After major successes in 2021 and 2022, Sen. Tammy Baldwin looks forward to 118th Congress - TAI News
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Josh Israel

The Wisconsin Democrat plans to keep her focus on affordable health care and jobs in Wisconsin and America.

In the last Congress, Democratic Sen. Tammy Baldwin helped to secure billions of dollars in funding for jobs and infrastructure for her Wisconsin constituents, as well as health care improvements and civil rights protections. Even though Republicans will control the House, she plans to work across party lines in the current Congress to continue making progress for her state.

Baldwin, who was elected to the House in 1998 and to the Senate in 2012, was a key vote in 2021 and 2022 for legislation that improved the lives of Wisconsinites.

According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, the $550 billion Bipartisan Infrastructure Law will mean an estimated $5.4 billion over five years for improvements to Wisconsin’s highways and bridges and give the state $198 million for improved airports, $37 million for highway safety, $599 million for public transit, and $79 million for an expanded electric vehicle charging network.

She backed the $280 billion CHIPS and Science Act, lowering consumer costs and boosting supply chains by investing in domestic manufacturing of microchips and in other science and technology efforts.

Baldwin voted for the Inflation Reduction Act, which will provide $369 billion in clean energy and climate change mitigation. An estimated 29,000 Wisconsin residents will be able to keep their health insurance because of the law’s $64 billion in funding to extend health insurance subsidies for three years.

Baldwin also secured more than $255 million for Wisconsin community projects in 2022, announcing in a statement: “These community driven projects will reach every corner of Wisconsin, with critical investments for roads, bridges and water infrastructure, workforce development, access to health and child care, improvements for emergency services, and so much more. By working with folks from across Wisconsin, I am proud to deliver federal support that responds to the unique needs of so many different communities.”

Baldwin also co-authored the Respect for Marriage Act, signed by President Joe Biden on Dec. 13, which explicitly protects same-sex and interracial marriages. “In the Senate, this bipartisan vote simply would not have happened without the leadership and persistence of a real hero: Tammy Baldwin,” Biden said during the signing ceremony.

In a statement to the American Independent Foundation, Baldwin said she hopes to see more victories in 2023: “I came to Washington to put Wisconsin first and do right by working families across the state, and my mission continues. I am excited to continue my work to build a stronger Made in Wisconsin manufacturing economy by championing Buy American rules, fighting to create family-supporting jobs, and helping lower costs for working families.”

The Wisconsin Democrat also said she will make accessible and affordable health care a priority. “I am going to build on our success of taking on big drug companies to push to lower prescription drug costs, fight for affordable health care for every Wisconsinite, and deliver resources to address the mental health crisis and curb the opioid epidemic,” she said. “I will work with anyone to deliver results for Wisconsin.””

A spokesperson for Baldwin told the American Independent Foundation that a top priority is to expand on a bipartisan victory from 2022 to boost American manufacturing.

In September, she and then-Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH) jointly introduced the Invent Here, Make Here for Homeland Security Act, a bill that required that inventions that stem from government-sponsored research must be made in the United States. “To me, it is simple: If American taxpayers [are] funding the research that leads to an invention, American manufacturers should be making the products,” Baldwin said at the time. The bill was rolled into the National Defense Authorization Act that became law in December.

In the final weeks of 2022, Baldwin also authored proposals to help individuals who need to travel to access reproductive health, to honor women’s suffrage with a monument on the National Mall, to boost apprenticeship programs, and to guarantee health insurance access for members of the Selective Reserve, a military reserve unit.

Baldwin’s spokesperson confirmed that she plans to keep fighting for these priorities in the new Congress.

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.

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The Wisconsin Independent is a project of American Independent Media, a 501(c)(4) organization whose mission is to use journalism to educate the public, giving them the information they need about local and federal issues.