Senator Maria Cantwell’s Background
Senator Maria Cantwell represents the state of Washington in the Senate. She has been serving as a senator for almost fifteen years now after serving in the House for Representatives for seven years. Born in Indianapolis, Cantwell is a Roman Catholic, who grew in an Irish-American neighborhood before she joined Miami University in Oxford after leaving high school. She graduated with a Bachelors of Arts degree in the field of public administration. Cantwell has remained committed to values that she inherited from her parents.
Cantwell kick-started her political career in 1986, when she was first elected as a Representative for Washington State. She won the seat for the second and third term. As a representative, Cantwell helped in drafting an Act requiring cities to come up with comprehensive growth plan. However, in 1994, a Republican candidate defeated Cantwell. She went into private business where she flourished through buying shares. In 2000, Cantwell vied and won the senate seat, and until then, she has been representing the residents of Washington State as a junior senator for in a Democratic ticket.
Cantwell believes that what an individual believes in can be achieved if he/she pushes for it. She became successful in politics because she used accompany her father to political rallies and meetings (Mayhead and Marshall 154). She always holds the values she earned from her parents. She is still working hard to assist consumers, businesses, as well as families to enjoy high standards of living through education, innovation, and health care. Cantwell prevented the Bush administration from raising the local electricity rates, in addition to protecting local jobs from foreign investor’s unfair practices. Cantwell is a strong advocate for environmental conservation: she voted for elevation of EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) into a cabinet level status to ensure clean air and safe water for drinking.
In the Senate, Cantwell has been voted severally in leadership committees. She voted for the use of military force to invade Iraq in 2002. In 2003, Cantwell voted against Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act, which was later passed into law. From the time that Cantwell joined the Senate up to now, she has missed only 29 roll call votes out of the total 4,584 votes. Cantwell is a ranking member in the Senate Committee that deals with Energy and Natural Resources, as well as the Subcommittee for Aviation Operations, Safety, and Security. In 2015, Cantwell participated in three voting process where she voted yes for Bill number HR 240 and no for Bill number S1 on both occasions.
Issues that the US Senate Should Handle
The US Senate is just below a quarter the size of the House, this explains why complex, and centralized leadership system is not required in the Senate (Bardes, Shelley and Schmidt 341). Thus, the Senate majority leader, the minority leader, as well as the respective whips control the leadership in the Senate. The Senate is concerned with the running of states; hence, it should endeavor to discuss issues affecting the common citizen. Such issues include the cost of living, regulation of oil prices, issuance of trade licenses, and education standards. Some issues in the Senate are not exhaustively covered, leaving some gaps in the implementation of laws. These issues include internal security and global climate change. Such issues are paramount to the American people and the whole humanity in general.
The Senate should endeavor to enhance security of the US through passing several bills that ensure the American people are safe within the American borders and outside the borders. Senator Cantwell has worked hard to ensure that safety and security issues along the state borders are resolved, in addition to protecting families in Washington are protected from theft and drug crimes. She has also managed to push for an important legislation to deal with identity theft. The issue of security and border disputes should be handled in the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee. The committee should discuss how the federal government should fund the agency that handles border patrol issues. The issue of border control is meant to protect America against terrorist attack, and not political parties (Mikulski, et al. 16). In the past, the Homeland Security Committee had been able to handle various catastrophes including the Hurricane Katrina and homegrown terrorism. However, the committee should expand its mandate to
The Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations (PSI) should ensure that the country is not vulnerable to cybercrime, which has become a major threat in the current world of technology. Most Americans are relying on technology on almost all aspect of their lives, hence, they are likely to suffer from violation of privacy, cyber bullying, and financial theft. The Senate should implement bills that would ensure those who violate the standard rules are strictly punished, and that no case would go unpunished. To enhance compliance, the relevant committee should push the federal government to provide funds to carry out thorough assessment of various offices to eliminate such incidents. The Senate should back Electronic Crimes Forces in its operation to identify and locate international cyber criminals that engage in bank fraud and data contravention.
The issue of global climate change affects human beings indirectly. Although the US Senate accepted that global warming is a real phenomenon, senators refused to accept that it was caused by human activities (Goldenberg). Unless the Senate is willing to accept the causes of global warming, people will continue to suffer, as the Senate is unlikely to react on such information. The discussion should not be what causes global climate change, but how to reduce global climate change. This issue should be address by the Senate Committee on Oceans, Fisheries, Atmosphere, and Coast Guard. The Senate should command the executive to invest on further research before discussing on what to accept and what to ignore.
The US Senate should contemplate on reviewing the Kyoto Protocol and incorporate the model into its climate laws. The US should not be seen as a hindrance towards searching for solutions to global warming. Global warming is a global issue, and EPA cannot handle global environment problems. The country needs to consider its citizens who work in countries that do not employ strict rules towards minimizing greenhouse gas emission. Senator Cantwell supported the notion of incorporating global warming into federal government planning because it would help in protecting the quality of air, in addition to safeguard seawaters and the living organisms in the oceans. The Senate Committee on environment should consider drafting new laws to guide on oil spillage and offshore drilling of oil. The committee should ensure the tax charged on national energy is utilized appropriately in conserving environment through conducting seminars to educate stakeholders on the need to protect the current and future generation.
Bardes, Barbara, Mack Shelley and Steffen Schmidt. American Government and Politics Today: The Essentials.Boston, MA: Wadsworth, 2014. Print.
Goldenberg, Suzanne. “US Senate refuses to accept humanity’s role in global climate change, again.” The Guardian, January 22, 2015. Web. 28 March 2015. http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2015/jan/22/us-senate-man-climate-change-global-warming-hoax
Mayhead, Molly A, and Brenda D. V. Marshall. Women’s Political Discourse: A 21st-Century Perspective. Lanham: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, 2005. Internet resource.
Mikulski, Barbara, et al. “Should The Senate Vote On A Homeland Security Appropriations Bill That Does Not Contain Immigration Riders?.” Congressional Digest 94.3 (2015): 14-31. Academic Search Premier. Web. 28 Mar. 2015.