Problem Solvers Caucus Endorses “Made in America Emergency Preparedness Act”

June 6, 2021
Press Release
Bipartisan legislation that would strengthen response to next national emergency and save lives

 

WASHINGTON, D.C.— Today, the Problem Solvers Caucus endorsed the Made in America Emergency Preparedness Act.  The legislation would examine the vulnerabilities that made the United States susceptible to the COVID-19 pandemic and produce recommendations to ensure our nation is taking the necessary steps to mitigate the impacts of future national emergencies. The bill would improve responsiveness by both the federal government and private sector.

The bill would authorize the creation of a National Commission on United States Preparedness for National Emergencies. This Commission would be modeled on the 9/11 Commission and would evaluate the federal government and private sector’s national emergency response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Commission would then report its findings to Congress and the President on the necessary steps to ensure an effective response for the next crisis. 

One of the purposes of the Commission would be to investigate the origins of the COVID-19 outbreak. 

Additionally, this legislation would mandate products that are deemed essential to a national response be manufactured and procured within the United States, such as medical, pharmaceutical, and emergency preparedness products. 

Problem Solvers Caucus Co-Chairs Brian Fitzpatrick (PA-01) and Josh Gottheimer (NJ-05), along with Jenniffer González-Colón (PR-AL), Thomas Suozzi (NY-03), Pete Stauber (MN-08), Dean Phillips (MN-03), Don Bacon (NE-02), Susie Lee (NV-03), Van Taylor (TX-03), and Jimmy Panetta (CA-20) introduced this legislation to the U.S. House of Representatives.  

“We simply cannot outsource our public safety and national security to foreign nations. We must reconstitute our healthcare and public safety supply chain back to the United States. Medical products, protective equipment, pharmaceuticals, emergency response equipment, and all other critical items and materials needed to respond to a national emergency must be produced domestically for domestic consumption, especially during a critical, time-sensitive crisis,” said Problem Solvers Caucus Co-Chair Brian Fitzpatrick (PA-01). “Our response to the September 11th terror attacks was ‘Never Again.’ We must have that same exact response to COVID-19. This landmark, bipartisan legislation does just that.”

“It's critical that our government and private sector industries learn from the COVID-19 crisis and better prepare for future national emergencies,” said Problem Solvers Caucus Co-Chair Josh Gottheimer (NJ-5). “We must ensure that our health systems, first responders, Strategic National Stockpile, and supply chain are always standing at the ready. This bipartisan legislation will establish a bipartisan federal Commission to help ensure our government and industries are better prepared for the next crisis."

“This past year we’ve witnessed the dangers of not having a ready and accessible reserve of goods to combat a global crisis,” said Rep. Tom Suozzi (NY-03).“A unified, coordinated government response combined with strengthened national supply chains will have us prepared for any future crisis. We never want to relive the uncertainty of having limited access to essential goods, and with the Made in America Emergency Preparedness Act, we won’t have to in the future.”

“As our country continues to recover from the heights of the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s apparent that the national stockpile was inadequately supplied to respond to an event of this magnitude,” said Rep. Jenniffer González-Colón (PR-AL). “In order to prepare for any type of major event, we need to ensure that we have the necessary medical products, protective equipment, pharmaceuticals, emergency response equipment, and critical items and materials included in the stockpile. Our country has an opportunity to rebuild our manufacturing capacity in places such as Puerto Rico where we not only lack the infrastructure capacity, but the labor and experience necessary to increase the strength of the pharmaceutical industry in America. This bill will provide the necessary information through the established commission to best prepare us for future events.” 

“Our entire nation was hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic, but my home state of Nevada was absolutely devastated as our travel and tourism economy came to a screeching halt,” said Rep. Susie Lee (NV-03). “We must do everything in our power to better prepare for another national emergency like the COVID-19 crisis. That means we must ensure that we understand how we got here. This bipartisan legislation will establish a National Commission on United States Preparedness for National Emergencies to help us learn from our response to the COVID-19 pandemic and then implement those lessons into needed reforms to our emergency response and national security systems.”    

