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Occurrences in the Congressional Record

Entry Title Date
Nomination Of Vivek Hallegere Murthy To Be Medical Director In The Regular Corps Of The Public Health Service, Subject To Qualifications Therefor As Provided By Law And Regulations, And To Be… December 15, 2014
Richard Blumenthal, D-CT
"Every single one of us, if we are honest with ourselves, knows a family that has been touched by this problem—every single Member of this body. I know it all too well because a friend of mine, Justin Eldridge of southeastern Connecticut succumbed to suicide as well. He was deployed in combat in Afghanistan where he braved mortar fire and sniper fire, and he returned to his family, his children, and his wife—his very young family—suffering from traumatic brain injury and post-traumatic stress. As brave as he had been on the battlefield, he could not win that war at home. He sought mental health care at the Connecticut VA facility. He had gone through a long battle for benefits. I helped him with it. But there was a significant gap in the continuity of his medical care. Basically, he slipped through the cracks and eventually took his life."
Executive Session December 15, 2014
Bill Nelson, D-FL
"For a State such as mine, the State of Florida, NASA has measured over the past 50 years—not drafts, not projections, measurements—5 to 8 inches in South Florida of sea level rise in Florida."
Tributes To Departing Senators December 15, 2014
Patrick Leahy, D-VT
"Throughout his tenure here, Mark Pryor has been a fierce defender of and advocate for rural communities, a commitment both he and I share. He has promoted expansion of rural broadband infrastructure to ensure that families, farmers, businesses, and students in even the most rural communities in Arkansas, in Vermont, and across the Nation have access to the World Wide Web. As the chairman of the Appropriations Subcommittee on Agriculture, he has been a partner of mine in working to ensure that farms small and large have the resources and support to maintain and contribute to the rich agricultural history of the Nation. We have also worked together to advance key conservation programs to help protect farmlands across the country."
In Memory Of Thomas “Tommy” Thompson December 2, 2014
Joe Barton, R-TX
"Mr. Speaker, I rise with a heavy heart today to honor an amazing life, and a legendary career. On November 6th, America lost one of the great innovators in medical technology and a dear friend of mine, Thomas “Tommy” Thompson. While Tommy Thompson may not be a household name, there is not one household in America who has not been touched by his life’s work. Tommy was a dynamic medical device innovator whose passion in life was to improve the human condition. And in this pursuit he was immensely successful. But Tommy wasn’t content with his own successes, he wanted to make sure that the countless doctors, engineers and other innovators in this field also had an environment where they could develop medical breakthroughs. Tommy was the type of leader who didn’t just point out problems, he tirelessly fought to fix them. In 1992, he joined with a group of innovators to establish the Medical Device Manufacturers Association to give the innovative and entrepreneurial sector of the industry a strong and independent voice in the nation’s capital. What started as a handful of medical technology companies has grown to nearly 300 members across the United States. Under Tommy’s leadership, the association helped drive countless policies and regulations that improved patient care and innovation. For the past few years, Tommy discussed the devastating impact the medical device tax was having on innovators trying to develop the cures of tomorrow. Tommy was also a tireless advocate to ensure patients and physicians had access to the technologies they needed, and worked to remove barriers and roadblocks so that they could obtain the best care possible. There is no question that medical technology innovators today are standing on the shoulders of Tommy and all the passion and hard work he dedicated towards improving the innovation ecosystem. To honor Tommy, I will continue to work to repeal this tax. Tommy’s passion also extended to helping organizations and individuals in his home state of Texas. He devoted countless hours to many of his favorite organizations there including the Fairhill School, the Foundation for Lovejoy Schools, and Phi Kappa Sigma at The University of Texas. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his wife Betty and all his family and loved ones at this difficult time. We have all lost a great man whose love of improving patient care was second only to that for his family. At one time or another everyone wonders what kind of legacy our lives might produce, and what it is that future generations may say about our brief time here on Earth. Tommy never said it—he was too humble and too magnanimous—but I will: Tommy Thompson was a legend and a leader in the medical device industry, allowing patients around the world to live longer, healthier lives. He gave so much of his time, treasure and talents, never expecting anything in return. Whether helping a local school or giving time to mentor an engineer just starting in the field, Tommy cared about people and improving this world. That is his legacy. That is what he will always be known for. That is a legacy anyone would be proud of, and we will be forever grateful for all that Tommy did on behalf of patients and innovators. Thomas “Tommy” Thompson led a life dedicated to that old-fashioned notion that if you’re focused on helping others, you truly can change the world. Tommy did change the world, and we are all better off thanks to his selfless passion and generosity."
Unconstitutional Actions By President Obama December 2, 2014
Louie Gohmert, R-TX
"Now, I was told when I was prevented from continuing to cook ribs that my friends across the aisle, Democrats, and Republicans love—everybody that is not a vegetarian tells me they loved my ribs; and my dear friend Louise Slaughter had told me that her late husband, before he passed, as a vegetarian had even eaten two ribs of mine she brought home. So my ribs were a big hit with everybody but the Architect of the Capitol. He told me I couldn’t continue to cook because of a violation of the fire code, and that was something Republicans actually changed to make sure that we in Congress had to live under the same laws everybody else does. So we do."

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