Friday, September 19, 2014


WASHINGTON – Today, Reps. John Conyers, Jr. (MI-13), Frederica Wilson (FL-24), and Marcy Kaptur (OH-09) - all co-chairs of the Congressional Full Employment Caucus - announced a discharge petition for H.R. 2821, the American Jobs Act, to compel House Republican leaders to bring the comprehensive package of employment measures to the House floor for a vote. 

U.S. Representative
John Conyers, Jr.
“The American Jobs Act will finally put an end to the painful impacts of the Great Recession,” said Rep. Conyers.  “Despite the progress we have seen in recent employment numbers, there are still more than two applicants for every single job opening.  There are still more than twice as many people among the ranks of the long-term unemployed than there were before the financial crisis struck in 2008.” 
H.R. 2821 is an updated version of President Obama's American Jobs Act, a bill that, according toindependent analysis, would have created 1.9 million jobs and boosted growth by 2% if passed when originally introduced in 2011.  Congressional leaders allowed the bill to expire at the end of the 112thCongress without bringing it to the floor for a vote.

This critical legislation rewards work and targets job creation through several fully paid-for provisions.  It would cut taxes for working Americans by reinstituting the Making Work Pay Credit, which provides a tax credit equal to 6.2% of earnings and up to a maximum credit of $400 individuals and $800 for couples.  It would also facilitate job-creating infrastructure investment by supporting public-private financing for projects such as airport and air traffic control systems, highway and bridge rehabilitation, and high-speed rail projects.  Lastly, H.R. 2821 would restore emergency unemployment insurance and end sequestration, the across-the-board budget cuts that are projected to cost Americans more than 2 million jobs over the next decade.

“Together with Democratic leadership, we are introducing this discharge petition for the American Jobs Act because it is time for Congress to focus on the priority that matters most for the American people: Jobs.  House Republicans should stop protecting corporate welfare and start fighting for American jobs,” said Rep. Wilson. “By putting teachers, police, firefighters, and construction workers back on the job, we can not only improve our employment situation but also boost educational outcomes and perform urgently-needed upgrades to our infrastructure.”

“The American public has told Congress over and over again that it is time to get serious about creating jobs, and the American Jobs Act would do just that,” said Rep. Kaptur. “This jobs bill would put millions of Americans back to work, strengthen our communities, and keep America competitive in our increasingly globalized world. Not only would the American Jobs Act put individuals back to work, it would place them in good paying jobs that provide a high quality of life.  This is the American dream and this Congress must act to pass the American Jobs Act, legislation that can quickly turn around the lives of millions of Americans.”

The Congressional Full Employment Caucus is a coalition of 25 Members of Congress who are committed to ensuring that all Americans who want to work have access to either employment or training.  The Caucus regularly hosts expert economists, academics, and policymakers to identify effective job-creation proposals and implement strategies for their adoption.
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WASHINGTON – Today, the House Judiciary Committee approved H.R. 5233, the Trade Secrets Protection Act by voice vote. 

Introduced on July 28, 2014, the bipartisan Trade Secrets Protection Act, which is sponsored by Rep. George Holding (R-N.C.) and Courts, Intellectual Property, and the Internet Subcommittee Ranking Member Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.), amends the Economic Espionage Act of 1996 to create a federal civil remedy for trade secret misappropriation that will help American companies protect their intellectual property from theft.  Trade secrets include such vital proprietary information as confidential formulas, manufacturing techniques, and even customer lists. 

