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FROM THE DISTRICT

SUCCESS STORIES

My son is autistic and was receiving Social Security benefits until his payments were arbitrarily stopped. The Social Security Administration also demanded repayment of 18 months' payments. Ms. Spanberger launched an investigation which resulted in his benefits retroactively being reinstated. Brad Mena Orange County, Virginia
REP. ABIGAIL SPANBERGER

ON THE ISSUES

Agriculture

Supporting Central Virginia Farmers
Virginia’s 7th District is home to thousands of acres of rich farmland, and Rep. Spanberger is working in Congress to make sure the voices of Virginia’s farmers and agriculture-focused businesses are heard. While travelling across the district, she has met with farm families to talk about the many challenges they face—from destructive protectionist tariffs to young farmers struggling to access the capital they need to build successful farm and ranch operations. In the United States House of Representatives, Rep. Spanberger is committed to expanding farmers’ access to lucrative markets, removing barriers on their ability to produce sustainable goods, and increasing access to crop insurance programs through robust implementation of the 2018 Farm Bill.


Addressing Food Insecurity & Hunger
Rep. Spanberger is committed to raising awareness about the prevalence of food insecurity in the 7th District, which impacts rural and suburban communities alike. According to a 2014 study, one in seven Central Virginians seek food assistance from a local food bank. In Congress, Rep. Spanberger is working to provide reliable meals to children, working families, veterans, and citizens with disabilities in communities in the 7th District and across the country. Rep. Spanberger will fight to protect successful and cost-effective anti-hunger initiatives, like the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, from harsh cuts or extreme restrictions.



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Budget

Responsibly Addressing Our National Debt
Rep. Spanberger believes that our ballooning national debt is a long-term threat to our economic stability and national security. She supports a federal budget that responsibly addresses rising deficits, but also protects Medicare and Medicaid and prevents cuts to essential diplomatic, national defense, education, and affordable housing programs.
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Civil Rights

Protecting Voting Rights
A bedrock principle of our democracy is equal rights under the law for all Americans, and Rep. Spanberger is fighting in Congress to make sure the rights of all Americans are respected, enforced, and protected. One of the most fundamental rights in our country is the right to choose your elected officials through free and fair elections, and Rep. Spanberger supports ongoing initiatives to strengthen voter rights and to counteract efforts across the country that seek to disenfranchise voters. This priority includes pushing for the restoration and modernization of the Voting Rights Act.

Reforming a Broken Criminal Justice System
As a former federal law enforcement officer, Rep. Spanberger recognizes the critical importance of keeping our communities safe and holding perpetrators accountable for their actions that harm others. But she also knows that for far too many Americans, injustices pervade our criminal justice system and later endanger their ability to receive a quality education, find fulfilling employment, or support their families. In Congress, one of Rep. Spanberger’s top priorities is to help pass meaningful, bipartisan criminal justice reform, including legislation to reduce mass incarceration, end the school-to-prison pipeline, and treat drug addiction like a public health issue, not a crime.

Fighting Discrimination and Supporting our Neighbors
Rep. Spanberger firmly believes that no American should face discrimination based on the color of their skin, where they are from, how they choose to worship, what disability they have, or who they love. This priority includes advocating for the Equal Rights Amendment and pushing to remove the ratification deadline to allow individual states to ratify the original Amendment. Rep. Spanberger strongly supports marriage equality and the Americans with Disabilities Act, and she will continue to make sure that no citizen is denied government services, loses a job, or faces any other form of discrimination.
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Economy & Jobs

Supporting 7th District Businesses & Entrepreneurs
Rep. Spanberger is actively focused on advancing bipartisan legislation that grows the 7th District’s rural industries, recognizes the regulatory burdens small business owners face, and invests in critical infrastructure improvements that support technological innovation and growth—like expanded broadband internet access.

