February 25, 2014
See Pete's new TV commercial running on Dallas TV
February 6, 2014
See Pete's first TV commercial running on Dallas TV
January 14, 2014
National Rifle Association Endorses Pete Sessions in Primary
Gives Sessions A+ Rating for work defending the Second Amendment
Today, the National Rifle Association endorsed Congressman Pete Sessions for re-election in the 32nd District of Texas.
“I’m honored to have the continued support of the NRA,” said Congressman Sessions. “The Second Amendment is a right guaranteed in our Constitution and defending this right is vital to protecting our freedoms as Americans. Gun ownership has a long and rich tradition here in Texas and I will work tirelessly to protect it. In Congress, I will continue to fight against President Obama and liberals who seek to prevent Americans from exercising their constitutional right to keep and bear arms.”
The NRA traditionally waits until after the primary to endorse candidates, but made an exception because of Sessions’ long history of leadership on Second Amendment issues, including his cosponsorship of H.R. 2959 – the Right-to-Carry Reciprocity Act of 2013.
"Gun owners and hunters have a strong ally in Pete Sessions,” said Chris W. Cox, Chairman of the NRA Political Victory Fund. “His steadfast support of our constitutional freedoms has earned him an A+ rating - the highest rating from the NRA-PVF - which is only earned by legislators who have both an excellent voting record on our Right to Keep and Bear Arms and make a vigorous effort to promote and defend that right,"
In addition to endorsing Sessions, last week the NRA presented him with their coveted Defender of Freedom Award.
"Pete has stood for principle over politics,” continued Cox, “and has fought efforts to undermine our gun rights by anti-freedom zealots like Mike Bloomberg and President Obama. On behalf of our 5 million members across the country and hundreds of thousands NRA members in the great state of Texas, we are proud to endorse Pete Sessions in the Republican primary for Texas' 32nd District and urge all gun owners and hunters to vote Pete Sessions for Congress on March 4."
December 16, 2013
Pete Sessions and Darrell Issa: Who are these Obamacare navigators?
To help the American people navigate the onerous and confusing requirements of signing up for Obamacare exchanges, the administration spent millions of taxpayer dollars to create the navigator program. Disturbingly, news reports from the last four weeks have highlighted numerous examples of fraudulent activity related to health navigators in Texas. So — who are these navigators and what is their role in Obamacare?
To help answer that question, the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform is holding a field hearing Monday at the Charles Eisemann Center in Richardson. Implementation of the program — much like the rest of the law — is off to a rocky start. This hearing follows eight months of Oversight Committee investigation and will address concerns that Obamacare’s navigator program lacks basic federal guidelines to protect Americans’ private information, reports of fraud and what officials in Texas are doing about it.
Funded by grants of taxpayer dollars to nongovernment groups, navigators are allowed to ask Americans for confidential financial and personally identifiable information. This is concerning for a number of reasons.
First, the law does not bar — or even require screening for — convicted felons, including individuals convicted of identity theft or fraud. This is particularly dangerous because navigators may have access to applicants’ personally identifiable information, including Social Security number, date of birth, address, phone number and annual income. This poorly conceived program endangers families and individuals across the country by heightening the risk of identity theft or financial loss.
In letters, interviews with administration officials, hearings and reports, Congress has repeatedly asked the administration: Why has the federal government failed to issue proper consumer protection guidelines for Obamacare’s navigators? Even as U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius admitted before Congress that the lack of federal requirements raises a “possible” problem, the administration has continued to call common-sense safeguards “cumbersome.”
Second, navigators are only required to take a five- to 20-hour online training course and pass a quiz that they can take as many times as needed. The lack of sufficient training for navigators stands in stark contrast to the requirements placed upon health care underwriters whose job it is to help people enroll in health insurance plans. The American people deserve to know why the administration believes that inadequately trained navigators are qualified to help guide them through such an important process as signing up for health care.
Finally, the lack of federal oversight of the navigator program has already led to reports of improper and illegal behavior, including two instances in North Texas. In Dallas, a navigator recommended that an applicant lie about his income in order to qualify for additional subsidies to lessen the costs of his health care plan. In Irving, a part-time receptionist who worked at a navigator center encouraged an individual to lie about his tobacco use to keep his premiums down.
Despite concerns of inadequate training, navigators have been educating Americans about the health exchanges and facilitating enrollment since Oct. 1. Fortunately, states such as Texas have proposed rules that will protect Americans’ private information by requiring health navigators to pass background checks and complete additional privacy training. Proper consumer privacy protection guidelines should be a priority for this administration, particularly in a program like Obamacare that requires Americans to purchase insurance or pay a fine for noncompliance.
