Rep. Bobby Scott discusses his principals for criminal justice reform and outlines his concerns with legislation recently reported by the House and Senate Judiciary Committees.
During a Special Order Hour on the House Floor on Monday, February 29, 2016, Rep. Bobby Scott calls on the Senate to consider the President's upcoming Supreme Court nomination.
Senator Tim Kaine and Congressman Bobby Scott announce the introduction of legislation that would establish a commission to plan programs and activities in 2019 across the country to recognize the arrival and influence of Africans in America.
Rep. Bobby Scott, Ranking Member of the Committee on Education and the Workforce, discusses the Flint, Michigan water crisis and the harm facing Flint's children due to lead exposure.
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May 19, 2016 Press Release
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Robert C. “Bobby” Scott (VA-03) issued the following statement on his No vote on H.R. 4909, the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2017 (Roll Call No. 216): “The House version of the FY2017 National Defense Authorization Act contained many provisions that I strongly support, especially those pertaining to shipbuilding and ship maintenance, as well as the proposed pay increase for our men and women in uniform. “Unfortunately, the bill also includes several troubling provisions that ultimately required me to vote No. As drafted, the bill uses an accounting gimmick that would transfer approximately $18 billion from the Overseas Contingency Operations account to fund base Department of Defense accounts. The Ranking Member of the Armed Services Committee has pointed out that this will shortchange our men and women in the field, degrade military readiness, and require Congress to enact a supplemental funding request for U.S. operations in Afghanistan by April 30, 2017. This accounting gimmick also breaks last year’s bipartisan budget agreement, setting up an unnecessary fiscal fight in the months ahead.
May 18, 2016 Press Release
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Joined by leaders from the civil rights, social justice and faith communities, Congressman Bobby Scott (VA-03), Ranking Member of the Committee on Education and the Workforce, and Congressman Joe Kennedy III (MA-04) today introduced legislation to amend the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA). The Do No Harm Act would clarify that no one can seek religious exemption from laws guaranteeing fundamental civil and legal rights. It comes in response to continued efforts across the country to cite religious belief as grounds to undermine Civil Rights Act protections, limit access to healthcare, and refuse service to minority populations.
May 17, 2016 Press Release
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Committee on Education and the Workforce Ranking Member Bobby Scott (VA-03) and Committee on the Judiciary Ranking Member John Conyers, Jr. (MI-13) unveiled the findings of a new report by the Government Accountability Office (GAO) on actions needed to reduce racial and socioeconomic segregation, and address disparities in K-12 public schools. Ranking Members Scott and Conyers, along with retired Congressman and former Ranking Member George Miller, first requested this report in May 2014. Sixty-two years ago, the Supreme Court struck down lawful school segregation in the Brown v. Board of Education decision, stating that “it is doubtful that any child may reasonable be expected to succeed in life if he is denied the opportunity of an education” The decision also affirmed that education was a right that “must be made available to all on equal terms.” GAO gathered data for this report from the Department of Education and confirmed that increasing segregation along the lines of race and poverty continue to be a driver for inequities in education. Despite Brown’s affirmation that “separate educational facilities are inherently unequal,” our system of public education remains largely separate and largely unequal.
May 16, 2016 Floor Statements
Mr. SCOTT of Virginia. I appreciate the gentleman from New York and certainly the gentlewoman from Ohio for organizing this Special Order to discuss the need for criminal justice reform. Mr. Speaker, we have serious, fundamental problems with our criminal justice system today. For too long, policymakers have chosen to play politics with crime policy by enacting so-called tough on crime slogans and sound bites, such as three strikes and you are out, mandatory minimum sentences, and--if you get it to rhyme, apparently, it is better--if you do the adult crime, you do the adult time. As appealing as these policies sound, their impacts range from a negligible reduction in crime to actually increasing the crime rate.
May 16, 2016 Floor Statements
Mr. SCOTT of Virginia. Mr. Speaker, I rise in opposition to H.R. 3832, the Stolen Identity Refund Fraud Prevention Act of 2016, as amended. While I support the legislation's underlying goal of deterring and preventing tax-related identity theft and tax fraud, I strongly oppose the bill's expansion of mandatory minimum sentencing. Section 5 of the bill would expand the mandatory minimums found in Title 18 Section 1028A of the United States Code. This section of Title 18 imposes a mandatory minimum sentence of two years for ``aggravated identity theft.'' Under section 5 of this bill, a violation of section 7206(b) of the Internal Revenue Code would require a judge to impose a two year mandatory minimum regardless of the circumstances of the case.