Measure drew bipartisan support in Congress, though local representatives split votes down party lines
June 7, 2011 (Washington D.C.)—By a 268-145 vote, the House of Representatives rebuked President Barack Obama for not seeking Congressional authorization for military conflict in Libya. House Resolution 292, authored by Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) asked the President to provide Congress with justification for U.S. involvement in NATO-led military strikes.
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES PASSES BILL THAT WOULD STRIP WOMEN’S RIGHT TO CHOOSE, REDUCE PRIVATE INSURANCE OPTIONS FOR ABORTION COVERAGE
By Jeremy Los
“This bill is an unprecedented assault on women’s health care. For the first time, restrictions would be placed on how women with private insurance can spend their own dollars in purchasing health insurance.” – Congresswoman Susan Davis (D-San Diego)
May 31, 2011- Women’s rights are under siege as Republicans in control of the House of Representatives recently passed H.R. 3. The No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act would sharply restrict access to abortion.
Championed by Rep. Christopher Smith (R- NJ), the bill passed the House with 251 "aye" votes, of which 235 were Republicans--including San Diego Republicans Duncan Hunter and Darrell Issa. (Brian Bilbray (R-San Diego) abstained from voting, while local Democratic representatives Susan Davis and Bob Filner voted "no.")
Push comes as major drug busts made at border involving Mexican trucks
By Jeremy Los
May 22, 2011- Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-Alpine) is leading a bi-partisan push to end a cross-border trucking program that would allow Mexican trucks to use U.S. roadways. Hunter and Illinois Democrat Daniel Lipinski sent a letter to Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood protesting the agreement between the U.S. and Mexico. The letter has rare bipartisan agreement, signed by 42 lawmakers from both sides of the aisle including Rep. Bob Filner (D-San Diego).
The lawmakers claim that the program will tarnish border security as well as hurt the American economy and cost jobs. In addition, concerns have been raised over highway safety.
Congressman Filner, the Freedom Rides, and Three Generations of Civil RIghts Activism
“I was 18. We did this thing, and we changed the whole legal structure of America. The sense that change is possible has been with me since."–Congressman Bob Filner
For the 50th anniversary of the Freedom Rides, Rep Bob Filner (D-San Diego) shares his memories as a Freedom Rider and of enduring two months in jail to take a stand during the tumultuous Civil Rights movement.
Women’s rights supporters plan protest at Rep. Hunter’s office today at noon
February 24, 2011 (San Diego’s East County) –Republicans in the House pushed through a 240-185 vote to strip all Title X funding from Planned Parenthood, sparking outrage among health advocates and women’s rights supporters, who have organized multiple protest rallies in San Diego this week including a rally today outside Congressman Duncan Hunter’s office in El Cajon.
Rep. Mike Pence (R-Indiana) introduced the amendment to strip Planned Parenthood of all federal funds. “It is morally wrong to take the taxpayer dollars of millions of pro-life Americans and use them to fund organizations that provide and promote abortion,” he said.
But Title X funds have never covered abortion care, so Pence’s statement is misleading, suggests Terry O’Nell, president of the National Organization for Women. Should the measure pass the Senate and become law, she said, “Millions of women, the vast majority of whom have incomes of less than $11,000 a year, will lose access to pap smears, testing for sexually transmitted infections, and contraception.” Calling the bill “dangerous and discriminatory,” she added, “There is little doubt that the WILL kill women.”
February 19, 2011 (Washington D.C.) – San Diego’s Congressional delegation is speaking out on spending and budget-cutting priorities –with widely divergent views. While Republicans have slammed President Barack Obama’s proposed budget, Democrats are blasting the rival Republican House appropriations bill.
As with any omnibus proposal, the devil is in the details. Issues at stake include funds for local border projects, birth control access, water supplies for Southern California, job training, and more. Here’s what our five local House representatives and both California U.S. Senators have to say about the spending proposals that Congress is weighing.
