On the Hill Updates

On the Hill Updates: Friday, July 23, 2021

Reproductive Health, Rights, and Justice

House to consider funding bills

Next week, the full House of Representatives will consider seven appropriations bills on the floor, including those funding Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies (Labor-H) as well as Financial Services and General Government (FSGG). As a reminder, for the first time in over 40 years, Hyde Amendment language has been removed from these bills; this means that there is no ban on Medicaid, Medicaid, or Children’s Health Insurance Program coverage of abortion care in the Labor-H bill or ban on the Distrct of Columbia using its own funds to cover abortion care in its Medicad program in the FSGG bill. Now, lawmakers must reject attempts by anti-abortion lawmakers to add these discriminatory and immoral restrictions back into the bills on the floor. NCJW supports the passage of clean appropriations bills without abortion coverage bans to ensure respect, dignity, and equal access to the resources necessary to control our bodies, families, and futures.

Federal Courts

Judicial nominee committed to justice for all set to advance in committee

The Senate Judiciary Committee is expected to vote on whether to advance the nomination of Myrna Pérez for the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. Extraordinarily qualified with extensive experience both as a litigator and a legal academic, Pérez would also be the only Latina on the court and the first since Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor. NCJW strongly supports Myrna Pérez for the Second Circuit.

Three highly qualified nominees await vote in Senate

On July 22, the Senate Judiciary Committee advanced the nomination of Chief Judge Gustavo Gelpí to the US Court of Appeals for the First Circuit out of committee for consideration by the full Senate (12-10). As a Puerto Rican jurist, Chief Judge Gelpí would bring a much-needed perspective to the federal judiciary. His nomination joins Eunice Lee to the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit and Veronica Rossman to the United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit, who are both awaiting a vote by the full Senate as well. Both Lee and Rossman have spent their careers as public defenders, with Lee representing more than 380 clients over the past 20 years and Rossman representing over 250 clients in the last 12 years. NCJW strongly supports all three nominees for lifetime appointments to the federal bench.

  • Take Action! Contact your senators in support of Gelpí, Lee, Rossman, and other nominees supported by NCJW.

Voting Rights

March On for Voting Rights

On Saturday, August 28, March On, SEIU, National Action Network and the Drum Major Institute are organizing a “March On for Voting Rights” to demand that legislatures across the country end their push for restrictive voting laws and that Congress pass the For the People Act and the John Lewis Voting Rights Restoration Act. These critical bills will ensure free, fair access to the ballot for every American voter. Marches will be held in Atlanta, Houston, Miami and Phoenix, where voting rights are under attack, and in Washington, DC, where Congress is debating voting rights legislation. To learn more about the March On for Voting Rights, visit www.marchonforvotingrights.org. Stay tuned for how to get involved with NCJW!

Additional Updates

Executive action on minimum wage

This week marks 12 years since the last increase to the federal minimum wage (currently $7.25 per hour), the longest the nation has ever gone without an update. The Biden administration announced its intent to increase the minimum wage for federal contractors to $15 per hour beginning January 30, 2022, and index it to inflation. It would also eliminate subminimum wages for federal contractors. This is an important step, and puts pressure on Congress to pass legislation increasing the federal minimum wage for workers across the country. NCJW supports the Raise the Wage Act (HR 603/S 53), which would increase the minimum wage for all workers to $15 per hour. The bill passed the House of Representatives last Congress.


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