March Madness - March 17, 2017
By the time many of you read this note from me, your bracket will most likely be "busted." Undoubtedly frustrated that you picked the wrong 13-seed to upset the wrong 4-seed, you will quickly be reminded that this is why us sports fans love this time of year. The unpredictability of the games and the "madness" that ensues are what make the NCAA tournament so exciting.
The Right Process - March 12, 2017
House Republicans and President Trump promised the American people a change in how their government will operate. The first noticeable change will be keeping to our promise of working in an open and transparent way to positively affect health care policy in this country.
'Unify the Civilized World to Reject Jihad' - February 27, 2017
Earlier this month, along with my colleagues on the House Financial Services and Foreign Affairs Committees, I went on a Congressional Delegation trip to the Republic of Congo and Egypt to meet with leaders in these two countries to discuss their commitment to fighting terror groups like Boko Haram, Al Qaeda, and ISIS.
What Do You Know About Dodd-Frank? - February 14, 2017
Much of my professional life was spent in banking, with the last 15 years spent running a community bank in Little Rock. It was here that I saw first-hand the damaging effects the Dodd-Frank Act had on smaller banks and the customers who had traditionally come to us seeking capital and access to credit. In part, this is what inspired me to seek public office and use my 30-plus years in the banking industry to provide sound input in creating financial regulations that make sense for the American people.
Separating Fact from Fiction - February 5, 2017
This week, my Conway District Office welcomed students wishing to state their objections to some of the actions our president has taken that I have supported. It was a positive discussion, and as I told the reporter who covered the story, my office strives to accommodate the thoughts and concerns of all of our constituents. I love to see young adults, particularly students, engaging with their government on issues that are meaningful to them. Our doors will always be open to those who are in need of our help or want to express their views.
First Week of President Trump - January 26, 2017
In 1981, then-President-elect Ronald Reagan decided to move the Presidential Inauguration to the West Front of the Capitol (previously held on the east side of the Capitol) because he wanted to take the Oath facing his home state of California. This was a wise decision by a wise man; the setting overlooking the National Mall is always breathtaking. But it is even more awe-inspiring when it is full of people who have descended upon it to witness the peaceful transition of power, the hallmark of our democracy.
Our Plan for Affordable Healthcare - January 13, 2017
The beginning of the 115th Congress marks an exciting time for our country. On the very first day of the Congress, the first bill we passed was one that would keep admonishments given to poorly performing Department of Veterans Affairs employees (VA) employees on those individuals’ records for the duration of their time at VA. Over the past two years, Congress has demonstrated a commitment to reforming VA so that it would perform in a way that meets the needs of the veteran, and I am proud that we will be continuing that work as we transition to a new administration
A Year in Review - December 28, 2016
This past year has been an exciting one for our country, and I am honored to have spent it serving and representing so many wonderful Arkansans in the U.S. House of Representatives. While I am looking forward to continuing my service to our great state and the Second Congressional District, I am also proud of the important work that we have accomplished in Congress to address the needs of Arkansans and hardworking Americans throughout the country.
Top 10 Biggest VA Embarrassments of the 114th Congress - December 19, 2016
File this under the "You Have Got to Be Kidding Me" section of the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) newspaper headline scrapbook: "Report: VA staff left veteran's body in shower nine hours, tried to hide mistakes." My visceral reaction to this story was that this might be the worst story about VA I had read since coming to Congress.
Pearl Harbor 75th Anniversary - December 7, 2016
"HERE RESTS IN HONORED GLORY AN AMERICAN SOLDIER KNOWN BUT TO GOD" are the words that read on the Tomb of Unknown Soldier at Arlington National Cemetery. This afternoon, I made the trip across the river into Virginia from Washington D.C., to lay a wreath at the foot of the tomb.
Ending the Year on A High Note - December 3, 2016
In the final weeks of the 114th Congress, there is still some unfinished business to accomplish in Washington. And this week, the House moved forward with two of the most substantial and innovative legislative ideas to come out of the Congress this year.
