WASHINGTON -- Congresswoman Jo Ann Emerson was officially sworn in to serve a fourth term as member of the 108th Congress is a ceremony held Jan. 7 on the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives.
Emerson stated, "I am very excited about beginning work in the 108th Congress. This Congress has a daunting list of tasks to accomplish including finishing work on a Medicare prescription drug benefit, improving trade for our farmers and ranchers and completing our federal highway bill. I am optimistic we can get the job done, and wherever the road may take us, I remain committed to focusing my energies on ensuing that the values we hold dear in southern Missouri, faith, family and community, are the principles that guide my work in Congress," she said.
Emerson said she filed several pieces of legislation immediately following the swearing in ceremony. The initiatives introduced by Emerson would:
* Establish a balanced budget amendment to the Constitution,
* Establish a voluntary school prayer amendment to the Constitution,
* Establish a constitutional amendment guaranteeing the fundamental right to life,
* Establish a constitutional amendment prohibiting the desecration of the United States flag,
* Restore equity in monthly Social Security benefits for Notch Babies,
* Establish a Medicare-eligible military retiree health care consensus task force; and
* Allow a refundable tax credit to military retirees for Medicare Part B premiums.
"The bills I have introduced today reflect the unique character and values that southern Missourians hold dear. I am proud to take the lead again on legislative initiatives that make clear every life is sacred, that protect our right to free religious expression, and that demonstrate our pride and our respect for our nation's veterans and seniors. These values truly represent the heart of rural America and I remain committed to preserving the integrity of these values and voice of Missouri's 8th Congressional District," the congresswoman said.
According to Emerson aide Michelle Dimarob, Emerson was allowed one special guest during the swearing in and she chose 4-month-old grandson William Curtis Leger, who was named for her late husband.
Emerson replaced longtime Rep. Bill Emerson in 1996 after he died of lung cancer.