Spotlighting Indiana’s Leadership

On Wednesday, I highlighted Indiana’s leadership in combatting human trafficking.

Our state has done some incredible ground-breaking work with respect to addressing human trafficking. It’s regarded, by many states, as a national model. The Indiana Protection for Abused and Trafficked Humans Taskforce (IPATH) has been an ongoing initiative to study the problem and come up with a way to address it in partnership with stakeholders in Indiana. I will continue to work with local, state, and federal leaders to prevent the horrors of human trafficking.

Seeking Common Ground

Over the last several weeks, I reached out to senators on both sides of the aisle to seek common ground on health care reform. Most agree we cannot leave things as they are. Sixty-three of ninety-two counties in Indiana do not have a choice in the individual health insurance market. Four of those sixty-three counties have zero options in the market.

If we’re going to make the kinds of changes we need to make to actually bend the healthcare cost curve downward, it’s going to take 60 votes in the Senate. To achieve this level of consensus, I will continue to keep talking to members on both sides of aisle.

I’m always looking for common ground. It’s the right thing to do.

Continuing Our Work in East Chicago

Senator Joe Donnelly, Representative Peter J. Visclosky, and I wrote a letter to Secretary of Health and Human Services, Dr. Tom Price, reaffirming the need for assistance for those affected by lead contamination. Since assuming office, I have made two visits to East Chicago and continued to pressure our federal agencies to clean up contaminated areas.

Sharing Good News with Sec. Sullivan

I thanked Deputy Secretary of State John Sullivan for his, and the State Department’s, help in reuniting the Oren Family.

After a two-year wait, the Oren family was able to bring their adopted three year old boy from Ethiopia home to Indiana to begin his life as a Hoosier.

GAO Education Reform Bill Drop

I teamed up with my colleague, Senator Joe Manchin, to introduce legislation to increase accountability at the Department of Education.

Congress has a responsibility to conduct robust oversight of federal agencies. This new set of oversight measures would hold the Department accountable for inaction on streamlining and improving key areas of its operations. Ultimately, the federal government is accountable to the American people and has a duty to constantly seek improvements for its own operations.

One More Thing Before You Go... Purposeful Design

Last week, I had the pleasure of welcoming Purposeful Design to the office. Purposeful Design is an Indianapolis-based non-profit that employs men without a home or who have found it difficult to get a job.

During our meeting, they shared, “We're not just trying to create skilled craftsmen. We also want to reach into the heart...” This is a great example of mission meeting opportunity within this organization, and it is leaving a lasting impact on the men and women who craft these awesome pieces and in our community as well.

We are honored to have this Hoosier-crafted table in our Washington D.C. office and will be proud to share its story with all of our guests.

Thank you for the continued privilege to serve you in the Senate. My mission is to fight on behalf of Hoosiers and the interests that are unique to our state. I look forward to working with you, and sharing our progress, in the days ahead. Until then…

In Service,