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Occurrences in the Congressional Record

Entry Title Date
Affordable Care Act February 8, 2016
Harry Reid, D-NV
"Kentucky and Arkansas had the largest drops in the percentage of people without health insurance in the country, according to the Gallup-Healthways survey. In 2013, more than 20 percent of Kentuckians did not have health insurance. By the end of 2015, after the State expanded its Medicaid program and created a health-insurance exchange, that figure was down to 7.5 percent."
Honoring The Reverend Dr. Noah Spencer Smith February 8, 2016
Keith Ellison, D-MN
"Mr. Speaker, I rise today in honor of Reverend Dr. Noah Spencer Smith and to recognize his decades of service to the citizens of Minneapolis. Born in Marion, Indiana in 1908, Reverend Dr. Smith’s parents enriched his childhood through music, art, and a lasting devotion to the African Methodist Episcopal church. After graduating high school in 1927, Reverend Dr. Smith’s love of music led him to drum in a jazz band, touring and composing songs for many years. He later took a job as a railroad dining car waiter to support his family. Eventually settling in Minneapolis and joining St. Peter’s AME Church, Reverend Dr. Smith was active in choir, Sunday school, and the Order of Service before answering his deeper calling to enter the ministry. In 1960, Reverend Dr. Smith was ordained as an Itinerant Elder in the African Methodist Episcopal Church, receiving a pastorate at St. Mark’s Church in Duluth, MN. He returned to Minneapolis in 1988 to serve the congregation of St. James’ Church, the oldest black congregation in Minnesota, until reaching the mandatory retirement age of 90. Reverend Dr. Smith was among the oldest graduates from three separate Minnesota colleges. He earned an Associate of Arts degree from Minneapolis Community College at age 74, a Bachelor of Arts in Religious Studies from Macalester College at age 78, and a Master of Divinity degree from United Theological Seminary at the age of 81. An exceptional student, Reverend Dr. Smith received the Sidney Barrow Award in Religion during his time at Macalester, and in 2013 was bestowed an honorary Doctorate of Ministry from United Theological Seminary at 105 years old. Reverend Dr. Smith was widely admired and respected both in the Minneapolis community and in the African Methodist Episcopal Church worldwide. After his retirement from St. James’ at 90, he tirelessly worked for 16 more years as a member of the Wayman Church ministerial staff where he continued to preach, helped found the Wayman Church Bible Institute, taught Bible studies, and mentored many members of the clergy. Reverend Dr. Smith’s final ministerial act was September 6, 2015, giving a scripture lesson during service at Lily of The Valley Church in Apple Valley, Minnesota. Lily of the Valley African Methodist Episcopal Church is a church that he not only helped found, but was also the first AME church to open in Minnesota in nearly 80 years. Reverend Dr. Noah Spencer Smith passed away on September 24, 2015 at the age of 107. At the time of his death, Reverend Dr. Smith was the oldest active minister in the United States. His memory stands as an example for all in Minneapolis never to cease your calling. Through a deep dedication to his faith, he fostered a community that will blossom for years to come."
Tribute To Esther Olavarria February 4, 2016
Patrick Leahy, D-VT
"In 2013, Esther was asked to serve as the White House Director of Immigration Reform. Her wealth of experience made her an invaluable asset in our bipartisan effort to pass the Border Security, Economic Opportunity and Immigration Modernization Act in 2013. The bill overwhelmingly passed the Senate with the bipartisan support of 68 Senators. I remain disappointed that that important bill was not taken up in the House, and I hope the Senate will one day turn again to this legislation. When we do, I know that Esther will be ready to provide her support once again as she has so many times when the Senate has turned its focus to the issue of immigration."
Statements On Introduced Bills And Joint Resolutions February 4, 2016
Ron Wyden, D-OR
"Despite passage of these state laws, marijuana remains stuck in the past as a Schedule I substance according to the Federal Controlled Substances Act, CSA. This designation means it is a felony to distribute, possess or consume it. Recognizing this discrepancy, the Obama administration issued a memorandum in 2013 which held: so long as certain enforcement criteria were met, Federal law enforcement entities would not interfere with legal state marijuana activity. Congress then followed suit and barred the Department of Justice from expending resources in contravention of state medical marijuana laws."
Tribute To Jane Albright February 4, 2016
Dean Heller, R-NV
"Beginning in 2008, Ms. Albright became a member of the Pack, taking on the role of UNR’s head women’s basketball coach. Throughout her first year at Nevada, Ms. Albright achieved the most wins as a first-year coach, with an overall record of 18 wins to 14 losses. In that same season, she also picked up her 400th career win when Nevada defeated Northern Iowa. In the 2013-14 season, Ms. Albright led the Wolf Pack in winning 12 Mountain West games, setting a program record for most conference wins in a single season and securing the number three seed for the Mountain West Championships."

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