Senate leaders vow to block repeal--but a Virginia judge declares mandate to buy health insurance unconstitutional
By: Jeremy Los
January 20, 2011 (San Diego’s East County) -- House Republicans have stuck to their campaign promises and passed a measure to repeal the newly established health care bill. In what was a strictly symbolic vote, since the repeal will most likely die in the Democrat-controlled Senate and would not be signed by President Obama, the House Republicans have sent a strong message to the nation that they mean business.
Local Republican representatives Brian Bilbray, Darrell Issa, and Duncan D. Hunter fell in line with conservative cohorts, as every House Republican voted to pass the repeal. On the other side of the aisle local Democratic representatives Bob Filner and Susan Davis voted against the repeal.
By Jeremy Los and Miriam Raftery
January 6, 2011 (Washington D.C.) – The red Republican wave that swept through the nation in November has officially begun its reign in the United States House of Representatives yesterday as the 112th Congress commenced. The change elevates the positions and influence of local Republican representatives, while reducing the power of San Diego’s Democratic delegation in Congress.
Highlighted by the election of Rep. John Boehner of Ohio, as Speaker of the House, yesterday today marked the beginning of what House Republicans see as a chance to move the conservative agenda forward. The Republican leadership has announced its intent to repeal President Obama’s health care bill and begin to cut government spending in their first three weeks. Democrats in Congress now are on the defensive as they are now hoping to impede the destruction of what they pushed for since 2006.
November 22, 2010 (San Diego)-- Miramar National Cemetery in San Diego officially opened today by providing its first burials of veterans and family members at the new facility.
Military honors at the opening ceremony included a rifle salute and the playing of “Taps.” Acting Under Secretary for Memorial Affairs Steve Muro gave remarks and was joined by VA and local officials in the interment of cremated remains. Casket burial options will be available in early 2011.
November 18, 2010 (San Diego) – Congressmen Bob Filner (D-San Diego) is calling for the U.S. House of Representatives Homeland Security Committee to hold a hearing to examine the Transportation Security Administration’s (TSA) security screening procedures at airports, including full-body scans and pat downs.
November 12, 2010 (San Diego) – Congressman Bob Filner wants to make sure all active duty and veterans who were forced to involuntarily extend their service know that the deadline to submit a claim for retroactive “Stop Loss” pay is approaching.
All claims must be submitted by December 3, 2010.
San Diego’s Congressional representatives earned grades from A to D. Who scored the highest--and the lowest? The answers will surprise you.
October 25, 2010 – Iraq & Afghanistan Veterans of America (IAVA)'s Congressional Report Card grades members of Congress on support for combat veterans in the past two years. San Diego’s Congressional delegation includes the Chair of the Veterans Affairs Committee, two veterans, a mlitary spouse, the wife of a military contractor, and a veterans' subcommittee member. So how did our legislators rank on supporting the many veterans in their districts?
New law will expand and update benefits for veterans
October 15, 2010 (Washington, D.C). – House Veterans’ Affairs Committee Chairman Bob Filner (D-San Diego) announced yesterday that President Obama signed H.R. 3219 into law. The Veterans’ Benefits Act of 2010, authored by Filner, improves and modernizes certain benefits administered by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) for veterans and their families.
East County News Service
October 9, 2010 (Washington, DC) – Just over a week after the President signed the Small Business Jobs and Credit Act, HR 5297, close to 2,000 small businesses have been approved for SBA-backed loans. Nearly $1 billion total will soon go to these small businesses. Locally, at least three business owners have already been approved since the new law went into effect.
October 5, 2010 (Washington, D.C.) – Congressman Bob Filner announced that the Department of Treasury has approved a grant for construction work on the final segment of the I-805/SR-905 interchange near the Otay Mesa Port-of-Entry. Awarded under the TIGER (Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery) program, the grant will pay for the completion of access to the Otay Mesa Port-of-Entry’s intermodal connector.
Washington, DC – Recently, First Focus Campaign for Children, a national bipartisan advocacy organization, recognized Congressman Bob Filner (D-San Diego as a “Defender of Children.” This award is part of First Focus Campaign for Children’s inaugural campaign to recognize several Members of Congress who make improving the well-being of children a national priority.
