08-21-15 - Rokita Report - Fighting for Schools and Transportation Infrastructure

Dear Friend,

Thank you for the opportunity to update you on the work of the 114th Congress. I trust this finds you and your family well, as we work together to bring Hoosier common sense to Washington.

For daily updates, please take a moment to "Like" my Facebook page by clicking here  or follow me on Twitter if you prefer  @ToddRokita.


In this week's Rokita Report

  • Highway Funding and Port Visit
  • Kokomo Rotary - Reducing our Debt
  • Signature School and Leading Education Policy
  • Update on Planned Parenthood Investigations


Highway Funding and Port Visit 

This week, I participated in the Southwest Indiana Chamber’s transportation symposium and a roundtable discussion at the Port of Mount Vernon.  

Discussing Highway Funding with fellow Hoosier, Rep. Larry Bucshon 

At the highway symposium, we discussed the importance of ensuring long-term stability to our highway funding projects.  In the most recent surface transportation extension, we found emergency funding, transferring $8 billion from the Treasury’s General Fund.  Unfortunately, this is not the first time Congress has kicked the can down the road on highway funding.  When we return in September, we will debate solutions to fix this problem. 

As the only Hoosier Republican serving on the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, it is my duty to learn how I can be helpful in my role as a Congressman to all transportation infrastructure programs statewide.  The port at Mount Vernon, is the eighth largest port in the country based on trip ton-miles, and moves more cargo by water and rail than any other port in Indiana.  The Indiana port industry, as well as the general transportation and infrastructure programs, are hurting due to bureaucracy. Any slowdown of these operations can result in serious economic repercussions. 

Visiting Mount Vernon Port with Port Director, Phil Wilzbacher 

Overall, we cannot ignore the underlying infrastructure problems that exist not only in Indiana but the country. 

We have a moral obligation to maintain our transportation  systems and I look forward to fighting in Congress to reduce government overregulation and working with my colleagues to identify a responsible long-term plan to fix our roads.

Kokomo Rotary - Reducing our Debt

Thank you to the Kokomo Rotary for hosting me at their meeting this week.  It was a great venue to discuss why we need more personal responsibility and economic freedom.  We discussed the situation that our nation faces and about the national debt we are leaving for our children and grandchildren.  

Talking with Hoosiers at Kokomo Rotary 

I came to Washington to fight for the children of tomorrow by stopping the out-of-control federal spending that is strangling our economy.  As Vice Chairman of the Budget Committee, I am pleased to report that earlier this year, we passed the first balanced joint budget resolution since 2001.  This budget balances in ten years and saves more than $5 trillion in spending without raising taxes. 

This budget also repeals Obamacare in its entirety, encourages the creation of 1.2 million jobs over the next ten years, and proposes positive solutions to reform auto-pilot programs like Medicare, Medicaid, and the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program. 


Signature School and Leading Education Policy

This week I toured Signature School in Evansville, Indiana.  Signature School is Indiana’s first charter school and I am glad to see a school that understands the importance of parent choice and restoring local control to our classrooms.  When parents have a choice kids have a chance. 

Visiting with students at Signature School 

Every student deserves an effective teacher, an engaging classroom, and a quality education.  However, for far too long the current K-12 education law has failed to provide students this fundamental right. That is why I introduced H.R. 5, the Student Success Act.

The Student Success Act locks in conservative gains and puts the education of our nation's children back where it belongs - in the hands of parents, teachers, and state and local leaders.  This proposal will stop the federal government from running schools through executive fiat, restore local control, and empower parents and education leaders to hold schools accountable for effectively teaching students.  


Update on Planned Parenthood Investigations

Every human life is sacred and should be protected. As a father of two children, I was shocked and disgusted by the undercover videos released depicting Planned Parenthood’s selling of fetal parts and tissue.  I will not turn a blind eye to this callous disregard for human life. This is why I cosponsored legislation, the Defund Planned Parenthood Act, which would keep federal funds from going to an organization that performs abortions. 

These videos raise important concerns because the very humanness of the babies make them valuable, yet their lives are not valued.

Since then, the House Committees on Energy and Commerce, Judiciary, and Oversight and Government Reform are working to conduct thorough investigations into the practices behind these repulsive videos. This investigation is about whether federal law has been violated and whether federal law sufficiently prohibits these disturbing acts.

I will continue to work with my colleagues in the House to use every possible tool to get the facts and protect life. 


Thank you for your continued interest in Congress and for supporting my efforts to bring Hoosier common sense to Washington. Take care.  



Todd Rokita