Vice President Harris Prioritizes National Security, Climate Change & Education at First National Space Council Meeting

2 Dec

Vice President Kamala Harris convened the Biden-Harris administration’s first National Space Council meeting yesterday. During the meeting, the vice president laid out the administration’s space policy and strategy, focusing on protecting our national security, combating climate change, and supporting STEM education. 

Vice President Harris also condemned Russia’s anti-satellite test last month, which resulted in more than 1,500 pieces of debris being generated, endangering other nations’ satellites and the lives of astronauts aboard the International Space Station.

Here’s a roundup of some of the coverage from yesterday’s event:

CNBC: White House unveils ‘Space Priorities Framework’ as VP Kamala Harris leads first space council meeting

By Michael Sheetz, 12/01/2021

The first National Space Council of the Biden administration is meeting on Wednesday, with Vice President Kamala Harris set to outline the White House’s approach to space policy…

With Harris leading Wednesday’s meeting, the White House released a document called the “United States Space Priorities Framework,” which gives an overview of how the Biden administration plans “to develop and implement national space policy and strategy going forward.”

Wired: The US National Space Council Is Back and Focused on Security

By Ramin Skibba, 12/01/2021

On Wednesday morning, US vice president Kamala Harris led the Biden administration’s inaugural National Space Council meeting, at which she and other political leaders outlined their priorities for the future of civil, commercial, and military space activities. She’s the first woman and first person of color to run such a meeting, which has traditionally been led by the vice president. While Harris has considerable foreign policy experience, this is her first major foray into space politics. 

“While our space exploration takes us to the moon, Mars, and the edge of our solar system, I believe we also have the responsibility to look to our home planet,” Harris said at the meeting…

“Without clear norms for the responsible use of space, we stand the real risk of threats to our national and global security,” Harris said. She referred to Russia’s anti-satellite missile test two weeks ago as an “irresponsible act;” it generated some 1,500 pieces of orbital debris, delaying astronauts aboard the International Space Station from doing a planned spacewalk on Tuesday

E&E News: Biden adds climate objective to National Space Council

By Timothy Cama, 12/01/2021

The Biden administration is tasking the federal government’s National Space Council with a new focus on climate change.

Vice President Kamala Harris, who chairs the council, published a new framework of priorities for the body ahead of a major meeting today, her first as the council’s leader…

Under Harris’ new framework, climate is named as a priority specifically for the use of satellites.

“The United States will advance the development and use of space-based Earth observation capabilities that support action on climate change,” the framework reads.

“The United States, through collaboration between the public, private, and philanthropic sectors, will accelerate the development and use of Earth observation to support climate change mitigation and adaptation,” it says. “Open dissemination of Earth observation data will support both domestic and international efforts to address the climate crisis.”

CNN: Harris condemns Russian test of anti-satellite weapon at Biden administration’s first space council meeting

By Kristin Fisher, 12/01/2021

“Without clear norms for the responsible use of space, we face real threats to our national and global security,” said Vice President Kamala Harris, who serves as the head of the National Space Council. “By blasting debris across space, this irresponsible act endangered the satellites of other nations as well as the astronauts on the International Space Station.”

In addition to promoting the rapid development of rules and norms to govern space, the United States Space Priorities Framework is focused on utilizing space to combat climate change and enhancing STEM education.

Those final two priorities are far more prominent for the Biden administration than the previous one, and they were reflected in an executive order signed Wednesday by President Joe Biden. The order added five members to the National Space Council: the secretaries of education, labor, agriculture and interior, as well as the national climate adviser.

Axios: Harris says Russia’s anti-satellite test was “irresponsible”

By Jacob Knutson, 12/01/2021

Russia’s destructive test of an anti-satellite missile last month that created at least 1,500 pieces of space debris was “irresponsible” Vice President Kamala Harris said at the annual National Space Council meeting Wednesday…

Harris stressed that the test and its aftermath showed why new international behavioral norms and regulations are needed to help maintain space as a relatively safe environment…

What they’re saying: “Over the past weeks and months, I’ve spoken with heads of state and governments about our priorities in space. In these conversations, the opportunity for space as been clear, as has the risk,” Harris said during an opening speech for the meeting.

