Congress

More on Congress

September 10, 2021 Weekly Column

Tuesday, September 11, 2001. It was like every other day working for then-Congressman John Thune on Capitol Hill. I was a staff assistant at the time and our office, the Longworth House Office Building, was located adjacent to the Capitol. 

August 27, 2021 Weekly Column

This week, the House was called back for a special session. However, it was not to vote on legislation related to the heart-wrenching humanitarian and military crisis unfolding in Afghanistan. Instead, Speaker Pelosi called us back to vote on a $3.5 trillion budget blueprint.

August 26, 2021 Press Release

Washington, D.C. – This week, U.S. Representative Dusty Johnson (R-S.D.) and several of his U.S. House and U.S. Senate colleagues pressed President Biden on the details of his plan to safely withdraw thousands of Americans and allies from Afghanistan.

August 12, 2021 Press Release

WASHINGTON, D.C. – This week, U.S. Representative Dusty Johnson (R-S.D.) along with 30 bicameral members of Congress called for President Biden to end the unconstitutional eviction moratorium.

August 6, 2021 Weekly Column

Just like any school-aged kid, I love recess. But recess in Congress looks a little different than recess in elementary school.

July 30, 2021 Press Release

Washington, D.C. – This week, U.S. Representatives Dusty Johnson (R-SD) and Republican Study Committee Chairman Jim Banks introduced the Countering Communist China Act, a bill to combat the growing threat the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) poses to the United States.

July 26, 2021 Press Release

Washington, D.C. – Today, U.S. Representatives Dusty Johnson (R-S.D.) and Kim Schrier, M.D. (D-WA) introduced the Supporting Underserved Populations by Placing Our Resources in Trusts (SUPPORT) for Mental Health Act. The bipartisan bill would allow states to utilize remaining COVID-19 relief funds to create a trust fund dedicated to mental and behavioral health.

July 23, 2021 Weekly Column

Some of my favorite memories growing up was when school closed for a snow day. But watching the snow pile up outside while waiting for news from the Pierre school district was agonizing as a young kid.

Thanks to Samyok Nepal, a student from Brookings High School, he and his fellow classmates do not have to wait with the same anticipation. 

That’s because Samyok designed Bobcat Notify, an app to alert students of snow days.  

July 23, 2021 Press Release

Washington, D.C. – Today, U.S. Representative Dusty Johnson (R-S.D.) announced South Dakota’s second annual Congressional App Challenge (CAC), an app competition for middle and high school students.

The CAC was established by Congress to encourage young people to learn coding and to inspire them to pursue a career in STEM. Students of all skill levels are encouraged to participate in the competition, no previous coding experience is required.

July 14, 2021 Press Release

Washington, D.C. – Following a legislative push from U.S. Representative Dusty Johnson (R-S.D.), the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) will abandon efforts to reclassify Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSA) like Rapid City and 140 other cities.

July 9, 2021 Weekly Column

Crime is on the rise across America.

Since the beginning of 2021, cities have faced surging levels of violence. The most staggering statistics have emerged in Portland, where homicides and shootings have jumped by a disturbing 533% and 126% respectively, compared to 2020.

Rates are not likely to slow either, as summer is known to be the most violent time of year.

July 9, 2021 Press Release

Washington, D.C. – Today, U.S. Rep. Dusty Johnson (R-S.D.) announced three South Dakota student artist winners for the 2021 Congressional Art Competition.

Elora Gould, a rising sophomore from Faith High School is the first-place winner of the 2021 Congressional Art Competition for South Dakota. Her pencil and charcoal artwork, “To Have Slept in a Hollow,” will be on exhibit in the Cannon Tunnel at the U.S. Capitol, along with the winning artwork from other congressional districts for the next year.

July 2, 2021 Weekly Column

Identifying bills to cosponsor, writing memos on proposed legislation, answering constituent calls, and compiling news stories – this is a day in the life of an intern in my Congressional office.

With only 15 full-time staffers among our four offices, it requires a full team effort to optimally serve over 880,000 constituents across South Dakota and our interns play an integral part in making that happen.

As much as the internship program helps our offices run efficiently, it also provides our interns with a valuable educational experience.

July 1, 2021 Press Release

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Representative Dusty Johnson (R-S.D.) is seeking internship applications for the fall in his Washington, D.C., Rapid City, Aberdeen, and Sioux Falls offices.

