Lesko: Reflections on 1st congressional year

By Debbie Lesko

It is hard to believe that this time last year I was contemplating if I should run for Congress.

After prayerful consideration with my family, I decided to throw my hat in the ring and run. After winning a special primary and general election earlier this year, I was sworn into Congress May 7, 2018. Since then, I’ve been fighting on behalf of my constituents every day to grow our economy, secure our borders, protect citizens, help veterans and senior citizens, and provide excellent constituent service for Arizonans.

Debbie Lesko

My first year in Congress has really only been eight months, but I hit the ground running on day one and never stopped. Since I was sworn in, I have one bill signed into law, sponsored two other bills, cosponsored 96 bills, signed more than 40 letters to various federal agencies and government officials to help our nation and Arizona, and joined 18 different caucuses. My office has given 87 U.S. Capitol tours to families from our district and handled more than 38,000 phone calls, letters and emails from constituents. What I’m most proud of is that my office has been able to assist hundreds of constituents who needed help with veterans’ issues, Social Security, Medicare, passports and more.

My national and border security bill, House Resolution 6400, passed out of both the House and Senate and was signed into law by President Trump Dec. 21. This legislation will help secure our border and nation by protecting our air, land and sea ports of entry from illegal activity. I also introduced H.R.1026, a resolution recognizing Medicare and Social Security as essential programs that must be protected for current enrollees and strengthened for the future. To improve education in Arizona, I introduced H.R. 6259, the Make Education Local Act, which will get more money back into our classrooms for students and teachers.

Congress passed, and the president signed into law, some very important bills since I came to Congress. I supported the VA MISSION Act, landmark legislation to improve health care for veterans. I also voted to bring 93 additional F-35s to Luke Air Force Base and give our troops the largest pay raise in nine years.

During my trips around the district, I visited 13 schools and toured a number of businesses. I’ve been to every corner of Congressional District 8 to meet with constituent groups and community organizations. I even took a trip to Nogales to meet with Customs and Border Protection and see the challenges at Arizona’s southern border first-hand. Often, my days start before the sun rises and end well into the evening, but I enjoy every minute of being your congresswoman.

I’ve certainly kept busy since day one, but I love the job. Serving the people of CD8 is an honor and a privilege, and I am blessed to have the opportunity. I’m looking forward to two more years of working hard for our district, state and nation. Thank you for your support, and may God continue to bless you and your family.

Editor’s Note: Congresswoman Debbie Lesko represents Arizona’s Eighth Congressional District in Congress and is a member of the House Homeland Security and Science, Space and Technology committees.

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