Should immigration laws be changed? What changes would you support? Please explain why.
Passing Comprehensive Immigration Reform (CIR) remains one of my highest priorities. In my first year in Congress I held a town hall, attended by members of Local 304, on immigration to communicate the details of the CIR legislation and my support of it to my constituents. I have continued to cosponsor legislation to support CIR, reduce backlogs in family immigration, and improve the ability of refugees to apply for asylum in the United States. In 2013, I took part in a 24-hour fast to support the passage of immigration reform. I also sent a letter to then-Speaker of the House John Boehner asking him to allow the House to consider CIR. With no response from the House Majority, in January of this year I published an op-ed through the Bay Area News Group opposing attempts to use Homeland Security funding as leverage to overturn President Obama’s executive orders on immigration.
The political climate in Washington, D.C. has been extremely partisan in recent years. In that kind of atmosphere, what would you do to get things done while in office?
In keeping with my promise to work across the aisle, in my first term I co-founded the bipartisan United Solutions Caucus to bring new Members together; the group meets regularly to advance common-sense solutions and overcome the partisan divide. And, last year I cofounded the bipartisan Sharing Economy Caucus to explore how this burgeoning new economic sector can benefit more Americans.
What, if anything, does the U.S. need to do in order to address national security and terrorism? Please explain your answer in detail.
I serve on the House Permanent Select Cmmittee on Intelligence and am the ranking Democrat on the Subcommittee on the Centeral Intelligence Agency.
The United States must set a strong example for other nations to follow in our foreign affairs. As a country, we should pursue all options available to prevent armed conflict while supporting the security of our allies. As the global voice of freedom and democracy, America should continue to serve as a model for peace and security across the world.
Even as the United States moves away from ground combat operations after more than a decade of continuous war, I will work to ensure our national security remains strong. When our service members are called to serve, it is imperative that we provide our troops with the equipment and weapons they need to be successful. And, we must make good on our promise to help our fighting men and women when they return home; we owe them much more than a “thank you for your service.” I will continue to support policies that protect our troops, their families, and our nation.
This year in Congress, I ensured that the bipartisan Intelligence Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2017 included provisions to track foreign fighters traveling to terrorist safe havens, an examination of how intelligence agencies help their workers manage student loan debt, and an effort to leverage the great talent found at our national laboratories.
The Federal Government plays a part in California water allocation and use through a variety of laws. What, if any, legislation would you support in an effort to handle water shortages caused by the current and any future drought?
A multi-year drought continues to pose serious problems for much of California. Droughts are not an isolated or new challenge for California, and so we need to take actions that tackle not only our immediate challenges but make long-term investments as well. That is why I am a cosponsor of H.R. 2983, the Drought Recovery and Resilience Act, which includes immediate emergency funds to deal with current water shortages and supports a variety of measures to reduce the likelihood of serve impacts from drought in the future, such as better infrastructure and increased use of water recycling and desalinization. Whatever we do to address the drought should not inappropriately privilege some water users over others and harm our environment. That is I what H.R. 2898, the Western Water and American Food Security Act would do, which is why I opposed it.