As our children head back to school, recent mass shootings in Dayton, El Paso and Odessa are weighing heavily on the hearts and minds of our parents, our teachers and, in many cases, our children. According to the Kentucky Center for School Safety, there were more than 1,400 threats against our schools last year alone.
Kentuckians have a deep interest in the production, cultivation and sale of industrial hemp and hemp derived products. Maybe our enthusiasm for this crop is rooted in the Commonwealth’s history. The Great Compromiser, Henry Clay, recognized the potential of hemp and grew it to make rope and bagging. Or, perhaps it’s because we recognize the enormous opportunities the industry provides for entrepreneurship and job creation. Either way, it’s clear, the hemp industry in the Commonwealth is booming.
Imagine going to turn on the lights in your home to find there is no power or rushing a loved one to the emergency room not knowing whether the life-saving medical equipment will work. If Congress adopts impractical policies in response to climate change, this could be our reality.
I am honored to represent the Horse Capital of the World, and throughout my time in Congress I have worked diligently to enact polices that will promote economic growth and investment in this key Kentucky industry. I continue to believe that the future prosperity of the sport depends in part on implementation of national uniform medication standards and testing procedures.
I recently returned to the nation of Israel—the United States’ most important strategic ally—to get an update from U.S. and Israeli officials on the ever evolving security environment in the Middle East. It was my first visit to the region since 2015 when the Obama Administration was negotiating the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), also known as the Iran nuclear deal, and since the Trump Administration withdrew from that agreement and announced the relocation of the U.S. Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.
I am proud to represent the people of Central and Eastern Kentucky in a seat in Congress that has existed for more than 200 years. It is a seat which has been occupied by many great statesmen including the Great Compromiser, Henry Clay. I am humbled to follow in the footsteps of these statesmen, serving the heart of the Bluegrass and recognizing my responsibility to fight for its future through various bipartisan roles in the House.
As we embark upon a New Year, I want to first express my sincere appreciation for the confidence you have once again placed in me by allowing me to serve another term as your Sixth District Congressman. It’s an honor to represent my Kentucky home in Washington, D.C., and I’m grateful to have the continued privilege to serve, work and fight for you in the United States House of Representatives.