Chairman's Press

03.06.13

Alexander: Health Care Law “Loading Up Employers With Costs That Make it More Expensive to Hire,” Keeping Unemployment High

Washington, D.C., March 6 - U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), the Ranking Member of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee, Tuesday said the health care law is "making it more difficult to lower the unemployment rate in this country, which has stayed too high with more than 12 million people still unemployed." (Video HERE) Alexander said: "Under the law, employers pay $2,000 if they do not offer insurance or a $3,000 penalty if they offer the wrong kinds of insurance. … Continue Reading


03.05.13

Alexander: “If the History Books Were Written Today, We Would Remember President Obama for the Sequester”

Washington, D.C., March 5 - In a speech on the floor of the Senate (VIDEO HERE), U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), the Ranking Member of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee, today said President Obama's leadership was "a colossal failure, because he will not respect this Congress and work with it in a way to get results…he's known for a year that the sequester was coming, but there was no meeting with the Republican or Democratic leaders that I know about unti… Continue Reading


03.01.13

Top Republicans on HELP, Appropriations, Finance Committees Question Administration Plans to Selectively Cut Programs for “Vulnerable Populations” in Sequester

Washington, D.C., March 1 - Senior Senate Republicans on committees overseeing labor, health and education programs today sought details from the administration on the methodology behind its sequestration plans, which appear designed to "dramatically cut funding for programs that serve some of the most vulnerable populations." In letters to Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius, Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, and Acting Secretary of Labor Seth Harris, the senators write … Continue Reading


02.28.13

Alexander Praises Senate Passage of Burr-Harkin Bill to Prepare Nation for Medical Emergencies and Bioterror Attacks

Washington, D.C., February 28 -Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), Ranking Member on the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee, today praised passage by the Senate of a bill to improve the nation's ability to prepare for, and respond to, pandemics and bioterror attacks. "The threat of a bioterror attack or flu outbreak is real, and this bill helps ensure we're prepared for that threat and that our state and federal governments and local entities are working together to be as rea… Continue Reading


02.28.13

SENATE, HOUSE LAWMAKERS ANNOUNCE BILL TO REPEAL JOB-KILLING EMPLOYER MANDATE

WASHINGTON - Today, Senate Finance Committee Ranking Member Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) and Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee Ranking Member Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) introduced the American Job Protection Act, legislation to repeal the job-killing employer mandate that was included in the President's $2.6 trillion health law, which requires businesses of 50 employees or more to provide health insurance of minimum value or pay a penalty between $2,000 and $3,000 for each emp… Continue Reading


02.27.13

Alexander: “Faster Approvals of Animal Medicines Will Reduce Farmers’ Costs”

Washington, D.C., February 27 - At a hearing today of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee, Ranking Member Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) praised the results of the animal drug user fee programs and said he would work to get the Animal Drug User Fee Act and Animal Generic Drug User Fee Act reauthorized before August. Alexander said: "Faster approvals of animal medicines will reduce farmers' costs, and these programs have reduced the average waiting time for the FDA to a… Continue Reading


02.26.13

Alexander: Federal Government Can “Create an Environment, and Governors Can Encourage” the Private Sector to Increase Employment Opportunities for Individuals with Disabilities

Washington, D.C., February 26 - At a hearing today of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee where Governor Jack Markell of Delaware testified about his initiative as chair of the National Governors Association to increase employment among individuals with disabilities, Ranking Member U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) said the federal government can help expand employment opportunities for individuals with disabilities by "creating an environment in this big, complex cou… Continue Reading


02.13.13

Alexander: Block, Griffin Should Leave NLRB While Senate Considers Their Nominations

WASHINGTON, Feb. 13 - U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) today released the following statement on the president's nomination to the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) of Sharon Block and Richard Griffin, both of whom were ruled unconstitutional appointments by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit: "The president has done what the Constitution requires, sending to the Senate for advice and consent two nominees for the National Labor Relations Board. In the meantime, while the S… Continue Reading


02.13.13

Alexander-Bennet Bill to Reduce Premature Births Moves Forward in Senate

WASHINGTON, February 13 - Senators Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) and Michael Bennet (D-Colo.), members of the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP), today praised the passage in the committee of their bill to reduce infant deaths and disabilities by expanding research, education, and intervention activities related to preterm birth. The bill passed the committee by voice vote. Sen. Alexander, Ranking Member of the committee, said: "We have seen great progress since we fi… Continue Reading


02.13.13

Alexander Announces Enzi, Burr and Isakson to Serve as HELP Subcommittee Republican Leaders

Washington, D.C., February 13 - At an executive session today of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee, Ranking Member U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) announced that Senators Mike Enzi (R-Wyo.), Richard Burr (R-N.C.) and Johnny Isakson (R-Ga.) will serve as Republican subcommittee leaders. Alexander said, "This committee has a broad agenda with especially important work ahead of us this Congress and I'm committed to seeing us do what we all came here to do-mark up bi… Continue Reading


