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In Case Your Missed It

Above and Below: On Monday, I was honored to help break ground on the new veterans’ mental health clinic at the Carl Vinson VA Medical Center in Dublin, Ga.

Above: On Tuesday, I discussed the work Coca-Cola is doing to invest in developing communities around the world. 

Today, we stand with the people of France in the wake of another horrific attack on innocent lives. I send my thoughts and prayers to the victims and their families.

This Week in the Senate
It was a busy week for the Senate as we passed essential pieces of legislation - the Veterans' Compensation COLA Act of 2016, the Federal Aviation Administration Reauthorization Act of 2016, and the Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act. However, Senate Democrats continued to play party politics by blocking votes on two other essential bills -- the Defense Appropriations Act and a funding bill to combat the Zika virus.

I joined my Republican Senate colleagues to continue working to strengthen our national security interests. I called on Secretary of State John Kerry to reinstate sanctions on Iran and introduced the Securing Our Secrets Act of 2016 to prohibit the use of private email accounts at the State Department.

Here is a recap of all we accomplished this week:

  • Following reports by German intelligence of more than one hundred attempts by Iran to procure nuclear materials and missiles, I joined my Senate colleagues in sending a letter calling for the reinstatement of sanctions on Iran. A year after the Obama administration brokered its dangerous nuclear agreement with Iran, these attempts in Germany for extensive nuclear and missile procurement are a threat to our national security, and we must protect our interests.

  • I was extremely disappointed that Senate Democrats again blocked a vote on the Defense Appropriations Act, which would provide funding for the Department of Defense and strengthen our military's ability to fight growing global security threats such as the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant, or ISIL.

  • On Wednesday, I argued the need for emergency funding to combat Zika virus during a Senate Foreign Relations subcommittee hearing. We have reached the critical point in addressing the Zika virus, but Senate Democrats unfortunately chose to commit professional malpractice by again blocking funding before we left for the summer state work period.

  • I introduced the Securing Our Secrets Act of 2016 to prohibit the use of private email accounts at the State Department. It should be common sense that classified information should never be shared over private email, and this necessary legislation will ensure that our national security will not be compromised in this manner again.

  • I am grateful the Senate passed legislation that I introduced, the Veterans' Compensation COLA Act of 2016, to help provide an increase in veterans' disability benefits based on rising costs of living.

  • I urged the House and Senate conference committee negotiators of the National Defense Authorization Act to eliminate changes to the military's housing benefits because it would cause significant financial hardship to many military families.

  • I introduced two resolutions to prevent the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission from moving ahead with two rules that would make it harder for American workers to choose healthy lifestyles and save money.

  • The Senate also passed the Federal Aviation Administration Reauthorization Act of 2016, which will strengthen security at our airports, support U.S. jobs and put passengers and their safety first.

  • I am also pleased that the Senate passed the Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act, which will help Americans combat the epidemic of heroin and prescription painkiller abuse across the country.

What's On Tap?

I am looking forward to being back in Georgia and traveling throughout the state for the summer state work period. Over the next few weeks I will be visiting with many of you at various tours, events and meetings. To follow my activities during the month, please check my website and follow me on Twitter or Instagram.

When the Senate returns in September, we will once again attempt to vote on legislation to fund our troops and to fund a national response to the Zika virus.

Johnny Isakson