For too long, the elites in Washington have forced a top-down bureaucratic regulatory regime onto the backs of American entrepreneurs. This elites-know-best approach has led to a corrupted system that protects favored incumbents and props up easier to control institutions. However, with the advent of modern peer-to-peer technology, we have an opportunity to return to America’s entrepreneurial roots.
Helping foster this new hyper-efficient economy is one of my highest priorities. This Congress I authored a bill to change how the government defines Accredited Investors. The current definition only takes wealth into account. If you have enough money, you can participate in special investment opportunities nationwide. My bill would change the definition to also include professional sophistication as an alternative metric to attain Accredited Investor status.
Administrative regulators are terrified of these new economic opportunities. Technology is changing at such a rapid pace that innovations are completed uncontrollable – an anathema to those with vested interests in DC’s top-down regulatory structure. Blockchain will revolutionize how modern financial ownership is proven. Peer-to-peer lending could do to community banks what the internet did to travel agencies. This paradigm must be fostered, because it is the one major hope we have for future economic growth.
For nearly a decade Washington bureaucrats have falsely concluded that the border is secure and made excuses for failing to complete the border fence. In reality, the fence remains unbuilt and the Department of Homeland Security only has operational control of 56 percent of our border.
The continued flow of illegal border entries, drug smuggling, and the influx of unaccompanied alien children (UAC) is proof that our border is not secure. In 2014, the United States saw a wave of illegal immigration by UACs and minors accompanied by adults claiming to be their parents (family units) along the southwest border. More than 68,500 UAMs and 68,445 family units – nearly 137,000 aliens – illegally entered the United States along the southwest border. Further, based off of current trends, some estimate upwards of 177,000 UACs and family units will enter the U.S. year. That number would represent a 29% increase over the previous high mark in FY 2014, when the administration claimed we faced a “crisis”.
Finally, recent reports of foreign nationals with terrorist ties crossing the border highlight the vital national security need to complete the border fence promised a decade ago. Washington’s continued failure to secure our border and stem the flow of illegal entries threatens both the security of our people and the sovereignty of our nation. This is why earlier this year, I introduced the Build the Fence Act. This legislation requires the Department of Homeland Security to prioritize building the southern border fence and gain operational control of our border as is mandated by the 2006 Secure Fence Act.
The right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed. The Second Amendment could not be clearer, yet liberals in Washington continue to attack our right to self-defense. The Second Amendment ensures that all law abiding citizens have the right to protect and defend themselves and their loved ones. While the liberal left continue to manipulate statistics to pursue their gun control agenda, we know the truth, that law abiding citizens exercising their Second Amendment right has led to less violent crime throughout our country.
That is why I have fought to expand the Second Amendment right. I have introduced legislation that prevents the Obama administration from targeting firearm manufactures with Operation Choke Point, a Department of Justice program designed at cutting off access to banking and financing for those businesses. I fought against Eric Holder’s Department of Justice to prevent the tracking and cataloging of multiple gun purchases by citizens in Arizona.
FAA Flight Paths
On September 18, 2014 the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) unilaterally implemented new departure procedures at Sky Harbor International Airport, without consulting the communities that would be impacted. As a result, Valley residents who previously had no aviation noise exposure have seen a drastic decline in their quality of life. These changes have exposed our communities to unacceptable levels of aircraft noise, disrupting homes, businesses, and neighborhoods.
In response, I worked to pass an amendment that will prevent the FAA from moving forward with plans to redesign the regional airspace while the serious issues resulting from the new flight paths remain unresolved in the Phoenix area. Further, working with the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, we were successful in including language that would require the FAA to reevaluate these flight paths and have community input on the future of Arizona’s airspace. Please be assured that I will continue to fight for our community.
Valley Fever Task Force
David Schweikert and House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy set up a Valley Fever Task Force to bring much needed awareness to the disease of Valley Fever, which is prominent in Maricopa county as well as the rest of Arizona and southern California.
The Task Force’s goal is to share information with stakeholders in the medical and scientific fields to foster new advancements in prevention and treatment as well as work with community organizations to help educate individuals on the disease. Congressman David Schweikert issued this statement:
“This task force is a much needed step toward raising awareness for this terrible disease and someday soon finding a cure. Valley Fever has silently affected entire communities in the southwest including our family, friends, and even beloved pets. I am hopeful that this working group will bring awareness, reduce the risk of misdiagnoses, and bring about a cure within the decade.”
Last Congress, Congressman Schweikert successfully led the effort to have Coccidioides spp., the pathogens that cause Valley Fever, listed as qualifying pathogens under the GAIN Act of 2011. This effort granted Valley Fever the title of “orphan disease” with the FDA, meaning any treatments or future cures will be given priority and fast tracked through the often arduous FDA approval process.
What is Valley Fever?
Coccidioides spp. comes from the desert earth and causes the disease known as Valley Fever. While some individuals breathe in the spore with no repercussions, others fall ill from Valley Fever. Those most affected by Valley Fever are immunosuppressed patients, the elderly, minority populations of African, Filipino, and Native American descent, and pregnant females. Of the more than 150,000 infected annually, roughly 50,000 warrant medical attention. Of those, nearly 600 cases have the infection spread from their lungs to other parts of the body. Ultimately 160 cases result in death. In recent years cases of Valley Fever in the southwestern states of Arizona, California, Texas and New Mexico have skyrocketed. CDC statistics show that reported cases of Valley Fever have risen nine-fold since 1998.
Today, patients diagnosed with Valley Fever are prescribed an antifungal therapy that has a 30%-60% failure rate. The current recommendation of the Infectious Disease Society of America is to continue treatment for life. There is no cure.
Valley Fever severely affects many who work outdoors, farmers and those in the construction industry. Every branch of the United States’ military has bases in the endemic regions, putting our military men and women at risk.