Your Voice Counts

Welcome to "Your Voice Counts" – the Boxer Updates feedback page. Here you can read what Californians are saying in response to my recent messages on issues facing Congress and the nation. If you would like to join the conversation, please click here. To start receiving periodic email updates from Senator Boxer, click here. To browse past Boxer Updates, please click here.

EPA Ozone Standards

Californians respond to my message on Protecting Americans from Dangerous Air Pollution:

Thank you for working on better clean air standards. We believe that a healthy environment is fundamental to a successful and prosperous country. What good does it do to invest in education if children are too sick to go to school? What good is a job if we are too sick to work?
Fred and Betsy, Carmichael

I am so glad the EPA is taking action on air quality. One of the best reasons I moved first to California and then closer to the coast was the improvement in air quality. In the Bay Area and Los Angeles you can see the effect of smog hanging in the air. To ensure future prosperity of the areas in the future, we need to conquer pollution.
Stephanie, Palo Alto

As a senior citizen with breathing problems, I currently live in in the Inland Empire where we have horrific air quality, I urgently want the EPA to require much cleaner air quality. The EPA needs to propose the standard that is actually needed, and not the standard the EPA believes is politically acceptable. We will get nowhere if the EPA only proposes the latter standard, which I am very much afraid is what they have done (once again). Please do all you can to make a strong case for even better air quality standards before it is too late.  And do not forget to amend the laws to include authorization for the EPA to specifically monitor and regulate the air and water pollution caused by fracking. Shame on former VP Cheney for excluding and protecting BIG OIL and GAS from their crimes and abuses of our environment.
Peggy, Moreno Valley

The ozone level must be lower than 65 or 70, that is hardly anything coming down from 75. People are dying. I'm dying, they blame it on smog, etc. I have a fatal lung disease. You can't just take tiny steps with the air quality Ms. Boxer. It will take much to long to begin to really save lives. I'm not talking about plants and such, I'm talking about human lives. Please have the woman running this bill lower the ozone level considerably more than what is now proposed. It sure would be nice if I didn't get sick with a lung disease that is going to take my life, there is no cure. Please, take stronger action. I thank you for your time.
Arlene, Riverside

And how, precisely will any EPA regulation combat pollution drifting in from China? or ozone emitted in San Francisco/Bay Area from cooking over the Sacramento valley and blowing up against the Sierras? How does penalizing the foothill counties for ozone counts they didn't create help anyone breathe easier? How does raising the cost of energy in anyway help the unemployed, the under-employed, the middle class, or business? It is time to require that EPA regulations be rolled back, be submitted to open scientific evaluation and be scored for economic harm. You are in error celebrating the newest EPA regulations.
George, Nevada City

I agree with your message about having the EPA improve air quality standards. Keep up the good work for us residents. Thank you.
Patricia, Carlsbad

Thank you so much for fighting for clean air. It seems common sense would prevail in this matter but when people are making huge amounts of money under the status quo it is a hard to make the changes necessary for the very survival of the inhabitants of our planet. Where the greedy are going to spend their loot when everything is dead never seems to enter the equation for the short sighted. We are on the brink of destruction and common sense must prevail against these hard headed and extremely selfish giants.
Judy, Chico

My husband and I live within 2 blocks of a freeway and one block of a train station that has only diesel engines of ancient age. We are looking forward to the time when diesel trucks are cleaned up; when the passenger trains are requireed to convert to electricity, and when automobiles are held to a higher standard. We look forward to the time when the new EPA rules and regulations are put into effect. Many urban dwellers face similar situations, and we urge Congress to the right thing.
Marilyn, San Francisco

While the new standard is indeed an improvement, given that the science advisory committee's recommendation for lower limits, I remain concerned that the new regulation is insufficient to protect human health. Why did EPA limit its range to 65ppb instead of 60? And, why is the secondary standard the same as the primary standard? Playing politics with well understood science is irresponsible, as is celebrating the acceptance of the lowest acceptable standards as defined by the science advisory committee. I implore you to fight for the best environmental outcomes and stand up for science against the influence of profits and greed!
Jay, Oakland

Thank you for your message about the proposed new accptable ozone levels. I so greatly appreciate your message's comment that if one cannot breathe one cannot work. Truly, the health of Americans is at the heart of any economic decision. How I wish more of your colleagues, Democrats as well as the Republicans, could understand that the destruction of American air, water, and lands is about human health and life expectancy. In "opinion surveys" I have received from Democratic candidates and those recently elected, these life and death environmental issues are not even listed. How shallow minded they are.
Leslie, San Francisco

Thank you for the note about the EPA proposal. Please do all you can to facilitate this standard being adopted. Writing from Fresno air quality is a major concern of my family.
Mark, Fresno

As you wrote: "If you can't breathe you can't work." Exactly so. It is tragic that an issue like this one will probably be batted around by politicians who lack vision or simple understanding.
Roland, Rancho Santa Fe

I very much support having clean air and less global enthalpy. I appreciate your email.
Lloyd, Chico

Good for the EPA...Every once in a while they make a half-hearted effort to do the right thing. BUT, obviously they are not doing enough! As long as oil companies control our energy policies, we will continue to live limited, toxic lives...Maybe someday this country will do the right thing, and make an all-out effort to develop truly CLEAN energy...Maybe...
Bob, Santa Barbara

While stricter standards might put manufacturers under some stress to comply, in the end, our quality of our environment is most important for us now, and for our children in the future.
John, Rancho Santa Margarita

I have been to many of the smoggiest cities in the world. It is terrible, the air seems like poison, and if we don't take steps now, believe me, it will get worse. We need to think of the world in terms of our children, or it will only get worse.
Cecelia, Aptos

Whereas I do appreciate your efforts and success with bringing SCE to heel, I am on the fence regarding increasing the EPA standard of population levels. I think it is important, more so in other states than California with our own AQMD, I see a lot of discouraged workers still trying to find gainful employment and not being 'counted' in the unemployment rankings. My focus continues to help find friends and family work by coaching and networking on their behalf. But what they need more is for the Work Force Investment Act to fund their retraining. So my question is, what will be the cost of the EPA regulation change on our recovering economy?
Lily, Silverado

I'm not worried about a small drop in ozone, a pollutant that has for the most part been handled successfully. (the enemy of perfect is not the good.) instead I'm more concerned about a certain party's refusal to acknowledge climate change and craft legislation re CO2 levels. not a single republican voted against Keystone, along with some democrat traitors. also concerned with the attempt to ban scientists from advising the EPA. maybe Inhofe wants politicians "who aren't scientists" to give advice themselves, parroting the lines from their big oil sponsors.
Dean, Topanga

I am very concerned with the destructive changing weather patterns, destruction of our Ozone layer and the destruction of our planets rain forests. The Amazon alone produces over 20% of this planets oxygen, controls climate, and contributes many new finds of drugs to the medical field, what happens when these forests are gone? And in addition to all that our arctic regions are melting away. It seems we have done too little, too late. Is what has begun to far gone to be reversed?
Frank, Glendora

Thank you so much Senator Boxer for believing that we need to promote human health above the profit of large polluting companies.
Susan, Salinas

Please hang tough in protecting the public from pollutants and toxins. A recent art exhibition at Stanford University depicted an area in Louisiana called "Cancer Alley". It is clear that pollution pays, enforcement is lax, and penalties are few. I hope you will continue to monitor the EPA and keep your constituents informed.
Lynn, Palo Alto

Thank you for your e-mail about the new Ozone limits proposed by the EPA. I guess you are supporting this as you sent me an e-mail about it, so I say thank you for continuing to support the EPA's fight to improve the air quality. I know that a lot of our elected officials don't share our concern for the environment, so we must always work to make changes that improve the air and water quality. Please continue the fight for us all.
Mark, Huntington Beach

Thank you for standing up for us & thanks to the EPA for proposing to lower ozone layers--hope this actually happens. While we understand that each reduction & other positive environmental actions cost money, please add up the cost of health damage (including lost work time), hospital admissions, medical care, etc. & you will realize that clean air, water & other environmental improvements cost far less in the long run.
Dina, La Jolla

I am so glad that the EPA is moving to reduce ozone levels in our communities. We can have healthy environments and healthy economies.
Eva, Laguna Woods

I applaud you for working to achieve cleaner air. I am disappointed that it will take up to 23 years for this new proposal to take full effect if it is passed. It seems that these standards are set and then industry/polluters push back and they are allowed more time to meet the standards. The standards should be put in place with a shorter time frame for meeting the standards. Those struggling to meet the standards are probably the worst offenders. Let the government give them loans to purchase the equipment necessary to put the standards into place. They can repay the government with their profits. Don't just pass more legislation. Enforce what is already in place!
Kathryn, San Francisco

Air quality is a very important part of living, it has been compromised already, and if we have determination to continue living we need to protect what we have now.
Clea, Redwood City

Time for this to happen! The EPA needs to stand strong on meeting goals. Our children will ask why we took so long to act on climate change.
Linda, Los Alamitos

Having worked with environmental issues for many years I am very much aware that politicians in Congress, as well as the White House have given a blank check to the oil companies and corporations. Shell oil company produced a clean burning fuel oil called AMBER 363 back in the late 1980's. when burned it only emitted 9 PPM of pollutants into the air. Never did come out to the general public. Southern California gas Company came out with a conversion kit that would convert gasoline burning engines to natural gas or propane. This to died a quick death. Our politicians will never back anything that gets rid of OIL production. Why do you think we are fighting all these damn wars since world war two?? It's all about oil in the middle East. Not democracy nor freedom.
Larry, Lompoc

Thanks so much for working on this. I have asthma and it’s irritated by smoke and air pollution. Two of my teenage neighbors, twin sisters, died of asthma attacks in their teens.
Carol, Windsor

