Ranking Member's Press

12.02.14

Harkin Applauds HELP Committee Approval of NLRB Nominee

WASHINGTON, D.C.- Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA), Chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee, today applauded HELP Committee approval of National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) nominee Lauren McGarity McFerran to serve as a Member of the NLRB. Her nomination now goes to the Senate floor for consideration. "Today the HELP Committee took an important step forward in approving the nomination of Lauren McGarity McFerran to serve as a Member of the NLRB." Harkin said. "O… Continue Reading


11.25.14

Harkin Statement on Menu Labeling Rule Announced by White House

WASHINGTON, DC- Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA), Chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pension (HELP) Committee, released the following statement on the final menu labeling rule announced by the White House today. "I commend FDA for issuing a sensible rule that puts the health of the American people first. Every American family deserves access to clear, evidence-based information about the food and beverages they consume. But previously, though consumers had access to nutrition informa… Continue Reading


11.24.14

Harkin, Alexander: One Year Anniversary of Major HELP Committee Legislation to Better Secure the Nation’s Drug Supply

WASHINGTON, D.C.-This week marks the one-year anniversary of the landmark Drug Quality and Security Act (DQSA), which Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA), Chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee, and Ranking Member Lamar Alexander (R-TN) introduced and led to passage in the Senate. The DQSA significantly improved the safety of our nation's drug supply by clarifying federal law regarding pharmaceutical compounding and by creating a new framework for securely tracking … Continue Reading


11.21.14

Harkin Applauds Senate Passage of Bipartisan Infant Health Bill

WASHINGTON, D.C.- Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA), Chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee, today applauded Senate passage of the Sudden Unexpected Death Data Enhancement and Awareness Act, a bipartisan health bill that will help to address the more than 25,000 stillbirths that occur in the United States every year. Chairman Harkin led the bill to HELP Committee passage earlier this week. This is the 26th bipartisan bill Harkin has led to Senate passage. As chair… Continue Reading


11.20.14

Senior Lawmakers Introduce Sweeping Reforms to Black Lung Benefits Program

WASHINGTON, D.C.-Senior Democrats from the House and Senate today proposed sweeping reforms to the federal program that provides benefits to coal miners suffering from black lung disease.Federal law requires that coal companies compensate disabled miners who contract black lung, which is caused by inhaling coal dust over an extended period of time, but coal companies routinely deploy an array of unfair tactics to avoid paying miners the benefits they deserve. To help level… Continue Reading


11.20.14

HELP Chairman Harkin Unveils Bill to Reauthorize Higher Education Act

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA), Chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee, today introduced the Higher Education Affordability Act (HEAA), his bill to reauthorize the Higher Education Act. The bill takes a comprehensive approach to rein in rising college costs and ensure the system is better serving students and families. After receiving thoughtful feedback from stakeholders in the higher education community throughout the summer, Chairman Hark… Continue Reading


11.20.14

Harkin Statement on National Labor Relations Board Nominee

WASHINGTON, D.C.- Today, Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA), Chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee, delivered the following statement at the HELP Committee hearing on the nomination of Lauren McFerran to serve as a Member of the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB). Harkin praised McFerran, urging swift approval and emphasizing the important role the NLRB plays in supporting a growing economy and a strong middle class by giving workers a voice in the workplace t… Continue Reading


11.19.14

Harkin, Alexander Applaud Passage of Bipartisan Ebola Treatments Bill

WASHINGTON, D.C.- Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA), Chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee, and Ranking Member Lamar Alexander (R-TN) today applauded HELP Committee approval of the Adding Ebola to the FDA Priority Review Voucher Program Act. "As the U.S. continues to respond to Ebola, it is critical that we are doing all we can to get life-saving treatments to those impacted by the disease," Harkin said. "The bill approved today will help to accomplish that by … Continue Reading


11.19.14

Harkin Applauds Passage of Bipartisan Infant Health Bill

WASHINGTON, D.C.- Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA), Chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee, today applauded HELP Committee approval of the Sudden Unexpected Death Data Enhancement and Awareness Act. "Every year tens of thousands of families suffer the unimaginable loss of a child due to stillbirth, sudden unexpected infant death, or sudden unexplained death in childhood. By passing the Sudden Unexpected Death Data Enhancement and Awareness Act, we are taking imp… Continue Reading


11.19.14

Harkin Applauds HELP Committee Approval of EEOC and Department of Labor Nominees

WASHINGTON, D.C.- Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA), Chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee, today applauded HELP Committee approval of two Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) nominees, two Federal Mine Safety and Health Review Commission nominees, and a Department of Labor (DOL) nominee. "I am pleased that the HELP Committee approved these well-qualified nominees." Harkin said. "Equal opportunity, safe workplaces, and worker protections are essential … Continue Reading


