Media

MADISONVILLE, La. – Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.), a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, today announced a $7,348,164 Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) grant to help Louisiana recover from Hurricane Laura.

“Louisiana is no stranger to natural disasters, and Hurricane Laura hit our state’s communities incredibly hard. This $7.3 million will help us continue to recover from Laura’s historic damage,” said Kennedy.

The FEMA aid will fund the following:

  • $7,348,164 to the state of Louisiana to reimburse disaster management activities related to Hurricane Laura.

WASHINGTON – Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.), a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, today announced $3,011,590 in Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) disaster relief grants for Louisiana’s Ascension and Jefferson Parishes.

“Hurricane Ida hit Ascension and Jefferson Parishes hard, and this $3 million will help the parishes recover after they worked to clean up communities and keep them safe in Ida’s aftermath,” said Kennedy.

The FEMA aid will fund the following:

  • $1,687,302 to the Ascension Parish School Board for emergency protective measures related to Hurricane Ida. 
  • $1,324,288 to Jefferson Parish for emergency protective measures related to Hurricane Ida. 

CHALMETTE, La. – Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.) spoke with Louisianians from St. Bernard Parish today about representing the state’s interests as a member of the Senate Appropriations, Small Business, Budget, Banking and Judiciary Committees.

“It’s wonderful to be in St. Bernard. It’s wonderful to be out of Washington and back in America,” the senator began.

“I spend a lot of my time on appropriations. I know every penny that comes into Louisiana—every single penny—and I never ask for a penny more than we need, but I never accept a penny less than we deserve,” said Kennedy. 

“In the six years, well, five-and-a-half, that I’ve been on the Appropriations Committee, we’ve sent $3.5 billion back to Louisiana for roads and bridges. Now, that doesn’t include money from the so-called infrastructure bill. I voted against the infrastructure bill, and I’ll tell you why: The Wall Street Journal did an exhaustive analysis of the so-called infrastructure bill and found that only 23 percent of the bill was infrastructure. The rest wasn’t,” he continued.

“If you put it in context, each year we give Louisiana that $700 million from the federal government and the state government for our roads and bridges. The infrastructure bill would’ve given us and will give us an extra $110 million—about 15 percent extra for five to seven years. But tucked in the bill was a $135 million-a-year tax increase for our petrochemical industry. I didn’t much care for those numbers.”

In total, President Biden’s infrastructure package increases taxes aimed at Louisiana businesses by $1.3 billion over the next decade.

“Our appropriations committee has sent $3.5 billion the last five-and-a-half years—excluding the infrastructure bill—to Louisiana, and I’m very proud of that,” said Kennedy.

As new inflation statistics reveal a 13.5% rise in prices under the Biden administration, the senator also addressed the climbing costs Louisianians are struggling under, saying, “The inflation we’re having today was made in Washington, D.C., and it is gutting the American people like a fish.”

BATON ROUGE, La. – Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.) spent the morning with the Baton Rouge Sunrise Rotary Club, taking questions from Louisianians on issues related to the economy, federal regulation and appropriations that the senator and delegation have secured for Louisiana.

“I believe in what we accomplished—and I participated in that—when my party had control of the House and the Senate and the presidency . . . We cut taxes. We increased wages. People at the lower end of the wage scale saw their wages go up twice as fast as those at the upper end of the wage scale, but all wages went up,” said Kennedy.

“We delivered out of that four-year period 3.4 percent unemployment. We had the lowest unemployment out of the history of our country for African Americans and for Hispanic Americans. . . . We created 8 million new jobs pre-COVID—and those were real jobs, brand new jobs, not jobs that were lost because the government shut down our economy and then the jobs came back. Those were new jobs,” he continued.

Kennedy also addressed education, saying, “I believe that no parent—no parent—should be required to send their child to a failing school, where violence is common and learning is rare.”

The senator outlined the hope he sees for the state by recalling the successes of just a few years ago under Republican leadership.