September 24, 2010 (Washington, DC) –Several important consumer protection features of health reform went into effect yesterday, six months after the Affordable Care Act (also know as the Patient's Bill of Rights) was signed into law. While even supporters contend the bill is no panacea, it does contain some key reforms that may affect you and your family.
“The Patient’s Bill of Right makes sure that health care is available to you when you need it most and outlaws the most egregious abuses by the insurance industry,” said Congressman Filner (D-San Diego). For plan years beginning on or after September 23, 2010, all privately-insured Americans now have the following protections:
By Miriam Raftery
“I hope this will spread across America.” - Congressman Bob Filner at a pre-dawn rally, where he announced that Union Bank called off plans to have the Sheriff issue a foreclosure notice today to evict a woman and her child with cancer
“We can join together and fight these banks.” – Ray Lutz, 52nd Congressional district candidate
September 14, 2010 (Bonita) – “Thank you, thank you!” Luz Maria Villanueva’s voice was choked with emotion at a rally on her front lawn organized by Congressman Bob Filner (D-San Diego). Nearly 100 people turned out at 5:30 a.m. for a candlelight vigil to protest Union Bank’s announced plan to have the Sheriff’s department take Villanueva’s Bonita home. She has pleaded for a reprieve at least until her son, who is legally blind and has cancer, completes chemotherapy treatments.
CONGRESSMAN FILNER TO LEAD COMMUNITY RALLY TO SAVE CHILD WITH CANCER FROM LOSING FAMILY HOME TO FORECLOSURE IN BONITA
East County News Service
September 13, 2010 (Bonita) – Congressman Bob Filner (D-San Diego) is urging the public to join him in a massive demonstration against foreclosures.
By Miriam Raftery
August 22, 2010 (El Cajon ) – Two Congressmen and four local lawmakers fielded questions from the audience Friday night, trading quips and barbs on topics ranging from healthcare to gay marriage. The occasion was the San Diego East County Chamber of Commerce’s annual “Politics in Paradise” event in the Water Conservation Garden at Cuyamaca College, where the weather was sultry and the politics even hotter.
August 19, 2010 (San Diego's East County) -- It may be the hottest political show of the season. On Friday, the San Diego East County Chamber of Commerce hosts its annual “Politics in Paradise” event, giving the public an opportunity to hear from top elected officials. This year, confirmed participants include Congressional representatives Duncan D. Hunter (R-El Cajon) and Bob Filner (D-San Diego), as well as State Senator Denise Ducheny (D-San Diego), Assemblyman Marty Block (D-Lemon Grove), and Supervisor Dianne Jacob.
The bipartisan lineup includes some of San Diego’s most influential and powerful legislative leaders. Ducheny chairs the Senate budget committee in Sacramento. Block chairs the Higher Education committee n the Assembly. Filner chairs the House Veterans Affairs Committee. Jacob, with decades of experience, has previously chaired the County Board of Supervisors. Hunter, a first-term Congressman, is a member of the House Armed Services Committee that his father formerly chaired.
East County News Service
July 31, 2010 (Washington D.C.) – U.S. Congressman Bob Filner announced this week that the federal Department of Justice (DOJ) has awarded $320,403 for the San Diego Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force.
“We have to work together across city lines if we are going to catch online child predators,” said Filner. “These funds will go to making sure we have the resources to be proactive in investigating and prosecuting those using the internet to commit crimes against children.”
FIERY FINDINGS: AMONG MAJOR CITIES, SAN DIEGO HAS LOWEST LEVEL OF FIREFIGHTERS—AND BIGGEST REVENUE SHORTFALL
Leaders propose options to address serious public safety crisis in City and County
By Miriam Raftery
July 28, 2010 (San Diego) – San Diego has the fewest firefighters per capita of any major city in the nation, a shocking new report by Center for Policy Initiatives revealed yesterday.
“Service quality has dropped below acceptable standards, most tragically in the fire-rescue department,” a CPI press release warned. “Without increased revenue, the city could face the closure of almost half of our fire stations and the firing of several hundred police officers, as the chief operating officer described to the Council yesterday.”
