- - -  THIS WEEK: NOVEMBER 17, 2017  - - -

Hill Headlines


FBI Report Shows Increase in Hate Crimes: The FBI released their statistics on hate crimes for 2016. Their report showed that hate crimes in the United States increased four percent from 2015, with hate crimes against Muslims increasing 19 percent. Muslims were the religious group with the second-highest rate of reported hate crimes. In response to this report, Rep. Beyer (D-VA-8) stated “The problem of hate in this country is growing, urgent, and requires prompt action from Congress,” and urged passage of the No Hate Act (H.R. 1566) to improve reporting and prosecution for hate crimes.

Legislative Updates


Tax Cuts and Jobs Act: The House voted 227-205 to pass the Republican tax reform plan, known as the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (H.R. 1), with 13 Republicans voting against. The Senate expects to vote on its own version, which includes repealing a key provision of the Affordable Care Act that requires most Americans to have health insurance, in two weeks.
02.pngStrengthening Background Checks for Gun Purchases: Sen. Cornyn (R-TX) introduced S. 2135, a bipartisan bill that would provide greater incentives for federal agencies to report criminal background information to the National Instant Background Check System, which is used to verify eligibility for individuals to purchase guns.
03.pngHelp Students Repay Act: Rep. Ferguson (R-GA-3) introduced H.R. 4372, which would consolidate five existing income-based student loan repayment plans into one plan that caps monthly student loan payments at 15 percent of the student’s income, and freezes interest accumulation after ten years.
04.pngPermanent Residency for Temporary Protected Status (TPS) Residents: Rep. Clarke (D-NY-9) introduced the ASPIRE Act, H.R. 4384, which would allow U.S. residents from countries with TPS to apply for permanent residency if they arrived before the beginning of 2017. TPS countries are those designated by the government as unsafe for U.S. immigrants to return to due to conflict or natural disaster. TPS holders are allowed to live and work in the U.S., but are currently ineligible for permanent residency.

Hill Events

Interreligious Working Group on Domestic Human Needs (DHN) Tax Advocacy

Poligon joined Network Lobby, Bread for the World, and other faith-based groups to meet with the offices of Sen. Scott (R-SC) and Sen. Roberts (R-KS) to discuss the Republican tax reform plan, raise concerns about the redistribution of tax burdens from the wealthy to the middle and working class, and encourage the expansion of the child tax credit for low-income families.

Further Reading

Appeals Court Partly Reinstates Trump’s New Travel Ban | New York Times | November 13, 2017

Paul Ryan: DACA fix will be separate from spending bill | The Hill | November 14, 2017

Official report: Low-income Americans will pay more taxes under Senate GOP tax bill | The Hill | November 16, 2017

Hill Buzz

On the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act:

“Passing this bill is the single biggest thing we can do to grow the economy, restore opportunity and help these middle income families that are struggling.” - Rep. Ryan (R-WI-1)

“It pillages and loots the middle class. It is a shameful piece of legislation.” - Rep. Pelosi (D-CA-12)

On Strengthening Background Checks for Gun Purchases:

“Just one record that’s not properly reported can lead to tragedy, as the country saw last week in Sutherland Springs, Texas." - Sen. Cornyn (R-TX)

“Our bill marks an important milestone that shows real compromise can be made on the issue of guns." - Sen. Murphy (D-CT)

On an FBI Report Labeling Activists as “Black Identity Extremists”:

“Given that white supremacy is well documented, [with] well researched movements such as the neo-Nazis, the Ku Klux Klan, etc - are they ‘White Identity Extremists?’” - Rep. Bass (D-CA-37) to Attorney General Jeff Sessions, House Judiciary Committee Hearing

Poligon Education Fund is working tirelessly to 1) monitor and hold accountable all Congressional action taken on issues that deeply impact the lives of everyday American Muslims and 2) educate American Muslims on effective advocacy and Congressional engagement. Only a few months since our launch, we have jumped headfirst into this crucial work, which we can only hope to continue with your generous support. Please take time to make a contribution.

Poligon Education Fund is a 501c3 non-profit charitable organization dedicated to amplifying the Muslim American voice in Congress.
Copyright © 2017 Poligon Education Fund, All rights reserved.

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