A Time for Optimism - November 17, 2016
We are entering an exciting and rare time in our country's history. Only four times before has a Republican president been sworn into office with Republicans in control of the House and the Senate. This president has an opportunity to take the blueprint that we in Congress have laid out for him and truly "Make America Great Again."
Veterans Day Message - November 11, 2016
I came to Congress because I believed my experience as a leader in our business community would allow me to be a voice for commonsense economic policy. While we are making strides in Washington to improve the economic environment in America, the work I am most proud of after my first two years as your Congressman is what we have done on behalf of our veterans. Veterans Day is an appropriate time to share that message.
Increasing Government Accountability - November 6, 2016
In my view, recent years have been a low point for government accountability. Senior administration officials have been involved in scandal after scandal, and rarely do they do what is needed to clean up their own mess and discipline those at fault.
Affordable Care Act? - October 29, 2016
Just before the Affordable Care Act, more commonly referred to as Obamacare, became the law of the land, then-Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi infamously said: "We have to pass [Obamacare] so that you can find out what is in it…." Republicans warned against the nightmare scenario that a federally mandated healthcare system would create, but still, Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid, and President Obama pushed forward with their signature legislative "achievement."
Security Matters Most - October 20, 2016
The size and scope of the role of the federal government has become increasingly unclear. As a conservative Member of Congress, I fight on a daily basis to limit the role of the federal government in your daily lives, while at the same time ensuring we commit resources and new accountability measures toward the limited endeavors where we need government to excel.
Breast Cancer Awareness Month - October 12, 2016
October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and for many Americans, the fight against this deadly disease is personal. With one in eight American women developing breast cancer over the course of their lives, too many of us know someone who has been diagnosed with breast cancer.
Congressional App Challenge - October 4, 2016
For the third consecutive year, the House of Representatives is hosting the Congressional STEM App Challenge to help foster the creativity and imagination of America's next generation of tech entrepreneurs.
#22PushupChallenge - September 26, 2016
On average, 18-22 veterans are taking their own lives every day. This is a national tragedy that Congress, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), non-profits, community-based organizations, private business, and regular citizens need to join forces to correct.
Correcting Bureaucratic Incompetence - September 19, 2016
Yesterday’s Arkansas Democrat-Gazette featured a story about a 97-year-old World War II veteran who had his only source of income, his veterans pension, garnished because of an alleged default on a Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) home loan in North Carolina 20 years ago.
15 Years Later - September 11, 2016
At just before 8am central time on Tuesday, September 11th, 2001, I was driving from the Quality Inn in Bentonville, AR to Bella Vista, AR to meet the FDIC team at a recently closed bank that my banking company had agreed to purchase.
Education Roundtable Highlights This Week in Arkansas - September 2, 2016
A quality education is the best tool for making the next generation of Arkansans more successful than the last. This topic has been a priority of mine since I came to Congress at the beginning of last year.
A Better Way: Eliminating Poverty - August 19, 2016
One of the joys of American exceptionalism is being able to watch the Olympics every two years and see our gifted athletes dominate international competition. Our athletes remain a wonderful source of pride and inspiration for this Nation.
A Better Way: Tax Reform - August 10, 2016
In last week's newsletter I talked extensively about Speaker Paul Ryan's "A Better Way" agenda, and a major part of this plan is the work we are doing on tax reform. Yesterday, I had the opportunity to host a Tax Reform Roundtable at the Arkansas State Chamber of Commerce in Little Rock with Arkansas business leaders, tax professionals, and other stakeholders to discuss House Republicans’ plan for reforming the current tax code.
A Better Way - August 2, 2016
House Republicans, led by Speaker Paul Ryan, took time in June and July to unveil our policy platform to rebuild our economy, strengthen national security, and restore the principles of our Nation's guiding document: the Constitution.
Wise Words from a Familiar Voice - July 14, 2016
I wanted to take a moment to reflect on last week's terrible shootings in Dallas. The City of Dallas holds a special place in my own life, it is where my wife, Martha, and I met, married, and began our careers.
