Deseret News: Berkley stresses education, infrastructure, energy

Rep. Shelley Berkley said “jobs, jobs, jobs” is her top priority in Congress and that creating them will take investments in education, infrastructure and renewable energy.

“These are not easy times and you are doing amazing work in a short period of time,” Berkley, D-Nev., said Wednesday during an address to a joint session of the Nevada Legislature, where she served in the Assembly 28 years ago.

NPR: Rep. Tim Walz Vows A Hard Vote On The Debt Ceiling

When it comes to the debt ceiling, most lawmakers would rather take a salary cut than vote to raise it. But Democratic Rep. Tim Walz of Minnesota is not one of them. True, he’s among the dozen House Democrats the GOP considers most beatable next year. Walz is back in his swing district trying to keep his balance, and NPR’s David Welna travels with him.

Billings Gazette: Tester says U.S. agriculture policy, genetically modified crops hurt family farms

Misguided federal farm policies and genetically modified crops are undermining family farm security, Sen. Jon Tester, D-Mont., said at a high-profile food conference Wednesday in Washington, D.C.

Sharing a Georgetown University stage with Prince Charles and “Fast Food Nation” author Eric Schlosser, Tester told the audience that federal farm programs favoring some crops over others had undermined farm diversity. Those policies, along with an ever-shrinking group of buyers for farm products were making it harder for family farms to get by, he said.

Columbus Dispatch: Brown: No Free Trade Agreements Until Congress Extends Trade Adjustment Assistance

U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown and 40 other senators weighed in on a dispute over pending trade agreements between President Barack Obama and congressional Republicans Monday. They sent a letter to Obama urging him not to submit free trade agreements to Congress until it completes a long-term extension of Trade Adjustment Assistance.

Portsmouth Daily Times: Brown signs anti-SB 5 referendum

In a news release from the Ohio Democratic Party, U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, says he has signed the petition calling for a referendum against the law produced by the passage of Senate Bill 5, which restricts collective bargaining by Ohio’s public employees. McCaskill praises transparency after first open defense markup since 1980s

They talked about what to do with historic tanks and rusting guns, not exactly state secrets that need to be kept from the public eye.

But Sen. Claire McCaskill was pleased this afternoon that for the first time in 15 years, the proceedings of a Senate Armed Services panel’s fine-tuning of legislation was open to the public and press.

Huffington Post: Fighting for Our Privacy Rights, Against the FBI’s New Powers

I don’t put a lot of stock in political polls. But I’d bet any poll will tell you that a vast majority of law-abiding Americans have a problem with federal agents secretly going through your household trash, or gathering personal information about you — without reasonable cause or proper recordkeeping.

We can all agree on the need to keep America safe, but Montanans and many other Americans understand that federal investigators and law enforcement agents shouldn’t have the power to run roughshod over our constitutional rights, invading our privacy and undoing what countless American heroes have fought and died for since the birth of this country.

The Nation: Instead of Dancing With the Austerity Devil, Keith Ellison Wants Democrats to Campaign for Jobs

Minnesota sends to Congress a remarkable member of Congress who has focused on defending the Constitution, speaking truth to power in both parties and practicing a politics of principle rather than petty partisanship. Now, that House member is launching a national campaign on behalf of a new common-sense economic agenda that gets America’s priorities straight, tips the balance from Wall Street to Main Street and puts people back to work.

Needless to say, we are not talking about Michele Bachmann.

Cranston Patch: Whitehouse Visits Tedco to Announce Jobs Bill

U.S. Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse was at Tedco in Cranston today to announce a new jobs bill he will introduce in the Senate that will give tax breaks to companies that hire formerly-unemployed workers.

Tedco, a metal forming and stamping company that cranks out several million pieces per month, is a local manufacturer that offers good paying jobs to high-skilled workers.

Huffington Post: It’s Time For Congress To Act On The Paycheck Fairness Act

This week, the U.S. Supreme Court blocked up to 1.6 million women from suing Walmart for sex discrimination in a class action lawsuit. The court’s 5-4 conservative majority sided with business over women, claiming that Walmart’s well-documented wage and hiring disparities are coincidences and not a result of a persistent culture of discrimination.

This is unacceptable. In the U.S. today, women are paid only 78 cents on the dollar that men make. If the highest court in the land won’t protect women from discrimination in the workplace, then we must stand together and demand action from Congress.