WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.) today filed legislation titled the Income Verification Act of 2018 to reduce fraud in taxpayer-funded government assistance programs by requiring states to use federal tax information to verify income eligibility.  The requirement would apply to the Medicaid, Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) and Supplemental Nutrition Assistance (SNAP) programs.

The bill comes just days after the Louisiana Legislative Auditor’s Office revealed the results of a random sample showing that 82 of 100 Medicaid recipients in Louisiana exceeded income requirements.  The Legislative Auditor’s Office projects the state wasted as much as $61.6 million on ineligible Medicaid recipients.

 “The report is stunning.  It is breathtaking.  There are not words in English to describe what our Legislative Auditor found,” said Sen. Kennedy.  “In 20 months, between $61 million and $85 million apparently has been wasted.  The Department of Health just threw the money in the dirt.  Incompetence like this is why I introduced legislation that will require every state Medicaid program and, for that matter, welfare and food stamps to use federal income tax data to determine eligibility.  It’s the most accurate income data we have out there. It would be a requirement.  Right now it’s optional.”

Here are actual, real-life, specific examples of Medicaid fraud identified by the Legislative Auditor:


Medicaid recipient


Improper Medicaid payment

Months qualified on Medicaid

Months not qualified on Medicaid

Recipient 1





Recipient 2





Recipient 3





Recipient 4





Recipient 5





Recipient 6





Recipient 7









WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.) issued the following statement today after a report by the Louisiana Legislative Auditor’s Office revealed that the state likely wasted $61.6 million to $85.5 million on ineligible Medicaid recipients:

“It’s no small wonder that Gov. Edwards keeps raising taxes on Louisiana families.  His Department of Health (LDH) is lazy and incompetent.  It’s Common Sense 101.  You need to check a person’s income if they’re on the Medicaid rolls,” said Sen. Kennedy.  “It’s the same story every time LDH gets caught not doing its job.  They assure us they’ll do better and recover money, but it’s always empty promises.  Taxpayers deserve better.”

The auditor’s report can be found here.


WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.) announced today that the East Baton Rouge Parish School Board received a $1.8 million grant from FEMA to replace four damaged buildings at Glen Oaks High School.  A second FEMA grant for $1.4 million was given to the Ascension Parish School Board for the St. Amant High School campus.  Both schools suffered severe flooding in 2016.

“The teachers and students at Glen Oaks High School and St. Amant High School need new classrooms so they can focus on what’s important—teaching and learning,” said Sen. Kennedy. “These grants will help these schools continue to recover from the devastating flooding of 2016 and build a better learning environment for our children.”


WASHINGTON, D.C. – Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.) released the following statement after the conclusion of the 2018 midterm elections: 

“Every Congressional race and every Senate race is different.  These midterm elections happened to split the House and the Senate,” said Sen. Kennedy. “As a Republican, I’d prefer to have both chambers stay in Republican hands, but the world is not going to spin off its axis just because the House is one party and the Senate is the other.  It still means we can get a fair amount of work done if everybody puts aside their differences and forgets about scoring political points.”




WASHINGTON, D.C. –U.S. Reps. Andy Biggs and Hakeem Jeffries introduced Sen. John Kennedy’s (R-La.) bill, S.2896 the Justice Against Corruption on K Street (JACK) Act, in the U.S. House of Representatives Tuesday.  Sen. Kennedy originally introduced this bill with Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W. Va.), and the legislation passed in the U.S. Senate in August.  The JACK Act would amend the Lobbying Disclosure Act to require lobbyists to disclose convictions of bribery, extortion, embezzlement, illegal kickbacks, tax evasion or money laundering.  U.S. Reps. Biggs, Jeffries and Sen. Kennedy released the following statements:


“This idea is simple: If you have been convicted of a felony like bribery, extortion, embezzlement or tax evasion, you should have to disclose that when registering to become a lobbyist,” said Sen. Kennedy. “Corrupt lobbyists need to be brought into the sunlight, even if they’re wearing $6,000 suits. Political leaders and businesses need to know the backgrounds of those who are trying to influence public policy. These corrupt lobbyists are the worst kind of swamp creatures and they need a one-way ticket out of Washington.”


“This common-sense piece of legislation is another step forward in draining the Washington, D.C. swamp,” said Rep. Biggs. “There is no reason these individuals should be able to hide convictions for serious crimes like bribery, extortion, and embezzlement when lobbying Congress. These remissions foster corruption and the remedy is full transparency. I am pleased to work with Congressman Hakeem Jeffries and Senator John Kennedy, who introduced the bill in the Senate, and I look forward to the JACK Act becoming law.”


“We must clean up Washington and make it work for the people,” said Rep. Jeffries. “The JACK Act will boost transparency and accountability by requiring lobbyists to disclose any criminal convictions for bribery, money laundering, embezzlements or other related crimes. Corruption in this town is an American problem and we must come together in a bipartisan way to fix it.”


The bill’s title refers to Jack Abramoff, who was convicted of tax fraud and bribery. Jack re-registered as a federal lobbyist in 2017 and did not have to include his criminal history on his registration. The JACK Act will provide the public with much needed transparency and accountability over Congress’ actions.



