Chairman's Press


Alexander Joins Sens. Paul, McConnell, Scott, and Lee in Hosting School Choice Forum

WASHINGTON, July 31-Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), the senior Republican on the U.S. Senate education committee, on Tuesday joined committee members Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) and Tim Scott (R-S.C.) along with Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) and Sen. Mike Lee (R-Utah), in hosting a forum on school choice, where the senators heard from parents and students in Washington, D.C. charter and private schools. Alexander told the forum participants: "I would think teachers would be knock… Continue Reading


Alexander: U.S. Senate is Telling Any President “You May Not Abuse the Constitutional Right of Recess Appointments”

WASHINGTON, July 30-The senior Republican on the U.S. Senate labor committee said today that the president's withdrawal of two National Labor Relations Board nominees whose appointments have been ruled unconstitutional by multiple federal courts was "an important moment in the history of our ability as a country to maintain checks and balances and a certain separation of power among the various branches of government, and especially to restrain the executive." Sen. Lamar Alexander (R. Tenn.) sa… Continue Reading


Op-Ed by Sens. Alexander, Paul, Lee, Scott, McConnell: "School Choice: Part of the Solution to Our Broken Education System"

By Senators Rand Paul, Mike Lee, Tim Scott, Mitch McConnell and Lamar Alexander One of the most important things we do as a society is educate our kids. Opportunity in education is the gateway to opportunity everywhere else -- in our economy, in our society and in our democracy. All children, no matter who they are or where they live, deserve an equal chance to develop their skills and intellect. But today in America, too many kids don't get that chance. We have a system in which politicians … Continue Reading


Senate Health Committee Members Urge Senate Action on Bill to Help Prevent Another Compounding Crisis Like the Deadly Meningitis Outbreak, Protect Nation’s Drug Supply

WASHINGTON D.C., July 25 - A bipartisan coalition of senators on the U.S. Senate committee overseeing health policy today urged Senate action on their legislation to help prevent another compounding crisis like the 2012 fungal meningitis outbreak that has led to 61 deaths and 749 illnesses, as well as protect the nation's drug supply chain for the nearly 4 billion prescriptions filled annually by establishing a uniform, national prescription drug-tracing framework. The senators released an upd… Continue Reading


Responses of Kent Hirozawa and Nancy Schiffer, nominees for the National Labor Relations Board, to Questions for the Record Submitted by Republican Members of the HELP Committee

WASHINGTON, July 25 - The following documents are Kent Hirozawa and Nancy Schiffer's responses to questions for the record submitted by Republican members of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee. The nominees' responses were received by the committee July 24. Please click here to see questions from Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) Please click here to see questions from Senator Mike Enzi (R-Wyo.) Please click here to see questions from Senator Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) Plea… Continue Reading


Alexander: Senate Action on Student Loans Lowers Interest Rates for 200,000 Tennesseans Going to College This Fall

WASHINGTON, July 24-The Senate today passed a bill sponsored by Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) that would lower student loan interest rates for 200,000 Tennesseans going to college this fall. Rates on all new undergraduate loans taken out this year since July 1 will be 3.86 percent, cutting the current rate nearly in half. Alexander, the senior Republican on the U.S. Senate education committee and former secretary of education, said: "This permanent, market-based plan makes students' loans … Continue Reading


Alexander Votes Against Obama NLRB Nominees With “Pro-Union Advocacy Past”

WASHINGTON, July 24-The senior Republican on the U.S. Senate committee overseeing labor policy today voted against President Obama's two labor board nominees, citing their history of work as advocates for labor unions. Sen. Lamar Alexander (R. Tenn.) said: "My primary concern is the ability of these two to set aside their pro-union advocacy past and act as neutral arbiters between employees and employers, so those parties can trust them to fairly adjudicate labor disputes. Will they be judges … Continue Reading


Alexander Presses Obama Labor Board Nominees to Protect Right-to-Work Freedoms

Washington, D.C., July 23 -The senior Republican on the Senate committee overseeing labor policy today pressed President Obama's two nominees to the National Labor Relations Board to protect state right-to-work laws. U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) warned against the board making an end run around Congress to undermine the laws, citing a case where the acting general counsel moved to stop Boeing, the nation's largest manufacturer, located in Washington, a non-right-to-work state, from ex… Continue Reading


Senators, House Republican Committee Leaders Press Administration to Release All Health Insurance Premiums Data

WASHINGTON, July 22-The senior Republicans on the U.S. Senate and House health policy committees and subcommittees today pressed the White House to release data it has collected on health insurance premiums in 34 states, after the administration released a report last week highlighting premium information in just 11 states. Senator Lamar Alexander (R. Tenn.) of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee and Representative Fred Upton (R-Mich.), chair of the House Energy and Com… Continue Reading


Alexander: House-Passed Bill Fixing No Child Left Behind is "a Kissing Cousin" of Bill Supported by All 10 Senate Education Committee Republicans

WASHINGTON, July 19-The senior Republican on the U.S. Senate education committee today said the reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act passed by the House of Representatives is a "kissing cousin" of the bill supported by all 10 Republicans on the Senate education committee, and urged the Senate to approve legislation like the House bill and end the trend toward "a national school board." Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) said: "The combination of Congress's failure to act… Continue Reading