“We deregulated the economy. We beat back ISIS. We completely revamped veterans’ health care to give them the health care they deserve. We secured the border. We secured our streets. We controlled inflation. During those four years, we strengthened the military. For the first time in my lifetime, we stood up to China . . . and we can do it again.”

 

NEW ORLEANS – Sen. John Kennedy (R-LA) today addressed environmental and health experts from around the globe at the 42nd International Symposium on Halogenated Persistent Organic Pollutants in New Orleans. The group of scientists meets annually to discuss environmental pollution, methods of pollution prevention, human exposure and the health effects of pollutants, among other topics.

The Louisiana State University (LSU) Superfund Research Program hosted the event in the U.S. for the first time in more than a decade.

“I am proud to welcome scientists and researchers from around the world to Louisiana as the American Innovation and Manufacturing Act starts to do its work protecting our jobs and environment,” said Kennedy. 

Background:

Kennedy led the effort to pass the AIM Act into law with overwhelming bipartisan support. The law helps U.S. industry transition away from hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) and drives more investments in American-made, next-generation coolants that are better for the environment, cheaper for consumers and good for the economy. 

The AIM Act is expected to create 150,000 direct and indirect U.S. jobs, including 33,000 new manufacturing jobs, in places like Louisiana. This will also help protect the more than 1.3 million jobs in the heating, ventilation, air-conditioning and refrigeration sector.

American companies have been at the forefront of developing HFC alternatives for years, and the AIM Act helps promote U.S. leadership in the innovation and manufacturing of these products.

Using these next-generation coolants is also expected to save American businesses and consumers billions of dollars in energy costs over the next 10 years. This would cut costs for Americans during historic inflation pressures.

MADISONVILLE, La. – Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.) penned this op-ed for The Ouachita Citizen explaining his opposition to Pres. Biden’s most recent reckless spending spree, which is adding to the inflation that has driven up food and energy prices for Louisiana families.

Below are key excerpts:

“Energy prices are up 23.8% in the last 12 months, grocery prices have seen the largest increase since 1979, and homeownership is now 35% less affordable than when Biden took office.

“Yet, President Biden has chosen to ignore the consequences of the inflation he caused as he recently signed the Inflation Reduction Act into law—another one of his massive tax-and-spend bills.”

“Despite its name, the Inflation Reduction Act is an inflation machine. It totals over $700 billion, adds over $100 billion in new debt, increases energy costs, and raises taxes on low and middle-income families.

“The non-partisan Joint Tax Committee confirmed that Americans making less than $400,000 per year will be the ones to pay more than half of the new tax increases from this bill.”

“I’ve consistently tried to stop the Biden White House’s irresponsible tax-and-spend tricks. In fact, I’ve opposed over $13 trillion in wasteful Washington spending.”

“The average American has lost the equivalent of $4,200 in annual income due to inflation and higher interest rates.”

“As President Biden continues to push forward with his reckless tax-and-spend agenda, I promise to fight for Louisianians who are hurting under his economy. I will continue to combat wasteful Washington spending, lower taxes, unleash our American energy, and oppose any far-left polices that hurt Louisiana’s families and businesses.”

The op-ed is available here.

WASHINGTON – Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.) penned this op-ed for the Farmerville Gazette explaining the need for hospitals to be transparent with patients about the cost of key services so that patients can choose the providers and care options that are best for them. Kennedy’s legislation, the Hospital Transparency Compliance Enforcement Act, would give Louisiana families clarity and save them money when they face medical bills. 

Below are key excerpts:

“For far too long, Americans have been left in the dark when it comes to the cost of their medical services and procedures.

“Last year, a rule requiring hospitals to publicly display the costs of their services online went into effect. The problem is, a year later, many hospitals still aren’t abiding by it.

“That is why I introduced the Hospital Transparency Compliance Enforcement Act—a bill to enforce hospital price transparency.

“No one should ever have to walk into a hospital for a routine procedure and walk out with the fear that their bill may be thousands of dollars more than they were expecting.”

“Americans are always looking for the best value, and that does not stop when it comes to their health care. According to a report from Public Agenda, 56 percent of Americans have tried to determine the price of their health care in advance.