“The COVID pandemic exposed the dangers of our reliance on the Communist Regime of China and other foreign nations for the critical minerals, pharmaceuticals, and PPE that we all need for survival,” said Rep. Pete Stauber (MN-08). “We must take the tough lessons learned from COVID and begin to build an even stronger and more self-reliant nation than ever before. The next time our nation faces an emergency, we will be ready because the Made in America Emergency Preparedness Act ensures that essential minerals, products and equipment are manufactured and developed here in the United States.”

“We were not prepared for the COVID-19 pandemic, and we can’t afford to repeat our mistakes during future crises,” said Rep. Dean Phillips (MN-03). “That means strengthening our domestic supply chains, implementing best practices, and making emergency response a priority at every level of government. Our task is not easy, but a National Commission on United States Preparedness for National Emergencies will help get us there. I am proud to work with Rep. Fitzpatrick and the bipartisan Problem Solvers Caucus on this issue as an original co-sponsor of the Made in America Emergency Preparedness Act.”

“Ensuring the public health and safety of all Americans should be a bipartisan mission,” said Rep. Don Bacon (NE-02). “This independent commission is needed to investigate the who, what, when, where, and why of COVID-19 and to develop a report on the U.S.’s response to its handling of the pandemic. Further, this will help us better prepare our medical professionals for future national emergencies and pandemics. I thank my colleagues from both sides for their partnership on this much needed effort.”

“The United States can never find itself unprepared for a global pandemic like it did in 2020 again,” said Rep. Dusty Johnson (SD-AL). “The Made in America Emergency Preparedness Act will get to the bottom of the origin of COVID-19 and establish a secure supply chain and homegrown stockpile to prepare for any future pandemics or national emergencies. This is a problem that must have a solution.” 

“Over the past year, we saw government, private-sector, non-profits, and citizens working together to front a once-in-a-hundred-years pandemic response. I support the creation of this commission so our country can learn from our COVID-19 response and remain prepared for any future national emergencies that come our way,” said Congressman Tom Rice (SC-07).

“The COVID-19 pandemic exposed that our country was not prepared to combat a global crisis,” said Rep. Tom O’Halleran (AZ-01). “The Made in America Emergency Preparedness Act will ensure that our first responders have the protection that they need, and our Strategic National Stockpile, health system, and supply chain are ready to respond to future national emergencies through a unified government response.”

“COVID-19 revealed America’s severe lack of preparedness for national emergencies,” said Congressman Dave Joyce (OH-14). “We must take proactive steps to ensure we never again find ourselves relying on other countries for supplies necessary to save lives and keep our communities safe. I’m proud to join my colleagues on the Problem Solvers Caucus in endorsing this bipartisan, common sense bill to ensure we learn from this pandemic, improve our response to future crises, and regain control of our supply chain.”

“Although we still have questions about the origin of COVID-19 and the role the Chinese Communist Party played in hiding it from the rest of the world, it is clear that our country was not prepared for a crisis of this magnitude,” said Rep. Anthony Gonzalez (OH-16). “It is important that Congress pass the Made in America Emergency Preparedness Act to ensure our nation is taking the necessary steps to mitigate the impacts of future national emergencies.”

“As we work to recover from the devastating impacts of COVID-19, it is critically important that we leave no stone unturned in our efforts to determine the origins of the coronavirus and what must be done to prevent or respond to future pandemics,” said Rep. Blake Moore (UT-01). “The American people deserve answers, and I am committed to ensuring that any investigations into the global spread of COVID-19 are honest, open, and transparent, and that America has the manufacturing infrastructure to support itself in the face of another national emergency. I was proud to support the Made in America Emergency Preparedness Act, which will help us accomplish these important goals.”

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