Thanks for working to improve air standards. It is far more critical to life than just making it possible to be able to work … Our whole national culture is currently being bombarded by the idea that we only have worth as units of production. Corporations, plutocrats, and oligarchs define human lives (other than their own) as valuable only as long as it makes a profit for them. Our society seems to be swallowing it hook, line, and sinker. I get it, the world is being run by these insane people, and you have to work within certain parameters to make a difference. Still, as a nation, I believe we must not lose sight of what it is to be decent human beings irregardless of what profit can be squeezed out of us. Please include that in the dialog lest all humane sentiment eventually disappear. You are in a position to sustain and nurture the mindset that protects the health of people just because they are people, and it is the right thing to do, instead of merely profitable for some greedy, amoral entity of business.
Larry, Santa Cruz
Thank you for your continued work in advancing clean air. I appreciated that you voted against the Keystone Pipeline because that was the right thing to do even though it may cost a Democratic seat in the Senate. It is the right thing to do to control the amounts of Mercury released in the environment by industry. I am not sure why people in this country do not want clean air and water. They elected more Republican representatives who will stall and stop environmental regulations. I don't understand, these Republican congress people also have kids and grand kids. Thank you again for your environmental work, you are a model Senator who truly cares for this country.
Susan, Menlo Park

Thanks for your notification about the new ozone standards that US EPA is proposing. Please encourage EPA to adopt the lowest standard possible, e.g., 60 ppm. As climate change causes higher temperatures in many regions, the higher temperatures and increased number of days with higher temperatures will result in more ozone being created in the atmosphere. For this reason and others, the lowest health protective standard should be adopted.
Diane, Davis

The EPA's standards are not nearly strict enough. Our air and water are precious and these greedy corporations must be held accountable. Stricter rules now!
Marian, Hollister

We are in total support of the EPA and your efforts to minimize air pollution. It is critical that we fight all the contributors to global warming, and halt their greedy efforts. It is imperative that we do everything we can to reduce the world carbon footprint before we reach the point of "no return". It won't happen in our lifetime, but the concern is for our children, their children, and future generations. We need to also care about the planet's wildlife...we have to fight for them since they are dependent on us.
Gary, Windsor

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Californians respond to my message Investigate Ferguson Police Department:

Thank you for taking immediate and positive action to urge Attorney General Eric Holder to conduct a complete review of the recent death of a young, unarmed African American in Ferguson, MO. When yet another death at the hands of a law enforcement officer goes unheeded and is dismissed by the local prosecution, the perception for justice, especially for the bereaved Mother, Father, siblings, and close friends is left wanting. Fairness demands a fair and impartial trial by Michael Brown's peers, not a 9 member white and 3 member black grand jury and a long standing white prosecuting attorney, who affords no trust among the local African American community. Again, thank you for sharing your letter with your constituents tonight. I really found comfort in the fact that you, Barbara, have already seen to take immediate action to urge the Department of Justice to leave no stone unturned. If not now, the citizens of Ferguson must continue to plead, when?!
Denny, Mill Creek

I'm pleased to hear that you have requested a full investigation of the Ferguson case. These type of outcomes where police officers have become untouchable and have been given the green light to kill and get away with not bringing communities together. The people have lost faith in the court system and the police officers that are placed to SERVE AND PROTECT. We are still fighting the same racial divide, equality and racism that has tormented this country for decades. The time passes but the scenes are the same...when will it stop? I look forward to the follow up of your request for an investigation.
Elizabeth, Brea

Thank you for sending your letter to Attorney General Holder. All Americans need to hear to truth of what happened to Michael Brown and whether the Ferguson Police Department acts in the best interests of its citizens.
Linda, Oceanside

I totally support your advocating further investigating- I listened to the entire speech before the Jury Verdict was revealed--and agreed with one of the legal opinions expressed afterwards- I continue to be appalled with police shooting suspects to kill-and one bullet is enough for that extreme measure but TEN Bullets in a teenager is OVERKILL and malevolent in my opinion.
We as a country need to reexamine our laws and our practices. Thank you for your continued hard work in the senate to support all Americans
Sheila, Martinez

Thank you Senator Boxer for requesting a full investigation into the civil rights of Michael Brown. I am also concerned about the militarization of police - all police. There should not be military arms, drones, vehicles used by city/county police departments supplied by Homeland Security. I am also seriously concerned that there is a serious attempt to stop all demonstrations and free speech in this country. There is no denying the intimidation and police presence at such events to discourage participation and jail people.
Carole, Simi Valley

I have always worked for Civil Rights. But in this case I believe people immediately tried and convicted Officer Wilson. And, if Michael Brown had not just committed a strong armed robbery, attacked the store clerk, and arrogantly walked down the middle of the street with his stolen goods he would probably still be alive. He assaulted the Police officer. Put the blame where it belongs.
Frances, Escondido

Clearing the policeman was a joke. It was not the property business of a Grand Jury to clear the cop, merely to find sufficient evidence to indict.
Gary, North Hollywood

Thank you for writing to the Justice Department to register your concern about the verdict in the Ferguson shooting case. As more and more such cases mount up, the necessity of systemic reform and nationwide examination of this issue becomes more and more crucial. I hope that the federal authorities take such recommendations very much to heart and that this change will come soon. The consequences of doing nothing will be very great, I fear.
Robbi, Irvine

Thank you, Senator Boxer, for the letter you sent to Attorney General Holder. You are correct to foreground the need to improve relations between Ferguson's police department and its community, but I also think the issue of competence and training is at issue. If Officer Wilson's testimony and actions are correct, it suggests a terrified and improperly trained officer. Why did he fire 12 times? Why didn't he wait for his backup? I do not know the details of the case well enough to feel certainty about what charges should have been brought against this officer, but it seems to me that he used an inappropriate and illegal level of force. The local district attorney's condoning of the officer's actions (through his failure to charge him with any crime) makes me feel less trusting toward the police since they can kill me or anyone in my family if they feel threatened. If this is the criterion for lethal force, why train them or pay them well. Just give them a badge and a gun. It works so well in Mexico...
Terence, Pasadena

I am pleased to know you took the action you did, involving the fiasco with the city of Ferguson. I strongly urge the DOJ to get involved and fix the mess left by the DA.
Enrico, Westlake Village

why are you and all the media assuming the grand jury didnt know what they were doing. there were black people on that jury enuf with the riots whenever a black teen is killed it is ALWAYS the white persons fault and ALWAYS done deliberlity no more riots!!!!!!!
Georgia, Sylmar

Thank you Senator Boxer, for your support of a justice system that serves all the People.
What is obvious, is the prosecutor acted as the defense attorney. He should be supporting the People. Yet he deliberately sent the message that all the witnesses were wrong and Officer Wilson was correct. The story given the Grand Jury was slanted. This was wrong. Thank you for using this event to change the system of abuse in our society. Allowing police officers such great latitude to kill hundreds every year does not create a safe community.
Bruce, Buena Park

The Grand Jury, with African American members, heard all the evidence and made a considered decision. Stop wasting time and creating a diversion on this issue… Brown had just robbed a convenience store. The forensic evidence largely supports Officer Wilson and the eye-witness reports are all over the place (eyewitness testimony is always to be treated with skepticism). The media has blown this way out of proportion. The Trevor Martin case was much more important and a much clearer example of misconduct.
Robert, Portola Valley

Thank you for asking the Justice Department to investigate the Ferguson killing. It appears that our Police Departments are becoming militarized, and that more Police Officers think it is o.k. to kill citizens - especially young black citizens. This situation has to stop and the Police must use not use lethal force as a first action. Thank you for all you do - my husband and I are glad that you are our Senator.
Dolores, Cotati

Thank you for your letter to the Attorney General, your letter was a ray of hope for some kind of justice for young Michael Brown.
Martha, La Puente

How can you even broach this topic. The officer was attacked, defended himself, was attacked again and in fear for his life, defended himself! How is that racist? The man in question had a record, was a suspect in yet another crime and failed to allow himself to be questioned. Because outside elements tried to make this a major issue doesn't make it so. An officer doing his job still has a right to protect himself. Not all police are perfect but you can't judge when you don't have the experience… Not a thing has been done about Benghazi, IRS malfeasance but you take up this banner in which a bi-racial grand jury ruled no prosecutable offense occurred! This is the system you are sworn to uphold. Your time and energy would be better spent in worthwhile and pertinent pursuits!
Rex, Fountain Valley

As I see it Brown was a criminal. It is unfortunate that he was shot. Whether he is black or white a police officer has to defend himself from people that act like they are going to shoot them. We had a grand jury of 12 people who went through hundreds of documents. No one else had access to information that they did.
Ray, Santa Ana

Your letter is on target and shows that citizens must be vigilant in supporting and enforcing our laws. I am sickened by the turmoil created after the announcement of the Grand Jury's decision but I it shows how broken the system is. An investigation into the practices of the Ferguson Police Department is a step in balancing an injustice that has permeated that particular region for many years. Police must behave professionally and citizens must feel protected.
Susan, San Rafael

i agree with your letter 100%. thank you so much! i never heard of a grand jury acting on information from the defendant (4 hours of testimony?) without a trial or the defendant not being cross examined. i do not understand how our country is going backwards towards more racism and double standards regarding blacks as well as women.
Joni, Weaverville

Thanks for calling for an investigation. The situation in Ferguson is fishy indeed and our nation needs transparency and justice.
Gail, Menlo Park