House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.), Ranking Member John Conyers (D-Mich.), Chairman of the House Judiciary Subcommittee on Courts, Intellectual Property and the Internet Howard Coble (R-NC), Ranking Member of the House Judiciary Subcommittee on Courts, Intellectual Property and the Internet Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) and Rep. George Holding (R-N.C) released the following joint statement:

“Trade secrets are an increasingly important form of intellectual property that have become more vulnerable to theft as a result of our globalized economy.  As of 2009, the value of trade secrets owned by U.S. companies was estimated to be nearly $5 trillion.  While current federal law protects other forms of intellectual property by providing access to federal courts for aggrieved parties to seek redress, there is no federal option to do so for trade secret theft. The bipartisan Trade Secrets Protection Act seeks to change that by allowing companies to seek civil penalties in order to protect their businesses from those engaging in economic espionage.  H.R. 5233 gives American companies a powerful new tool which will help them compete in an ever-evolving global market."

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Wednesday, September 17, 2014


WASHINGTON— Today, Congressman John Conyers, Jr. (MI-13) released the following statement after voting in support of the measure to authorize the Obama Administration to train and equip the Syrian rebel army to battle the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL):

U.S. Representative
John Conyers, Jr.
“I agree with President Obama that the destabilizing and destructive actions of ISIL demand an American response.  While I am supportive of President Obama’s targeted actions against ISIS to date, I believe our government must be mindful of the unintended consequences inherent in training and equipping fighters in a highly complex foreign conflict.  For this reason, I authored a successful bipartisan amendment to the House’s Defense Appropriations bill this summer, prohibiting the transfer of dangerous shoulder-fired antiaircraft missiles known as MANPADs to parties in the Syrian civil war. 

As President Obama uses any authority granted by Congress to train and equip Syrian rebels, I hope he honors the will of the House of Representatives to prevent the dissemination of these and other dangerous weapons in the Middle East and beyond.  

We must remain cognizant that military force is not the solution to the strife afflicting Iraq and Syria.  I continue to oppose the presence of US ground troops in the region.  We must do all we can to eliminate funding sources for ISIL and to support inclusive governance and vigorous dialogue while respecting Iraqi sovereignty.  We must also do what we can to promote a peaceful settlement in Syria and to invest in employment-focused economic development throughout the region.”

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Tuesday, September 16, 2014


WASHINGTON – Today, Rep. John Conyers, Jr. (D-Mich.) and Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) introduced the “Employ Young Americas Now Act,” legislation that would fix our country’s youth jobs crisis.

Rep. John Conyers. Jr. and
Sen. Bernie Sanders
The Employ Young Americans Now Act will provide $5.5 billion in immediate funding to states and localities to employ one million young Americans between the ages of 16 and 24, and provide job training to hundreds of thousands of young Americans.  The legislation also allocates $4 billion in grant funding to the U.S. Department of Labor to create summer and year-round employment opportunities for low-income youth and another $1.5 billion in competitive grants for work-based training.

The youth unemployment rate in the United States for 16- to 19-year-olds was 19.6 percent in August, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.  The African-American youth unemployment rate is 32.8 percent. 

“Nearly six million young Americans are neither in school nor working,” said Conyers.  “This is a national emergency that demands immediate federal action.  By empowering states, local communities, nonprofits, and small businesses to train and hire young Americans, this legislation will restore financial security, productivity, and dignity.  Our economy and society are strongest when our young people enjoy decent opportunity.”

“The most serious crisis facing this country is the lack of decent-paying jobs, particularly when it comes to young Americans,” Sanders said.  “If young high school graduates are unable to find entry-level jobs, how will they ever be able to develop the skills, the experience and the confidence they need to break into the job market?”

Sanders and Conyers emphasized that youth unemployment has long-term consequences.  Today, more than5.8 million young Americans have either dropped out of high school or graduated from high school and have no jobs.  Unemployment can equate to lower lifelong earnings and productivity for affected workers.  Recent academic studies have shown that people who experience early bouts of unemployment suffer 10 to 15 % lower wages than their peers.  These “wage scars” have been demonstrated to last upwards of 20 years.                                                                                                             

Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.) is a cosponsor of the Senate bill.  “High unemployment hits our communities and families hard, and it is particularly devastating for teens and young adults who are denied the opportunity to get the basic job skills they need to go on to college and get a good paying job,” she said.  “This legislation is an investment in our young adults who just need the chance to prove themselves and get ahead.”

