announcement that President Obama has dropped chained CPI from his budget this year: "Using the most accurate measure of inflation for entitlement spending and tax rates would be the simplest, fairest way to take a meaningful step toward fixing the federal debt. The president was exactly right to include it in last year's budget… Continue Reading


02.20.14

Alexander Calls for Administration to Clarify Position on Patient Access to Personal Health Information

Nashville, Tenn., Feb. 20 - U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), the senior Republican on the Senate health committee, today asked Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius to clarify the administration's position on patient access to personal health information. The FDA last year said in a warning letter to genetic test maker 23andMe it was taking action to stop the company from marketing certain tests directly to consumers that FDA does not trust individuals with test results, … Continue Reading


02.19.14

Alexander Statement on CBO Report that Minimum Wage Bill Could Cost as Many as 1 Million Jobs

Washington, D.C., Feb. 18 - U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), the senior Republican on the Senate labor committee, today released the following statement on the Congressional Budget Office report finding that the Democrats' bill to raise the minimum wage to $10.10 an hour with annual increases for inflation could cost as many as 1 million jobs: "This CBO report reiterates a fundamental principle of our free-market economy: increasing the minimum wage eliminates jobs, cuts off the bottom r… Continue Reading


02.12.14

Op-ed by Sen. Alexander in National Review Online: 11 Million $2,100 'Scholarships for Kids': A Real Answer to Inequality

By Sen. Lamar Alexander February 12, 2014 On the same day that the president discussed income inequality during his State of the Union address, I introduced legislation that would allow $2,100 federal scholarships to follow 11 million low-income children to any public or private accredited school of their parents' choice. This is a real answer to inequality in America: giving more children more opportunity to attend a better school. The "Scholarships for Kids Act" will cost $24 billi… Continue Reading


02.12.14

McConnell, Coburn, Alexander Push for FDA Accountability on its Approval of Powerful Pure Hydrocodone Product

WASHINGTON, DC - U.S. Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and Senators Tom Coburn (R-OK) and Lamar Alexander (R-TN) wrote to U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Commissioner Margaret Hamburg today to hold the agency accountable for decisions it makes that have the potential to negatively affect prescription drug overdose rates, misuse, abuse, and diversion. In 2010, drug overdose was the leading cause of injury-related death in the United States, largely driven by opioids. The F… Continue Reading

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