This has been a difficult month for us all in the face of an avalanche of extreme, precedent-breaking decisions by the Supreme Court. The extremist, out of touch judges have stripped people in America of their fundamental rights, demolished the wall separating church and state, and handcuffed government agencies from being able to uphold public safety laws and protect the environment.
As I’m sure you’re aware, the Supreme Court overturned the constitutional right to abortion, tearing apart decades of legal precedent. I believe this abhorrent decision takes our country down a terrifying path of stripping away additional fundamental freedoms.
The case of Kennedy v. Bremerton School District was about a public school official pressuring students into active religious practice, and SCOTUS’ ruling is devastating for the separation of church and state. In America, Freedom of Religion includes the freedom to not participate in a religious community, and our children should have the ability to practice any religion – or none at all – without fear of retaliation or pressure.
As scientists around the world are sounding the alarm on the rapidly accelerating pace of climate change, it is confounding to see this court kneecap the Environmental Protection Agency’s ability to regulate planet-warming emissions with their ruling on the West Virginia v. the EPA case. Despite these consequences, there are still paths forward to reducing emissions and saving our planet – and I will not stop fighting until we meet our climate goals.
At a time when gun violence is devastating communities across the country, the Supreme Court also decided to overturn a century-old New York State law that limits guns in public. To me, this decision is riddled with hypocrisy. The Supreme Court is stripping states of their power to protect communities by regulating guns in public, while granting states the authority to regulate women’s bodies.
I think the decisions in all these cases are outrageous and dangerous, out of step with public opinion, and severely damage the court’s legitimacy. We cannot accept a world where our future generations have fewer rights than those who came before them. I’ll keep fighting in Congress to codify our fundamental rights into federal law.
What Else I’ve Been Working On:
Rep. Huffman stands with House Democratic colleagues to call for bold climate action.
- Uncovering the Truth of January 6th: As the Select Committee to Investigate the January 6th Attack on the U.S. Capitol continues its public hearings, we’ve learned shocking new information about what happened before, during, and after the insurrection. We’ve heard from many witnesses close to Trump and his allies about their coordinated efforts to overturn the election and obstruct Congress’s duty to certify electoral votes. The committee has shown evidence that Trump's pressure campaign was incredibly vast and spread to every level of government. I commend the committee and the many brave witnesses for their work to reveal indisputable evidence that Trump’s scheme to hold onto the presidency and disrupt the peaceful transfer of power that was both illegal and unconstitutional.
- Passing Gun Violence Prevention Legislation: I voted for the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act, the first major gun reform bill signed into law in three decades. While this bill doesn't do everything I would like it to, it is a step in the right direction. This legislation incentivizes states to implement extreme risk protection order laws, closes the “boyfriend loophole,” strengthens background checks for buyers under 21, and provides $250 million in funding for community-based violence prevention initiatives.
- Standing Up for Climate Action: Standing with my progressive colleagues, I spoke at a press conference to show our support for bold climate action. Last year, the House passed the most transformative and historic investments in climate action this country has ever seen. Although this was blocked by the Senate, I promise that I will not stop fighting until these measures make it across the finish line. We simply can’t afford to wait, and I will continue to push the Biden administration to take bold actions to address the climate crisis now.
- Addressing Environmental Impacts from Crypto: I led a letter to the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy outlining my concerns about the energy-intensive nature of many cryptocurrencies. The expansion of cryptocurrency in the U.S. poses a major threat to public health, the climate, and environmental justice. We must make sure the U.S. doesn’t fall behind in meeting its ambitious climate goals and that all the growth of cryptocurrencies - which involve extraordinarily high energy use, often produced from fossil fuels - does not cause dangerous emissions increases.
- Advocating for our Oceans: I attended the United Nations Oceans Conference in Lisbon with a number of my colleagues from the Natural Resources Committee. It was great to meet with world leaders to discuss key ocean issues, including reducing plastic pollution and addressing Illegal, Unreported, and Unregulated (IUU) fishing. I’m looking forward to continuing our transatlantic efforts to protect and conserve our oceans.
Whether it’s help working with a federal agency, or providing information about legislation and policy, don’t forget – my staff and I are here to help. Below is an example of some of the work my office has done to help our constituents.
“Thank you to the Congressman and his staff for working with the Social Security Administration to reinstate our benefits after they had been wrongly suspended. After submitting an appeal and not hearing anything for eight months, we reached out to Congressman Huffman’s Office. With their help, we were able to resolve our appeal and resume our monthly payments. They also ensured that we received several thousands of dollars of much needed backpay, to make up for the year that we should have been receiving benefits. The staff’s effort and diligence throughout the whole process was essential to making things right again.”
– Tim Giddings from Petaluma
If you’re in need of assistance, you can submit a Casework Authorization Form on my website.
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Thank you, and stay well,
MEMBER OF CONGRESS