Congressman Suozzi is a proud supporter of America’s veterans and appreciates the sacrifices our veterans, and their families, make to protect our country. Congress must ensure veterans have access to world-class healthcare and post-service economic opportunity. Above all else, we must never forget the vet.
He has brought together a Veterans Advisory Council, which meets regularly to discuss ways to improve the lives of veterans locally and around the nation. Together, they have created a “Veterans Agenda” that focuses on accomplishing the following items:
- Improving access to mental health counseling for ALL veterans
- Improving the Northport VA physical plant
- Demolishing vacant buildings at Northport VA
- Improving the transition from active duty to veteran status
Veteran suicide is a national crisis. When an individual is in crisis, we need to put bureaucracy aside and use all available resources to treat those in pain. That is why the Congressman introduced the “Mental Health Services for All Veterans Act,” which would provide free mental health services to all members of the Armed Services, regardless of their discharge status. The bill will also provide mental health services to members of the reserves, including the Army National Guard and Air National Guard. These critical services would be made available through VA medical facilities and through Veterans Health Centers.
The Northport VA Medical Center provides health care, and other services, to tens of thousands of veterans. The Congressman has worked closely with each Northport VA Director, and the Department of Veterans Affairs, to improve services for veterans and address the physical conditions of the facilities, including expediting the demolition of buildings 1 and 2. The Northport VA should be a model for the nation and the Congressman will continue to push for ongoing improvements to realize that goal.
We need to do more for new veterans, that is why Congressman Suozzi has pushed for easing the transition from military service to civilian life. He has called for the reduction of licensing and certification hurdles for veterans who had high skilled training in the military, so they can apply their skills as civilians. The more seamless the transition from military to civilian employment, the more seamless transition will be in all aspects of a veteran’s life.
Climate change is the defining issue of our time, and as a coastal community, we are on the front lines. We can no longer wait; our national, economic, food, and water security depend on the decisions we make today. This reality requires us to think globally and lead locally.
One of Congressman Suozzi’s top priorities is cleaning up the Navy Grumman Plume. As a member of the Armed Services Committee, he has held the Navy accountable, as well as secured tens of millions of dollars in funding increases. Working with local, state and national stakeholders, the Congressman has helped streamline bureaucracy to expedite clean up and remediation.
As a co-chair of the Long Island Sound Caucus, he has helped secure millions in funding to continue to revitalize the Sound and surrounding ecosystems. The Congressman is a member of the Climate Solutions Caucus where he works closely with other members, from both sides of the aisle, to find policy solutions to the myriad of issues we face.
On the Foreign Affairs and Armed Services committee, Congressman Suozzi sees firsthand how climate change is affecting communities around the world and impacting our national security. In the 2018 National Defense Authorization Act, he voted to require the Department of Defense to study the impact of climate change on our national security, and how its effects should factor into the nation’s defense.
Problem Solvers Caucus
Congressman Suozzi is Vice-Chair of the bipartisan Problem Solvers Caucus, a group of 24 Republicans and 24 Democrats committed to working across party lines to try and find real solutions. The Caucus meets regularly and is not afraid to take on the tough issues, such as health care, immigration, infrastructure, and government reform. The Congressman believes bipartisan solutions are necessary to achieve comprehensive and sustainable reform to the nation’s most pressing issues.
Health Care Proposal
From the very beginning, Congressman Suozzi has said we need to “mend, not end,” the Affordable Care Act. The Problem Solvers Caucus released a bold, new bipartisan proposal to stabilize the individual health care market and bring down costs. Congressman Suozzi joined Congressman Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA) in penning an op-ed for CNN.com, which outlines the plan. The caucus’ proposal has received widespread praise from both Republicans and Democrats.
Our immigration system has been broken for decades and the Congressman Suozzi believes we need comprehensive immigration reform. The Problem Solvers Caucus has proposed a plan to protect the Dreamers, including a pathway to citizenship for DACA recipients, and funding for dynamic border security.
There is overwhelming bipartisan support for reinvestment in America’s infrastructure, but congressional gridlock has let our nation’s highways, roads and bridges, transit and railways, ports and airports, water and sewer systems fall into disrepair. The Problem Solvers’ report, “Rebuilding America’s Infrastructure” includes recommendations to build a 21st-century infrastructure for a 21st-century economy.
Congressional paralysis has led to record low approval ratings. Congressman Suozzi believes we need to change the rules in order to overcome many of the institutional hurdles that prevent solutions, with widespread bipartisan support, from receiving an open and fair debate. The Problem Solvers has released a plan to “Break the Gridlock,” a set of rule changes to promote openness and transparency, and empower all lawmakers to represent their constituents in Congress.
National Security and Foreign Policy
As a member of the House Armed Services and Foreign Affairs Committees, Congressman Suozzi believes in a strong national defense and is dedicated to America’s national security, human rights, and the rule of law.
Government corruption is a destabilizing force in the world. That is why Congressman Suozzi believes strongly in advancing anti-corruption efforts, with a particular focus on Russia. Vladimir Putin represents a threat to national security and global stability and is using non-traditional means of hybrid warfare to achieve his objective to undermine democracy and international institutions. Putin’s methods rely on a lack of transparency to advance his interests and bully his critics into submission. In order to combat Putin’s nefarious actions, the Congressman introduced the bipartisan HR 2820 – Fight Russian Corruption Act which will shed a light on Putin’s corrupt and destabilizing tactics.
The Congressman meets regularly with Secretary of Defense Mattis, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs, and other senior members of the military and Department of Defense, to discuss the nation’s defense and supporting the warfighter. He has traveled to Afghanistan, Korea, and other countries to meet with troops and receive briefings from commanders on the ground.
A nation’s first responsibility is to protect its citizens. As a member of these committees, the Congressman believes we need both a strong military and a State Department, to advance our national security interests. Deterrence, coupled with diplomacy, is necessary for a sustained peace.
Congressman Suozzi is a strong supporter of the state of Israel and is dedicated to strengthening the U.S.-Israel relationship. He has traveled to Israel in both a personal and Congressional capacity over the years. The Congressman has spearheaded efforts that would strengthen Israel’s regional security, and regularly voices his support in combatting anti-Israel bias and anti-Semitism.
Congressman Suozzi is committed to taking actions wherever possible to prevent Iran & Hezbollah from attacking Israel. In 2017, he introduced and passed the bipartisan HR 3342 SHIELDS Act which imposes sanctions on Hezbollah for its use of civilians as human shields. In 2018, the National Defense Authorization Act included the Congressman’s amendments that would detail some of Hezbollah’s nefarious activities in Lebanon and Russia’s cooperation with Iran in Syria, - where Iran must not be allowed to establish a foothold on Israel’s border.
One of the Congressman’s first acts in Congress was to speak out against the U.N. Resolution 2334 because it failed to distinguish between long accepted and more controversial settlements. Congressman Suozzi has also introduced H.R. 328 “Commemorating the 50th anniversary of the reunification of Jerusalem.”