Rep. Peterson's Newsletter 9/20

Monday morning sunrise in Marshall

Dear Friends,

Yesterday House Republicans narrowly passed a "nutrition-only" bill on a party line vote of 217-210. Unfortunately this bill will make it harder for Congress to pass a much needed farm bill. Over the weekend I attended the MN-VFW Fall Conference in Alexandria and spoke with the honorable men and women who served our country in foreign wars. This week I spoke with farmers in Montevideo and met with Kandiyohi County Commissioner Roger Imiedeke.


Congressman Collin C. Peterson

Minnesota 7th District

On Monday tragedy struck our Nation. The incident occurred a mile from the U.S. Capitol, where thousands of people work at the Washington Navy Yard. Police officers and emergency responders who arrived quickly on the scene saved lives.  My deepest sympathies go out to the families of the victims.

Update on the Farm Bill

On Thursday, House Republicans narrowly passed a "nutrition-only" bill on a party-line vote.  While I've said from the beginning that it's possible to find middle ground on this debate over food stamps, this bill was not reasonable or responsible, and will only make it harder, if not impossible, to pass a new farm bill this Congress.  

While this process is frustrating, I will not give up trying to figure out how to untangle this mess and move toward a conference committee with the Senate.

Click here to listen to my speech on the House Floor

I spoke on AgriTalk this week about gridlock on a five-year farm bill.

Click here to listen to the full interview

MN Veterans of Foreign Wars

Auxiliary Legislative Chairman Gege Abraham (Owatonna), State Auxiliary President Laurie Dale (Kenyon), National Auxiliary Council Member Paty Thrond (Wells), MN-VFW Legislative Chairman Rich Zierdt (Hopkins)

On Saturday I spoke at the VFW Fall Conference in Alexandria. Throughout the district I've met veterans from all generations. These men and women stepped forward with their sense of duty and served our Nation, and we owe them a debt of gratitude we can never truly repay.  I promised them that I would seek their advice and counsel as long as I am a Member of Congress. Working together we can accomplish their goals and meet our obligations to those who wear the uniform and defend us.

Rich Zierdt, MN-VFW Legislative Chairman, stopped by my Washington, D.C. office a few days later to touch base on veterans' issues and our mutual concern on the national level for Vets.

September 20th: POW-MIA Recognition Day

Official DoD POW MIA Poster

Each year, the third Friday of September is designated as POW-MIA Recognition Day. It is a day established by Congress to remember those Americans who were captured and held as prisoners of war or missing in action as a result of combat operations. Thirty-eight Minnesotans are still missing––all from the Vietnam War.

According to Defense Prisoner Of War and Missing Personnel Office, the official count of personnel unaccounted for as of September 12th, 2013 is as follows: World War II -- 73,661 (not including 6,299 who were buried at sea); Korea -- 7,906; Cold War -- 126; Vietnam War -- 1,644; Global War on Terrorism -- 6.

To learn more about POW-MIA events and information click here

Montevideo Farm Meeting

Photo courtesy of the West Central Tribune

I visited farmers at the Trailways Café in Montevideo this past Monday. We talked about the Farm Bill as the expiration date of the current legislation is coming up fast. I told them that while I am not giving up on passing a new farm bill, the partisanship in Washington is making a mess out of agriculture discussions.

Kandiyohi County Commissioner

Bill and Judy Taunton (SPICER), Judy and Roger Imiedeke (NEW LONDON)

Today I met in the Capitol with Kandiyohi County Commissioner Roger Imiedeke to discuss upcoming legislation and transportation issues. He and his wife Judy traveled to D.C. and brought their friends, Bill and Julie Taunton, to travel with them. They took a tour of the U.S. Capitol led by a member of my staff following our meeting.

 Air Force Birthday

The U.S. Air Force was officially founded on September 18, 1947. The United States military purchased its first aircraft in 1909, but it was not until 1947 that the U.S. designated the U.S. Air Force as a separate and independent military service organization. This week we honor the 66th Birthday of the U.S. Air Force and the fine men and women who serve our nation as members of this branch of our military.

National Truck Driver Appreciation Week

Truck drivers keep the economy moving and this week we honor their hard work and commitment to their jobs. There are 3.1 million truck drivers that deliver over 9.4 billion tons of freight to businesses across the United States every year. Minnesota’s economy depends on a robust trucking industry and more than 68% of all Minnesota communities depend exclusively on commercial trucks to move their goods. Truck Driver Appreciation Week runs from September 15th to the 21st.

September is National Preparedness Month. It is important to be ready for natural disasters, especially with winter quickly approaching. Sudden blizzards and sub-zero temperatures can cut off electricity and leave Minnesotans in distress, so prepare a toolkit ahead of time.

Click here to find additional information on making your own toolkit

National Book Festival

The Library of Congress is hosting their annual National Book Festival on the National Mall in D.C. on Saturday, September 21st and Sunday, September 22nd from noon to 5:30 P.M. The event is free and open to all. More than 100 authors and poets will make presentations on both days inside the Author Pavilions. On Saturday, the Pavilion of the States will feature the literary traditions of all 50 states, so look for Minnesota inside those tents. The "Great Read" selected to represent the state of Minnesota is "It's a Tiger!" by David LaRochelle.

For more information on the National Book Festival of 2013 click here

This Week in American History

George Washington laid the cornerstone to the United States Capitol building on September 18th, 1793. Decades later the British invaded Washington, D.C. in the War of 1812 and almost burnt the entire Capitol to the ground. Repairs were quickly made but Congress began to outgrow the work space as the U.S. population boomed. The original Capitol looked nothing like it does today. The Capitol dome and the wings of the U.S. Senate and U.S. House of Representatives wouldn’t be added for another sixty-five years. Over the course of 150 years the U.S. Capitol has received continuous updates like installing telephone and electricity wires.

If you and your family are visiting Washington and would like a tour of the U.S. Capitol, please call my office at 202.225.2165 or visit the tour section of my website.

Constituents from the 7th

Dan and Kristal Ehrke (GLENCOE), Lynne and Doug Krieger (DETROIT LAKES)

The Rabaey family (MARSHALL) visited the Agriculture Committee room in the Longworth House Office Building.

“Fall Canopy”

Kerria Robinson (FRAZEE-VERGAS)

2013 Congressional Art Competition