Nurse Workforce Legislation Introduced in House


Yesterday, Congressman David Joyce (R-OH), joined by a bipartisan group of colleagues, including Reps. Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI), Doris Matsui (D-CA), Rodney Davis (R-IL), Suzanne Bonamici (D-OR), Patrick Meehan (R-PA), and Kathy Castor (D-FL), introduced the Title VIII Nursing Workforce Reauthorization Act of 2017, (H.R.959).


Since the start of the 115th Congress, ANA has been working with key champions in the House to re-introduce the Title VIII Nursing Workforce Reauthorization Act, legislation that incentivizes nurses practicing in rural and medically underserved communities, and supports advanced nursing education, diversity grants, National Nurse Service Corp, nurse faculty loan forgiveness, and geriatric education.

ANA is currently working with its Senate champions to introduce companion legislation in the coming weeks. In the meantime, we’ll be busy gathering cosponsors and pushing to advance the bill.

Last year we successfully passed the Title VIII Nursing Workforce Reauthorization Act in the House but ran out of time in the Senate.

Help us push these critical programs over the finish line by contacting your Members of Congress.

A Week in Confirmations


This week in Washington will be filled with both cabinet and judicial confirmation-related activities. On Tuesday, the Senate will vote on Betsy DeVos’ nomination to become Secretary of Education. Following a frenetic week of both grassroots organizations mobilizing against her nomination and Republican defections by Senators Susan Collins and Lisa Murkowski, it appears that DeVos is likely to win a close confirmation with Vice President Mike Pence casting the tie-breaking vote. Vice President Pence is ascribed the role of President of the U.S. Senate under Article One of the Constitution, and thus can cast a tie-breaking vote in the Senate. This would be the first time a cabinet nominee is confirmed by a Vice Presidential tie-breaking vote.

Later in the week (likely on Thursday), Senator Jeff Sessions (R-AL) will also have his own confirmation vote to become the nation’s Attorney General. Sessions’ vote was strategically timed to come after DeVos so that Republicans could count on his vote to confirm her nomination. Though Sessions’ confirmation will also be close, he will likely be confirmed along party lines with a 52-48 Senate Republican majority. Health and Human Services cabinet nominee, Rep. Tom Price (R-GA), may also have his confirmation vote later this week. The earliest his vote could take place is Friday morning.

Labor Secretary Nominee, and current CKE Restaurants CEO, Andrew Puzder, is scheduled to have his Senate confirmation hearing on Tuesday following four separate delays by the committee of jurisdiction. The Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor & Pensions refused to consider his nomination until all of his paperwork was completed and submitted to the Office of Government Ethics.

Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch is also barnstorming the Senate this week in the hopes that he too can win Senate confirmation later this spring. He’s scheduled to meet with some fourteen sitting Senators, most of whom are red-state Democrats who may control his confirmation fate.

On Wednesday, the House Democratic Caucus will head to Baltimore for a three-day retreat. Democrats are expected to hammer out a messaging and legislative strategy for the 115th Congress. They’ve branded the retreat with the theme “Fighting for All Americans.”

Stay tuned for more updates from Capitol Hill later this week.

President Trump’s first Two Weeks


In his first week as president, Donald Trump signed a series of executive orders aimed at delivering on the promises that he made during the campaign. Among those campaign pledges that Trump has already addressed: undoing the Affordable Care Act, building the US-Mexico border wall, lifting federal prohibitions on drilling, and banning refugees and citizens from Muslim countries as well.

Trump’s administration has also instituted a temporary communication ban at the Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Health and Human Services. Although it’s not an executive order, Trump instructed those agencies to stop sending out news posts, specifically on social media.

While his executive orders might seem dramatic or even dystopian, it’s important to recognize that a signature does not necessarily indicate immediate action.

Newly inaugurated presidents typically sign sweeping executive actions during their first 100 days to demonstrate their commitment to constituencies. During President Obama’s first week, he signed roughly the same amount of executive orders as Trump — he famously closed Guantanamo on day one, but that prison remains operational (and could expand during Trump’s presidency).

Below you can check out a running list of Trump’s executive orders that we’ll continue to update as he enacts more.

  1. Restricting abortion access – Trump reinstated the global gag order, also known as the Mexico City Policy, which was introduced by President Reagan in 1985. The policy prohibits federal aid to family planning organizations that counsel on or provide abortions.
  2. Enacting a federal hiring freeze – Other than in the military or public safety positions, Trump has temporarily frozen hiring for federal agencies with open positions. Trump’s intention is to reduce the size of the federal government workforce over time.
  3. Dismantling of the Affordable Care Act – With help from the Republican-held Congress, Trump initiated plans to dismantle Obamacare. On Jan. 23, he signed an order that will “minimize the unwarranted economic and regulatory burdens” of the Affordable Care Act. Essentially, this means that federal agencies do not have to comply with the law if it is fiscally straining.
  4. Withdrawing from the Trans Pacific Partnership – Trump rejected Obama’s TPP trade deal and withdrew from the alliance, as he promised to do. His reasoning? Refusing to ratify the TPP might make it easier to keep jobs in America.
  5. Enacting a federal regulation freeze – Like the federal hiring freeze, Trump also froze the implementation of all new federal regulations currently awaiting approval. Regulations like climate policies that Obama instituted during his final week will be reviewed by Trump’s administration.
  6. Renewing formerly banned drilling – Trump signed an order that would immediately renew construction of the North Dakota Access Pipeline that the Army Corps of Engineers halted in November. Additionally, Trump overturned Obama’s rejection of construction of the Keystone Pipeline, which would transport shale from Canada to the Gulf Coast.
  7. Restricting immigration – The wall between Mexico and America will be built, according to another order signed by Trump. Responding to the threat of domestic terrorism, Trump has also signed a directive to block refugees from Syria from entering America as well as a 90-day halt on anyone from Iraq, Syria, Iran, Sudan, Libya, Somalia, or Yemen from entering the country, according to the New York Times. Syrian refugees will reportedly not be allowed to enter the country for an indefinite amount of time. Refugees from other countries will have their cases reviewed after a 120-day halt on processing.
  8. Limiting federal regulations – Trump issued a somewhat vague order which requires the repeal of two federal regulations for every new regulation implemented. Aimed at limiting regulations for businesses, Trump described the order as beneficialfor reducing governmental regulations’ “damaging effects on our small business, our economy, [and] our entrepreneurial spirit.”
  9. Restructuring of the National Security Council – In the midst of considerable backlash to his immigration ban, Trump quietly restructured the National Security Council. The president promoted his Senior Adviser, Steve Bannon, to a position on the council (which is typically reserved for Generals). The Joint Chiefs of Staff, who have historically advised the president on matters of National Security, were demoted to optional meeting attendance. The White House defended the reorganization by claiming the Joint Chiefs of Staff’s presence might not be required for every meeting and falsely claiming the order mirrored directives from Presidents W. Bush and Obama.