Many thanks for supporting community policing in Ferguson -- very important in all communities. I am proud of Richmond, CA, which has done a remarkable job with their police department (and other areas as well.) I believe Oakland is making good attempts at community-based policing, and deserves any support they can get. I wish we could reduce the armaments from our forces that have been passed on to local police. But what to do with all this left over army gear. Can't think of any place I'd like to see it. What about a prize for the person who could figure out how to recycle it all into something peaceful. Keep up the good work!
Janet, Berkeley

Thank you Senator Boxer for the letter to Attorney General Holder about looking into the Ferguson and 78 years old, I have been racially profiled many times over the years. Sometimes the officers would say I am being stopped because the car was reported stolen. I replied many times that I own the car and have never reported it stolen. It was just a form of intimidation and harassment.
Lee, Sacramento

Please stop putting your own "spin" on what happened and what needs to be done. Let the Justice Department do their investigation - without comments from the "peanut gallery". By constantly putting the thought out there that the Grand Jury got it all wrong in Ferguson - you are just continuing to "fuel the fire". STOP - Rioting will continue as long as people keep interfering. The Justice Dept will handle it.
Renee, Marina

I am very disappointed that once again we have street riots "racial in nature" going on in our country. These people are behaving dangerously, recklessly, and are taking privilege in destroying the property of others, including but not limited to burning, smashing, stealing, and other manner of destruction. Once again this is a public outrage… The rioters did NOT want to hear the truth, learn the truth. The GRAND JURY did it's job. The investigation is complete. It took time to investigate properly and completely. There were a number of Black witnesses who bravely told the truth and provided accurate (as they saw it unfold)testimony that supported the Officer Wilson's actions. They should be applauded for speaking out truthfully and bravely because the mob(s) were not and are not willing to believe the truth. Please support truth and responsibility in these situations. Innocent people are adversely affected by irreparable physical and / or property loss when looters and rioters are allowed to rage out of control.
Diane, Hemet

Your letter to Eric Holder is a beginning toward the systemic change we need in this country to establish equal rights for every citizen, whether on the streets, in our prisons, or in the courtroom. As long as fear, anger, hate, isolationism, racism, and elitism rule our system, those who are charged with ensuring "justice for all" will fail our citizenry and endanger, instead of protect, the principles established by the Founding Fathers to uphold the foundation of our country. Thank you for taking that small first step toward significant action, and giving some amount of hope to those who have waiting too long to experience a true sense of freedom.
Gwen, San Diego

Thank you for your letter to the DOJ. I don't think the Attorney General [ie, the prosecutor] acted appropriate vis a vis the Grand Jury, I don't think that defendants usually have the right to present their case. Clearly the Michael Brown couldn't - not when he was facing Wilson and not now. The Prosecuting Attorney was to prosecute not defend. I believe he defended… I think we must do more than investigate that police department -- bur while we are let us investigate so many more departments - perhaps each one where a young person or a black person was shot and killed by a police officer. The President, who must be heartbroken and entirely undone with this and everything else, says we must accept the rule of law. Doesn't that apply to the police first?
Deena, Topanga

Not only should Holder prosecute regarding pattern of abuse by police, but should seek to plug all of the gaping holes McCullough presented as his defense of the killer cop, like the second bullet that was never found, the witnesses that mysteriously disappeared never to be heard by the grand jury, and the disparate treatment of the killer cops as compared to anyone else, as well as the total failure of victim support to contact Michael Brown's family. I am incensed and it is left to Holder to bring justice.
Kristina, Lomita

The disparity of Ferguson citizens stopped for traffic citations has apparently long shown there is a question of bias in the police force. Unfortunately, the issue of race has shown its ugly head throughout our nation ever since President Obama was elected the first time. I had hope that we truly were in a post-racial nation, but it seems to me things are worse rather than better. I am seventy-nine, white, and a veteran, and my service to our nation was for all of us, not just those of us who are white. I recall when Ike had his heart attack. We all had a common concern. If we do not have a common concern about racial relations in our country, soon, our nation will suffer irreversible sorrow. Again, thank you.
Bob, Yuba City

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Immigration Reform

Californians respond to my message on President Obama’s Executive Action on Immigration:

THANK YOU, Senator Boxer, for being outspoken both for immigration and President Obama's recent action. I support this all the way.....even though it isn't far enough it is a start. What a laugh to think the Republicans would have cooperated if the President waited until January!
Monessa, La Quinta

I join you in applauding President Obama's recent action regarding immigration in our country. It is a much needed humane legislation in behalf of the many whose life and work nourish each of us in the United States. Thank you for support President Obama. This support is vital and will enable us to hold our heads high in the respect we give to each other.
Maria Luisa, Ventura

Excellent message and action by our President, at long last. So tired of do nothing congress, bickering Senate, and of course, the threat of lawsuits by a senator that isn't worthy of the office he holds. Thanks for your letter and for supporting our President.
Regina, Piedmont

Thank-you for coming forward and supporting President Obama and his immigration action. I personally as an ordained Catholic minister have been frustrated by Congress's lack of initiative and commitment on such an important issue. I appreciate and support your vote of confidence to the president.
Rev. Lester, San Bernardino

I support President Obama's reform for immigration as an educated Latina who is employed in social services in CA. I strongly encourage the Senate and House to work with President to develop/pass a bill that improve a broken immigration process for this county. What President Obama has only is a short term cure because he has a Senate of Republicans and House of resistance. We are the voters and I demand you pass a bill that allow the group Dreamers and other hard working, years and years as tax paying undocumented people to become upstanding citizens.
Linda, La Mesa

I heartily support the President's position on Immigration status and keeping families together. I believe he has not been strong in standing against a do nothing congress and a divided democratic party. I think that it is not just the republicans who have failed to act but also a weak democratic position. I have worked with undocumented, intelligent and educated young adults for the past few years. I've heard their stories and hardships, their fears and concerns over deported loved ones. Family security is an essential to any healthy community. Whatever is being done now is necessary and a pathway to citizenship is needed for these young people to fulfill their place in American society. They see themselves as Americans - they've lived nowhere else. If we are a nation built on Law, I hope Immigration Law to come cares for the voiceless as well as the squeaky wheel.
Alice, Huntington Beach

In total agreement with his taking action on this issue. These immigrants have been doing our dirty work without proper compensation for many years, and they deserve legal status. If we, North Americans, had been the ones with limited opportunities for education and jobs, and the Latin American had been the land of opportunity ... Let's live by the Golden Rule!
Gwen, Woodland Hills

Thank you for the e-mail regarding the Presidents executive action on immigration. Although I am not in favor of this passage, I wonder why if this is so important, that the President did not act on it the first five years of his presidency especially in view that the Democrats were in charge then. Regardless, This whole immigration passage is a result from secret behind door meetings,with the various south American countries,setting up a plan to send children into our country,knowing that the American people would not turn them away and also would then open the door for their parents.We can pretend all we want about these people paying taxes,background checks,etc but current events have clearly demonstrated that this will never happen. The only thing achieved in this passage will be over population,higher unemployment,increased welfare costs, and skyrocketing medical costs. Even the most innocent bystander can see this,But apparently worth it as it will provide more democratic voters.
Robert, Weldon

Thank you for speaking out in support of the President and his actions on immigration. I wish the people who feel so much hatred toward him would read your letter and really listen to his moving speech. I am appalled at the way people, including elected officials in the Congress and other places, blatantly disrespect not only the President himself but the Office of President. I believe the upsurge of ill will toward him is fueled by racism, more so than any other reason. It truly is shameful and does our country a disservice. I appreciate your backing him on this and speaking out to your constituents.
Sandra, Santa Rosa

You applaud the President for doing what the public didn't want? How will that strengthen our economy? Who's going to pay for all their needs? This will cost our tax payers billions. We wouldn't be tearing their families apart, they already did it themselves when they came illegally. How could it possibly increase border security? How do you think they will be held accountable? The President didn't have to wait 17 months, all he needed to do is tell Reid to pass on the paperwork to him. He didn't follow the former presidents because they did it legally through congress. Please accept only the truth.
Ronald, Hemet

There will not be a perfect answer to immigration but the President is correct to cover his action for immigration decisions because these types of delays are intended to make him look bad. It will be stated that he did nothing and used against him. For the opposition to seat on their decisions until the President is out of office is not the answer either. I don't understand why we can't have clear instructions on how this is suppose to work. We are all a melting pot and are suppose to support government that is having a problem getting their act together. To threaten the President with a lawsuit gives the appearance that the person filing the suit is more interested in making a name for himself and avoid doing his job. Can he not see he is defeating the purpose of good Government. The President's job is hard enough and is being made more difficult without cooperation from those who promised commitment to the people.
Martha, Spring Valley

It is about time this bill was passed in spite of the Senate's dragging their feet on the matter. As for the President taking action, I applaud it too! It shows He is focused on being the Chief Executive of this great country and if I was allowed to vote again, I would certainly keep him in office for the remainder of his term. Senator Boxer, thank you for your service as well. I appreciate very much all that you do, and that you keep doing such a great job.
Please remind the Republican party that shutting down the government is NOT the answer. It just makes the country suffer and young people lose interest in playing an important role in country's future.
Hugo, Alhambra

Thank you Ms. Boxer for supporting the president on his executive action on immigration. Congress left no choice for the president, by playing politics instead of doing the job we elected them to do. President needs your support, and please do everything in your power to make sure that he knows that sensible people of this country is with him!
Prabhakar, Sunnyvale

While we openly applaud our great nation's legal immigration and naturalization process legislated by Congress, we are, however, moved to voice our opposition to President Obama's recent move to unilaterally legalize illegal immigrant's rights. In a word, let's have a lively debate and conversation in our Nation's Congress on what new immigration legislation should look like; but when one branch of our republic -- the Executive branch -- creeps into the lawful and constitutional boundary of another -- Congress -- that opens-up a whole new can of proverbial worms. The framers of our Constitution described quite clearly in the Federalist Papers these boundaries.
Greg, Westlake Village