My Day with the Walking Veteran; Golden Fleece Announcement - July 6, 2016
One of my favorite times of the year is the Fourth of July. This Fourth of July weekend I was able to travel all over the Second Congressional District, talking with constituents while celebrating the birth of our Nation.
A Plan for a Fair and Simple Tax Code - June 30, 2016
House Republicans are leading on this issue, and just last week, we unveiled our agenda for tax reform. It is nearly impossible to find a major issue in Washington that has such universal appeal, but the American people, across almost all ideological spectrums, support reforming the tax code.
Border Security: Findings from My Visits to Our Southwest Border - June 23, 2016
On Monday night, I went on “Lou Dobbs Tonight” to recap my findings from my recent trip to the U.S.-Mexico Border in San Diego, California. This was my third border trip, having visited El Paso, Texas, in April of last year and Laredo, Texas, last October.
Reforming Social Security Disability Insurance - June 14, 2016
Last week, along with Sen. Tom Cotton and Sen. Mike Lee, I introduced legislation to address a serious problem related to the solvency to one of our mandatory spending programs: disability insurance. H.R.5409 Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) Return to Work Act will modernize SSDI to keep its benefits available to those who need them most.
Weekly Newsletter - June 7, 2016
Following a productive district work period at home in Arkansas, I am back in Washington today for what is shaping up to be a busy legislative week. Congress will continue its work on moving forward with the appropriations process, receive an address to a joint-session of Congress from Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, and vote on a bill that deals with the Puerto Rico financial crisis.
Memorial Day Message - May 30, 2016
Memorial Day is a time to honor the brave men and women who have laid down their lives in defense of our Republic. These heroes sacrificed everything to serve their country dutifully, all in the name of freedom.
Bad News for the President's Healthcare Law - May 18, 2016
The past week has been a good one for those in favor of dismantling Obamacare and heading in a better direction. On Monday, the Supreme Court handed a victory to the Little Sisters of the Poor when they unanimously voted to vacate previous rulings on Zubik v. Burwell and send the case back to the lower courts to negotiate a compromise that protects the rights of religious organizations.
Ninety-One Year Old Veteran Receives Purple Heart - May 9, 2016
I had the honor of taking part in an emotional moment for one of Arkansas's great warriors when Edsel Smith of Bryant, Arkansas, was awarded a Purple Heart at a ceremony in Little Rock last Tuesday. Mr. Smith, a ninety-one year old veteran of both World War II and Korea was wounded in Korea, during the campaign to take the Chosin Reservoir.
Small Business Week - May 3, 2016
This week is Small Business Week in America, and I will be in Arkansas stopping by some of our local establishments. Central Arkansas is home to many outstanding small businesses, and I have enjoyed spending time traveling throughout the entire Second Congressional District visiting with the hardworking people who own, operate, and work at them.
70 Years of Fulbright - April 22, 2016
Yesterday, I was joined by my Arkansas colleagues to celebrate one of America’s finest contributions to the international community. We planted a tree on the Capitol Grounds to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the Fulbright Program. Established in 1946 by then-Arkansas U.S. Senator J. William Fulbright, this exceptionally American contribution to the world has educated over 360,000 students from 165 countries, including 52 Nobel Laureates and 31 heads of state.
My Visit to Russia and Poland - April 15, 2016
Last week, I traveled with with four of my colleagues to Russia and Poland. I wanted to hear first-hand from the Russians in Moscow their views on Syria, Ukraine, and the state of American-Russian relations. While in Warsaw, I listened to Polish assessments on these same issues from a European point of view. In both countries, we had the opportunity to engage with business leaders, students, media, academics, and elected officials.
100 Miles for 100 Years - March 30, 2016
This week is the first of Congress' two-week district work period. I am excited to be back in Arkansas and am hosting a variety of events and speaking with many different constituents and local leaders.
#MarchMadness - March 22, 2016
Over the weekend, I watched the UALR Trojans play against the Iowa State Cyclones in the round of 32 in the NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament. The outcome of the game was not what Trojan fans had hoped for, but the loss can't take anything away from their tremendous season!
