‘Buy American’

Meriden Record Journal

The kid’s doing all right.

First-term U.S. Sen. Chris Murphy chalked up perhaps his biggest legislative accomplishment to date recently when the “Buy American” amendment he crafted, part of the National Defense Authorization Act, was approved in the Senate.

According to a Connecticut Mirror report, Murphy’s measure requires the Pentagon to report to Congress purchases made overseas in the hope it would discourage shopping there. Under the Buy American Act, government agencies are required by law to prefer U.S.-made products in their purchases and are banned from buying anything that does not contain at least 50 percent American-origin components in its assembly — unless that agency has obtained a waiver.

This is a positive thing for America, and American workers, and a feather in the cap of Connecticut’s 41-year-old junior senator.

One of the knocks against Murphy, a Democrat from Cheshire, when he was seeking his Senate seat in 2012 was that he was too young to hold such power. Folks wondered aloud whether this “kid” would be taken seriously by the old lions roaming the Capitol halls. Would white-haired lawmakers actually work with a guy who was in high school during the 90s when teenagers were routinely referred to as Generation X slackers?
Well, Murphy has proven to not only be a polished politician, but also a serious legislator during his time in Washington, which included six years as Connecticut’s state representative from the 5th Congressional District.

In D.C., Murphy has served on the House Energy and Commerce Committee and founded the Buy American Caucus. Currently, he is co-chairman of the Congressional Land Conservation Caucus.

Yeah, it doesn’t sound like he’s walking around with a skateboard under his arm.

Speaking of his “Buy American” win, Murphy said, “By passing my amendment, the Senate has taken the common-sense stand that American taxpayer dollars should be spent on American-made goods when possible. This will keep us safer and help create jobs in the United States instead of overseas.”

In a day when Americans have such a low opinion of Congress, and a distrust of politicians in general, Connecticut residents can agree that Murphy, at the very least, is getting things accomplished.