Federal Correctional Workers Endorse Bost for Re-Election

MARION, IL – The Council of Prison Locals C-33 today announced its endorsement of U.S. Representative Mike Bost (IL-12) for re-election to Congress. Council of Prison Locals C-33, a part of the American Federation of Government Employees (AFGE), represents more than 30,000 bargaining unit employees in the United States. The Council is made of workers in virtually all levels of the Federal Bureau of Prisons.

“Time after time, Congressman Bost has stepped up to the plate for federal correctional workers,” said E.O. Young, National President AFGE, CPL C-33. “In these tough political times, Congressman Bost has been a constant voice for our members, their safety, and their families.”

“I’ve visited USP Marion to see the important work correctional officers do and hear firsthand about the issues they face,” said Bost. “I’ve also fought in Congress for their key legislative priorities, including the Correctional Officer Protection Act, the Defending Public Safety Employees’ Retirement Act, the Correctional Officer Self-Protection Act, and the Thin Blue Line Act. Corrections officers know that I will always have their back.”

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Coal Miners Union Endorses Bost for Re-Election

SESSER, IL – The National Council of Coal Miners Political Action Committee (COMPAC), the political arm of the United Mine Workers of America (UMWA), today endorsed U.S. Representative Mike Bost (IL-12) for re-election to Congress. The UMWA is the largest union in North America representing coal miners and is one of the largest in the world. The UMWA represents workers in and around underground coal mines, surface mining operations, and preparation plants.

“We very much appreciate the support Congressman Bost has given both active and retired coal miners and their families, especially in such difficult times as the coal industry is experiencing today,” said UMWA International President Cecil E. Roberts. “His strong voice in support of our members is an inspiration to us all.”

“My grandfather served as president of United Mine Workers Local 1457 nearly half a century ago. Coal mining is in my blood and is part of Southern Illinois’ heritage,” said Bost. “I understand the important work generations of Southern Illinois miners have put into powering our nation. I am proud to have their endorsement, and I will always fight for them in Washington.”

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Cairo Mayor Tyrone Coleman Endorses Bost for Re-Election

CAIRO, IL – Tyrone Coleman, mayor of Cairo, Illinois, today announced his endorsement of U.S. Representative Mike Bost (IL-12) for re-election. Coleman and Bost have worked extensively in a bipartisan manner to address public housing issues in Alexander County.

“As mayor of Cairo, I’ve seen firsthand how much Mike Bost cares about the communities he represents,” said Tyron Coleman. “ Mike is a fighter and a leader, and Southern Illinois needs him in Washington, D.C. I’m proud to support Mike Bost for Congress.

“I’m thankful to Mayor Coleman for his endorsement, but more importantly for his friendship,” said Bost. “I respect the mayor’s strong leadership in addressing the challenges facing his city, and I am proud to work with him, as Republican and Democrat, to build a brighter future.”

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Infrastructure Union Endorses Bost for Re-Election

MURPHYSBORO, IL – The International Union of Operating Engineers (IUOE) Local 150 today announced its endorsement of U.S. Representative Mike Bost (IL-12) for re-election. IUOE Local 150 represents approximately 23,000 men and women working in a variety of construction and other industries throughout our region.

“As a member of the House Transportation & Infrastructure Committee, I’m honored to have the endorsement of the IUOE,” said Bost. “I have always had 2 goals while serving on the committee. I want to help build and maintain the infrastructure in Southern Illinois. I also want to ensure the men and women constructing these infrastructure projects can collectively bargain for wages and benefits consistent with their skill and professionalism. Hardworking families in Southern Illinois should be able to support themselves after an honest day’s work.”

“The International Union of Operating Engineers Local 150 is proud to endorse Mike Bost for re-election to Congress,” said James Sweeney, President-Business Manager of IUOE Local 150. “Our members can count on Mike Bost to protect their collective bargaining rights and the federal prevailing wage laws that support a middle-class living. In addition, Southern Illinoisans can rely on Mike Bost to fight for safe infrastructure that spurs economic activity and job creation.”