Announcing Mobile Office Hours Throughout the District This Week - March 14, 2016
As your member of Congress, being able to reach all of my constituents is an important part of the role I serve in our community. We have two great office locations in Little Rock and in Conway where my staff and I handle casework and meet with constituents.
The Administration’s Assault on Savings - March 9, 2016
When talking with constituents at home in Arkansas, I hear a litany of concerns on a wide range of topics, including doing more to care for our veterans, balancing the federal budget, and replacing Obamacare.
Arkansas's Historic and Pivotal Role in Advancing Civil Rights - February 29, 2016
Last week was productive in both Arkansas and in Washington. On Monday, I hosted a Community Empowerment Initiative (CEI) Roundtable in Little Rock. I regularly hold CEI events to hear from local community leaders on how we can work together to alleviate poverty, improve access to quality education and workforce skills, and boost opportunity for all our citizens.
Arkansas's Future Tech Entrepreneurs - February 22, 2016
I was able to spend this past week back home in Arkansas's Second Congressional District meeting with students, teachers, veterans, local judges, business and community leaders, and many other constituents.
Thoughts on This President's Day - February 15, 2016
With Saturday's news of the passing of U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, our country is left with a giant vacancy on its highest court. Like many Americans, I appreciated and admired the wit, wisdom, and dedication to the law that he displayed throughout his life.
My Visit to the Naval Academy - February 10, 2016
Last night, the House passed nine veterans bills, all of which are important to Congress achieving its goal of creating a more efficient Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) that not only provides the best care for our veterans, but also is more accountable to taxpayers.
Education Matters - January 31, 2016
Last week, Southwestern Energy announced they would be laying off 600 employees in Arkansas. This is troubling news, and my thoughts are with the employees and families in Arkansas that are affected. The news also speaks to real economic problems we face here in central Arkansas and the need for a pro-growth energy policy.
The Administration’s Weak Stance on Iran - January 19, 2016
Last summer, I recorded a video message expressing my disappointment that the president had not used his nuclear agreement with Iran as an opportunity to free the Americans being illegally detained by the Iranian government. At the time, I urged the president to use the economic clout of the West to force the oppressive Iranian Regime into returning Robert Levinson, Amir Hekmati, Jason Rezaian, and Saeed Abedini to America.
New Year, New Tactics - January 12, 2016
Congress's first week back in the new year was certainly not uneventful. For the first time since Republicans became the majority party in the House, we sent to the president’s desk a bill gutting Obamacare and defunding Planned Parenthood.
Congressional Highlights for 2015 - December 31, 2015
It is an honor to be your voice in Congress, and as we approach the New Year, I want to wish you and yours a safe and happy 2016. I look forward to another year of representing your interests in Washington, and while we have much to do in the coming year, here are just some of our accomplishments from 2015:
The Next Generation of Great American Innovators - December 16, 2015
Young people respond to inspiration and opportunity. During my youth, I remember fondly President John Kennedy's goal of sending man to the Moon in ten years. What may have seemed unachievable was not only completed, but was done so in a way that jump-started a global technological revolution.
Highways, Paul Ryan's Vision for America, and Honoring a Great Arkansan - December 7, 2015
Last Saturday was "Small Business Saturday," and to mark the occasion, I visited someone of my favorite local small businesses. As we enter this Holiday Season, I encourage all of you to "think locally" when doing your holiday shopping.
Syrian Refugees - November 23, 2015
The attacks in Paris were a reminder that we are at war with an enemy who doesn't adhere to the rules of engagement of civilized nations. This barbaric assault on democracy was carried out by thugs who wanted to disturb how free people live.
Constituent Services Highlights - November 18, 2015
When I came to Congress, one of my primary goals was to be a great resource for the people of the Second Congressional District. As a banker, and now as a Congressman, a core belief that I have long held is that customer--now constituent--services are vital to a successful operation.
