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Friday, August 9, 2013

What to Say to Stop or Amend N.J’s Congressman Chris Smith’s International Megan’s Amendment to Federal Bill HR2848- Part Two



Part Two of a Two Part Post. 

I first became aware of this terrible amendment on the morning of Saturday August 3, 2013 and immediately put up a post about it. 

I spent the majority of yesterday getting the correct names for all the appropriate Virginia Representatives, House Foreign Affairs Committee and Senate Foreign Affairs Committee contacts and now I’m sharing the fruit of that labor with you.  

Below is a copy of the message I sent out to every lawmaker in the above three groups.

Feel free to use it as a sample letter/email. Copy as little or as much of it as you like. Or if you prefer compose a brand new message of your own, that’s even better. Just as long as you contact these Federal lawmakers in the month of August before they return from their summer break (in September) when they plan then vote on HR2848.  

I do suggest including in the message to your district’s Virginia Congressman mentioning in the very first sentence that you are a constituent. 

Thank you.

Mary D. Devoy



Dear ______________________________, 

On August 1, 2013 (one day after this bill was filed) New Jersey Congressman Chris Smith submitted an amendment in the House Foreign Affairs Committee to HR2848- Department of State Operations and Embassy Security Authorization Act, Fiscal Year 2014 and the amendment and bill were unanimously approved. 

This Smith amendment does NOT belong in HR2848! 

Representative Smith’s maneuver to tack on his 6 year-old International Megan’s Law (IML) Bill as an amendment to an Embassy Security bill is disgusting. Clearly no U.S. Lawmaker would ever vote against a bill that is to enhance or fund the security of our foreign embassies especially after the 2012 Benghazi incident plus this week’s closure of 19 foreign embassies due to a terror-alert. 

HR2848 is obviously on a fast-track and Congressman Smith is capitalizing or perhaps exploiting that fact. 

For 6 years Congressman Smith has unsuccessfully attempted to mandate a restriction and/or revocation of the passports of U.S. Registered Sex Offenders.  

2008:    HR5722
2009:    HR1623
2010:     HR5138
2011:     HR3253 , HR2830 , HR3589
Still pending for 2013 HR898

Not to forget Representative Ted Poe’s similar attempt in 2010 with HR5870 

All of the “IML” bills have failed up to this point for very good reasons. 

Most of the versions have swept up anyone convicted of a sexual offense that is required to register, then there have been iterations where it’s anyone convicted of a “crime against a minor” or my favorite the vague description of “high interest offenders”. Legislation that is left open for interpretation, leads to confusion, high costs and unintended sweeping mandates. Proposed legislation need to be well written, specific, based on facts and proven data and most of all meaningful, this Smith amendment is none of those. 

Back in 2010 the Congressional Budget Office estimated that it would cost the American taxpayers $252 million from 2011-2015 to implement the International Megan’s Law. 
 

Who to Contact to Stop or Amend N.J’s Congressman Chris Smith’s International Megan’s Amendment to Federal Bill HR2848- Part One

 

Part One of a Two Part Post, more details are in the following post.
 
3 lists of contacts 

#1-         Every Federal Virginia Representative, U.S. House and U.S. Senate.
 
#2-         The U.S. House Foreign Affairs Committee Members who accepted the Smith Amendment back on August 1, 2013 but they still need to vote on the bill in September along with every House member for it to proceed onto the U.S. Senate.
#3-         The U.S. Senate Foreign Affairs Committee Members who will debate the bill IF it passes through the House onto the Senate. In this Committee amendments can be deleted and new amendments added before it goes before the entire U.S. Senate to be voted on.

 

Virginia Representatives
Congress member
Foreign Affairs Assistant
Party
D.C. Main Phone
D.C. Office/ Mailing Address
 
Eric Cantor
joel.katz@mail.house.gov
R
202-225-2815
303 Cannon House Bldg
Washington, D.C. 20515
Gerry Connolly
D
202-225-1492
424 Cannon House Bldg
Washington, D.C. 20515
J. Randy Forbes
R
202-225-6365
2135 Rayburn House Bldg
Washington, D.C. 20515
Bob Goodlatte
R
202-225-5431
2309 Rayburn House Bldg
Washington, D.C. 20515
Morgan Griffith
R
202-225-3861
1108 Longworth House Bldg
Washington, D.C. 20515
Robert Hurt
R
202-225-4711
125 Cannon House Bldg
Washington, D.C. 20515
Jim Moran
D
202-225-4376
2252 Rayburn House Bldg
Washington, D.C. 20515
Scott Rigell
R
202-225-4215
418 Cannon House Bldg
Washington, D.C. 20515
Bobby Scott
D
202-225-8351
1201 Longworth House Bldg
Washington, D.C. 20515
Robert Wittman
Office Refused to give a name
R
202-225-4261
2454 Rayburn House Bldg
Washington, D.C. 20515
Frank Wolf
R
202-225-5136
233 Cannon House Bldg
Washington, D.C. 20515
Senator
Foreign Affairs Assistant
Party
 
 
 
Mark Warner
D
202-224-2023
475 Russell Senate Bldg
Washington, D.C. 20510
Tim Kaine
D
202-224-4024
388 Russell Senate Bldg
Washington, D.C. 20510