Strengthening Workforce Training & Apprenticeships
Whether they choose to go to college or not, Rep. Spanberger believes that all Virginia workers should have access to the education and training they need to achieve career success and earn a good living. Rep. Spanberger is working in Congress to increase investment in vocational training and apprenticeship programs for young people that lead to better-paying jobs, support the growth of small businesses in our communities, and prepare the next generation as they enter a competitive and rapidly changing global economy.

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Education

Supporting Public Education & Teachers
Public schools are the social and economic backbone of our cities, towns, and rural communities. Rep. Spanberger is fighting in Congress to give every child access to a high-quality public education, and she is opposed to any effort to privatize our public education system. A proud recipient of an excellent public education at J.R. Tucker High School in Henrico County, Rep. Spanberger believes that dedicated teachers and increased educational resources set Central Virginia students on a path toward greater economic opportunities—and right now, Congress can do more to address educational disparities among underserved populations, improve career and technical education programs, and make sure teachers have secure retirements.

Tackling Skyrocketing Student Debt
As the cost of a college degree continues to rise, too many Central Virginians find that while they have the qualifications they need, their student debt burdens are unmanageable. During her time in the private sector, Rep. Spanberger worked with higher education officials to improve their outreach to a diverse range of students and to lower the cost of attendance. In Congress, Rep. Spanberger brings this same approach, and she advocates for practical and cost-effective solutions to address the growing student loan debt crisis. Rep. Spanberger is committed to working with educators, students, parents, and college and university administrators to find innovative ways to lessen student debt burdens, while also maintaining the range of educational opportunities available to Commonwealth students.

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Energy & Environment

Mitigating the Effects of Climate Change
Climate change is a severe threat to the safety and strength of nearly all aspects of our society—our economy, our environment, and our national security. Rep. Spanberger knows that the science on the potential effects of climate change is settled—and elected officials must heed the warnings of scientists and work together to develop a long-term strategy to counteract this escalating ecological crisis. To help mitigate the impacts of climate change, Rep. Spanberger is working in Congress to lower greenhouse gas emissions, protect our clean air and water, safeguard our public lands, and defend our endangered species. She also supports preserving environmental protections that maintain the health of Central Virginia’s ecosystems and natural resources and help preserve them for future generations.

Increasing Incentives for Clean Energy Development
Rep. Spanberger supports a transition from fossil fuel dependence to increased reliance on clean energy sources. She believes long-term, sustainable energy independence will not just benefit our environment, but it will encourage innovation and job growth across our economy and lessen our dependence on international actors whose values may conflict with those of the United States. Rep. Spanberger is fighting to advance bipartisan legislation in Congress that creates commonsense incentives for increased development of alternative and renewable energy sources, like wind and solar energies.
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Good Governance

Fighting for a More Transparent Democracy
The framers of our U.S. Constitution intended for our government officials to be accountable to the people they were elected to serve. But too often our representatives seem to be beholden to special interests, lobbyists, and large corporations. Rep. Spanberger is committed to pursuing effective campaign finance reform legislation that would shed light on the undue influence of dark money in our democracy. She believes that Members of Congress should hold themselves to the highest standard of transparency, accountability, and ethical behavior when it comes to making decisions on behalf of their constituents.
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Gun Safety

Pursuing Bipartisan, Commonsense Gun Violence Prevention Legislation
As a former federal law enforcement agent who carried a firearm for her job every day, Rep. Spanberger understands the training and qualification requirements needed to responsibly carry a firearm. After too many gun-related tragedies across the United States, including in our schools, Rep. Spanberger believes that we are long overdue for effective, bipartisan gun safety reforms in the United States. To keep families, neighborhoods, businesses, and schools safe, Rep. Spanberger supports measures that would improve background checks for all firearm purchases, allow family members and law enforcement officials to temporarily keep firearms out of the hands of those who may be an immediate danger to themselves and others, and fund nonpartisan federal research of gun-related violence and deaths by suicide.
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Healthcare

Increasing Access to Affordable Healthcare Coverage
Central Virginians need greater access to quality, affordable health insurance, and Rep. Spanberger is fighting to expand healthcare coverage for all Americans. She believes in stabilizing the Affordable Care Act and preserving its protections for those with pre-existing conditions, including 43,000 children and teenagers in the 7th District. Rep. Spanberger is also working to reduce premiums in the insurance marketplace and to lower out-of-pocket costs. She supports universal coverage through the adoption of a public option and, in Congress, she advocates for bipartisan healthcare solutions that achieve real progress, respond to the unique challenges of the district’s rural communities, support the Commonwealth’s efforts to expand Medicaid coverage, and preserve funding for critical programs like the Children’s Health Insurance Plan.