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Transportation Trade Union Endorses Bost for Re-Election

MURPHYSBORO, IL – The International Association of Sheet Metal, Air, Rail and Transportation Workers (SMART), today announced its endorsement of U.S. Representative Mike Bost (IL-12) for re-election. SMART- Transportation is the largest railroad union in North America, with more than 500 locals. It represents employees on every Class I and Class II railroad, as well as employees on many regional and shortline railroads. It also represents bus and mass transit employees on approximately 45 bus and transit systems.

“I’m honored to have the endorsement of the SMART labor union,” said Bost. “As a former dues-paying labor union member and member of the House Transportation & Infrastructure Committee, I’ve consistently voted to protect the prevailing wage and the ability to collectively bargain. Southern Illinois working families know I’m fighting for them in Congress.”

“SMART-Transportation endorsed Rep. Bost because of his strong support of Amtrak, and general labor issues. He is one of the top Republicans in the Congress in supporting issues that are important to us,” said John Risch, National Legislative Director for SMART-Transportation.

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Politifact Calls Brendan Kelly’s Attacks “False”

By Stephen Koff

Politifact

In Illinois, Brendan Kelly wants to cash in on a Mike Bost vote

In Washington, Mike Bost has agreed consistently that Congress members, earning $174,00 a year, don’t need a pay raise. But the Illinois Republican spent two decades in his state’s General Assembly before his 2014 election to Congress, and in one of those years — 11 years ago — he voted for a 9.6 percent pay raise for state lawmakers.

You can guess where this is going.

“While southern Illinois families struggled, Bost voted to raise his own pay.” So said a campaign ad from his Democratic challenger, Brendan Kelly.

Is this true? The suggestion is that Bost took care of himself and his lawmaker friends rather than the taxpayers. But Bost’s record of voting against pay raises is much longer.

The single vote

In 2007, the Illinois General Assembly was trying to pass a 75-page, multipart supplemental spending bill to fund schools, multiple state agencies and employee salaries. By the time it came up for a final vote, other lawmakers had included a measure to raise the assembly’s pay, with rank-and-file members’ salaries rising to $63,143 from $57,619. The Legislature had not received a raise, even one to cover cost-of-living increases, in several years, but this was controversial nevertheless because of claims that the state had bigger priorities, and limited resources.

Supporters of the bill said its passage was essential — not because of the pay raise but because the underlying bill contained multiple other state funding measures. That’s why Bost said he voted yes.

He had voted no the previous year on a similar measure with a proposed 9.6 percent pay hike.

Bost had also voted against pay raises numerous other times, his campaign and Illinois media said. WSIL-TV, an Illinois ABC affiliate, reported that while in the Illinois Legislature, “Bost voted against pay increases for lawmakers more than a dozen times, and even voted to require furlough days for legislators, actually reducing compensation.”

The Belleville News-Democrat, examining Illinois General Assembly documents, found the same thing in its own examination.

Now in Congress nearly four years, Bost has voted to freeze congressional pay 12 times. The number of votes exceeds his time in Congress because annual spending bills typically go through several stages, requiring several votes.

A nuance

This is about pay raises, but inflation-linked cost-of-living, or COLA, increases are also a form of a raise. Unless blocked by the Legislature, Illinois grants COLA adjustments automatically, a result of an independent compensation board’s decision decades ago. When counting votes against pay raises, Bost and the Illinois media generally include Bost’s multiple votes to skip the COLA hikes

But there was an instance in 2010, confirmed by PolitiFact in Illinois legislative records, when Bost voted yes on a floor amendment to suspend a COLA hike and require legislators to take 12 furlough days — yet when the measure got attached to a much broader budget bill, Bost voted no on that bill. He said he could not support the bill other reasons.

Technically speaking, that meant he voted against the final legislators’ COLA freeze and furlough.

The same pay provisions came up the next year, however, in a clean bill pertaining only to lawmaker compensation — and Bost voted for the cuts.

Our ruling

Kelly’s ad says Bost “voted to raise his own pay.” There is one 2007 vote that is not in question. Bost’s campaign spokesman said Bost voted for the bill despite that distasteful element because so many other provisions were essential for the state.