02.13.13

Alexander on State of the Union Speech: “The President Missed a Golden Opportunity”

WASHINGTON, Feb. 12 - U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) released the following statement after the president's State of the Union speech tonight: "I'm disappointed because the president missed a golden opportunity to present a serious plan to deal with the most serious problem facing our country - how to preserve Medicare by reducing out-of-control entitlement spending." # # #… Continue Reading


02.08.13

Alexander Cosponsors Bill to Repeal Obamacare’s Tax Hike on Medical Device Manufacturers: “It’s Already Costing Tennessee Jobs”

Washington, D.C., February 8 - U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), the Ranking Member of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee, today announced he is a cosponsor of the Medical Device Access and Innovation Protection Act, a bill introduced by Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) and Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), to repeal the 2.3 percent excise tax on medical device manufacturers that was included in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act: "This tax increase on medical dev… Continue Reading


02.07.13

Alexander: Congress Should “Do its Job” and Reauthorize K-12 Education Law, Let Education Secretary “Step Back from Waivers, and Let States Make Their Own Decisions”

Washington, D.C., February 7 - At a hearing today of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee, Ranking Member U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) said Congress should "go back to work this year" on a reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, and "let the Secretary step back from waivers and let the states make their own decisions about whether students are teachers are succeeding or failing." Alexander said the administration's process for granting stat… Continue Reading


02.07.13

Alexander: Non-Partisan Report “Confirms the Failures of the Health Care Law”

Washington, D.C., February 7 - U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), the Ranking Member of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee, today released the following statement on the recent Congressional Budget Office report that seven million Americans will lose their job-based health care as a result of the new health care law: "The Congressional Budget Office's nonpartisan report confirms the failures of the health care law: At least seven million people will lose the health … Continue Reading


02.07.13

Sens. Alexander, Bennet and Reps. Eshoo, Lance Introduce Bipartisan Bill to Reduce Premature Births

WASHINGTON, February 7 - Senators Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) and Michael Bennet (D-Colo.) and Reps. Anna G. Eshoo (D-Calif.) and Leonard Lance (R-N.J.), today introduced legislation to reduce infant deaths and disabilities by expanding research, education, and intervention activities related to preterm birth. Sen. Alexander said: "This important bill will allow the scientists and doctors researching the causes of premature birth and its prevention to continue their work. We have seen great prog… Continue Reading


02.07.13

Senators Burr, Harkin, Enzi, Casey, and Alexander Introduce Bill to Better Prepare Nation for the Threat of Pandemics or Bioterror Attacks

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today, U.S. Senator Richard Burr (R-NC) along with Senators Harkin, Enzi, Casey, and Alexander introduced the Pandemic and All-Hazards Preparedness Reauthorization Act of 2013, a bipartisan effort to ensure that our nation is prepared to respond to a wide range of medical and public health emergencies, whether naturally occurring or the result of a chemical, biological, radiological, or nuclear attack. As a result of the passage of the Pandemic and All-Hazards Preparedness A… Continue Reading


02.01.13

Alexander Announces Staff Changes

WASHINGTON, Feb. 1 - U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) today announced the following staff changes stemming from his election as the top Republican, or Ranking Member, of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee: At the committee, Alexander's current legislative director, David P. Cleary, will serve as Republican staff director, MarySumpter Lapinski will serve as health policy director, Peter Oppenheim will serve as education policy director, Lindsey Ward Seidman w… Continue Reading


02.01.13

Alexander: “Get the Government Out of the Economy’s Way”

MARYVILLE, Feb. 1 - U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) today announced he is an original cosponsor of a bill in the U.S. Senate that he said would help reduce the negative impact excessive regulation has on the economy. "For too long, the federal government has been throwing a big, wet blanket over the economy with unrealistic regulations that burden businesses," Alexander said. "The best thing we can do to create more jobs for Tennesseans is to get the government out of the economy's way."… Continue Reading


01.31.13

Alexander, McConnell and 38 Republican Senators Send Letter to President Obama’s Unconstitutional NLRB Appointees Insisting They Leave Immediately

Washington, D.C., January 31 - U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), the Ranking Member of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee, along with Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell and 38 Republican senators, sent a letter to Sharon Block and Richard F. Griffin, Jr., the two individuals whose alleged appointments to the National Labor Relations Board have been ruled unconstitutional by a federal court, insisting that they leave the board immediately, "withdraw from all Bo… Continue Reading


01.31.13

Alexander Calls for Best Ideas on “Simple Plan for Voluntary Savings that Employers Would Be More Likely to Adopt”

Washington, D.C., January 31 - At a hearing today of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee on retirement savings, Ranking Member U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), asked four expert witnesses to "start from scratch" and offer the committee a simple plan for voluntary savings that employers would be more likely to adopt. "Because of the problems of complexity, legalese, and liability, there seem to be plenty of opportunities to make it easier for employees to choose pla… Continue Reading

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