Reducing Prescription Drug Prices
As Rep. Spanberger meets with families, patients, providers, and community healthcare organizations across Virginia’s 7th District, she consistently hears about the financial struggles her elderly and disabled neighbors face as their prescription drug costs continue to rise. Rep. Spanberger supports allowing Medicare to negotiate drug prices, so that more senior citizens in the Commonwealth don’t have to choose between putting food on the table or affording their life-saving medication.

Addressing the Opioid Abuse & Addiction Epidemic
The opioid abuse and addiction crisis is nothing short of a national public health emergency, and Rep. Spanberger is fighting to address this crisis both in the 7th District and across the country. Since 2013, drug overdose deaths have been the leading cause of unnatural death in the Commonwealth. To combat this crisis, Rep. Spanberger supports a national response that reaches everyone affected, stops treating drug addiction like a crime, and boosts education to prevent addiction in future generations. She believes that this epidemic requires a prevention and treatment response that works directly with community leaders, law enforcement officials, and healthcare professionals to build an actionable strategy that supports community healthcare organizations currently providing mental health, recovery, and wraparound services to those impacted.

Protecting Women’s Healthcare Access
Rep. Spanberger believes that protecting women’s access to reproductive healthcare is a social and economic necessity. She supports maintaining federal funding to Planned Parenthood and other providers that provide essential healthcare screenings and preventive services to both women and men. Additionally, she is actively seeking innovative, bipartisan legislative solutions to help combat rising rates of maternal mortality in the United States.
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Immigration & Border Security

Advancing Commonsense Immigration Reform
At its core, our country is a nation of immigrants. Rep. Spanberger is proud of that history and fully recognizes that legal immigration continues to provide substantial economic growth in the Commonwealth and across the country. To fix our currently broken immigration system and to remove partisan politics from this important issue, Rep. Spanberger supports effective and data-driven immigration reform. Rep. Spanberger believes that a successful proposal must take into account the needs of business, create an earned pathway to legal status for tax-paying, law-abiding undocumented immigrants currently living in the United States, and give much-needed and overdue certainty to Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals recipients.

Border Security
As a former Central Intelligence Agency officer, Rep. Spanberger worked counterterrorism and international drug trafficking cases on behalf of the United States—and she has an acute understanding of the foreign threats facing our country and its borders each day. In Congress, Rep. Spanberger is committed to working with her colleagues, both Democrats and Republicans, to advance bipartisan, smart policy that would recognize the real challenges of U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials, effectively secure our borders and points of entry, and responsibly use taxpayer dollars without breaking from core American values. She will continue to advocate for policies that embrace cutting-edge technology, reduce safe havens for violent criminals, and improve coordination between federal, state, and local law enforcement.
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Infrastructure

Broadband Internet Infrastructure
Just like roads, bridges, and electricity infrastructure, high-speed internet access is essential to the day-to-day operations of schools, hospitals, law enforcement facilities, and small businesses across the Commonwealth. But in parts of the 7th District, thousands of rural residents do not have the broadband internet access they need to stay competitive in a global economy, complete their homework assignments, monitor their chronic health conditions, or grow their businesses. One of Rep. Spanberger’s top priorities in the U.S. House is to advance legislation that would recognize these challenges and help expand broadband internet infrastructure throughout underserved communities in Central Virginia and across rural America.

