Congressman Mike Gallagher
On June 25 the U.S. House of Representatives unanimously passed the Blue Water Navy Vietnam Veterans Act. The bipartisan bill co-sponsored by Rep. Gallagher extends VA benefits for veterans who served in Vietnamese coastal waters or along the Korean demilitarized zone during the Vietnam Era and are suffering from diseases linked to Agent Orange exposure. Under previous law, only veterans exposed to Agent Orange who set foot on land during the war or served in Vietnamese inland waterways were eligible for these benefits. “I’ve seen firsthand the harmful, in some cases debilitating, effects that Agent Orange exposure has had on Vietnam War veterans in Northeast Wisconsin. This important legislation will help ensure veterans exposed to Agent Orange get the care they need and deserve, regardless of if the exposure took place on land or at sea,” Gallagher said. “These brave men and women put their lives on the line for this country, and the very least we can do is have their backs in their times of need.”
Source: Gallagher press release
Governor Scott Walker
Gov. Walker says his goal when it comes to tariffs is to level the playing field to where there are few or any tariffs imposed on products made in the United States, including Harley-Davidson motorcycles. Walker said that’s what he will push for in the wake of news that Harley-Davidson is shifting production of motorcycles headed for Europe from the U.S. to factories overseas due to increasing tariffs the European Union imposed on its motorcycles exported from the U.S.
Another top Wisconsin Republican is echoing those comments and not criticizing President Donald Trump’s trade policy or the Milwaukee-based company’s decision. A spokeswoman for House Speaker Paul Ryan, of Janesville, said the Milwaukee-based company’s decision is “further proof of the harm from unilateral tariffs.” AshLee Strong said the best way to help American workers, consumers and manufacturers is to open new markets and not raise barriers.
Mark Copelovitch, an associate professor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison LaFollette School of Public Affairs and expert on international political economy and the European Union, said Harley-Davidson’s announcement highlights the impact of Trump’s tariffs on U.S. companies. “Harley-Davidson’s announcement illustrates the serious and direct consequences for American companies of the Trump administration’s protectionist trade policies and the retaliatory tariffs imposed by the EU and other major trading partners such as Canada and China,” Copelovitch said. “Harley’s announced plans to shift production of its motorcycles for sale in the EU is the predictable response of a firm facing rising prices overseas for its exports as a result of the tariffs, which would raise the price of motorcycles sold in Europe by about $2,200 on average.”
Senator Tammy Baldwin
Sen. Baldwin introduced legislation to support dairy product innovation and provide resources to help cheesemakers and other dairy businesses get their start, develop new products and expand markets. The Dairy Business Innovation Act would establish regional initiatives to spur innovation in dairy businesses, which can help add more value to the milk farmers produce and expand uses for milk to address oversupply and depressed milk prices. The legislation will also foster the development of new and innovative dairy products, modernize existing dairy plants and support new dairy entrepreneurs.
“Wisconsin’s dairy businesses are a key driver of our state’s economy, but recently our dairy farmers have faced very challenging times with an oversupply of milk and low milk prices. It’s critical that farmers, cheesemakers and dairy processors have tools to innovate and develop new Made in Wisconsin dairy products to build a brighter future for our dairy farms and drive our rural economy forward,” Baldwin said. “I’m proud to introduce this legislation to create new initiatives and expand resources for our dairy businesses to foster innovation, improve their manufacturing practices and reach new markets so Wisconsin’s dairy industry can continue to lead the nation.”
The Dairy Business Innovation Act would provide resources to serve prospective and established businesses that produce a product made from milk from a dairy animal, including farms with their own dairy production facilities and dairy processors including cheese plants, ice cream manufacturers and milk bottlers.
Many dairy farmers and processors support Senator Baldwin’s Dairy Business Innovation Act, including the International Dairy Foods Association, Wisconsin Cheese Makers Association, Wisconsin Specialty Cheese Institute, National Milk Producers Federation, Midwest Dairy Coalition, Associated Milk Producers, Inc., Ellsworth Cooperative Creamery, and First District Association.
Source: Baldwin press release
Senator Ron Johnson
Sen. Johnson says Congress must act on immigration legislation to address what he calls a “flood of people trying to get into this country illegally.”
Johnson said in an interview on WTMJ-AM that he believes a bill could get the necessary votes in the Senate, but he doesn’t know if it would find enough support to pass the House. Republicans control both the House and Senate.
Johnson said the problem is Democrats are unwilling to help pass a bill because “they like the issue.”
He says Democrats are “exploiting these very sympathetic pictures” to win elections. But Johnson says President Donald Trump’s executive order to stop separating children from their families at the border won’t stand the test of time and “this is up to Congress to act.”
President Donald Trump
President Trump threatened on Tuesday that Harley-Davidson will be “taxed like never before” if the motorcycle maker moves production overseas. He claimed that the iconic U.S. company was using increased trade tensions as an excuse to justify planned changes in manufacturing. “A Harley-Davidson should never be built in another country-never! Their employees and customers are already very angry at them. If they move, watch, it will be the beginning of the end – they surrendered, they quit! The Aura will be gone and they will be taxed like never before!” Trump said in a tweet. Harley said Monday it was moving some production overseas due to increased costs from the EU’s retaliatory tariffs against the Trump administration’s duties on steel and aluminum. No production will be moving to Europe as a result of the tariffs, according to the company. Harley’s overseas manufacturing plants are in Brazil, India, Australia and Thailand.