While President Barack Obama and other allies of Obamacare continue to publicly tout the law, they have done too little to address serious problems that come with it. This hearing, one of a series of hearings investigating the flawed implementation of Obamacare, strives to get the answers that the American people deserve about Obamacare’s navigator program.
September 12, 2013
Conservatives Eat Their Own for Profit
by Brian Walsh, US News Opinion
As chairman of the National Republican Congressional Committee in 2010, Rep. Pete Sessions, R-Texas, led what has been cited as the "GOP's greatest expansion in the House since the Eisenhower Administration."
For more than two years, Sessions spent countless hours recruiting strong candidates and raising tens of millions of dollars that were pumped into Republican campaigns around the country. On November 2, 2010, House Republicans won a net gain of 63 seats and Nancy Pelosi's days as speaker of the House were over.
And as a congressman representing the 32nd Congressional District of Texas for the last 16 years, Sessions has also been a staunch conservative. Among other distinctions, he's received an A+ rating from the National Rifle Association, a 100 percent rating from National Right to Life and a 97 percent lifetime rating from the American Conservative Union. His conservative credentials are second to none.
Yet this week, the Senate Conservatives Fund – a super PAC run out of a Capitol Hill townhouse by operatives of former U.S. Senator Jim DeMint – called Sessions a "Texas RINO" (that's a Republican-In-Name-Only for those unfamiliar with the term) and threatened to "actively recruit and fund a primary challenger" against him next year.
In a widely-distributed fundraising email that harkened memories of General Custer exhorting his troops before the Battle of Little Bighorn, SCF Executive Director Matt Hoskins went so far as to write, "We can't sit back and let wishy-washy Republicans like Pete Sessions destroy our freedoms."
The career-threatening offense committed by this lifelong conservative leader? As chairman of the House Rules Committee, Sessions does not appear willing to help march Republicans off a political cliff and risk the House majority by shutting down the government – cutting off checks to military families and seniors and putting at great risk the recent spending cuts achieved through sequestration – over a fantastical fight to "defund" Obamacare.
Never-mind, of course, that in 2011 even the Heritage Foundation, which today has joined with SCF to attack Republicans over Obamacare, called it a "dirty little secret" that Obamacare can't truly be defunded.
Never-mind, of course, that as a senator himself in 2011, now-president of the Heritage Foundation Jim DeMint voted for a continuing resolution to keep the government, and hence, Obamacare, "funded," which he and his allies equate today with supporting the law.
Never-mind that even staunchly conservative senators like Tom Coburn have correctly observed that Republicans, after failing to win control of the White House and Senate in 2012, flat-out do not have the votes currently to cut off Obamacare funding and, more importantly, to repeal-and-replace this terrible law.
Never-mind that after funding disastrous Senate candidates like Christine O'Donnell in Delaware, the Senate Conservatives Fund played a key role in the Republicans' failure to win that Senate majority.
None of that matters – this is about political cash, not political principle.
In fact, the Senate Conservatives Fund and Heritage Action, the political arm of the once well-respected Heritage Foundation, have spent more money so far on attack ads this year against House and Senate Republicans than the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee and Democratic National Committee, combined. All the while, virtually every Senate Democrat up for re-election in 2014 – all of whom were the deciding vote on Obamacare – has been given a free pass by these groups.
You see, money begets TV ads which begets even more money for these groups' personal coffers. Pointing fingers and attacking Republicans is apparently a very profitable fundraising business. It's also a detriment to the future of the Republican party and the critical effort to defend the House and win back the Senate in 2014.
Fortunately, more and more conservative members of Congress are standing up and joining with Coburn and telling these groups, enough is enough. RollCall yesterday quoted Texas Republican Rep. Jeb Hensarling saying recently:
The folks at Heritage Action and [the Club for Growth] don't have their pictures on my voting card or yours. And I'm tired of them elevating small tactical differences to a scorecard, and I've told them that.
While Georgia Republican Rep. Rob Woodall said he thought Heritage Action and the Club for Growth were jeopardizing the sequester spending cuts:
"You risk losing on spending in the effort to win on Obamacare," Woodall said. He said he thought the two groups were "overpromising" conservatives and that, even if conservatives achieve successes with spending and Obamacare, Republicans would be "underdelivering" in the minds of constituents.