Duties will include researching legislation, writing memos, attending committee hearings and briefings, answering constituent phone calls, sorting mail, and providing support to the staff and the Member of Congress.

June 25, 2021 Weekly Column

Earlier this month marked the 32nd anniversary of Tiananmen Square, a tragic day in which the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) forced the silence of thousands of pro-democracy activists and killed hundreds.

Unfortunately, no Chinese citizen will find mention of that day in their history books. That’s because the CCP continues its suppression of democratic values.       

This past week, China forced Apple Daily, Hong Kong’s pro-democracy newspaper to shut down, citing violation of its year-old national security law.  

June 18, 2021 Weekly Column

This week, President Biden met with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Geneva, Switzerland. Stakes were high leading into the summit as U.S.-Russian relations have reached a low point.

From Moscow’s crackdown on political opposition, to their military buildup along the Ukrainian border, and their recent agreement to supply Iran with advanced satellite systems, it is quite clear that Russia is not our friend.  

Following the talks, President Biden said in a press conference that he told Putin his agenda “is not against Russia” but “for the American people.”

June 17, 2021 Press Release

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Representatives Dusty Johnson (R-SD) and Tom O’Halleran (D-AZ) today introduced the Metropolitan Statistical Area Preservation Act, a bill to preserve more than 140 Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSAs) from losing their classification as a MSA.

May 24, 2021 Press Release

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Representative Dusty Johnson (R-S.D.) and U.S. Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) today sent a letter to President Biden’s new Presidential Commission on the Supreme Court of the United States, reminding the commission that only Congress has exclusive authority to amend or preserve the U.S. Supreme Court.

May 11, 2021 Press Release

Washington, D.C. – Today, U.S. Representative Dusty Johnson (R-SD) and U.S. Senator Roger Marshall (R-KS), introduced the bicameral Get Americans Back to Work Act, a bill to remove the federal supplemental unemployment benefit by June 30th.

April 30, 2021 Weekly Column

Nearly 100 days ago, President Biden stood before America and promised unity and a path forward. He told us that path forward would include Republicans – it hasn’t yet. I’m an optimist though, and during my first two years in Washington, when faced with a global pandemic, Congress stepped up to the plate and passed bipartisan legislation to help all Americans. I believe we can get back to that place.

April 22, 2021 Press Release

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Representative Dusty Johnson (R-SD) spoke on the U.S. House floor today in support of his bill, the D.C.-Maryland Reunion Act, a proposal that would merge the residential portions of the district with Maryland. Johnson opposed H.R. 51, legislation Democrats passed today to provide D.C. with statehood and full voting representation in Congress.

April 15, 2021 Press Release

Washington, D.C. – Today, as House and Senate Democrats unveiled legislation to expand the Supreme Court to thirteen justices, U.S. Representative Dusty Johnson (R-SD) announced that his constitutional amendment to cap the Supreme Court at nine justices reached 100 cosponsors in the House.

March 16, 2021 Press Release

Washington, D.C. – The Indian Health Service (IHS) announced they will be stripping former Capt. (ret.) Stanley Patrick Weber of his federal pension and benefits. This announcement comes after a U.S. Public Health Service Commissioned Corps Board of Inquiry completed its review of Mr. Weber, who was convicted of multiple felony charges of aggravated sexual assault of minors while he was on active duty as an officer of the U.S. Public Health Service and assigned to IHS.

March 12, 2021 Weekly Column

Temps are rising and the sun isn’t setting at 4:30 in the afternoon – that can only mean one thing – Daylight Saving Time (DST) is here.

The “spring forward” has its pros and cons – the cons, we lose an hour of sleep and our kids’ schedules are in disarray for a few days – but for me, the extra daylight in the evening is well worth it. It’s the “fall back” I dislike, so much of the afternoon daylight is lost.

March 5, 2021 Weekly Column

“We can join forces, stop the shouting and lower the temperature. For without unity there is no peace, only bitterness and fury. No progress, only exhausting outrage. No nation, only a state of chaos. This is our historic moment of crisis and challenge, and unity is the path forward.”

Those were the words spoken by President Biden the day he was sworn into office.

February 26, 2021 Weekly Column

One of the best parts of my job is the unique opportunity I have to meet with outstanding young people from across the state. I am inspired by their energy and dedication to make a positive impact in their communities and across the country.