Bipartisan Group of Senators Reach Deal to Lower Rates for All Students

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today, U.S. Senators Joe Manchin (D-WV), Richard Burr (R-NC), Angus King (I-ME), Tom Coburn (R-OK), Tom Carper (D-DE), Tom Harkin (D-IA), Lamar Alexander (R-TN), and Dick Durbin (D-IL) introduced a bipartisan compromise, the Bipartisan Student Loan Certainty Act, to lower interest rates for 100% of borrowers who have taken out, or will take out, a new federal student loan after July 1, 2013. "When Democrats and Republicans work together and have a real debate on a real proble… Continue Reading


Alexander to Vote Against Confirmation of President Obama’s Labor Secretary

WASHINGTON, July 17-The senior Republican on the U.S. Senate committee on labor policy said today that he would vote against confirmation of President Obama's nominee for U.S. Secretary of Labor, Thomas Perez. Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) said: "Mr. Perez's involvement in a quid pro quo arrangement between the Department of Justice and the city of St. Paul seems to me an extraordinary amount of wheeling and dealing outside the normal responsibilities of the Assistant Attorney General over the… Continue Reading


Alexander: Nominations Agreement “Allows Senate to Make Clear that This President, or Any President, Cannot Thumb His Nose at Senate’s Constitutional Role”

WASHINGTON, July 16-The senior Republican on the U.S. Senate committee on labor policy today released the following statement on the agreement reached by Senate leadership and the White House that the administration will send two new nominees to the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), replacing Sharon Block and Richard Griffin, Jr.: Sen. Lamar Alexander (R. Tenn) said: "This is the suggestion I offered in the HELP committee in May, that the president send us two new members to replace those … Continue Reading


Thune, Alexander Question Secretary Duncan on Education Department’s Role in ObamaCare Implementation

WASHINGTON, D.C.-Senators John Thune (R-S.D.), Chairman of the Senate Republican Conference, and Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), Ranking Member of the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee, were joined today by several of their Republican Senate colleagues in sending a letter to Secretary of Education Arne Duncan questioning the Department of Education's involvement in implementing ObamaCare. The senators write: "While we understand that the effects of the President's health care law will … Continue Reading


Alexander Votes to Delay Obamacare’s Individual, Employer Mandates

WASHINGTON, July 11-The senior Republican on the U.S. Senate committee on health policy today voted to delay the new health care law's employer mandate and individual mandate. The votes, on amendments offered in a Senate Appropriations Committee markup of the Senate Labor-Health and Human Services-Education appropriations bill for fiscal year 2014, failed in party-line votes, as Democrats voted against the measures. U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) said: "Republicans are working to protec… Continue Reading


Alexander Statement on Today’s Student Loan Vote

WASHINGTON, July 10 - Senator Lamar Alexander, the senior Republican on the Senate's education committee today released the following statement about the Senate voting down a student loan proposal supported by some Democrats: "Today's vote was the failure of a bad idea-the Senate voted against a short-term political fix that would have left 7 million middle-income students twisting in the wind and helped low-income students for just one year. We must focus our attention now on a long-term solut… Continue Reading


Alexander: Democratic Student Loan Bill “Leaves More Than 7 Million Middle-Income Students Twisting in the Wind, Paying Double the Rates They Should”

WASHINGTON, July 9-The senior Republican on the U.S. Senate education committee today in a speech on the Senate floor (Video HERE) called on Senate Democrats to support a proposal to lower student loan rates for all student borrowers, rather than the Democratic proposal scheduled for a vote tomorrow that will lower rates only on subsidized Stafford loans for a year. Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) said: "The only proposal that we're voting on tomorrow appears to be one that will leave [more than… Continue Reading


Alexander, Corker Introduce Bill to Protect Tennessee Medicare Recipients Who Count on Blood Pressure Monitors, Wheelchairs, and Other Medical Equipment

July 3 -U.S. Senators Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) and Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) announced today they have introduced legislation to ensure Medicare beneficiaries in Tennessee continue to have access to medical equipment. The bill would require the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) to conduct a rebid for contracts to supply medical equipment to Tennessee's Medicare beneficiaries through a new competitive bidding system that launched July 1. The senators have called for CMS to fix and res… Continue Reading


Sen. Alexander: Obamacare Unraveling

*** "This is the train wreck that the senator who wrote the law predicted was coming. The new health care law should be repealed and replaced with effective legislation that will reduce costs by involving patients more in health care decision-making." -Lamar Alexander MARYVILLE, Tenn., July 2-The senior Republican on the U.S. Senate health committee today released the following statement on the administration's announcement that it would delay until 2015 the new health care law's mandate … Continue Reading


Alexander: Senate Must Vote on Compounding Legislation “As Soon As Possible”

Washington, D.C., July 2 - The lead Republican on the U.S. Senate health committee today called for the full Senate to vote "as soon as possible" on legislation unanimously approved by the health committee in May to clarify oversight of drug compounders, as Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports the number of deaths caused by a multistate outbreak of fungal meningitis has risen to 61. Contaminated drugs traced last year to a Massachusetts compounding pharmacy led to the outbre… Continue Reading

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