Press Releases

Congressman Smith and Acting Under Secretary Szubin Discuss the Importance of Remittances

Washington D.C. – Congressman Adam Smith joined Acting Under Secretary Szubin of the Treasury Department in Seattle today for a conversation with local stakeholders, community leaders, organizations, and money transfer operators to discuss the important role that remittances play for Somalia and the Philippines and efforts to facilitate remittances through legitimate and transparent channels.

June 27, 2016

In recognition of these important issues, Congressman Smith cosponsored the Money Remittances Improvement Act of 2014 which was signed into law by the President on August 8, 2014, and has met with numerous government officials in attempts to find ways to continue U.S. remittances to Somalia.  Congressman Smith continues to call for the U.S. government to take steps to cooperate with and support Somalia and its people whenever possible.  Congressman Smith remains ready to help in any way he can.            

Acting Under Secretary Szubin was nominated by the White House to serve as Treasury’s Under Secretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence on April 20, 2015.  This position leads the Treasury Department’s policy, enforcement, regulatory, and intelligence functions aimed at identifying and disrupting the lines of financial support to international terrorist organizations, proliferators of weapons of mass destruction, narcotics traffickers, and other actors posing a threat to our national security or foreign policy.  The Under Secretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence is also responsible for overseeing the Department’s efforts to combat money laundering and financial crimes.

“Today’s community conversation and engagement provided a powerful platform to reiterate our earlier calls for the processing of remittances. As a vital component of the Somali economy, remittances help many families pay for every day necessities such as food, medicine, education, as well as help expand economic and business opportunities in Somalia,” said Congressman Smith. “We need to make it easier for residents of the 9th District and Somali-Americans everywhere to send money back to their families in Somalia. Having Acting U/S Szubin here in Seattle shows the Treasury Department’s commitment to our efforts.”

“Treasury is working to ensure that remittance flows are transparent, safe, and strong, and recognizes the importance of remittances from the United States reaching loved ones abroad,” said Adam J. Szubin, Acting Under Secretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence at the U.S. Department of the Treasury. “Challenges remain, but we are encouraged by the continued robust flows of remittances and by the progress that's being made in increasing transparency and oversight. I am further encouraged by the thoughtful dialogue that I have had with Congressman Adam Smith, his constituents, money transmitters, and local banks on this important issue. We look forward to working with Congressman Smith and other members of Congress in the weeks and months ahead.”

Congressman Smith and Acting Under Secretary Szubin will continue to support efforts to build a strong Somalia, with a sustainable and well-regulated and supervised financial system in Somalia, and support its people whenever possible. 

June 27, 2016 Community Meetings:

Who:

  1. Congressman Adam Smith, Washington’s 9th Congressional District
  2. Adam J. Szubin, Acting Under Secretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence

Where:

NewHolly Gathering Hall

7054 32nd Ave South

Seattle WA 98118

Schedule of Events:

10:15 – 10:45 am              Banking Roundtable

11:00 – 12:00 pm              Panel discussion and community discussion 

 

Smith Statement on Supreme Court Decision in Whole Woman's Health v. Hellerstedt

Washington D.C. – Congressman Adam Smith released the following statement in response to the Supreme Court’s ruling today that upheld the constitutional right of women to make their own reproductive decisions:

June 27, 2016

“Today the Supreme Court struck down two provisions of a dangerous anti-abortion law in Texas by a vote of 5 to 3. In the case of Whole Woman's Health v. Hellerstedt, a group of Texas abortion clinics and three doctors argued that a Texas state law requiring health providers have admitting privileges at a nearby hospital and perform abortions in ambulatory surgical centers was overly burdensome. I am extremely pleased to see the Supreme Court rule in favor of the plaintiffs, recognizing that unnecessary requirements on surgical centers poses an undue burden on women’s constitutional right to seek an abortion. I stand with all women and will continue to support policies that allow for women to make their own healthcare decisions and have access to critical reproductive healthcare services.” 

Washington D.C.Congressman Adam Smith released the following statement in response to the Supreme Court’s deadlocked decision in United States v. Texas:

“I am deeply disappointed with the Supreme Court’s ruling today resulting in a deadlock decision on the President’s Executive Actions on Immigration. Millions of U.S. citizens with undocumented parents and DREAMers will now face uncertainty in their future and may see their families torn apart. Failure on the part of Republican leadership is what forced the President to act. I call on Congress to take action and pass a permanent comprehensive immigration bill and fix our broken system. We cannot afford to wait any longer to reform our immigration system and bring relief to millions of children and families.”

 

Washington D.C.Congressman Adam Smith released the following statement about the sit-in taking place on the House Floor:

“Today, I was proud to join Congressman John Lewis and Congresswoman Katherine Clark as they led House Democrats in a sit-in to call for action on common sense gun reforms. My fellow Democrats and I took to the floor to demand that gun safety legislation finally be allowed a vote by the full House of Representatives. The time is long past due for action. It is shameful that Republican Leadership has failed to listen to the American people. Speaker Ryan must change course – let us vote now to keep weapons out of the hands of dangerous terrorists and enact reforms that will reduce gun violence and keep our communities safe.” 

Washington D.C. On June 10, 2016, Congressman Adam Smith (D-WA)and Congressman Trent Franks (R-AZ) introduced bipartisan legislation, The Adoptee Citizenship Act, H.R. 5454, to guarantee citizenship to international adoptees. Similar legislation has been introduced in the Senate, S.2275 by Senator Klobuchar (D-MN) and Senator Coats (R-IN). Often, when children are adopted, the required paperwork is not filed and the children are never naturalized. With the passage of the Child Citizenship Act of 2000, most international adoptees were granted citizenship. Unfortunately, the bill did not apply to adoptees who were already over the age of 18 when it was enacted into law in 2000. The Adoptee Citizenship Act, would fix this arbitrary oversight and grant citizenship to people who were legally adopted and were age 18 or older in the year 2000 when the Child Citizenship Act was signed into law.

“This bill seeks to carry forward the vision of the original Child Citizenship Act of 2000, which sought to ensure that adopted children and biological children are treated equally under U.S. law. It will extend citizenship to foreign born adoptive children who have joined their forever families here in the United States," said Congressman Smith. "Unfortunately, not all adoptees were able to benefit from the legislation when it originally passed, as it was limited to apply only to minors age 18 and under. Adopted individuals should not be treated as second class citizens just because they happened to be the wrong age when the Child Citizenship Act of 2000 was passed.”

“The Adoptee Citizenship Act closes a loophole and in so doing, brings hope to thousands of adoptees who were lawfully adopted and have lived their entire lives knowing only the United States as home, and yet, may never have been able to exercise their rights of citizenship due to lack of paperwork stemming from the circumstances surrounding their adoption," said Congressman Franks. "Elevating the voices of adoptees here in Congress has been a priority for me as co-chair of the Adoption Coalition, and I am so grateful to be able to jointly introduce this very bipartisan initiative with my colleague Congressman Smith. I look forward to working together to ensure the legislation moves forward.”

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