WESH: Vice President Harris talks security, space opportunities during National Space Council meeting

By Scott Heidler, 12/01/2021

In her first time chairing the National Space Council, Vice President Kamala Harris outlined the Biden administration’s plan for space seen as rich in economic and environmental opportunities. But also a growing need for better rules and transparency…

According to Dale Ketcham of Space Florida, space is a subject that is truly bipartisan…

It’s good news for the Space Coast, as it’s expected that the launch total for the year will be more than 40.

Politico: Harris calls for new international rules for space after Russia blows up satellite

By Bryan Bender, 12/01/2021

Vice President Kamala Harris on Wednesday said Russia’s “irresponsible act” last month of blowing up one of its satellites demands a more robust global effort to adopt rules of behavior in orbit to protect national security and defend growing commerce.

“By blasting debris across space, this irresponsible act endangered the satellites of other nations, as well as astronauts in the International Space Station,” Harris said in convening the inaugural meeting of the National Space Council under her leadership.

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Ahead of Holidays, Supply Chain Bottleneck Easing Thanks to Joe Biden

23 Nov

Thanks to President Biden’s leadership, new reports indicate that the global supply chain bottleneck is easing ahead of the holiday season. While Republicans continue to try to block progress for the American people, President Biden is leading and delivering real results for middle-class families.

Marketplace: “What supply chain crisis?” say Target, Walmart and Home Depot

  • “Walmart, Target and Home Depot told investors they have more than adequate inventory to weather the holidays.”
     
  • “You know those local news reports you see every Black Friday of shoppers engaged in hand-to-hand combat over that last power saw at Home Depot? You can’t blame that on broken supply chains this year.”

Bloomberg: The U.S. Supply-Chain Crisis Is Already Easing

  • “Evidence keeps piling up to suggest that the U.S. is slowly but surely making progress in easing freight congestion and supply shortages.”
     
  • “U.S. manufacturing output rose in October to the highest level since March 2019, Federal Reserve data showed this week.”
     
  • “For the supply-chain crunch to get better, it first needed to stop getting worse. That at least appears to have happened.”

Wall Street Journal: Supply-Chain Problems Show Signs of Easing

  • “An easing of supply-chain choke points would allow production to move toward meeting strong demand and would lower logistics costs. If sustained, that, in turn, would help alleviate the upward pressure on inflation.”
     
  • “Shipping and retail executives say they expect the U.S. port backlogs to clear in early 2022, after the holiday shopping season and when Lunar New Year shuts many factories for a week in February, slowing output.”

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Roundup: President Biden’s Build Back Better Agenda is Popular

23 Nov

Despite what you hear from many Republicans and the right-wing media, President Biden and Vice President Harris’ agenda is overwhelmingly popular with the American people. Just ask Mitch McConnell, who called the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law a “godsend.” 

The truth is, poll after poll continues to show the American people support President Biden’s Build Back Better agenda that will create jobs and lower costs for families, all while reducing the deficit by asking big corporations and the wealthy to finally pay their fair share.

But don’t just take our word for it. Look at the numbers. 

President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal is broadly popular with the American people.

Monmouth University Poll: “Support for the Bipartisan Infrastructure deal (BIF), which passed Congress last week and awaits the president’s signature, stands at 65%”

President Biden’s Build Back Better Act is also extremely popular. 

According to a recent poll from Morning Consult/Politico:

  • 78% of voters support “expanding Medicare coverage to cover hearing services.”
  • 66% of voters support “funding for affordable housing.”
  • 61% of voters support “funding for child care and universal pre-kindergarten.”
  • 53% of voters support “extending the child tax credit for one year.”
  • 59% of voters support “a 15% corporate minimum tax rate for large corporations.”

