JONES RECEIVES CONSTITUTION AWARD FOR PERFECT SCORE ON FREEDOM INDEX

November 20, 2013
News Release
Congressman Walter B. Jones Press Office

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Walter B. Jones (NC-3) has been chosen as a recipient of the Constitution Award by The New American in honor of his perfect score on the magazine’s Freedom Index. The Freedom Index is a congressional scorecard based on 10 votes chosen by the editorial board that reflect a representative or senator’s “adherence to constitutional principles of limited government, fiscal responsibility, national sovereignty, and a traditional foreign policy of avoiding foreign entanglements.” Congressman Jones was one of only 12 members of the House and Senate to earn a score of 100 percent.

“I am honored to receive the Constitution Award from The New American,” said Congressman Jones. “Our Constitution is under constant attack, and defending America’s principles of freedom is my greatest privilege and responsibility as a member of the House of Representatives.”

For additional information, please contact Sarah Howard in Congressman Jones’ office at (202) 225-3415 or sarah.howard@mail.house.gov.

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JONES COSPONSORS BILL TO EASE FISHING VESSEL DISCHARGE REGULATIONS

November 19, 2013
News Release
Congressman Walter B. Jones Press Office

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Congressman Walter B. Jones (NC-3) cosponsored legislation to exempt owners of fishing vessels from burdensome regulations requiring them to obtain an Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) permit for discharges incidental to normal vessel operation. The Commercial Vessel Discharges Reform Act of 2013 (H.R. 3464) would put a permanent moratorium on the EPA requirements, which are scheduled to take effect next month and will necessitate a permit for discharging things as simple as ballast water, deck wash, bilge pump discharge, fish hold water, and laundry and shower water. Failure to obtain the permit could result in lawsuits and fines of over 32,000 dollars.

“With an economy that is already struggling to recover, the last thing that Eastern North Carolina fishermen need is another costly federal regulation,” said Congressman Jones. “We need federal policies that encourage – not stifle – economic growth and job creation.”

 

 

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Jones Cosponsors Bill to Improve NSA Accountability

November 15, 2013
News Release
Congressman Walter B. Jones Press Office

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WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Congressman Walter B. Jones (NC-3) cosponsored legislation to improve accountability at the National Security Agency (NSA) by requiring the inspector general (IG) of the NSA to be appointed by the president and formally confirmed by the Senate. Currently, the NSA director is responsible for appointing the IG – a situation which discourages the type of meticulous oversight the agency needs. By requiring independent appointment of the IG, the NSA Inspector General Act of 2013 (H.R. 3436) would hold the agency to the same standard as the Department of Defense, Central Intelligence Agency, Department of Justice, and Department of Homeland Security.

“The NSA is vested with the responsibility to protect our national security, and with that responsibility comes a great amount of power,” said Congressman Jones. “Unfortunately, the NSA has a history of abusing its power and violating the privacy of millions of Americans. This bill would improve accountability at the NSA by instituting a new structure of oversight and discontinuing a system in which the IG is required to report on the very individuals who appointed him or her to the position.”

“As former CIA Inspector General Britt Snider wrote in a recent op-ed for the Washington Post, the decision to require an independently-appointed IG at the CIA in 1989 created an environment in which the IG’s office ‘no longer had to worry about the potential effect on their careers if their findings and conclusions were critical of the agency’ and could freely decide ‘which of the CIA’s activities would be investigated, inspected or audited without waiting for direction or approval from agency management.’ This is exactly the type of oversight that the NSA needs in order to prevent it from further engaging in inappropriate activities that infringe on the privacy rights of U.S. citizens.”

For additional information, please contact Sarah Howard in Congressman Jones’ office at (202) 225-3415.

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Jones Files Amicus Brief in Case Arguing Obamacare Violates Constitution

November 13, 2013
News Release
Congressman Walter B. Jones Press Office

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Walter B. Jones (NC-3) has joined 39 of his colleagues in filing an amicus curiae brief with the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals in Sissel v. HHS, a case which challenges the legality of Obamacare on the basis that it violates the Origination Clause of the Constitution. While the Origination Clause states that “[a]ll bills for raising Revenue shall originate in the House of Representatives,” Obamacare’s individual mandate penalty – ruled a tax by the Supreme Court in 2012 – originated in the Senate. Thus, the brief argues that the healthcare law should be ruled unconstitutional.

“Even worse than the canceled insurance plans and skyrocketing premiums resulting from Obamacare is the fact that individuals are suffering these ill effects from a law that runs directly contrary to our Constitution,” said Congressman Jones. “It is my hope that the Court of Appeals will recognize the law’s blatant violation of the Origination Clause and rule accordingly.”

Sissel v. HHS was decided in June 2013 by the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia in a ruling – made by an Obama-appointed judge – that upheld the constitutionality of the president’s healthcare law. The D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals will hear the case this fall. Regardless of the outcome, the losing party will likely appeal to the Supreme Court.

For additional information, please contact Sarah Howard in Congressman Jones’ office at (202) 225-3415.

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Jones Calls for Hearing on ENC Obamacare Rate Hikes

November 4, 2013
News Release
Congressman Walter B. Jones Press Office

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Congressman Walter B. Jones (NC-3) called for congressional hearings regarding the cancellation of health insurance plans and dramatic increases in premium costs that individuals in Eastern North Carolina and across the country have suffered as a result of Obamacare. In a letter to House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform Chairman Darrell Issa and Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Fred Upton, Congressman Jones pointed out that not only are individuals watching their rates skyrocket, they are being removed from their current insurance plans in favor of new, more costly plans that often include less coverage – a situation which President Barack Obama explicitly promised would not occur. In light of the president’s false statements, Congressman Jones requested the chairmen hold hearings in their respective committees to allow individuals who have suffered these unfortunate changes to their insurance plans the opportunity to testify before Congress.

“Individuals in Eastern North Carolina and across the country are being forced to pay exorbitant rate increases for new insurance plans that they do not want while being prohibited from visiting the doctors that they need,” said Congressman Jones. “This runs directly contrary to the president’s promise that ‘if you like your healthcare plan, you’ll be able to keep your healthcare plan’ and is further proof that this law is an unaffordable burden to the average American.”

 

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