It’s easy to look at today’s political climate and feel discouraged, but as I am reminded every time I meet with young people, the future of this country is in good hands. 

February 18, 2021 In The News

RAPID CITY, S.D. (KOTA) - South Dakota Representative Dusty Johnson was in the Black Hills Thursday, to meet with local Republicans.

Johnson was the speaker for the Pennington County Republican Women’s monthly meeting.

He fielded questions from the group and expressed his concerns with President Joe Biden’s executive order that effectively shut down the Keystone XL Pipeline.

January 29, 2021 Weekly Column

Over the last several years, there’s been a lot of discussion about making our nation’s capital city the 51st state in the union. I think that’s a bad idea, but it’s supported by many for a few reasons.

Some support statehood for Washington, D.C., because they want to expand Democratic control of the United States Senate. I’m opposed to that kind of a political power grab.

January 27, 2021 Press Release

Washington, D.C. – Today, U.S. Representative Dusty Johnson (R-S.D.) reintroduced the District of Columbia-Maryland Reunion Act, legislation that would revert the majority of Washington, D.C., suburbs to the state of Maryland. The National Capitol Service Area, consisting solely of the National Mall and federal buildings, would remain the District of Columbia.

January 26, 2021 Press Release

Washington, D.C. – In advance of this year’s reauthorization of the five-year highway bill, U.S. Representative Dusty Johnson (R-S.D.) has been appointed to the House Transportation & Infrastructure Committee.

“The surface transportation bill will be among the most important pieces of legislation Congress will tackle this year,” said Johnson. “I’m grateful my colleagues have provided me an opportunity to play a lead role in developing that bill, ensuring rural priorities aren’t forgotten.”

January 23, 2021 Press Release

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Representative Dusty Johnson (R-S.D.) along with 33 of his Republican colleagues demanded better treatment of the National Guard deployed to Washington after it was reported that thousands of Guardsman were kicked out of House and Senate buildings and placed in parking garages. Johnson requested an explanation as to what initiated the abrupt order that forced the National Guard outside and who made the decision.

January 6, 2021 Press Release

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Representative Dusty Johnson (R-S.D.) issued a statement amid the U.S. House and Senate counting of the Electoral College votes. Johnson will vote to uphold the election results that were certified, recounted, and audited from various states across the nation.

January 4, 2021 Press Release

Washington, D.C. – Today, U.S. Representative Dusty Johnson (R-S.D.) introduced a constitutional amendment which limits the size of the U.S. Supreme Court to nine Justices. In recent months, there have been calls to “pack the court” following the confirmation of Justice Amy Coney Barrett.

December 4, 2020 Press Release

Washington, D.C. – Today, a provision authored by U.S. Representative Dusty Johnson (R-S.D.) to improve the Department of Defense’s (DoD) approach to overseeing weapon systems investments was included in the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2021 Conference Report.

October 7, 2020 Press Release

Washington, D.C. – Today, U.S. Representative Dusty Johnson (R-S.D.) introduced the District of Columbia-Maryland Reunion Act, legislation that would revert the majority of Washington, D.C., suburbs to the state of Maryland. The National Capitol Service Area, consisting solely of the National Mall and federal buildings would remain the District of Columbia.

September 25, 2020 Weekly Column

Back in Session

This year has been far from normal. But over the last few weeks Congress has been back in session, and the pace seems to be picking up again. Last week, I unveiled a bipartisan pathway for another COVID-19 relief bill, and this week, the House has been focused on passing a number of tribal bills as well as a bill to keep our government open through the election.

September 18, 2020 Weekly Column

Congress passed the last COVID-19 relief bill 174 days ago. Hundreds of thousands of Americans – schools, families, and small businesses – are still struggling from this virus. Both the House and the Senate have proposed vastly different proposals to help these hurting Americans. The House passed a bill with a $3T price tag – that’s too much spending so I voted no. The Senate has offered several packages with a lower price tag, but Senate Democrats have offered no support. We need to find common ground.

September 17, 2020 Press Release

WASHINGTON - Today, Tuesday, September 15, 2020, the bipartisan Problem Solvers Caucus – 25 Democrats and 25 Republicans -- unveiled its “March To Common Ground” framework to help break the gridlock on the latest COVID-19 relief package and encourage negotiators to get back to the table. 

