Peter Welch

Angela Evancie / VPR

When Congress returns to Washington next month for the second phase of its lame duck session, Rep. Peter Welch will be urging House leaders to schedule a comprehensive debate to consider President Obama's plan to increase military actions against the terrorist group ISIS in Iraq and Syria.

Jim Bourg / Reuters Pool/AP

All three members of Vermont's congressional delegation strongly support President Obama's new immigration reform plan. The delegation says the president had to act because the U.S. House failed to move an immigration bill. 

Angela Evancie / VPR/file

Congressman Peter Welch has voted against legislation that would authorize the construction of the Keystone XL Pipeline.

The Keystone pipeline issue came before the U.S. House on Friday and was approved by a vote of 252 to 161.

The State Department is currently reviewing this proposal because it would bring oil sands from Canada to refineries in the southern part of the United States.

President Obama is expected to announce his position on the proposed pipeline in the next few weeks.

Angela Evancie / VPR/file

Congressman Peter Welch is our guest on the next Vermont Edition. The Democrat was easily re-elected last week, but when the new Congress begins work in January he will have fewer Democratic colleagues and a host of issues still to decide, including immigration and the future of the Affordable Care Act.

Send your questions for Congressman Peter Welch to vermontedition@vpr.net or post below.

Broadcast live on Fri., Nov. 14 at noon; rebroadcast at 7 p.m.

Angela Evancie / VPR/file

Democrat Peter Welch has easily won a fifth term as Vermont's lone representative in the U.S. House, turning aside the second challenge in as many elections from Republican Mark Donka.

In 2012, Welch beat Donka,  a conservative Republican and Woodstock police officer, by amore than three-to-one margin.

As Republicans increased their ranks in Washington Tuesday night, Welch said the big challenge facing Congress would continue to be in finding common ground.

The Ebola virus has infected very few people in the United States, and none here in Vermont. But political debate about the disease has spread to the state’s congressional race. 

Incumbent Democrat Peter Welch and his Republican opponent Mark Donka have very different opinions about whether a travel ban is the best way to fight Ebola. 

Angela Evancie / VPR/file

Congressman Peter Welch says it would be a mistake to implement a travel ban from West Africa as a way to contain the spread of the Ebola virus in the United States.

Welch says the best public health strategy right now is to deploy  U.S. troops in Africa as part of an effort to contain this deadly disease at its source.

The response by the White House to the spread of the Ebola virus in this country has come under the close scrutiny of Congress.

Jane Lindholm / VPR File

Rep. Peter Welch has introduced legislation that he says will make it easier for Vermont’s community banks to offer mortgages and loans.

The legislation would exempt many smaller banks from the financial regulations that were put into place following the national financial crisis in 2008.

Welch says it’s very important for Congress to realize that there’s a big difference between the operations of large Wall Street banks and the work done by community based banks across the country.

The U.S. House has given its approval to President Obama’s plan to arm and train Syrian forces to fight against the terrorist group known as ISIS –the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria.

Congressman Peter Welch voted against the plan because he says it has virtually no chance of succeeding and will put the U.S. in the middle of a Syrian civil war.

Welch says this vote was one of the most difficult that he’s had to make in the eight years he’s served in the U.S. House.

All three members of Vermont's Congressional delegation say they will vote against a short term budget bill if it fails to include Democratic priorities
Toby Talbot / AP/file

Vermont’s congressional delegation says they agree with President Barack Obama’s decision to train and equip Syrian rebels to oppose the Islamic state terrorist groups.

In statements released after last night’s address, all three members said they support the president’s strategy.

Senator Patrick Leahy:

Congressman Peter Welch says it would be a mistake for the United States to launch air strikes in Syria to weaken the Islamic State known as ISIS or ISIL.

The Obama Administration describes ISIS as a well-funded and well organized terrorist group that poses a threat to the security of the United States.

For the past few weeks, the Administration has conducted air strikes against ISIS in northern Iraq but these attacks stopped when ISIS forces move across the border into Syria.

AP File/Toby Talbot

Congressman Peter Welch is our guest on the next Vermont Edition. We discuss the Islamic State in Syria and what he thinks the United States' military response should be. We take your calls on domestic issues facing Congress.

Also in the program, the role that write-in votes played in Tuesday's Primary Election. Political analyst Eric Davis discusses the results of voting in an election that saw extremely low voter turnout.

Broadcast live on Fri., Aug. 29 at noon; rebroadcast at 7 p.m.

AP File/Toby Talbot

Congressman Peter Welch has one of the most liberal voting records in Washington. At the same time, he’s one of the few Democrats to work closely with some of the most conservative Republicans in the House.  

Welch’s work on the House Oversight Committee serves as a good example of his approach to politics. For the past year, the committee has been the scene of some extremely partisan behavior.

Congress is scheduled to leave Washington at the end of the week with a number of critical issues still unresolved. Vermont’s delegation says there is hope for progress on two bills covering veterans’ health care and transportation funding.

The House and Senate are far apart on an immigration bill to deal with more than 52,000 undocumented children who have crossed the border.

Rep. Peter Welch is hopeful that Congress will pass a bill this summer that will allow individual states to impose their sales tax on items purchased on the Internet.

Welch says the plan will help strengthen downtown businesses and will raise new revenue for many states.

Right now, states are allowed to require businesses to collect the sales tax on purchases made on the Internet, if the retailer has a physical presence in the state.

Under this legislation, states could choose to impose their sales tax on sellers of all taxable items sold on the Internet.

Bob Kinzel / VPR

Unless congress acts by the end of the month, the federal highway trust fund is going to run out of money.  That means many of the road construction projects underway in Vermont will have to be called off. Congressman Peter Welch is calling for a long-term, sustainable solution.

We talk to Congressman Welch about his support for an increase in the gas tax. We also talk about the migrant children coming across the southern border, and take your questions.

Broadcast live on Friday, July 18 at noon; rebroadcast at 7 p.m.

J. Scott Applewhite / AP

The U.S. House has given its approval to legislation that will provide the federal highway trust fund with enough money to fund projects until next spring.  The bill passed 367 to 55. Rep. Peter Welch voted against the bill because he says it fails to address the long term transportation needs of the country.

A major shortfall in the fund caused Vermont highway officials to consider delaying dozens of projects that were planned over the next few months.

Peter Hirschfeld / VPR

You don’t have to look too hard underneath the Interstate 89 overpass here in Waterbury to see signs of wear and tear. Exposed rebar and rusty steel beams betray the structure’s deteriorating condition. And a bright orange sign underneath the overpass warns pedestrians to watch out for falling concrete.

Rich Tetreault, chief engineer at the Vermont Agency of Transportation, says the overpass is far from a lost cause.

Skeptical of a recent statement by the Food and Drug Administration that the agency does not, in fact, intend to crack down on the practice of aging artisan cheese on wooden boards, Rep. Peter Welch said Thursday that he intends to move forward with an effort to block enforcement of that rule.

Toby Talbot / AP/file

A recent rule interpretation by the Food and Drug Administration that aging cheese on wooden surfaces does not conform to sanitation standards has Vermont cheese makers worrying and Rep. Peter Welch working to block funding for its enforcement.

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