July 28, 2010 (Rancho San Diego) – San Diego East County Chamber of Commerce will host its second annual “Politics in Paradise” event on August 20 from 6-9 p.m. at the Water Conservation Garden. The bipartisan program provides voters in East County with the opportunity to hear from legislators representing them in Washington, in Sacramento, and at the County level.
The evening will allow guests to pose questions to representatives and hear their opinions on hot button political issues and current events. Legislators confirmed to attend so far include Congressmen Duncan Hunter and Bob Filner, Assemblyman Marty Block, and Supervisor Dianne Jacob. More RSVPs are expected.
July 3, 2010 (San Diego) -- Congressman Bob Filner (D-San Diego) applauds the announcement of a $9 million U.S. Department of Energy grant to a UC San Diego led consortium for research into use of algae for biofuels.
According to a San Diego Association of Governments (SANDAG) analysis, research on algal biofuels employs 410 scientists and other workers in San Diego and provides nearly $28.8 million in payroll and $56.2 million in economic activity for the region. Direct spending on algal biofuels, combined with the additional jobs and spending in related service industries is currently responsible for 784 jobs, $44.6 million in wages and $108.3 million in economic output in the San Diego region.
“I am persuaded that this project will not be built. It was conceived in secrecy ….sold with misleading information.” – Stephen Volker, attorney
Anonymous donor pledges to match donations for legal battle up to $20,000
June 24, 2010 (Alpine) – A standing-room-only crowd of around 700 people packed into the Alpine Community last night, where Supervisor Dianne Jacob and the Protect Our Communities Foundation convened a meeting for the public to provide input on SDG&E’s proposal to route Sunrise Powerlink through the Cleveland National Forest. No representatives were present from the U.S. Forest Service or SDG&E.
Many public officials and candidates for office came out in opposition to the project—while others were conspicuous by their absence or failure to take a stance.
The public has until June 29 to submit comments to Forest Supervisor William Metz. You may submit your comments online at email@example.com and include the subject line “Sunrise Powerlink Comments” or call to leave recorded comments at (858)673-6180.
ASKS BP TO PUT DIVIDENDS IN ACCOUNT FOR OIL SPILL CLEANUP AND VICTIM COMPENSATION
June 18, 2010 (Washington D.C.) – As BP board members debate whether to move forward with a scheduled dividend payment, U.S. Congressman Bob Filner joined 31 other members of Congress to call on the oil company to instead direct those funds to an escrow account dedicated to cleaning up the Deepwater Horizon spill and compensating its victims.
June 19 (Chula Vista, CA) -- Veterans and active duty military will get access to financial planning advice and help with their benefits at a free afternoon seminar on Monday, June 21, 2010. A number of topics will be covered including the availability of tax breaks, eligibility for veterans’ benefits, small business assistance and professional pro bono financial planning advice.
Utility company spent $45 million to support measure that would make it harder for cities and counties to provide cheaper power alternatives to consumers
May 26, 2010 (San Diego) – Politics makes strange bedfellows—and in the case of Proposition 16, almost nobody is being swayed by Pacific Gas & Electric's efforts to woo voters. One of the largest coalitions in memory against a ballot proposition has been forged to oppose the utility giant's efforts, uniting business, labor, consumer, seniors, and enviornmental groups opposed to the measure.
PG&E has spent over $45 million on its “Yes on 16” campaign. If passed, the initiative on the June ballot would make it almost impossible for local cities or counties to start a Community Choice Aggregation (CCA) program to provide electricity at lower rates--or from cleaner sources--than a utility company.
May 16, 2010 (Washington, D.C). – U.S. Congressman Bob Filner has announced that San Diego and Imperial Counties will get more than $8.7 million for security preparedness. In San Diego, funds include protection of ports and public transit.
“It takes constant vigilance to be prepared and keep our country safe,” said Filner. “This money will go to keeping our critical infrastructure safe from terrorism, major disasters and other emergencies.”