Veterans Day Message - November 11, 2015
Veterans Day is a time to recognize and honor all of the men and women who have served and continue to serve in our military. Some of these heroes fought and died for this great Nation in foreign lands to keep conflict from our shores, risking everything for the country they loved and leaving behind families and friends and the lives they could have lived.
New Beginnings - November 3, 2015
This weekend, I wrote an op-ed for the Washington Times listing a few observations for the challenges facing Congress as we transition to a new Speaker of the House, most notably a President who has a penchant for blocking our reasonable pro-growth policies.
The President's New Low - October 26, 2015
Last week, I went on First News with Kevin Miller and the Dave Elswick Show to discuss the President's potential veto of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2016. At the time of these interviews, I was surprised we were even having the conversation because it seemed almost impossible that the President would veto the bill that funds all aspects of our military, including pay and benefits for the men and women who fight our wars.
More Work to Be Done on Our Border - October 20, 2015
Beginning with a trip to the El Paso, TX area in April, I am personally making assessment visits along our critical southwest border. Last week, I continued my tour of the border by joining Congressman Henry Cuellar (D-TX) in his hometown of Laredo, Texas.
Another Illogical Veto Threat - October 13, 2015
Last week, the U.S. House of Representatives passed my bill, H.R. 3192, the Homebuyers Assistance Act, by a bipartisan vote of a 303-121. H.R. 3192 would provide a formal hold-harmless period for those making a good faith effort to comply with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s (CFPB) Truth in Lending Act and the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (TILA-RESPA) Integrated Disclosure (TRID) rule, which became effective on October 3, 2015.
The Pope's Message to Congress - September 30, 2015
In my nine months in Congress, I have not been a part of a week in Washington that was as uniting, hopeful, and inspiring as the one that just passed. The visit by Pope Francis was a historic moment for the Congress, and I was truly honored to have been able to be in attendance for his speech.
A Bad Deal - September 24, 2015
Like many of you, I am extremely concerned by the Administration's nuclear agreement with Iran. Implementation of the agreement is a direct threat to the safety and security of America and many of her allies throughout the world, particularly Israel.
Toughts on the 14th Anniversary of September 11 - September 11, 2015
It is hard to believe it has been 14 years since the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, when the wounds are still fresh on the minds of many Americans.
Hurricane Katrina: Ten Years Later - September 2, 2015
Like most Americans, ten years ago this week I watched with great horror and sadness as Hurricane Katrina pounded the Gulf Coast and wreaked immense devastation on the people of Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and Florida.
The Path to Citizenship - August 25, 2015
Last week, I had the privilege of speaking at Arkansas's naturalization oath ceremony in Little Rock. Watching the group be sworn in as American citizens was an inspiring moment for me, as well as the many other people in the room.
Back to School - August 19, 2015
This week marked the first days of school for most students in central Arkansas. This is always an exciting time of year for them, especially those entering their senior year of high school.
Here to Help - August 14, 2015
I posted this story on Facebook yesterday, but I wanted to relay it to you here as well. A constituent, Anne Roark, recently reached out to me asking for assistance in getting the military medals that her deceased father, Price Roark, received during his time in the U.S. Army.
What a Waste - August 3, 2015
This week was Congress' last before the district work period. While I have enjoyed the busy legislative schedule of the past seven months, I am excited to be able to spend the next month touring the Second Congressional District. Hearing your views on the issues that matter most to you is essential to my work.
Dodd-Frank: A Nightmare on Main Street - July 27, 2015
This week marked the 5th anniversary of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act's becoming law. Under the promise of ending future bank bailouts, enhancing consumer protection, and boosting our overall economy, the President signed Dodd-Frank into law.
American Resolve - July 20, 2015
Just weeks after Private Quinton I. Ezeagwula and the family of Private William "Andy" Long received Purple Heart medals for the 2009 recruiting office attack in Little Rock, the American people witnessed another horrific event, in which the battlefield was abruptly moved to the homeland.