The 50-member bipartisan Caucus, developed and came together in support of the framework after extensive listening to constituents and outreach to stakeholders over the past six weeks.

September 9, 2020 Press Release

WASHINGTON — U.S. Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.) and U.S. Rep. Dusty Johnson (R-S.D) today announced that they are accepting applications to the U.S. military academies for the class entering in the summer of 2021.

Students interested in attending a service academy must first obtain a nomination from a member of Congress.  Thune and Johnson will make nominations to the Military Academy at West Point, the Air Force Academy at Colorado Springs, the Naval Academy at Annapolis, and the Merchant Marine Academy at Kings Point, New York.

August 21, 2020 Weekly Column

The last several months continue to serve as a reminder of services critical to all Americans. Two of those services have been on the forefront of my mind recently: The United States Postal Service and local newspapers.

Each are important for different reasons – the USPS plays a vital role in delivering medications and other essential goods, and our local newspapers work day in and day out to keep South Dakotans informed of what’s happening both locally and nationally. 

August 19, 2020 Press Release

Washington, D.C. – Today, U.S. Representatives Dusty Johnson (R-S.D.) and Collin Peterson (D-MN) introduced the Preserving Readership and Information of Newspapers for Tomorrow (PRINT) Act, which would include the cost of print production of local print media in the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). Currently, local media is eligible for the PPP, but printing costs are not forgivable under the program guidelines.

July 30, 2020 Press Release

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Representative Dusty Johnson (R-S.D.) today announced South Dakota’s first Congressional App Challenge (CAC), an app competition for students in middle and high school across the country.

The CAC accepts computer programs (or apps) written in any programming language, for any platform (desktop/PC, web, mobile, raspberry Pi, etc.).

July 27, 2020 Press Release

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Representatives Dusty Johnson (R-S.D.) and Greg Gianforte (R-MT) urged the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to hold convicted pedophile and former Indian Health Service (IHS) pediatrician Stanley Patrick Weber fully accountable for his actions. The Representatives demanded HHS take quick action to revoke Mr. Weber’s government pension after an investigation reported the felon, convicted of child sexual abuse, was still receiving his pension.  

July 24, 2020 Weekly Column

Politicians are people, too. Unfortunately, in today’s highly partisan environment that can be hard to remember. Cable news fosters the idea that officeholders, especially those in the other party, are worthy of our derision, rather than our respect or empathy.

Two incidents of the last week have reminded me of the fragility of the human experience. These tragedies have impacted human beings, human beings who happen to be involved in politics.

July 21, 2020 Press Release

Remarks as prepared for delivery: 

Thank you, Madam Chair.

When Secretary Perdue announced the creation of the Farmers to Families Food Box program, I was excited. 

This was a way to expeditiously assist producers—many of whom were plowing over crops or dumping milk because of supply chain disruptions—as well as consumers who found themselves in circumstances beyond their control, and in great need. 

July 10, 2020 Weekly Column

August is just around the corner – can you believe it? It is almost hard to process. For more than five months, most of the country has had their K-12 aged kids at home, full-time. Five months. 

July 2, 2020 Press Release

Washington, D.C. – Today, U.S. Representatives Dusty Johnson (R-SD), Filemon Vela (D-TX) and Joe Wilson (R-SC) introduced a bipartisan amendment to the House of Representatives’ National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). This legislation focuses on improving the Department of Defense’s (DoD) approach to overseeing weapon systems investments.

June 30, 2020 Press Release

Washington, D.C. – Today, U.S. Representatives Dusty Johnson (R-SD) and Henry Cuellar (D-TX) introduced the Direct Interstate Retail Exemption for Certain Transactions (DIRECT) Act. This legislation will allow state inspected meat to be sold across state lines through e-commerce, allowing small producers and processors more options to directly market to consumers.

June 26, 2020 Weekly Column

In the wake of George Floyd’s death, I’ve spent hours listening and learning from community leaders, as well as law enforcement officials, about how we can bring about a more-just nation. These conversations have been productive and insightful as I prepared to return to Washington this week for police reform debate. 

June 25, 2020 Press Release

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Representative Dusty Johnson (R-S.D.) today announced nine South Dakota students who will be attending one of the United States Service Academies. These students were nominated by Johnson and received an appointment to each student’s preferred academy.

Pages