In the House, the Employ Young Americans Now Act is cosponsored by Representatives Charles Rangel (NY-13), Marcy Kaptur (OH-09), John Lewis (GA-05), Eleanor Holmes Norton (DC), Elijah Cummings (MD-07), Terri Sewell (AL-07) and Frederica Wilson (FL-24).

The American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO), American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME), United Automobile Workers (UAW), the United Steelworkers of America, Campaign for America’s Future and the National Employment Law Project have also expressed support for this critical legislation.

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Monday, September 15, 2014


WASHINGTON – Tomorrow, Rep. John Conyers (D-Mich.) and Senator Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) will hold a press conference to introduce the “Employ Young Americans Now Act,” legislation that would provide$5.5 billion in grants to states and local governments to provide job opportunities and professional career training to millions of young Americans.

According to the latest report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the youth unemployment rate is 19.6% and the African-American youth unemployment rate is 32.8%.           
 Who: Rep. John Conyers (D-Mich.) and Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.)

What: Press conference on youth jobs crisis
When: TOMORROW – Tuesday, Sept. 16 - 11:30 a.m.

Where: Senate Radio/TV Gallery   (S325)
            Contact: Michael Briggs (202) 224-5141   


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Friday, September 12, 2014


DETROIT – Today, Congressman John Conyers Jr. (MI-13) issued the following statement in recognition of the 20th 
U.S. Representative
John Conyers, Jr.
anniversary of the AmeriCorps program:

“Twenty years ago, AmeriCorps was founded in order to foster civic engagement and help meet our domestic obligations to one another.  It has succeeded with flying colors.  AmeriCorps has immeasurably strengthened our communities and it continues to embody the very best of American ideals.

In Michigan this year, more than 1,400 individuals will join through the AmeriCorps program to fulfill unmet needs in education, environmental justice, economic fairness and community development.  These men and women join a proud tradition: since 1994 over 25,000 Michiganders have served in AmeriCorps, where they have provided over $80 million worth of vital services to our communities.  

More than anyone, the volunteers for AmeriCorps exhibit the spirt needed to heal our nation’s divisions.  Their spirit is defined not by self-interest and personal gain, but by self-sacrifice and personal initiative.  I congratulate AmeriCorps in celebrating their 20th anniversary and I wish the program all the best for the next twenty years and more.”

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To learn how you can get involved and for more information on the AmeriCorps program, visit:
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Wednesday, September 10, 2014


Washington, D.C. – Today the House Judiciary Committee approved H.R. 5421, the Financial Institution Bankruptcy Act of 2014 by a voice vote.

The Financial Institution Bankruptcy Act is a product of the Judiciary Committee’s long-standing oversight of our nation’s bankruptcy laws as well as the Committee’s recent examination into improving bankruptcy laws for the resolution of financial institutions. The Financial Institution Bankruptcy Act incorporates the recommendations of hearing witnesses, regulators and experts from three Committee hearings on the subject over the past year. The legislation specifically adds a new subchapter V to chapter 11 of the Bankruptcy Code to address the resolution of financial institutions, including large, multi-national financial firms.

House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.), Ranking Member John Conyers (D-Mich.) and Regulatory Reform Subcommittee Chairman Spencer Bachus (R-Ala.) praised today’s Committee vote:

“We strongly support the Committee’s passage of the bipartisan Financial Institution Bankruptcy Act today. This bill was carefully calibrated to strengthen our nation’s bankruptcy laws and to ensure that the bankruptcy process is well equipped to resolve companies of all operations and sizes. This legislation enhances the Bankruptcy Code and its ability to resolve financial institutions in an efficient and value-maximizing manner for the benefit of the U.S. and global economies, employees, creditors, and customers.”

‘Financial Institution 5 Bankruptcy Act of 2014 by Beverly Tran

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