Net Neutrality
Rep. Spanberger believes that the internet should be equally accessible to all users, and she views protecting net neutrality as a fundamental issue of economic freedom and freedom of speech. In Congress, she supports legislation that would restore net neutrality and prevent high-speed access from being auctioned off to the highest bidder. By taking this important step, Rep. Spanberger wants to increase high-skill job opportunities in rural communities and make sure the district’s families have the reliable internet access they need to stay connected to their loved ones.
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Local Issues

Serving the Seventh
No matter what headlines come out of the Beltway, serving and representing the people of Virginia's Seventh District is always Rep. Spanberger's top priority. Please scroll through some of the other Issue areas to learn more about how I'm working for Central Virginians in Congress, and stay on this page to learn more about some of the local accomplishments we've achieved in our office. 
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National Defense & Foreign Affairs

Supporting our Servicemembers & their Families
A former federal law enforcement officer and Central Intelligence Agency officer, Rep. Spanberger’s career in public service has focused on protecting American families and economic interests from a wide range of domestic and foreign threats. She recognizes the tremendous sacrifice of those who serve in our military, and she believes we have a sacred obligation to honor their dedication to our country and to give them the support they deserve. In Congress, Rep. Spanberger is committed to providing our service members with the compensation, training, equipment, and benefits they need to successfully carry out their vital missions and protect their fellow citizens. And she is working in the U.S. House to find additional ways to support military families as their loved ones serve abroad and as they eventually transition to civilian life.

Reinforcing the Importance of Diplomacy & Our Relationships with U.S. Allies
Rep. Spanberger knows that the United States today faces many foreign threats from its adversaries, and she believes that a strong diplomatic presence is a core component of our national security and must not be lessened or ignored. To ensure our communities stay protected, Rep. Spanberger is fighting to reaffirm the importance of our country’s relationships with its key allies, including member countries of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization. And she will continue to voice her unwavering support for U.S. diplomats, law enforcement, intelligence officers, and civil servants who work every day at home and abroad to identify dangerous threats, prevent tragedies, and save countless American lives.
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Social Security, Medicare, & Retirement

Strengthening Retirement Security & Protecting Social Security
As Rep. Spanberger meets with seniors across the 7th District, she has heard tragic stories of hardworking Virginians who are seeing their benefits slashed and their retirement savings and pensions further jeopardized. This trend is unacceptable, and Rep. Spanberger believes that these seniors and their families should be able to count on a secure retirement during their golden years. In Congress, she is focused on working with both Republicans and Democrats to maintain the benefits employees have earned and to push back against cuts to our Social Security and Medicare programs. Rep. Spanberger is committed to keeping our promises to working families, and she strongly opposes radical efforts to put the livelihoods of hardworking Americans at risk.

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Veterans' Issues

Honoring the Sacrifice of Virginia 7’s Bravest
More than 700,000 veterans call the Commonwealth home, and we owe a great debt to these fellow Americans who selflessly served to protect our country. Rep. Spanberger is committed to honoring the sacrifice of these veterans, while also making sure they receive the benefits and services they have earned by putting on the uniform.

Strengthening Healthcare, Mental Health, and Employment Resources for Veterans
At a time when our nation’s veterans experience unacceptable rates of homelessness, unemployment, and death by suicide, Rep. Spanberger believes Congress must do more to strengthen Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) services that provide mental health resources, job training, and civilian transition assistance. Rep. Spanberger is also meeting with Central Virginia veterans to learn more about how Congress can address the unique healthcare challenges rural veterans face due to long distances between their home and a VA healthcare facility.
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Women's Issues

Fighting for a Level Playing Field for All American Women
Rep. Spanberger is committed to fighting for Central Virginia women in three key ways: ensuring equality under the law, fighting for equal pay for equal work, and protecting women's right to reproductive healthcare and abortion. She helped introduce the Paycheck Fairness Act, which was signed into law by the President. She has also been a vocal advocate for the Equal Rights Amendment. Rep. Spanberger believes that the more we empower women through legal & economic equality, the more we can strengthen and stabilize entire communities across Virginia's Seventh District. 
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