Thank you for your letter. I agree with all of it. I am upset and frustrated that this President of the United States does not get the respect he deserves, for his Office and for him as an individual. I am an elder citizen. FDR and I "came in" together--1932. I remember no President suffering the disrespect and abuse that President Obama has suffered. If the opposing Party disagrees on policy, then a debate should take place. What is going on today is no debate, it is hateful attack,attack,attack. It breaks my heart. I want to end on a grateful note. I again thank you for your letter and gladly thank you for your leadership.
Shirley, Los Angeles

I do not share your views on President Obama's Immigration Maneuvers. People have died fighting for this country and it's values. I am opposed to the concept of "Cheap Citizenship" for anyone that can walk over here, and take "cuts" in front of the others waiting in line. What's the doctrine unfolding here? America has a place in its heart for people that really want to be "Americans," but it's not clear to me that President Obama's proposal has drawn the line in the right places. I think the President's proposal violates Executive Authority... I'm not really pleased with the Republicans either - but I experience your platform as much worse.
Jonathan, Silicon Valley

I applaud you for supporting our President's decision to take Executive Action on Immigration Reform. I myself am a second-generation American Citizen. My grandparents immigrated from Eastern Europe at the turn of the last century. They came to America hoping for a better life. I believe that is the wish of the majority of immigrants who come to this country...and yet immigrants are all lumped together under the category of "lazy takers." I think this is hateful and shameful behavior on our part and it disturbs me very much. However...I can't help but wonder why the President didn't take a stand on this before the mid-term elections? Why must every issue be so politicized? I believe it was cowardly on his part not to act before yesterday… I do, however, admire you and your convictions very much, and I'm very proud to be able to say that you are "my" Senator. I sincerely believe we need more people like you in Congress.
Deborah, Belmont

Action on immigration and securing the border is needed. I support the president in his current policy. On the other hand I am frustrated that the issue has not been addressed in a manner that takes into account the larger issue of relations between the United States and other american countries. Relations between the U.S. and countries south are shameful. The U.S. has shown no real leadership to solve hemispheric issues. Instead the U.S. behaves as if the people and resources south are there to be exploited. I pray for a real statesperson who will propose a common market of the americas. This would allow standards of living and human rights to be extended throughout the region. Citizens of any country could work in any other just like in the European Common Market. Then as in the common market we could all work for common peace and prosperity.
Eric, Canoga Park

I am so proud of president Obama and you for supporting this issue. Full immigration reform is necessary and I pray that Republicans can step forward for real change. Often I work with children who are separated from their parents and I see the pain this causes. Thank you for your service to our country.
Minerva, San Marcos

Thank you for your e-mail. I commend our president for taking such a courageos action. I watched his spirited speech at the highschool in Las Vegas today. Yes, the Republicans had their chance. They could have acted on immigration over a year and a half ago. If they sue our president, whether it will be for his Obama Care or immigration, good luck Republicans. There will never be a Republican president. I, as a well educated immigrant who came to the US at almost age 18, had to work the fields picking up lettuce in the hot sun in El Centro, Calexico area while I attended a private school to learn English…. Rest assured that I will do all I can to encourage and assist any loyal hard working immigrant to strive and continue their efforts to do better for them and our country. It was a pleasure hearing from you, and watching our President deliver what he promised.
Alejandro, Oakley

I am so proud of the president for finally standing up. The speech was spot on. Looks like this is how he will have to get things done since so many republicans are, and always have been, against him on anything. What I cannot understand is how they degrade him, in so many ways, makes me wish I could be there to shame them for not having manners. Do you hear of this degradation in other countries? I am so glad he is tough enough to withstand it. On second thought, I wish I could be there the next time it happens so I could hit that person square in the nose. (even at my age 79) He is President of the United States; they need to show more respect.
Shirley, Lemoore

I am supporting Pres.Obama on his Executive order on immigration for those families who have lived here over 5 years and have been in good standing with their families and children striving in their education . I am glad he is taking a stand as other former Presidents have on immigration in order to help families stay together! I am thankful we have a President like Pres. OBAMA who is a humanitarian and wants to help families who are working at jobs no one else would do to stay in this country! I agree to deport those who break the law! But help those who want a better life for their families and prosper!
Rosa, Lompoc

I find it interesting that all you can talk about is it being the Republicans fault that nothing has been done regarding immigration. Why do you and all other Democrats not work WITH all other members of Congress and the House to come up with a solution?. I am so tired of each party blaming the other for whatever doesn't get done. You all remind me of my bickering grandchildren.
Karen, Fresno

Thank you for your strong leadership on immigration reform. It is time to replace the broken immigration system with a humane immigration system that respects all hard working people and keeps families together. I appreciate all you do representing us in the U.S. Senate.
Valerie, Pacifica

In my opinion I believe that the president is wrong on doing what he did. We are just rewarding law beakers. Why should they wait and apply legally, when that can just come across illegally and achieve the same result. At this rate we will always have an illegal population. What's to stop this from continuing. He's in effect saying keep coming, we won't deport you. I use to be a Democrat, now I'm an independent.
Johnny, Idyllwild

Please don't let the Republican leadership get away with demonizing the President's recent bold move to advance efforts toward Immigation reform. How dare McConnell & Boehner say that this move "will poison the well." They did that when they became the part of NO and conspired to make Obama a 1 term president. Please, please stand up to their lies & hypocrisy. Thank you for your service - I believe in you!
Angelina, Sacramento

Thank you for standing with our president in this time of wild eyed Republican response to his responsible actions for the many people who have lived under the shadow of thinly veiled racism.
Pastor Chuck, Lompoc

We should make it quite clear to the GOP, that we will not regress from our positions, and back the Presdident all the way and whatever it takes. They are wasting time, and money fighting two acts that met with overwhelming response when they were signed by the President. Immigration was had reached that urgency that required the president to react to under law. The GOP simply used the issues without accepting the blame for doing nothing, yes, absolutely nothing to address this growing issue.
Raymond, Hidden Valley Lake

I completely disagree with your last e-mail where you state: "I applaud the President for stepping up and taking bold and constitutional action to bring people out of the shadows, thereby strengthening our economy and keeping families from being torn apart." Illegal immigrants do not strengthen the economy-they weaken it.
Barbara, West Hills

Hooray for you, for stating your position on the President's Immigration Reform measures.  Thanx for NOT being quiet. You are absolutely right. The Congress has the power, but they have been neglecting their duty, that is, to bring up the immigration issue and actually VOTE on it! Eight years of Bush did VERY LITTLE if anything to tackle the issue. Again, I applaud you for standing WITH the President.
Bill, San Clemente

I agree with President Obama about immigration. Some members of the GOP have been after the President since he was first elected. They vowed to not cooperate with him and stop most anything he wanted to do. It seems that our President has the wrong color skin in their option. When the President won the second election, the GOP became really angry…  President Obama needs all the support we have given him. I hope the elected new wake up and do the right thing regardless of the GOP.
Kris, Loma Linda

I only regret that the President held off on this until after the Mid-terms. Made the Dems look scared and spineless. Too bad he doesn't get the support and respect from his own party to exercise more executive authority.
Gia, Napa

I am encouraged by this, but there is much work to be done. It will be very important to get agencies identified to assist people through the process. I know many families that will benefit by this and it's long overdue. This country should realize that many of the jobs these immigrants do are not ones many will consider.
Marian, Hollister

I don't know where to begin, except to say that I'm deeply disappointed in our President and Congress as a whole and have been for quite some time. My message to all of you: stop pussyfooting around on immigration reform. All of this game playing between the two parties is growing old… It's a shame that we've been held hostage to politics as usual with little substance and no real & tangible results.
Bonnie, Huntington Beach

It was the right thing to do. It breaks my heart to see hard working families being divided. It would be good for our economy. Their hard work is very valuable. The Dreamers are young people that have achieved difficult goals. They are people of great courage and determination. I am sure their future will be great if we give them the opportunity. It will be great for our nation as well.       
Rosa, Banning

Thank you Senator for supporting the President. As a son of an immigrant mother who came here when she was 10yrs. old and had nine children, 3 of which became teachers, one a lawyer and one a social worker, I'm eternally grateful to our President for taking this executive action.
Philip, Pomona

Thank you, Senator Boxer, for supporting positions that I heartily agree with. Too bad that so many members of the House are not so reasonable.
Ida, San Mateo

I so totally agree with you. Have just heard Speaker Boehner has filed the lawsuit. Is there ANY way we can stop him from wasting our TAX money in such a fashion?
Sandi, Cameron Park

Bravo Senator Boxer. What Obama did was moral above all and that's what America is supposed to be about!
Dorothy, Laguna Woods

I agree with the president and you senator Boxer. I want the president to take more actions to move policy ahead. The opposition is only interested in seeing Mr. Obama fail. We deserve better!
Craig, Riverside

I have to say that I was disappointed when I received your message. Not with respect to the immigration policy, which I fully support, but rather the tone of the message. The message placed full blame of lack of Congressional action on the part of the Republicans and very much demonizes them. Please note that it is your responsibility to represent the Republicans in your jurisdiction, as much as it is to represent the Democrats. Furthermore, I very much hope that my Senator is one who can reach across the aisle to find solutions, not one who places blame on others and refuses to hold her party accountable.
Jessica, Palo Alto

Thank you for your message regarding immigration. Maybe we, the people, need to be reminded that other than the Native Americans, we are all immigrants and many of our great grandfathers/mothers were "illegal". How quickly we forget where we came from. Keep up the good work!
Ruth, San Pedro