But Bost voted repeatedly against other pay hikes — not only the COLAs but a 9.6 percent proposed pay hike in a 2006 bill as well. If counting, those votes outnumbered the 2007 vote. Looking at his overall record gives a very different impression. We rate the claim Mostly False.

 

Brendan Kelly Playing Political Games with Suffering Families

Brendan Kelly and Nancy Pelosi’s most recent attack ad was proven to be filled with lies and half-truths, so they’ve gone back to the gutter for more. This time they stretch the truth on Mike Bost’s record fighting against the opioid epidemic in a 30-second television ad.

“Brendan Kelly and Nancy Pelosi have a lot in common, but most importantly they’re both liars and are absolutely ruthless,” said Dustin Rhodes, Campaign Manager for Bost for Congress. “Brendan Kelly not only spreads mistruths without flinching, but he’s trying to score political points on the backs of suffering families. Mike Bost has a strong legislative record of fighting the opioid epidemic and it’s a shame that Brendan Kelly wants to turn human suffering into a political game.”

Bost Fighting the Opioid Epidemic

Mike Bost has been an active leader in combating the opioid epidemic in Southern Illinois. He formed an Opioid Task Force that includes local public officials, health providers, education professionals, law enforcement, and families of those affected by the opioid crisis.

This week, Mike Bost will be voting for the most significant congressional effort against a single drug crisis in history when the House later this week considers H.R. 6, the Substance Use-Disorder Prevention that Promotes Opioid Recovery and Treatment (SUPPORT) for Patients and Communities Act.

Mike Bost has also cosponsored more than a dozen bipartisan pieces of legislation and has voted for more than $10 billion in funding to combat the flow of illegal opioids into Southern Illinois. These bills enhance national and local solutions to assist families, health providers and community officials improve access to help and treatment for those addicted to opioids.

  • HR 449: “The Synthetic Drug Awareness Act”
  • H.R. 664, “Stem the Tide of Overdose Prevalence from Opiate Drugs Act”
  • H.R. 1057, “the STOP Act”
  • H.R. 2652, the “Veteran Overmedication Prevention Act”
  • H.R. 2851, the “SISTA Act”
  • H.R. 3566, “the Addiction Recovery for Local Communities Act”
  • H.R. 3832, “the Veterans Opioid Abuse Prevention Act”
  • H.R. 4275, “the Empower Pharmacists in the Fight Against Opioid Abuse Act”
  • H.R. 5228, “the SCREEN Act”
  • H.R. 5603, “the Access to Telehealth Services for Substance Abuse Act”
  • H.R. 5752, “the Stop Illicit Drug Importation Act”
  • H.R. 5889, “the Recognizing Early Childhood Trauma Related to Substance Abuse Act”
  • H.R. 5891, “the Improving the Federal Response to Families Impacted by Substance Abuse Act”
  • H.R. 1625, “the FY 2018 Omnibus Appropriations Act”

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Firefighters Union Endorses Bost for Re-Election

MURPHYSBORO, IL – The Associated Fire Fighters of Illinois (AFFI) today announced its endorsement of U.S. Representative Mike Bost (IL-12) for re-election. AFFI represents over 15,000 professional firefighters in 225 communities across Illinois.

“As a former firefighter, I know firsthand the dedication our first responders show to the communities they serve,” said Bost. “I’m honored to stand shoulder to shoulder with my firefighter brothers and sisters who put their lives on the line for their communities and I’m humbled by their support.”

“The Associated Fire Fighters of Illinois is proud to endorse Congressman Mike Bost for re-election in Illinois’ 12th Congressional District,” said Pat Devaney, AFFI President. “As a former firefighter, Mike Bost understands the needs of our first responders. We can count on Mike to put partisanship aside and stand up for Southern Illinois’ communities.”

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Op-ed: Workhorses Get Things Done

In Congress, you learn real quick that the barn is full of show horses and workhorses. The show horses talk a big game while galloping from one cable news camera to the next.

But it’s the workhorses that get things done.

