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After two straight weeks of voting, we reached what’s called, ‘House of Origin cutoff’ on Tuesday. That means Tuesday was the last day the House and Senate could pass bills that originated in their respective chambers.

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In the first two and a half months of 2021, illegal immigration has reached a crisis point. There have been more than 200,000 illegal border crossings with as many as 5,000 illegal crossing encounters in one day. In order to maintain the rule of law and keep criminals out of our country, we must continue working to enhance our border security.

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I’m fortunate to call Yakima my home. Situated in the heart of Washington and known for its rolling hills, gorgeous landscapes, and rich agricultural soil. After more than 50 years of living, working, and raising a family here – I’ve also witnessed the challenges that come with living in rural Washington, especially for disadvantaged groups that are more vulnerable to the impacts of COVID-19.

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When our state moved into Phase 2 of Governor Inslee’s latest iteration of a reopening plan, it signaled a well-deserved step forward for our region. Following guidelines under the leadership of local health districts and elected officials, we worked together to reduce our hospitalization rates, prevent the spread of the virus, and lower the number of cases in our regions. We earned our way into Phase 2.

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Last week, the Washington State House of Representatives passed House Bill 1078 that would allow convicted felons to automatically regain their ability to vote before they have completed their full sentences. While I believe in redemption, I also believe that voting is a privilege, not a right.

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Hydropower and hydroelectric dams have truly transformed our region into what it is today. Central Washington and much of the Pacific Northwest is naturally arid, but with the construction of federal water infrastructure, it has transformed into a productive agricultural region with a growing population and an increasingly successful, diverse business community.

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Central Washington is one of the most agriculturally rich and diverse regions in the United States. Since coming to Congress, I have had the honor of representing our agricultural producers, advocating for strong trade agreements and market protection measures, and securing the tools and resources our state needs to remain at the cutting edge of agriculture innovation.

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Government shouldn’t be able to give away something it doesn’t own. But that’s what happened when Gov. Jay Inslee stopped property owners from evicting non-paying tenants. He took something of value from the landlords and gave it to the tenants.

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