Are You on Instagram? - July 13, 2015
Are you on Instagram? If you are, please follow me at username JFrenchHill. As I have said many times before, communicating with constituents is paramount to being a good legislator. Whether it is in person, over the phone, via email, or on Twitter, Facebook, and Instragram, I take my interactions with you, my constituent, very seriously.
Happy Fourth of July - July 4, 2015
I want to start this week's update by wishing you a happy Fourth of July! As people throughout the country come together to celebrate the 239th anniversary of the signing of the Declaration of Independence, I would enjoy hearing how you are celebrating with your friends and family.
Disarming Iran - June 29, 2015
As your representative in Congress, getting your feedback is invaluable to the job. Please reach out on Facebook to share your thoughts with me. Over the past few weeks, I have noted that many of you are greatly concerned about the nuclear agreement with Iran.
Father's Day Message From Congressman Hill - June 21, 2015
This Father's Day, I want to take a moment to recognize the important role fathers play in our community. Whether it is a biological father, an adoptive father, a mentor, or another family member who steps in to fill a void, fathers give children the support they need to be successful in life.
Promoting American Job Growth - June 11, 2015
As the House works to address the issues surrounding the proposed legislation governing presidential authority to negotiate trade treaties, more commonly known as Trade Promotion Authority (TPA), I ask that you answer a few quick questions on this important topic.
D-Day: How America and Our Allies Saved the World - June 7, 2015
The flooding in Arkansas over the past two weeks is a reminder that we have no control of Mother Nature, but it was also a reminder of the urgency our community always demonstrates when helping friends and neighbors affected by disaster.
The Golden Fleece Award - June 2, 2015
Remembering Our Heroes - May 25, 2015
There is no more noble a cause than risking your life to defend the people and the virtues you value most. Since our brave founders signed the Declaration of Independence, America has been powered by patriots willing to die for the liberty and freedom of our Nation.
The 114th Congress: Committed to Keeping America Safe - May 18, 2015
Over half of the members of the majority party in Washington have been in Congress under five years. While we may have the least seniority, I think you are beginning to see our influence in the day-to-day activities of the Congress.
Why We Need TPA - May 11, 2015
I saw a troubling report on the news this week. Any loss of jobs in Arkansas is always displeasing, but it is especially frustrating when you realize we can take actions to promote jobs and careers. Hundreds of Arkansans in the oil and gas industry are out of jobs because we have outdated regulations limiting the industry's ability to keep growing and investing to offset recent price declines.
A Smarter Approach to Appropriating - May, 3, 2015
I promised you I would work to stop wasteful government spending in Washington. While there is still a lot of work to be done, through its first four months, the 114th Congress has been refreshingly effective and efficient at meeting this goal.
One Year Later: Remembering the Victims - April 27, 2015
One year ago today, the Arkansas towns of Mayflower and Vilonia were hit by an EF4 tornado with reported winds approaching 200mph and a swath of destruction that stretched over 40 miles long.
Reforming the Tax Code - April 19, 2015
With much of the country struggling to meet the Tax Day deadline this past week, the burden of our madly complex federal tax code rests freshly on the minds of millions taxpayers.
Curbing Washington's Wasteful Spending Habits - April 13, 2015
This week, I had a flashback to my days as a Senate Banking Committee staffer when former Senator Bill Proxmire (D-WI) handed out annual awards for the biggest waste of hard earned taxpayer dollars. I had a "Golden Fleece" moment when I saw KATV's report on the poorly managed solar panel project at the VA Hospital in Little Rock.
Dismantling the Iranian Nuclear Program - April 5, 2015
Earlier this week, the President spoke to the Nation from the Rose Garden of the White House about the framework for a Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action regarding Iran’s nuclear program. While I appreciate the Administration’s efforts to promote peace in the region, I do not believe the current framework will accomplish our stated goal of a verifiably dismantled Iranian nuclear program.
Balancing the Budget and Fixing Medicare - March 29, 2015
Earlier this week, the U.S. House of Representatives took a significant step towards securing our Nation’s future and restoring our fiscal sanity. For far too long, Congress and the President have ignored the will of the people and continued to spend taxpayer dollars at unsustainable levels.