And North Carolina Republican Rep. Renee Ellmers told the Washington Post last week:
"They've used bully tactics, and they're going way beyond the scope of promoting conservative ideology," she said. "They are now trying to influence members of Congress through what I consider very threatening actions." Ellmers said she relied on Heritage Foundation research when she was first elected in 2010 but no longer: "To me, it is tainted."
In the days ahead, the rest of their Republican House colleagues have an important choice to make – to sheepishly follow groups that are currently existing solely to attack Republicans, while ignoring the Democrats, or to focus on winning the long-term war, and not a one day battle with a pre-determined outcome.
In our great democracy, you affect public policy by offering a vision, influencing a majority of public opinion and winning elections – not by burning down the House, attacking your allies, and falling on your sword.
June 27, 2013
Behind the numbers of economic reports
Today’s revised – and final - estimate of our nation’s economic growth for the first quarter of 2013 confirms that President Obama’s economic policies are ineffective in creating the growth we need to adequately reduce unemployment and get our economy back on track.
This latest report from the Commerce Department gives us the most accurate view of our economy. In the first three months of the year, total economic activity grew at a sluggish pace of just 1.8 percent. Over the last six months, our economy has grown at an even weaker rate: only 1.1 percent.
At this rate of growth, we will never be able to create enough jobs to put Americans back to work. More than eleven-and-a-half million Americans are looking for work, almost eight million are working in part jobs because they can’t find full-time positions, and about three million men and women are so discouraged they have stopped looking for work.
Perhaps the most alarming result of the President’s failed policies is the position that it has left our recent college graduates in. Far too many of them are being forced to move back home with their parents and have only been able to find part-time work. The Obama Administration's policies have left young Americans on the sidelines hoping for a real economic recovery that will open up opportunities in their chosen professions.
Our nation’s economic situation is simply unacceptable and I believe that North Texans deserve better. It’s time we adopt policies that will spur real and significant job growth.
Another report issued by the Labor Department sheds the light on what will work to generate job creation in our economy. On June 21st, the Labor Department released its advanced report of state-by-state economic growth estimates for 2012.
Once again, we see clearly what the result will be if we continue to follow President Obama’s economic policies. In the President’s Democrat-controlled home state of Illinois the economy continues to struggle, growing at just 1.9 percent for the year.
Meanwhile, the Texas economy grew by 4.8 percent in 2012 – more than twice the rate of Illinois. The policy differences between the two states could not be more distinct. Illinois raised its taxes on businesses and households in 2009, while continuing to increase government spending and pile up more debt. The state now has the lowest bond rating of any other state in the country.
By comparison, Texas faced the economic challenges of 2009 by cutting government spending without raising any taxes. As the state’s economy rebounded, the Texas Legislature responsibly increased its spending on public education and health care.
The economic growth rate differences between the two states translate in two completely different job markets. In Illinois, unemployment remains high at 9.1 percent, even as its labor force shrinks with more and more families exiting the state.
In comparison, the picture couldn’t be more different in the Lone Star state.
Our unemployment stands at 6.5 percent, well below the national average of 7.6 percent. Texas has created more jobs in the last twelve months than any other state (324,700), and our labor force is growing every month as more and more Americans looking for opportunity move to our state.
It’s time for the Obama Administration and the Democrat-controlled Senate to acknowledge the economic policies that spur job creation. Lower taxes, less regulation, reduced government spending and an aversion to piling more debt onto future generations are the policies that work in Texas and will work nationwide. Higher taes, increased government spending, more regulation, and a burdensome debt load is proving to be a failure in Illinois – and, with today’s GDP report, in the national economy as well.
May 22, 2013
State Unemployment Report Confirms Failure of Obama Administration’s Economic Policies
Last week’s state-by-state employment report by the Bureau of Labor Statistics confirms that the Obama administration’s economic policies fail to deliver the economic growth we need. Instead, the numbers prove that President Obama’s policies cause slower economic growth and persistent high unemployment with zero job creation.
Of all the states, two best represent the two divergent views on how to create economic growth in this country. The two states are studies in how Democrat policies work, versus how Republican economic principles work in creating new jobs and spurring economic growth.
On one hand, we have Illinois, the President’s home state, in which the Democrats have been in full control of Governor’s office and legislative branch since 2002. With its tax increases, runaway spending and rising debt burden, Illinois has pursued economic policies that are identical to the direction in which President Obama leads the nation.
