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Waves in Washington: Our Dems in D.C.

San Diego County’s congressional delegation continues to have a strong Democratic majority pushing for change in Washington. From funding for bike paths to emergency production of COVID-fighting medical supplies, our representatives are doing the work we sent them there to do. 

In the 49th district, Congressmember Mike Levin -- Chair of the House Veterans’ Affairs Subcommittee on Economic Opportunity and the representative for Camp Pendleton -- has put forward several bills to help veterans’ families. He recently introduced legislation that would strengthen life insurance support for military families to reflect inflation. Rep. Levin also sponsored a bill that would rename the San Diego Veteran’s Affairs (VA) Medical Center and another facility after two women: a highly-decorated combat veteran from San Diego who was killed in action, and a longtime San Diego resident who helped shape the military’s policies on sexual discrimination and was intrumental in expanding opportunities for women in the Navy.

Representative Juan Vargas in the 51st, who sits on the House Foreign Affairs Committee and the House Financial Services Committee -- and represents the district hit hardest by COVID-19 -- introduced a bill that recently passed the House. The COVID-19 Emergency Medical Supplies Enhancement Act of 2021 will support the president’s use of the Defense Production Act to further advance the production and distribution of medical supplies used to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. It also allows FEMA to appoint an Outreach Representative to help coordinate partnerships between the government and the private sector for the production of medical supplies and equipment. 

Congressmember Scott Peters in the 52nd, who sits on the House Budget Committee and the House Energy and Commerce Committee, recently requested that the INVEST in American Act include funding for three local projects. One is the City of San Diego’s Downtown Mobility project, which would build protected bike lanes to connect surrounding neighborhoods and make biking and walking safer and more accessible. The project is slated for $5.6 million in funding. Rep. Peters has also been focused on access to affordable healthcare and has sponsored legislation to bring down drug costs, increase medical production,and stabilize insurance premiums.

The newly elected congressmember for the 53rd, Sara Jacobs, recently cosponsored a bill protecting trans military family members. It would bar the Department of Defense from stationing service members with trans dependents in states or countries that restrict or forbid gender-affirming healthcare treatments. As Vice Chair of the Subcommittee on International Development, International Organizations, and Social Impacts, Rep. Jacobs also cosponsored legislation that would boost America’s diplomatic presence in the U.S. Mission to the United Nations and incentivize American diplomats to serve in international organizations, helping to restore and strengthen U.S. global leadership. 

Many thanks to our Democratic congressional delegation for working hard to make sure San Diegans have the representation they deserve in D.C. And while four out of five seats isn’t bad, we’ll continue to fight to flip the 50th! 

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This is the latest in our series of "Dems Deliver" blog posts, which highlight the work of Democratic elected officials serving San Diego County at all levels. Click to catch up on our previous posts highlighting the County Board of Supervisors, the San Diego Mayor, the San Diego City Council, and our State Assemblymembers.