Good afternoon. I hope you and your loved ones are faring well during these trying times. There have been several developments in Congress I would like to share with you.
Mourning the Loss of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg
On September 18th, we lost of one of the greatest judicial minds in our nation’s history, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Justice Ginsburg was a trailblazer and true champion of both gender and racial equality. At the ACLU’s Women’s Rights Project, Justice Ginsburg argued and won five landmark Supreme Court cases that abolished discriminatory laws towards women. As a Supreme Court Justice, one of her most notable written opinions was on United States v Virginia, which struck down the Virginia Military Institute’s practice of excluding women from admission. In 2013, Justice Ginsburg wrote one of her most important dissenting opinions in the Shelby County v. Holder case, which effectively gutted the Voting Rights Act of 1965.
Justice Ginsburg will be sorely missed, not only by the court but also by a grateful nation. While we must mourn her loss, we must honor her legacy by continuing the fight for greater equality for all.
Proposing Term Limits for the Supreme Court
I, along with Reps. Don Beyer (VA-8) and Joe Kennedy III (MA-4), introduced the Supreme Court Term Limits Act. This bill would establish 18-year term limits on Supreme Court Justices approved after the bill’s passage. After their 18-year terms, justices would then be allowed to continue their service on lower courts if they so choose. Current justices would be exempt from the term limits. Going forward, the bill would create a regular appointment process to allow every president to nominate a new justice to the Supreme Court during each odd year, guaranteeing each president the opportunity to nominate two justices per four-year term.
We can’t face a national crisis every time a vacancy occurs on the Supreme Court. No justice should feel the weight of an entire country on their shoulders. No president should be able to shift the ideology of our highest judicial body by mere chance. Most importantly, our country’s top constitutional questions shouldn’t be decided by a panel of jurists who are biding their time until a president of their choice is elected. It’s long past time to standardize and democratize the Supreme Court.
Updates in the District
As always, our Santa Clara District Office staff remains committed to serving constituents, as we continue to respond to the COVID-19 crisis, economic hardship, heat waves, and the wildfires that continue to devastate our state. We have received hundreds of requests in the past six months and are working diligently to resolve them. Several federal agencies are experiencing lengthy delays due to the pandemic, but our staff will see each inquiry through to resolution despite those delays.
If you need assistance, please call my office at (408) 436-2720 between 9:00am and 5:00pm, Monday-Friday. Your call will be promptly answered (remotely) by my staff. You can also contact me online at any time at Khanna.house.gov/contact. While we are unable to meet in-person, my staff is ready to help.
Facebook Live Town Halls
Thank you to all who participated in this month’s Facebook Live town halls. In October, I will host Facebook Live town halls on October 8th and October 19th at noon Pacific. Please be sure to follow me on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram @RepRoKhanna.
Incentivizing the Federal Government to Use Electric Vehicles
I introduced the Charging Helps Agencies Realize General Efficiencies (CHARGE) Act in the House of Representative, which is a companion measure to S. 2193 that incentivizes government agencies to purchase and utilize electric vehicles. The United States Government should take every opportunity to support green technology, starting with its own transportation policies.
Honoring Navy SEAL Matthew Axelson
In October 2019, I introduced a bill renaming the post office in Cupertino, CA after fallen Navy SEAL, Petty Officer 2nd Class (SEAL) Matthew G. Axelson. Axelson, who was originally from Cupertino, was killed during combat operations in Afghanistan in 2005. I am pleased to announce that bill passed in the House of Representatives on September 14, 2020.
Modernization Centers of Excellence Program Act
Earlier this year, I introduced H.R. 5901, the Modernization Centers of Excellence Program Act to modernize and apply best practices in information technology to federal agencies. This will help make the government more effective and responsive to all Americans. My bill is up for a vote today (September 30th) and is expected to pass the House with strong bipartisan support and advance to the U.S. Senate.
Caseworkers in my Santa Clara office are available to help Silicon Valley residents navigate the bureaucracy of federal agencies and any other concerns during the COVID-19 crisis. My staff can help you solve problems with immigration, visas, Social Security payments and VA paperwork, among other areas. Please call my office at (408) 436-2720 between 9:00am and 5:00pm Monday-Friday if you need assistance. Your call will be promptly answered (remotely) by my staff. You can also contact me online at any time at Khanna.house.gov/contact. While we are unable to meet in-person, my staff is ready to help. Visit my website for more information.