According to a recent poll from Data for Progress: 

  • “With a +29-point margin, likely voters support the Build Back Better plan. The plan is very popular with both Democrats and Independents, who support the plan by respective margins of +83 and +19 percentage points. One-third of Republican voters also say they support the plan.”

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REPORTS: Build Back Better Will Create Jobs, Cut Deficit

23 Nov

As Republicans continue to lie about President Biden and Vice President Harris’ policies, recent reports from Moody’s and the nonpartisan Joint Committee on Taxation make clear the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and the Build Back Better Act will create jobs, lower costs for families, cut the deficit, and strengthen the middle class.

President Biden and Vice President Harris ran on the promise to build an economy that works for everyone, not just those at the top, and these reports demonstrate that’s exactly what the Build Back Better agenda will do.

President Biden’s Build Back Better Act and infrastructure law would strengthen economic growth and primarily benefit working Americans:

  • Moody’s: “It will strengthen long-term economic growth, the benefits of which would mostly accrue to lower- and middle-income Americans.”
     
  • Moody’s: “Real GDP growth would average 3.2% per annum during Biden’s term and 2.2% over the next decade, compared with less than 2.8% and 2.1% per annum if the legislation fails to become law.”

President Biden’s Build Back Better agenda would create millions of new jobs, lower unemployment, and increase labor productivity: 

  • Moody’s: “In terms of employment, under the infrastructure deal and reconciliation package, there are 2.4 million more jobs at the peak of the employment impact by mid-decade, and unemployment is a full percentage point lower. Labor force participation is also higher, although the full boost to participation occurs after the 10-year budget horizon.”
     
  • Moody’s: “Accessible childcare facilitated by federal support to childcare providers has especially strong employment effects for single mothers, mothers with young children, and lower-income moms.”
     
  • Moody’s: “A second important macroeconomic impact of the reconciliation package is that it would increase labor productivity by raising the educational attainment of the workforce via universal pre-K, expanded funding for higher education. Increased funding for workforce development would also lift the skill level of the workforce.”

And President Biden’s Build Back Better Act is fully paid for and would actually reduce deficits over the long term: 

  • The Hill: “Tax-increase provisions in House Democrats’ latest version of their social spending package would raise nearly $1.5 trillion over 10 years, Congress’s tax scorekeeper said Thursday… House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Richard Neal (D-Mass.) told reporters that the JCT score indicates that the bill will be fully paid for when the tax increase, IRS and drug pricing provisions are all taken into account.”
     
  • The Hill: “The Treasury Department said that after taking into account the IRS and drug-pricing provisions, the bill would include about $2.2 trillion in revenue-raisers. Treasury estimated that the IRS investments would raise $400 billion, and said that the prescription drug provisions would produce about $250 billion in savings. ’The investments and revenue provisions of the Build Back Better package would raise over $2 trillion in offsets, making the entire package paid for over ten years and would reduce deficits over the long term,’ Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said in a statement.”

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What They’re Saying: Vice President Harris’ Successful Trip to France

23 Nov

The reviews are in on Vice President Harris’ successful trip to France, where she reaffirmed America’s partnership with our oldest ally, stood with world leaders in pressuring Libya to hold democratic elections, and passionately spoke on the need to address global inequality. 

Here’s a media roundup of the Vice President’s trip: 

CNN: Harris’ trip to Paris signals a relationship back on track

By Jeremy Diamond, 11/13/2021

Beyond their time together, Harris’ solo visits were also powerful diplomatic messaging moments.

Harris’ multi-hour attendance and remarks at the Paris Peace Forum helped lend credibility to a Macron initiative. Her visit to the French biomedical research Pasteur Institute highlighted longstanding French-American cooperation on scientific research — as well as Harris’ own personal connection to that cooperation in the form of her mother’s research at the institute in the 80s. And a final visit to one of the sites of the 2015 terrorist attacks in Paris on the sixth anniversary underscored shared values and a commitment to fighting terrorism.