“The Hospital Transparency Compliance Enforcement Act would crack down on hospitals that are hiding their costs by doubling the current government penalties for not being transparent about pricing.”

“When one hospital charges $9,000 for a Cesarean section and another hospital charges $165,000 for the same Cesarean section, there needs to be transparency.”

 …

“All patients have a right to shop for their care, as they do for every other service. Enforcing hospital price transparency will not only increase competition, but it will also help lower overall health care costs and save patients money.”

The op-ed is available here.

WASHINGTON – Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.), a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, today announced $20,492,688 in Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) grants in disaster aid for Louisiana.

“I’m grateful this $20.4 million will help Lake Charles, St. Bernard Parish and other parts of the state rebuild and recover from the damage Laura and Ida dealt to too many Louisianians,” said Kennedy. 

The FEMA aid will fund the following:

  • $1,913,261 to the Lake Charles Police Department for replacement of the SWAT Training Center that sustained damages related to Hurricane Laura.
  • $2,193,620 to the city of Lake Charles for building repairs related to Hurricane Laura.
  • $4,300,648 to the Louisiana National Guard for emergency protective measures related to Hurricane Ida. 
  • $10,933,792 to South Louisiana Electric for emergency logistical support for electric workers as a result of Hurricane Ida.
  • $1,151,367 to the St. Bernard Parish School Board for emergency protective measures related to Hurricane Ida.  

WASHINGTON – Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.) joined 20 of his Republican colleagues in urging Interior Secretary Deb Haaland to lower energy costs for American consumers by amending the department’s Outer Continental Shelf Oil and Gas Leasing Program to include 10 lease sales in the Gulf of Mexico and one in the Cook Inlet.

The letter comes as Americans and Europeans alike face rising energy costs due to record-high inflation and the Biden administration’s war on domestic energy production.

“American families are struggling to keep up with rising costs due to inflation, high energy prices, and persistent supply chain issues. In addition, local businesses that are part of the ecosystem of U.S. energy production are being confronted with decisions that impact their employees and employees’ families due to uncertainty about future natural resource development. . . . It is our obligation to do everything within our power to help ease these burdens and remove this uncertainty for both Americans and our allies,” the senators wrote.

“Finalizing the five-year program with a commitment to semi-annual area-wide sales will also be a big step for American energy security and demonstrate to the American people the administration is serious about actions that can contribute to lower energy costs,” the lawmakers concluded.

The senators urged the Interior Department to:

  1. Conduct the three congressionally mandated offshore lease sales that Pres. Biden canceled. 

      2. Offer quarterly lease sales across federal lands.

Full text of the letter is available here.

WASHINGTON – Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.) joined his Republican colleagues on the Senate Judiciary Committee in calling on Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) Dir. Christopher Wray and Attorney General Merrick Garland to explain the search warrant and arrest of pro-life speaker Mark Houck. 

“Based on reports and allegations, the actions taken by the FBI reasonably call into question whether they complied with DOJ’s use of force policy.  The FBI must explain their justification for their actions on September 23, 2022,” wrote the senators.

According to Houck’s attorneys, he was cooperating with the government, and the Assistant U.S. Attorney recommended a ‘return on own recognizance’ bond, meaning Houck was free to leave without having to post bail.  This indicates that the government did not see Houck as a threat to the community. That, in turn, calls into question why heavily armed FBI agents were needed to arrest him in the first place.

“Lastly, we’ve obtained photos of the aftermath of the FBI agents’ raid on the Houck home . . . The photograph shows an agent with a ballistic shield and an assault rifle. Based on allegations, other FBI agents had a battering ram and ballistic shields. The photo and the allegations received by the committee appear to contradict the FBI’s statement that they employed ‘standard practices’ against Mr. Houck,” explained the lawmakers.

“This extraordinary fact pattern requires additional information from the Justice Department and the FBI relating to why Mr. Houck was not allowed to self-report for his arrest and arraignment and whether political considerations were made to approve and execute the search warrant,” they concluded.

Full text of the letter is available here.