Southern Illinois’ has a lot of workhorses, and I knew if I was going to remain true to those values, I’d need to find common ground with members from across the political spectrum without compromising my principles. That is why every single bill I’ve introduced has had bipartisan support. A Democrat co-sponsor on every single one. Several of those bills are now law.

As a Marine and chairman of the Veterans’ Affairs Disability Subcommittee, I knew we had to honor the sacrifices of our veterans and their families and ensure they are provided the best care possible. I was shocked when it was brought to my attention last year that more than 470,000 American veterans were languishing in the VA benefits appeals process, waiting to have their cases heard and their benefits rendered. In response, I went to work with U.S. Rep. Elizabeth Esty, D-Connecticut, and introduced the Veterans Appeals Improvement and Modernization Act to make the VA appeals process more efficient. That bill was signed into law by President Trump last year.

In recent years, we’ve seen an alarming rise in violence at our schools. We have to ensure our children have a safe environment to grow and learn. That’s why I partnered with U.S. Rep. Brad Schneider, D-Illinois, to write the Securing Our Schools (SOS) Act, which established a federal program for local school districts to enhance their security and install panic alert systems. A school in Chicago and one in De Soto or Herrin have very different security challenges, but these grants allow the school districts the flexibility to address their unique needs. The SOS Act became law as part of a larger school safety legislative package earlier this year.

As a member of the House Agriculture Committee, I am proud to represent the more than 10,000 producers in our district. What I’ve heard from them, especially our beginning farmers, is that the cost of doing business is growing while their revenue to reinvest in their business and employees is shrinking. That’s why I introduced the bipartisan Beginning Agriculturist Lifetime Employment (BALE) Act to give beginning farmers, ranchers, and agricultural producers better access to credit so they can expand or diversify their operations. The BALE Act passed the House as part of the FARM Bill earlier this summer and is expected to be signed into law later this fall.

When the holiday floods of 2016 breached the Len Small Levee in Alexander County, destroying several thousand acres of infrastructure and agriculture land, residents were left in bureaucratic limbo as federal agencies calculated whether fixing the levee was worth their while. In the meantime, Southern Illinois families suffered. So I worked on a legislative fix gives a lifeline to rural communities struggling to rebuild after a disaster by providing financial flexibility for local sponsors to partner with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to meet their economic threshold for repair. My provision passed the House this month and should be signed into law in the coming weeks.

So when you’re watching a debate this fall or come across a slick new attack ad on television, think about which horse is right for Southern Illinois. The show horse or workhorse?

Either way, I want you to know that it has truly been the honor of a lifetime representing Southern Illinois in Congress. Who would have thought that a kid who joined the Marines out of high school and became a truck driver and a firefighter could one day go on to write bills in Congress?

It’s been a humbling ride.


September 23, 2018

The Southern Illinoisan

 

Carpenters’ Union Endorses Mike Bost for Re-Election

MURPHYSBORO, IL – The St. Louis – Kansas City Carpenters Regional Council today announced its endorsement of U.S. Representative Mike Bost (IL-12) for re-election. The St. Louis – Kansas City Carpenters Regional Council represents more than 20,000 members in 33 locals across the region, including in Southern Illinois.

“As a former dues-paying labor union member, I’m honored to have the endorsement of the Carpenters Regional Council,” said Bost. “Hardworking families in Southern Illinois should be able to support themselves after an honest day’s work. That’s why I’ve consistently voted to protect the prevailing wage and the ability to collectively bargain. Southern Illinois working families know I’m fighting for them in Congress.”

“Mike Bost is a friend to organized labor and working families throughout Southern Illinois,” said Mark Dalton, Assistant Political Director for the St. Louis – Kansas City Carpenters Regional Council. “The Carpenters Regional Council advocates for fair wages and comprehensive benefits packages for our members. Mike Bost has been with us every step of the way. It is very important to us, and all of Labor, to protect prevailing wage (Davis-Bacon) and Mike Bost has been an outspoken leader on that issue. That’s why we’re proud to endorse Mike Bost for re-election to Congress.”

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