Please continue the fight to pass comprehensive Immigration Bill. It always fall short. This bill need to include everyone. I understand the Republicans get in the way. If there is a Petition to sign, I will be happy to sign it and promote the petition. This needs to be done. This needs to be the focus of the next election if Congress does not pass a bill. The only problem is that it takes a lot of hurdles. My grandmother almost gave up becoming a citizen because she was asked to read in English and she could not. She was 94 years old when she finally became a citizen after 60 years living in this country. My grandfather had no problem becoming a citizen. Of course, it was much easier then. My grandparents migrated to El Paso, Texas in 1930's. Your children were all born in the US. She was unable to get a Green Card because she had no birth certificate. Her birth records were lost in a fire. She did not was not "legal" until years later when a Priest from her church verified her birthday with the date she was baptized. She was in her 40's when she finally became legal, even though my grandfather had become a Naturalized citizen before then.
I was 17 years old at the time when she was studying the Constitution to become a Naturalize Citizen. It just so happened, I had Government class my senior year. We both helped each other. She memorized the Gettysburg Address and the Bill of Rights. She knew all the Presidents and she answered all in English. She went before the Judge and the Judge asked her to read. She did not become a citizen that day. But she did learn to read a little. She did speak broken English. She was 94 years old when she went before the Judge when she passed and became a Citizen of the United States. She was so proud, she followed politics in the US and Mexico. The first time she was able to vote, she voted for Clinton. No one needs to go for years before the opportunity to either become a "legal" immigrant or a Naturalize Citizen… It is important for families to stay together. I don't know how my family would have survived if my grandmother was deported after living in the US for 40 years. Two of her sons were in the Military. I am grateful my son and his family were able to live in the US with my grandchildren. Thank you for all you do. Please continue to fight for Immigration reform.
Rosemary, Pinon Hills

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Californians respond to my message on Dear Mr. President, Act Now on Immigration (11/17/2014):

Thank you for your letter to President Obama regarding immigration reform. As always, I fully support your position. Thank you so very much for your compassionate, practical, and just approach to immigration reform.
Betsy, Sacramento

For your continued leadership and courage. Thank you for your message to President Obama regarding the use of his executive powers to create the progress that has been blocked (by certain Blockheads) in the area of Immigration Reform. You are inspirational and I appreciate and support your efforts and accomplishments!
Diane, Simi Valley

Being a lifelong conservative Republican, I very rarely agree with you. However, on this issue, I do. My wife is from Mexico and became a US citizen in 2004 (Just in time to vote for George Bush). I have (step)daughters who have been waiting since 1999 to legally live in the US…. My view is not based, just on my family. I have had open border views for more than 30 years. 
John, San Diego      

That is a great letter to President Obama. I am grateful that you took the initiative, not only to encourage and support him, but to remind him of the Republican Presidents who have taken similar executive, immigration action.
Sister Marietta, Millbrae

Thanks for your strong letter to President Obama urging action on immigration reform. It is well past time that action was taken to help folk move ahead in their lives and help our country move forward. Indeed Congress has stalled out on its work of governing and action needs to come from somewhere. Hopefully the President will have sufficient support to act now. Thanks for encouraging him and supporting such action.
Diana, Fallbrook

Please urge the president to follow the current laws and the constitution and not change current immigration status. These people have broken our laws and need to follow the progress as my Hispanic ancestors did. What if all Americans chose laws they did not wish to follow?
Charles, Los Angeles

Thank you so much for being bold and encouraging the President to take executive action on immigration reform. Congress has been remiss and action is long overdue. Again, thank you!
Angela, Montebello

Thank you for writing to the President requesting that he act on immigration reform. I support his proposed move to grant respite from deportation to those here illegally who have children born here; that is breaking families up. We could never deport upwards of 5,000,000 people anyway. This actually saves the government money by not having to process and pay for people to go back to their homes. I'm tired of Republican obstructionism! And now they say we need to compromise with them! Are they not thinking?! They haven't collaborated with the Democrats for six years since President Obama was elected, and now the President & the Democrats have to collaborate with them?!!! I don't want the Democrats to be guilty of obstructionism; however, there is no need to give up core principles. Enough is enough!
Mary, Oakland

Thank you for your letter to President Obama urging him to act on immigration reform. It is long past due. Thank you for pointing out that Republicans didn't have a problem when several Republican Presidents took executive actions on immigration. I believe many Democrats decided not to vote because they didn't see Democrats standing up for what's right. It's important to take stands so people know what you stand for.
Carol, Garberville

We read your letter addressed to the president with much appreciation for not only your message to urge him to ACT now on this long-overdue problem, but for the common sense and rationale behind the message. I mean, GOOD GRIEF! President Obama has "bent over backwards" to try and work with these so- called representatives (Republicans) who were elected to help run the government, but instead--all they have done for six years is to put this nation in situations in which we have been on the brink of financial and social disaster. He has been so maligned by a large number of Republicans who truly would rather see him "fail" as a president than help their own country progress into a more economically stable and global leader. I do not understand HOW these individuals continue to be elected. Thank-you for your continued support for this immigration reform bill, and thank-you for all your sound and sage work in the U.S. Senate.
Sherry and Bruce, Banning

You have got to be kidding. Why authorize several millions illegal immigrants? It's about the word illegal. The illegals shouldn't be here taking away jobs and filling up our classrooms. You should be ashamed of yourself for falling in line with a President that is just looking for new voters for future elections.
John, Placentia

Thank you for encouraging the president to take executive action on the issue of Immigration. This country needs to embrace the world, not intimidate, bomb and occupy the world.
Scott, Willits

Why is a US Senator writing to another former US Senator (and alleged constitutional law scholar) suggesting that he ignore the intent of congress and violate the constitutional requirement that he "shall take Care that the Laws be faithfully executed." I just don't get it! … Immigration should be left to Congressional action, not executive fiat. The Senator from my home state and my birthplace should be more respectful of the laws of this country and the system.
Larry, Orange

Muchas gracias por su apoyo… Tenemos muchos anos esperando por una reforma migratoria que pensamos que el presidente Obama iba hacer!! Muchas gracias!!
Edith, Greenbrae

It was so refreshing to receive your email and read your letter to the President urging him to take executive action on immigration, given that Congress refuses to act. Just this a.m., I was telling a friend that both Reagan and GHW Bush had signed executive orders on immigration with no complaints, yet we are listening to Republican threats to once again shut down the government if President Obama does the same thing. She was surprised, and we both wondered why Democrats had not been communicating this loudly. So thank you for getting the word out to some of us and for urging on President Obama. And please take any opportunity you can to remind everyone about past presidents' executive action on immigration. How soon we forget....
Kath, Diablo

Thank you Senator Boxer for being our voice, but you should also advice our president that he needs to act as the leader he said to be during the election time "that he was going to change Washington, yes we can" as a result of failing his promises as a true leader, I'm opening my options to consider candidates from other political parties, I hope he makes the right decision which is always been justice, high ethics and defending the weak that depend on strong leaders, just like our founding fathers that built this great nation.
Jose, Imperial

Senator Boxer I am strongly on your side. You always do the right thing, and definitely are with the immigration issue. The Republican party is so different now. All they care about is easing things on the wealthy and large corporations. I'm so glad that you're my Senator.
Steph, San Francisco

We don't need amnesty for illegal aliens. We need our border protected and stop them from coming over the border. I am a legal immigrant and had to pay my dues. All others who wish to come to this country need to pay their dues. They should be sent back to their country of origin and come here like many other legal immigrants. They should not be given free reign because they have been living here. I don't care who the president is the rule of law should be followed not flaunted
Charlotte, Murrieta

Thank you for having our President's back. After the disastrous election, our party needs to come out and "tell it as it is", that the GOP is obstructive and wants to see our President fail. The Democrats had no platform during the election and there is so much good to be talked about. I am counting on you to be a strong leader for our party. Start with Immigration, Affordable Care Act and go from there! And I hope you will run again and be re-elected.
Shirley, Los Angeles

Thank you for your heartfelt letter to President Obama advocating for action on immigration reform. This action is overdue, and will have a positive benefit on all citizens, not just those directly affected by compassionate action. It is also true, however, that comprehensive immigration reform needs to take into account the needs of political asylum petitioners, whose cases are backlogged in the immigration courts for years, and who, for extended periods of time are denied the right to work and to support themselves legally. These are people who have already been brutalized in their home countries, who seek refuge in the US, and who are left to fend for themselves without support and without appropriate ways to sustain themselves while their cases are pending. Whatever legislation is contemplated to upgrade the immigration process in the US needs to take into account these often very wounded and under-served refugees, giving them, at minimum an immediate, renewable right to work while they await court decisions.
Catherine, Van Nuys

I disagree with your position asking the President to take swift executive action. Immigration reform is a serious topic which requires the attention of Congress....not just the President. We need to give Congress an opportunity to resolve our nations immigration policy...not rush with an executive order. Rushing it with an executive order only makes it appear the President is trying to hide something from the American people. Additionally since he's already had 6 years in office to change immigration...why he rush now? He instituted health care in less time. Why not wait for Congress to act? Is it because Republicans have the majority? Let's stop with the games and do what's right for this country. I believe we and immigrants can wait 6-9 months to develop a comprehensive immigration policy In order to get this right.
Joe, Vacaville

Thank you for your letter to our President on immigration. It hurts me so much to think that the Republicans can be so nasty, unloving and unthinking all for the sake of deposing President Obama. They are far, far less than helpful. I sincerely hope something good will come of President Obama's executive actions on immigration. How people can be so cruel to others in the name of politics is beyond me. How can the Republicans in Congress sleep at night? Thank you so much for all you do for us.
Jan, Palo Alto