On the other hand, Texas is a state where Republicans have been in full control of its Governor’s office and legislative branch since 2002. It follows a completely opposite set of economic principles: lower taxes, controlled state spending and a general avoidance of burdening its citizens with public debt.
What are the results? On the face of the report, it looks like Illinois’s economy is getting better, while Texas’s job market is staying even. The Land of Lincoln’s unemployment rate went down to 9.3 percent in April from a March level of 9.5 percent. Meanwhile, the Texas unemployment rate stayed flat, remaining at 6.4 percent in the same time period.
A closer look tells the real story, however. From March to April, Texas once again led the nation in job creation, adding 33,100 non-farm payroll jobs, compared to Illinois which lost 2,000 non-farm payroll jobs over same period. In the last year, Texas not only led the nation among all states in job growth with 326,100 net new jobs but also generated more than 8 times the number created in Illinois, which added only 40,300 jobs in same 12 months.
Why has the unemployment rate gone down in Illinois but stayed flat in Texas? It’s because the civilian workforce is shrinking in Illinois, losing more than 30,000 workers in just the past month, while the labor force in Texas has grown, finding jobs and opportunity for more than 31,000 new men and women in the same time period.
These numbers prove that President Obama’s economic policies aren’t working in Illinois, where they have been tried longer than in any other state, with the possible exception of California. The report also proves the economic policies favored by Republicans work well in Texas.
Texas’ principles of lower taxes, less government spending and balanced budgets would be just as successful nationwide if they were implemented in Washington. Dodd-Frank, ObamaCare and the so-called “stimulus” are just a few examples of the President’s failed policies that have left us with a stubbornly high unemployment rate and nearly $17 trillion debt. I will continue to stand up for my constituents to cut wasteful spending and get government out of the way to re-energize our economy and make life better for North Texans.
November 7, 2012
Pete Sessions Statement on 2012 Election Victory
U.S. Congressman Pete Sessions today released the following statement regarding his re-election to represent Texas’ 32nd Congressional District in the House of Representatives:
“Today, North Texans demonstrated their support for a limited government that protects our individual liberties and the opportunity to achieve the American Dream. It is my highest honor to once again serve the people of Texas’ 32nd Congressional District, and I will continue to fight for a more prosperous Texas and America, on their behalf, in the 113th Congress.
“Throughout this campaign, I have been surrounded by an outstanding team of volunteers whose tireless efforts made victory possible tonight. I am ever grateful for their contributions, and I am encouraged by their unwavering dedication to freedom.
“Now more than ever, it is critical that we have strong leaders in Washington that will address the challenges facing our nation to get our economy back on track. We must tackle our nation’s ballooning debt, eliminate red-tape that impedes small business growth, and empower the free-enterprise system to create jobs. I stand ready to work with my colleagues in Congress on these important issues and remain committed to ensuring a brighter future for our children and grandchildren.”
October 12, 2012
Ratings and Endorsements
Pete Sessions has earned a solid reputation in Congress for fighting for taxpayers and the free enterprise system. For that, he has been recognized through the years by numerous pro-business organizations and conservative groups for his voting record.
April 30, 2012
EPA Administrator's "Crucify" Comments Highlight Assault on Employers and Domestic Energy
Last week, comments surfaced by Environmental Protection Agency's Region VI Administrator Al Armendariz, whose region included Texas, in which he compared his "philosophy" towards regulating the oil and gas industry to those of the Romans when conquering Turkish villages. This vindictive and politically-motivated approach proves that he is unable to appropriately carry out his duties and I am pleased that he chose to resign.
Armendariz's comments to "crucify" oil and gas companies serve as yet another example of the EPA and Obama Administrations' unprecedented overreach into the lives of the American people, job creators and our economy. The oil and gas industry is a top job creator in Texas, employing over 209,000 people, and it contributes more than $201 billion to our state's economy. With a national unemployment rate above 8% for over three years, the EPA should encourage domestic energy production and work with private-sector companies to promote safe and effective means for securing our nation's vast energy resources while empowering them to invest in the American economy.
Despite his resignation, Armendariz's comments highlight the Obama Administration's continued assault on employers and domestic energy. I will continue to stand up for Texas jobs by fighting against this unacceptable behavior and mentality towards the oil and gas industry. Texans, and all Americans, deserve better than an EPA that refuses to acknowledge the critical role this industry plays in our national economy.
Click here to read the letter I signed with 27 of my colleagues in response to Al Armendariz's comments last week.