But it was Harris’ visit to the Suresnes American Cemetery, where Americans who fought and died in France during World Wars I and II are buried, that served as perhaps the most powerful reminder of the shared sacrifice between the two countries and a deeply rooted bond.

“If there is any question about the why or the what, in terms of our relationship as the United States with France, that is one visual and one concrete example of the endurance and the mutual commitment and interdependence between the United States and France,” Harris said on Friday, reflecting on her visit to the cemetery.

LA Times: In Paris, Kamala Harris is introducing herself to the world in personal terms.

By Noah Bierman, 11/11/2021

Harris’ trip to France has afforded her an opportunity to reveal herself on the world stage — highlighting her status as the first woman and the first woman of color to serve in such high office — after 10 months of focusing on responding to the COVD-19 pandemic and other crises that have left her domestic reputation battered.

As she introduces herself to America’s oldest ally, Harris is doing so in personal terms. She has visited a Parisian laboratory where her mother, an Indian-born scientist, conducted medical research, and the gravesite of a fellow barrier-breaker from Oakland, the vice president’s hometown, as part of her Veterans Day remembrance. Her keynote speech at the Paris Peace Forum on Thursday not only included references to her mother, but also to larger themes around growing inequality in the world.

Wall Street Journal: World Leaders Pressure Libya to Hold Elections on Time

By Jared Malsin, 11/12/2021

Vice President Kamala Harris and other world leaders gathered in Paris on Friday to make a diplomatic push in support of coming elections in Libya that could make or break the peace process in a country that has been torn apart by war and political crisis for a decade.

Ms. Harris, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, French President Emmanuel Macron and other European and Middle Eastern leaders joined the summit, which ended with a statement urging Libyans to hold the election as scheduled on Dec. 24. French officials have argued that holding the election on time will provide a definitive solution to Libya’s political crises since the 2011 ouster and death of dictator Moammar Gadhafi.

The Hill: Harris urges world leaders in Paris to address inequality. 

By Brett Samuels, 11/11/2021

Vice President Harris on Thursday implored world leaders gathered in Paris to see the coronavirus pandemic as an opportunity to examine how to address global inequality.

Harris spoke at the Paris Peace Forum, an annual gathering of political and private sector leaders, where she focused her remarks on the need for collaboration to erase gender inequality, wealth inequality and food inequality.

She noted the pandemic has exacerbated many of those issues, with school closures threatening access to education for children and highlighting disparities in internet access, and economic troubles hampering progress to close the gaps between men and women in the workforce.

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Ratings Agencies Make Clear: Build Back Better Will NOT Increase Inflation.

23 Nov

The ratings agencies have spoken, and they’ve told an inconvenient truth to Washington Republicans rooting for inflation: President Biden and Vice President Harris’ Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and Build Back Better Framework will NOT increase inflation. 

According to Reuters:

  • “U.S. President Joe Biden’s infrastructure and social spending legislation will not add to inflationary pressures in the U.S. economy, economists and analysts in leading rating agencies told Reuters on Tuesday.”
  • “The two pieces of legislation ‘should not have any real material impact on inflation’, William Foster, vice president and senior credit officer (Sovereign Risk) at Moody’s Investors Service, told Reuters.”
  • “’The bills do not add to inflation pressures, as the policies help to lift long-term economic growth via stronger productivity and labor force growth, and thus take the edge off of inflation,’ said Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody’s Analytics, which operates independently from the parent company’s ratings business.”
  • “Zandi said the costs of both the infrastructure and social spending legislation were sustainable.”
  • “‘The bills are largely paid for through higher taxes on multinational corporations and well-to-do households, and more than paid for if the benefit of the added growth and the resulting impact on the government’s fiscal situation are considered’, he said in an interview.”

[READ MORE HERE]

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Fight The Lies

23 Nov

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