I must disagree with your request to President Obama to use Executive Action for Immigration. I believe this is a wrong move at this time. It looks like defiance in the face of an overwhelming change in Congress. If he would relax and try to work with the new Congress in January, perhaps something bi-partisan could be accomplished.
Kathryn, Simi Valley

Congratulations on your pro-active stance to provide compassionate action for thousands who are adrift in a storm of bureaucracy and insensitivity. President Obama must know that he will be supported by utilizing his legal authority to bring about justice to those who have suffered too much and too long.
Don, Santa Barbara

Thank you so much, Senator Boxer, for your letter of request and support to President Obama to use executive order re the Immigration problem. The House Republicans "do-nothing" policy is mean and spiteful rather than helping to solve a serious national problem. May God bless you, our President and our country.
Sister Patricia, Los Angeles
I agree with you completely. I have signed petitions urging President Obama to do so. I feel strongly that he will. Thank you for your email and for all you do for the progressive cause.
Edward, Foster City

Any action Obama takes on immigration needs to be voted down by congress. We have two many illegal immigrants here now. This must be stopped! We can't afford any more people on welfare and public assistance. We need to take care of our own first. There are to many americans in need of help including our vets and children! Please stop this nonsense now!
Barbara, San Diego

I'm very much opposed to allowing illegal aliens to stay in America. They take away jobs from American citizens, and disproportionately burden our hospitals, schools and other systems. They should not be rewarded for breaking our laws.
Vic, Livermore

Thank you for your letter to President Obama. I agree with you the President needs to go ahead and get the job done. Thank You for your service.
Victoria, Red Bluff

Thank you for urging Pres. Obama to take action on immigration. The present situation and the number of times other presidents have acted on this issue make it clear we truly need reform instead of patchwork fixes.
Glenda, Palo Alto

Thank you for your important letter to President Obama. It is urgent that President Obama act. Mixed (citizen-non-citizen) hard working families and communities have been allowed to form since 1986 and are now being torn apart by zealous deportation policies of the Justice Department and the "Secure Communities" program.
Elliot, Berkeley

I am extremely disappointed with you and startled that you would even suggest something as hurtful to the wishes of the American people. This is NOT a partisan matter. This is a matter of our American people, who are unable to live with such overcrowding. We need to do something immediately to change this situation, as you already know. How can you even suggest something like this, when the American people have said this is not what we want? We really need to have the resources available to us that were available when these Republican presidents were in office.
You already know that we are being pushed out of our homes because we can't afford to live here anymore! Where else can we go except the streets? How dare you? You should be ashamed of yourself for sending this message! I really find that this was the last straw.
Therese, Santa Clara

Many thanks for your letter urging President Obama to take executive action on immigration reform. It's urgent that he does it before the end of the year. I appreciate your commitment to the humanitarian needs of the undocumented immigrant and the economic benefits of reform for our economy.
Mary Ann, Merced

Bad bad idea! The wretched mess of the illegal children is still within memory of the people of Kansas, and Iowa, and Georgia. California missed a bullet only because people in the border towns actually rioted to keep shipment of illegals away! This is not the time to tell President Obama to act independently of the Congress and Senate. What are you thinking? … Please stop urging the president to act without consent of the governed.
Mary, San Miguel

It is so long overdue--let this be just one of the many reasons that history will prove Obama to be one of the best............and thank you for helping to move it along... "Give me your tired your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free..."
Cookie, Walnut Creek

I really find your letter kind of late. President Obama had the power to do a reform in immigration since 2008 when he had the house and the senate, but did not take action. This was 6 years ego, and want to remind you that he has been the President that has deported the most illegal people back to their countries. Again this is a President that has not taken immediate action to the problems in the United States instead he waits until problems become worse and then blames every body. But he is the one taken this country down with his incompetence.
Miguel, Gardena

I hope that the illegal parents of US born children will be made to complete paperwork for naturalization. Illegal immigrants CANNOT be granted legalization without some form of penalty for breaking laws. What about future people who come and bear their children in the USA? My parents were born in Mexico and crossed into the USA back in 1920. Every year for nearly 70 years, they willing completed forms registering with the government. They were happy to do so. There was no stigma. They came as children with their parents who crossed legally… I do not take away any rights of children born here as citizens. It should not grant any benefits to their parents unless they are willing to take the time and effort to become legal. I love this country. We can not afford to take on the expense or pay the natural resources for those whom do not wish to follow the laws of this glorious country.
Oralia, Whittier

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Californians respond to my message on Immigration Reform Is the Right Thing for California (7/18/2013):

Thank you Senator Barbara Boxer for your effort pro Immigration Reform. It is necessary to keep pushing the House to approve it. It is necessary to deliver justice to the millions of undocumented immigrants who had worked hardly and honestly to earn the bread for them and their families.
Augusto, Long Beach

Thank you so much for taking such a strong stand on this important issue! Am just learning how important it is for California--but also believe it is the right thing to do! I have taught in an elementary school with many undocumented parents--everyone is just trying to do the best for for their families! I like the comment that says we have two signs on our border--Help Wanted and Keep Out. this problem needs to be fixed! Thank you for your efforts in the Senate and to encourage House to consider. It seems with the economic benefit they should!
Margare, Walnut Creek

It's not going to be easy but we have to keep working hard on this issue. 
Narciso, Anaheim

I am writing to urge you to VOTE NO on the so called revision of the Immigration Law. From what I have heard and read of the proposed is a slap in the face of all Immigrants who came to this Great Country of The United States of America, back to my Grandparents. I went through the Military Channels to get married to marry a New Zealand and then she had to go through the Government Channels to be able to come to the United States as a Resident Alien married to an American Serviceman. She became a naturalized citizen. She is now deceased and if she were still alive she would be very discouraged with this travesty that has been submitted.
Robert, Sacramento

I beg to differ on your opinion. While I will agree that some sort of immigration reform needs to be done, I take offense to the fact that my elected officials continue to reward criminals. Millions of individuals have come to the United States the correct way, waiting for long periods of time to legally enter. Millions more have thumbed their noses at our laws, entered the United States illegally which is a crime, and have obtained work in the United States which is also a crime.
Christopher, San Diego

Thank you for your work on behalf of Comprehensive Immigration Reform. Your efforts are much appreciated.
Camilla, Redding

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Californians respond to my message on Senator Boxer: A Nation of Immigrants (06/27/2013):

I am so grateful that the Senate today passed the Comprehensive Immigration Reform Bill. It was the right and humane thing to do. I am especially pleased that now families will not be separated and that the young people who have been here all their lives and graduated from high school and college will be able to pursue full citizenship and really contribute to the welfare of the country. I am also an immigrant from Canada and came here in 1954 when pursuing one's citizenship was not difficult.  Thank you so much for what you are doing. And now if the House of Representatives will follow suit, all will be very well.
Annamaria, San Francisco

Your parents were immigrants and so were mine. They came to this country to find a better way of life. I assume that your parents were legal immigrants as were mine. Those now living in the shadows (not too far in the shadows since many of them are opemly attending our schools and universities) will be rewarded for being illegal.
Quintin, Palm Desert

Thank you so much for the great news we all here appreciate it as I have said before this immigration reform will benefit us all.  I do know you have been hard at work for this issue as well as many others and let us keep pushing for this to happen for the good of our country.
Carlos, Moorpark

Congratulations for being an important part of the struggle to approve the Immigration Reform in the Senate. As an immigrant and proudly naturalized American citizen, I thank you for your contribution to achieve this important step in the process of the Reform. I have been defending this overhaul for several years by writing letters, participating in demonstrations, etc. I hope the House also approves the reform.
Augusto, Long Beach

I urge you to vote no on the so-called immigration reform. As a husband and father of legal immigrants, I’ve spent $1000’s of dollars and years of government red tape to help them become citizens. If you are going to allow people that arrive illegally a small fine and tax payer finance English classes, it is an insult to those who follow the rules. In addition, the H1B is a joke. It is bad enough that the US government has helped shipped manufacturing jobs oversea in ‘dumb-trade’ treaties, but why is this government bringing in cheap IT workers to displaced American IT workers. You as our Senator leaders are supposed to do what is best for this country; I urged to stop pandering to illegal alien groups and multi-national corporations and put the American people first.
James, Winnetka

Thank you for your concern for our immigrants. Please show the same concern for our unborn citizens who need your protection from abortion.
Frank, Buena Park

i am 2nd generation of italian immigrants and i am thrilled that we will move on for our 11,000,000 undocumented persons. i live in the central valley and have also lived in tucson, in the heart of these good, hard working people.
Wendy, Fresno

I strongly urge you to vote against the current immigration reform legislation. This country cannot afford another 1000+ page form of legislation that you, as my senator have not read and do not fully understand. Its implications on our economics as well as the way upstanding immigrants achieve the greatest form of freedom in the world is unknown to you and I'm sure a majority of your colleagues that plan to give it a free pass. Real reform must be done over time and in smaller sections in order to avoid something so gargantuan that it allows billions of dollars in spending to slip in undetected and unrelated to the subject of the legislation. A bill so large that my senator cannot in good faith, say that her decision to vote yes on it fairly represents the views and desires of her constituents is a bill that should not pass. Americans do want immigration reform but they want it done in a way that respects its current citizens and enforces the most rigorous of challenges for those who desire citizenship. The title of 'American Citizen' is something that should not be given away freely to those who choose to break our laws.
My heart is torn for those who came here wanting a better life for their children so much that they jeopardized the greatest gift this country has to offer. Should they be proud of their parents or ashamed?
Ryan, Santa Rosa