11.17.14

Harkin, Alexander, Mikulski, Burr Applaud Senate Passage of Bipartisan Bill to Help American Families Access Safe, Affordable, and Quality Child Care

WASHINGTON, D.C.-U.S. Senators Tom Harkin (D-IA), Lamar Alexander (R-TN), Barbara Mikulski (D-MD), and Richard Burr (R-NC) today applauded Senate passage of the Child Care and Development Block Grant (CCDBG) Act of 2014, a bipartisan reauthorization that will expand access to and improve the quality of child care for the more than 1.5 million children and families that benefit from the federal child care subsidy program. The law has been due for reauthorization since 2002. Harkin and Alexander … Continue Reading


11.17.14

Harkin Statement on PBGC Annual Report

WASHINGTON, D.C.-Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA), Chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee, released the following statement today on the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation's (PBGC) 2014 Annual Report. Congress requires the agency to provide the Annual Report so that policymakers and the general public have a better understanding of the health of PBGC and the private pension system. The HELP Committee is responsible for the oversight of the PBGC. "For millions… Continue Reading


11.13.14

Harkin Applauds Passage of Bipartisan Bills Aimed at Preventing Skin Cancer and Strengthening Traumatic Brain Injury Programs

WASHINGTON, D.C.-Today, Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA), Chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee, applauded Congressional passage of two bipartisan health bills: the Sunscreen Innovation Act and the Traumatic Brain Injury Reauthorization Act of 2014. Led by Harkin as chairman, both bipartisan bills were passed by the HELP Committee and the full Senate in September. With House passage today, both bills now head to the President's desk for his signature and are se… Continue Reading


11.13.14

Harkin: CDC Study Shows Decline in Youth Tobacco Consumption; Rise in E-Cigarette Use

WASHINGTON D.C. - Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA), Chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee, today issued the following statement as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released the 2013 National Youth Tobacco Survey. The survey shows that tobacco use among young people is decreasing, while e-cigarette use among high school students has tripled between 2011 and 2013. "While it is encouraging to see that tobacco use is declining amongst America'… Continue Reading


11.13.14

Harkin Statement on Equal Employment Opportunity Commission Nominees

WASHINGTON, D.C.- Today, Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA), Chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee, delivered the following statement at the HELP Committee hearing on two Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) nominees. The EEOC nominees include P. David Lopez, nominated to serve as General Counsel, and Charlotte Burrows, nominated to serve as a Member of the EEOC. Harkin praised the nominees, urging swift approval and emphasizing the important role the E… Continue Reading


11.12.14

Harkin Statement Regarding Efforts to Ensure A Fully Functioning National Labor Relations Board

WASHINGTON, D.C. -Today, Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA), Chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee, released the following statement on today's announcement from the White House regarding the administration's withdrawal of Sharon Block's nomination to serve on the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB). "It is truly unfortunate that Sharon Block, a dedicated public servant, will not have this opportunity to serve on the National Labor Relations Board at the presen… Continue Reading


11.12.14

Harkin, Alexander Introduce Bipartisan Bill to Help with Development of Ebola Treatments

WASHINGTON, D.C. -Today, Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA), Chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee, and Ranking Member Lamar Alexander (R-TN), along with several other HELP Committee cosponsors introduced a bill to incentivize the development of treatments and vaccines for Ebola by adding the disease to the Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) priority review voucher program, an initiative designed to help speed the development of new drugs for neglected tropical … Continue Reading


11.07.14

Harkin: October Jobs Report Shows Continued Positive Economic Growth

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA), Chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee, today released the following statement on the October employment report showing that the economy added 214,000 jobs last month, with the national unemployment rate continuing to decrease, falling from 5.9 percent to 5.8 percent, its lowest point in six years. "The October jobs report represents yet another indication that our economy continues to grow and is moving in t… Continue Reading


10.30.14

Harkin, Durbin, Murphy, Cummings on Department of Education's Final Gainful Employment Rule and For-Profit Task Force Announcement

WASHINGTON, D.C.-U.S. Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA), Chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee, Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Chris Murphy (D-CT), and Representative Elijah Cummings (D-MD) today released the following statement regarding the Department of Education's final gainful employment rule: "As Chairman of the HELP Committee, I led a two-year investigation to determine if students attending for-profit colleges were being offered a path to gainful emp… Continue Reading


10.28.14

Harkin, Alexander Will Introduce Bipartisan Bill to Speed Development of Ebola Treatments

WASHINGTON, D.C. -Today, Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA), Chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee, and Ranking Member Lamar Alexander (R-TN) announced their intention to introduce a bill to speed the development of treatments and vaccines for Ebola by adding Ebola to FDA's priority review "voucher" program, a program at the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) designed to incentivize the development of new drugs for neglected tropical diseases. Currently Ebola is n… Continue Reading

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