WASHINGTON, D.C. –U.S. Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.) issued the following statement today after New Iberia resident Matthew Delcambre helped prevent the theft of the Magna Carta from England’s Salisbury Cathedral:
“The Magna Carta is one of the most important pieces of paper in history.  The Founding Fathers used it as a reference when writing the U.S. Constitution,” said Sen. Kennedy.  “Mr. Delcambre didn’t look the other way or take a selfie when some knucklehead tried to hammer through the glass display case protecting the Magna Carta.  He helped apprehend the perpetrator.  He’s done history a great service.  New Iberia and the rest of Louisiana should be proud.”





WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.) today announced that he will travel to Japan and China this month for an official overseas trip with a congressional delegation for meetings on trade and energy issues.

In addition to Sen. Kennedy, the delegation includes other U.S. senators as well as U.S. representatives.

Meetings will be held with high-ranking officials in Japan and China to discuss bilateral trade and energy issues, including nuclear power development.  Sen. Kennedy also will use the trip to promote Louisiana interests such as liquefied natural gas, seafood and rice.

In Japan, the delegation plans to meet with U.S. Ambassador to Japan William F. “Bill” Hagerty, Deputy Chief of Mission-U.S. Embassy Tokyo Joseph Young, Deputy Prime Minister Taro Aso, Defense Minister Takeshi Iwaya, and Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga.  In China, the delegation plans to meet with U.S. Ambassador to China Terry Branstad, People’s Republic of China President Xi Jinping, Premier of the State Council Li Keqiang, Vice Premier Liu He, Director of the Office of Foreign Affairs Yang Jiechi, Vice Minister of Agriculture Han Jun and Secretary of the Central Political and Legal Affairs Commission Guo Shengkun.

“This is an important trip that will give us the opportunity to represent U.S. and Louisiana interests to China and Japan at a pivotal time,” said Sen. Kennedy.  “The White House is in the middle of trade negotiations with Japan and discussions with China.  We need fair, bilateral trade agreements that keep costs down for American consumers while creating opportunities for American entrepreneurs.  I plan to renew discussions about what Louisiana can offer as far as LNG and agricultural products.”


WASHINGTON, D.C. – On Fox News Channel’s America’s Newsroom today, U.S. Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.) discussed the recent attacks on prominent political figures.  Sen. Kennedy expressed his apologies to all of those affected by the threats, and apologized to the American people for having to cope with these despicable attacks.

Click here or the image below to watch Sen. Kennedy’s interview.

Extending Apologies: “I think the responsible thing to say for leadership is how I feel.  I’m sorry. I’m sorry for what happened to the Clintons, and the Obamas, and Mr. Soros, and CNN, and now apparently Vice President Biden.  I’m sorry for America.  We shouldn’t have to go through this.”

Heated Political Rhetoric: “It’s too early to assess blame.  I know that the political rhetoric in this country has been hot on both sides.  Has that contributed to it? I don’t think it’s helped.  We should probably all dial it down a notch.  When you’re civil, it doesn’t mean that you agree with your colleagues; it means that you respect them.  I’m just sorry this happened.  There’s not much else you can say.”

“The rhetoric in our country is hot, and all sides are responsible for it.”

Trust in Our Law Enforcement:  “The FBI is best law enforcement agency in all of human history.  We’ll find this person, but until then it’s all speculation.”





WASHINGTON, D.C. –U.S. Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.) announced today that FEMA awarded $3 million to the Baker School System.  The money will be used to help Baker High School recover from the 2016 severe flooding.
“It’s been over two years since the severe flooding in south Louisiana, and it’s time for students to get back to normalcy,” said Sen. Kennedy. “Grants like these from FEMA will help Baker High School repair academic facilities to get students back into permanent and improved classrooms.”




WASHINGTON, D.C. –U.S. Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.) sent a letter to President Donald J. Trump this week thanking him for his proposal to cut spending by 5% across all federal agencies.

“The federal government has a spending problem, not a revenue problem,” said Sen. Kennedy.  “Our federal deficit is astronomically high at $779 billion the past fiscal year.  Congress has lived off the taxpayer’s credit card for far too long, and the only things that have grown are the debt, the federal bureaucracy, and the appetite for more spending.  The President’s initiative to cut federal agency spending is a good first step towards helping get our federal budget back under control.”

October 18, 2018



President Donald J. Trump

The White House

1600 Pennsylvania Ave

Washington, D.C. 20500


Dear President Trump,


I want to personally thank you for your strong leadership to save American taxpayer dollars by cutting federal spending across all agencies by 5%.  This is precisely the type of commonsense spending reform that America desperately needs and expects from its leaders. The Congressional Budget Office reports that the $21 trillion national debt is and will continue to slow the growth of productivity and wages, doing considerable harm to our economy in the process.  I am proud to see the Trump Administration taking historic action to put America’s fiscal house in order, and I remain fully supportive of those efforts. 


I have recently taken action in the Senate to tackle Washington’s spending problem.  Earlier this year, I supported your proposal to reign in federal agencies by imposing a pay freeze on federal bureaucrats.  I also advocated for a simple 1% spending haircut across federal agencies that, despite being only a drop in the fiscal bucket, would have been an improvement over out of control spending. However, the Washington swamp runs deep as you well know, and Congress couldn’t even agree on these basic reforms.


I recognize that making these types of cuts may not be easy for some within the Administration, but I know how necessary they are for the health of our economy. I firmly believe that all three levels of government have a spending problem, not a revenue problem. Your new 5% directive is a good start to fixing those problems. Please know that you have my enthusiastic support. Thank you for your service to America.






                                                                                                John Kennedy

                                                                                                United States Senator