WE, or our ancestors were all immigrants at one time. Including the first nations; they just got here a little earlier. But this 2013, not 1813; with current economy and unemployment, we do not need to cater to corporate desires for cheap labor; let them pay a living wage (good law to sponsor??). We do not need computer people from India; plenty of American kid who would like to; until the republicans priced them out of an education. Heaven forbid some poor kid compete with the Bushe's or Rockefeller's kids. Even worse if they win !
Charles, Rio Nido

Poem: Thank you
I am the immigrant, who makes the best clothes,
But I am naked
I am the immigrant, who builds mansions,
But I cannot live in them
I am the immigrant, who sows and harvests,
But I have nothing to eat
I am the immigrant, who cleans and washes,
But I am in the way
I am the immigrant who sets up tables, serves to eat, and cleans at the best parties
But I am not invited
That immigrant is you, your father, your mother, your brother, your sister, a loved one
Daniel, Santa Ana

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Californians respond to my message on Reforming Our Broken Immigration System (06/07/2013):

Thank you for your strong support for comprehensive immigration reform, particularly the Dream Act and the path to citizenship for all undocumented immigrants in this country. As you know, this is the most important piece of legislation before this Congress.
Judith, Santa Barbara

Keep up the pressure. We need immigration reform. I am a school principal and I see over 400 students born here whose parents are illegal. The families want to participate at school and their community but are afraid to be noticed and possibly arrested and deported. As I have sadly seen too often. I have seen excellent students who have been denied scholarships and youth summer employment because they are not citizens. You have got to get true reform done and soon.
Frederick, Stockton

It's time for Congress to stop pussyfooting around on this issue. It's time to face the facts that those who are opposed to immigration reform just don't want "those Mexicans" coming here. It's so racially biased that it's not funny. I note that not one person in Congress has spoken out about the not-so-hidden racial and ethnic agenda here. Let's be honest and stop all this nonsense. This constituent is sick to death of all this back-and-forth with nothing to show for it except more wrangling.
Richard, San Francisco

I would like to believe that the proposed legislation would result in all the good things for the American economy that you mentioned. Why would the ones in the dark emerge to work when they get so much gravy from American taxpayers now? AND does current proposed legislation include sending convicted criminals back to where they came from? I DO agree that those who were brought here as young children should be allowed to stay and become citizens - BUT there should be a time limit. If they have not achieved that goal in a reasonable amount of time, back they go! This is America, and I am tired of the constant increase of Spanish language signs and instructions and voting materials. All imigrants should be encouraged to learn English - not pandered to just to gain votes for the panderers!
Gloria, Kenwood

it has been a very long time since any member of the legistive house"s have even dareed to touch the subject of immigration and i am very happy that maybe we may make some real change and progress. i truly beleive that you may not be able to please everyone but we definetly have to start somewhere it is not going to go away so we might as well deal with it thank you for part in this on going debate.
Clara, Brawley

With all due respect, I urge you to vote against passing S 744. I am an immigrant myself, but strongly believe that before passing any comprehensive immigration reform, the borders have to be secured, and this has to be proven effective for some period of time. Please consider the number of US Citizens that can't find well paying employment, and passing any currently proposed immigration reform, will make these unemployed US Citizens compete for the few available jobs with millions of illegals.
Martin, Camarillo

Your speech resonated with me! I too am an offspring of immigrants. The story you shared is an inspirational one. Thank you!
Jennifer, San Diego

Our immigration system is a mess. I had the unfortunate need to use it once. I do believe there is not one computer in the whole system. My check was left laying on a desk somewhere for over six months! No action, it was returned to me as "stale". I complained to the Government Accounting office and got no reply. How can a government office accept money for a fee and not even cash the check? The entire system has to be redone from the mail room on.
Eleanor, Westminster

i support the dream act. i agree that it is a necessary first step to having a nation that acts, not just rhetorically speaks of, the freedom, equality, and justice on which we are founded. common sense shows that: building stronger families, not tearing them apart; good, not fearful, workers; educated, not deported, young people help to strengthen this country. we are all immigrants.
Dannye, Poway

Thank you for doing all you can to promote the Dream Act. I know a young woman, brought here as a young child from the Philippines, who wants to become a nun but until she can obtain permanent residence, she cannot. Meantime, she has received her two-year dream act card, is working, paying taxes, and going to community college. What is not to love about this and the contribution she will make to our nation if she can become a citizen? Immigration Reform cannot fail. It must pass while President Obama is in office or it may never make it.
Rosemarie, Culver City

Thank you for supporting immigration reform. As someone who works with the immigrant community, I see on a daily basis how important it is for our country. Please continue to support comprehensive immigration reform and a path to permanent residency and US citizenship for those who are here working toward a better life. It is unacceptable to tear apart families and separate children from their parents due to immigration issues.
Lisa, Los Angeles

I just watched the video of your speech on Immigration Reform. Thank you so much for your support of this very important issue. It is long overdue. I have seen first hand how immigrants have suffered and heard their stories of why they come. We have many young people who are outstanding citizens who will benefit from the Dream Act. Keep up your good work!!
Diane, Concord

You have failed us in our state in regards to immigration. You have not addressed the obvious problem plaguing CA. This past winter our schools were putting out buckets to collect the water leaking from the roofs because there was no funding to fix it. All the while we see time and again more and more funding going to southern part of the state to keep programs for illegal children running. I find it ridiculous that you put the responsibility on the tax payers who already pay too much into a corrupt system. Their parents brought them here and should take responsibility for that. We as tax payers have already paid for the education up to graduating high school and now you want to forgive their crime freely while allowing millions to destroy our system. You have had too long to fix the issue in CA and have not accomished much.
Jennifer, Herlong

As always you do not say what is wrong with the system that we have now. You do not say anything about protecting our borders so we don't have to do this again as we are having to do because you will not uphold the laws of 1986. You do not say anything about protecting American workers with stricter job enforcement with E-Verify. If you won't uphold the immigration laws that were put into place in 1986 why should we believe you will uphold these new laws?
Kirk, Upland

Bravo! House vote to deport DREAMERS very mean spirited. I know many children who were brought here, attended US schools and are as American as any citizen. They deserve a path to citizenship.
Samuel, San Clemente

Thank you, Senator, for your support of the immigration reform of our country. We do need smart brains, hard-working people and investment from all over the world. That's why we became and how we keep on being No. 1 and the only superpower in this world!
Taihe, Monterey Park

I am so sad and disgusted and yes, angry with the obstructionists in Congress who refuse to listen to reason from our President. His ideas make sense to us in this household, but where is the mercy? Where is the compassion to be found amongst our Congresspeople?
Jan, Palo Alto

I did listen to your speech on immigration reform. I do know you are a supporter of UAFA which would allow same-sex spouses of bi-national couples a chance at living freely as a permanent resident of the US. I did not hear you mention the fact that the Gang of 8 left this out of their plan. I heard references of family reunification and I hope you were including same-sex families in this category. I also heard you say how difficult it was for the Democratic Senators to get everything they wanted in the bill. That said, Same-Sex bi-national couples should not be sacrificed in the name of getting this bill passed. Sometimes we must stand on principle and in history, this is one of those times. Same-sex bi-national couples have suffered for decades and have been ignored during each and every administration. This is the first time we have not been ignored and yet, we are still being left behind. It's absurd.
Glen, Van Nuys

Your speech about "immigration reform" is entirely off target. What we need is equal ENFORCEMENT of our laws - including immigration. Rewarding those who broke our laws would be a reprehensible act. I trust you will reconsider your position and place those who desire to enter the United States through legal channels ahead of those who chose to break in illegally. This is the single most important issue in the country today with consequences for environmental protection and respect for law. I most emphatically urge you to vote AGAINST any immigration amnesty. It was an abject failure under President Reagan and would be a failure again.
Jim, Santa Rosa

We need you to start caring about us citizens and native americans. Bringing in more people just increases the problems we already have. Its time to find solutions to us job shortages (for citizens), us economic meltdown, us homelessness, us poverty and hunger, us citizens without medical coverage.
Dinda, San Diego

These immigrants don't belong here. We need a guest worker program badly. The parents are the ones who should be deported and if the children want to go with them, that's up to them. We have to educate them, they are populating our schools, we have to run expensive programs for them, not to mention the billions of dollars we spend on them for medical care. Our own citizens don't get all the services these people get. We can't go to any their country and get the services they get here. I had to see a doctor in Mexico and I had to pay for that. There's no free ride there and that is why they come here. The only thing we need is a guest worker program because our citizens don't what to do the work they do. They are lucky is they make $30 a week there. They can make $90 a day here. You figure out why they want to come here. You need to be informed.
Valerie, Sebastopol

Thanks for sending video related to immigration reform. Your message is appreciated well-stated. A retired school teacher, I have personal experience with the young population to whom you refer. You are however, forgetting a critical factor in any immigration reform legislation. Immigration debate must begin with the shameful history of actions of the U.S. government to acquire the southwest region, and the shameful disregard of treaty provisions after 1848. Any immigration bill that does not acknowledge this is DOA among the Mexican-American community; and, when we speak of illegal immigrants and Dreamer population we are speaking essentially of people of Mexican descent. If you persist in ignoring that factor, the "shadows" you refer to will remain. Illegal immigrants will forever distrust any law that requires them to be disclose their identity simply because there is no guarantee that the law will not be repealed in some future.
Richard, Kerman

I respectfully disagree completely with your speech and thoughts concerning illegal immigration and your support for the Obama bill. When is "illegal" legal? Why should I as a taxpayer foot the bill for an illegal's education, food stamps and welfare? Don't you recognize that this once great and productive state of California has slowly been retaken by the Mexicans? Our politicians, like you, sat in their ivory towers and looked the other way or saw this a means for cheap labor and lately as votes for the Democratic party. I am very siappointed what I see happening everyday in California.....and you want to make it worse.
Dennis, Laguna Niguel

