Warren Vietnam veteran honored with Purple Heart

Jul 13, 2016

On Sunday morning, Rep. Levin joined retired Lt. General Guy Swan and Sgt. John Marek to present Private First Class Herman Johnson with a Purple Heart medal for wounds sustained in the Vietnam War in 1969. Johnson was awarded the Purple Heart as a surprise after his friend and fellow soldier, Fred Rivera, contacted Rep. Levin’s office to help secure the honor. For 47 years, Rivera believed Johnson to be dead, yet the two were reunited by phone a few months ago and in person for the first time over the weekend in Washington, D.C.

Read more about the Purple Heart ceremony and the story that brought Johnson and Rivera back together here.

GOP Continues to Attack Agencies That Protect Consumers
Last week, the GOP passed another bill attacking agencies that protect consumers. The Financial Services appropriations bill cut funding for several agencies that protect consumers from predatory practices, including funding for the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the Securities and Exchange Commission, and the Internal Revenue Service.  The bill was also used as a vehicle for bad policies, such as provisions that prohibit the IRS from implementing the 2010 health care law's individual mandate, provisions blocking Dodd-Frank financial reform, and efforts to undermine the President’s policy on Cuba.

Macomb County diversity efforts recognized by White House
On June 30th, Macomb County, along with more than 50 other U.S. cities and counties, was honored at a special event held at the White House for participating in the Building Welcoming Communities campaign.  The Campaign is a partnership of The White House Task Force on New Americans, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services and Welcoming America, a national nonprofit organization with expertise in welcoming efforts, to encourage communities to engage in local immigrant integration efforts.  In September 2013, Macomb County launched its OneMacomb initiative with a mission of supporting collaborative and community-based activities which celebrate cultural diversity and inclusion, and also supporting leaders in active, positive and affirmative response to its increasing cultural diversity and inclusion efforts.

House Passes Legislation Responding to the Opioid Epidemic
Every day 129 people die from a drug overdose in the US, and drug overdoses annually claim more lives than car crashes among adults .  Opioids, prescription painkillers and heroin, are the leading cause of drug overdoses. Recognizing that opioid abuse is an epidemic and stems from addiction, the House passed the Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act by a vote of 407-5 last Friday.  This legislation represents a bipartisan, bicameral work of Congress to prevent opioid addiction as well as provide treatment and long-term recovery supports for people in need. The Senate is considering this legislation later today, July 13, and is expected to pass it with similarly broad, bipartisan support.

Rep. Levin was a cosponsor of the Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act. This legislation was supported by more than 230 advocacy organizations.  In a May op-ed., Congressman Levin urged Congress to come together and pass comprehensive legislation to address the opioid epidemic.

On the Floor of the U.S. House this week: The House will continue FY 2017 funding bills with consideration of the Department of the Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies Appropriations of 2017 Act (H.R. 5538), take up another Republican attempt to limit women’s access to health care services and family planning options (S.304), and consider a Senate-passed bill on food labeling (S. 764).  The Majority will also bring to the House floor three bills (H.R. 5119, H.R. 4992, H.R. 5631) that will undermine the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, the international agreement on Iran’s nuclear program.  Finally, the House will vote on a Republican bill intended to restore separation of powers but will actually cause separation of powers problems and create regulatory uncertainty.