I have been a devoted voter for both you and Feinstein for many years and am very proud to call myself and American and a democrat. I aboslutely do not support immigration reform. Illegals are illegals and deserve the same rights as we recieve in their countr! None! Why should legal U.S citizens who imigrated legally, like my parents, who pay their taxes support illegals and their kin. Please do your part for our country and protect our economy from the drag of any amnesty programs. Do not support amnesty or any path to citizenship for illegal immigrants! It is not right and it is not fair to your constiuents who are legal and trying to build their American dream.
Jared, Foster City

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Climate Change

Californians respond to my message on the Historic U.S-China Agreement to Combat Climate Change:

Thank you for letting me know about the new environmental agreement with China to decrease fossil fuel emissions. Very exciting news! Now if we can only get the Republicans to accept scientific facts and get behind this agreement instead of trying to nullify it or change it!
Molly, Pinole

I couldn't agree with you more on the importance of joint China/U.S. commitment to take action of climate change. There are no good excuses for denial that our entire planet is in peril because of humans' very heavy carbon foot print, and need to reverse this destruction. Thank you for your addressing this critical issue.
Linda, Montebello

I support your efforts and President Obama's efforts in reaching an agreement with China to curb fossil fuel emission by 2025. It was a monumental agreement and I hope it is entirely supported by the people of this country. Hurrah to Pres. Obama. Republicans do not have any excuse not to support the President in his efforts to make the planet habitable for the future of our grandchildren and the people of this planet.
Theodore, Lincoln

It was truly encouraging to hear the recent announcement that both China and the U.S. have pledged to reduce carbon emissions. I am especially appreciative of the work you have done in the senate to make preservation of our environment a priority. However, what compounds worries about the state of the environment is the change of leadership that is about to occur in the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee. The next chair appears to be a senator who is known as a denier of climate change. It is so ironic that many "conservatives" have such little regard for actual conservation of our natural resources. I would like to know what concerned citizens can do to help prevent a turnaround in our nation's progress and policies on addressing global warming and pollution.
Laura, Orange

Thank you for caring enough to send me a message that is in favor of protecting our atmosphere and reducing the dangerous CFC's that are currently destroying our earth’s protective layers. I too am in favor of reducing if not completely halting all greenhouse gases from not only the United States, but also China and other countries who are producing large amounts of carbon and other methane types of gases which are creating this dangerous and very unnatural warming. This past summer's high temperatures are a witness and a big warning to what is happening to our protective uppermost layers of the atmosphere. I am very concerned on a daily basis about it.
I can only try and hold out hope that if people can band together to create this change needed to help correct a very serious problem, that we can perhaps reverse the current state of global warming.
Diane, Irvine

First of all, I want to thank you for the work you do on environmental issues. We need champions for clean air, water, and food, without which none of us survive. I am pleased to hear of the agreement with China, and hope to hear more polluting countries will get on board to cut their emissions as well. I only wish it had a shorter timeline.
Judith, Crestline

Too little & too late. It is already here & devastation is occurring globally. WE were all warned and told about the scientific evidence SEVERAL decades ago. Meanwhile, we've opted to have China produce manufacturing items for the U.S. that are inferior, do not meet U.S. Quality or our NEEDS & we, the people of the Globe REFUSE to reclaim, recycle & reuse.......plastic cha-kees, inferior goods & expensive items that do not last......are all junk filling our landfills. We pay more to dump them than what they were worth to begin with.
Lorraine, Colfax

News of the commitment the United States has made with China to reduce carbon emissions is very welcome. I think it is vital that we move ahead with this and it is to be hoped that Congress will not try to block the President, citing "evidence" that global warming is a hoax. It is very important to note, however, that the commitment we made is sadly far short of what is required to actually effect a change. We must not only try to convince naysayers that the current proposed steps are necessary but that we must do far more.
Jane, Santa Ynez

I am happy to hear the good news about Global Warming... However, I just wanted to address something you said, "There is no longer an excuse for Congress to block action on climate change."... Over the past 7 years, Congress did not need an excuse to do anything they do... Now they will soon take over Senate... My mom and dad's families are both from England... My parents are no longer with us, but I still have family in England... If a Republican is elected President in the upcoming Presidential Election... I am seriously thinking about moving to England... In addition, you know what is even stranger... I used to be a "Republican", but please do not tell anyone... I became a Democrat when President Reagan was in office... I know this email is not addressing climate change... Just wanted to tell you how I feel...
Steven, La Puente

Thank you for all your effort supporting Obama with the climate change and China. It is really something special to finally see acknowledgement and the willingness to do something about the pollution and how it affects the climate.
Cheryl, Orange

With the drought in California and extreme weather changes throughout the country including the ice caps melting, I wonder how the China-US Agreement could be considered a success when it doesn't have to be in true effect until 2025. I hope it effects change in time though it seems like hyperbole.
Karin, Davis

Yes, it's nice to know our leaders are thinking about the environment, but surely you must see how low the bar was set on the recent announcement. China won't stop increasing their carbon emissions until 2030! And even then 80% of their energy still may be from dirty sources!!
Maybe these sorts of deals make for good politics, but they ring loudly hollow when it comes to saving the planet for our grandchildren and those to follow. I hope you will push harder for the health of the planet and the creatures that live here.
Philip, Los Angeles

It is nice that China (and the US) are finally focused on the climate change issue. However, I was disappointed to hear they were giving themselves until 2030!!!! Over 15 years from now. Truly? I would think with the horrible quality of air that they would see more immediacy to this and work much faster to rectify and remedy the air and climate situation. I certainly hope they get to work in this soon and make major changes within the next 5 years rather than 15.
Heather , Pleasanton

Thank you for letting us know about the agreement with China. Hopefully it is not too late!
I also read that China will be doing more fracking, which could result in many other environmental problems. Maybe that should be looked into!?
Jacalyn, Ojai

Don't let McConnell and his neanderthals block the recent climate accord with China. You've always been a fighter and we've been in your corner all the way. Use every trick in the Senate rule book to protect our environment and healthcare laws from the party of greed and shortsightedness. There must be some GOPers who are moderate and interested in moving our country forward and not backward!! Or, should that be a question rather than an hypothesis.
Lewis, Claremont

You shouldn't praise Pres Obama for such a weak agreement with China. We are to cut OUR carbon pollution by 26-28% by 2025. But China only agreed to PEAK their CO2 emissions by 2030, and increase their share of non-fossil energy by 20% by 2030. Is that the best the Pres could get out of China? China is the worse polluter and consumer of ocean products in the world. We should be much harder on them. Or are they running the show?
James, San Mateo

From what I've read the agreement reached between President Obama and the Chinese is extremely one-side with the US making serious commitments regarding emissions and the Chinese hinting that they may start doing something by 2030. This agreement is totally lopsided in the favor of the Chinese to the disadvantage of the US and should be rejected by the Senate! This is a real job killer in all the added regulations that will be imposed on US industry.
Robert, Santa Barbara

Let's just make sure this country does its part and leads the way for a change.
Margaret, Montgomery Creek

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Californians respond to my message on Rally May 21st for Climate Change Action (5/19/2014):

Yes, Yes, Yes ... action is needed and this is a step in a positive direction. It is painful to watch the deniers proffer such pitiful comments to solicit doubt from those who are easily confounded.
Those on the other side of this issue need to recognize that taking positive steps toward taking action on climate will strengthen our economy, not harm it. Yes, there will be a shift in who makes the most the fastest, but finally (allow me to dream) we may realize that it is not all about corporate profit. I don't remember reading in the Constitution or any other papers on which our country was founded, these words, "We the corporations .... "  Nope, it reads "We the people ...."
Can't come to D.C. but will be willing you great results.
David, Rough and Ready

Thank you for planning the "Wake Up Congress for Climate Action" rally in DC tomorrow.
Please continue to lead and push for action. We need a whole lot more than just an alarm, the time for alarms is over. Je vive en espoir ("I may live in hope" my family's coat of arms); however, I fear that the consequences of the past 30+ years may be more than we can overcome.
We need government policy NOW that caps carbon emissions.
Jessica, Napa

Thanks for the updates on the climate situation. I just want to say that the situation is so dire now that we must call for a complete divestment of all fossil fuels. At 78 yrs old I lived through gasoline rationing in WWII, and know that my parents coped with major inconvenience because it was needed. Now the situation is indeed a War that we might not be able to win. There is no time left. Many climate scientists think even if we stop using all fossil fuels now, it is too late. The arctic ice melt is causing more of the sun energy/heat storage; and as I am sure you must know that the thawing of the tundra on land is giving off methane gas in such quantities that the "game is over". For my two children and two Grand children's sake I am hoping, beyond hope, that we can at least prolong s total destruction for a little more life. You are one of the people I count on to do the right thing. Please oppose fracking (we can't afford water contamination) and fossil fuel extraction. Demand new technology in renewable energy. And start treating the climate problem like it is a war. It is a war – a war for the survival of our species.
Beverly, Soquel

Thanks for organizing this rally. Please continue to do all you can to get the members of congress and the public to demand that we fully open our minds to the threat and do all we can to address the problem. Lives and ways of life depend on it.
Alby, Encinitas

Californians respond to my message on Climate Change Impacts in North America (05/06/2014):

It's time for immediate action! The current drought in California, extreme cold, flooding, tornados in the Atlantic coast, and midwest is in direct proportion to the extent of Global warming. Please, we need to put extreme conservation measures in action now, we don't need to wait for more studies and debate about who is at fault, is it really global warming, etc.. ACTION NOW!
Oralia, Whittier

Thank you for sending the link to the overview of the current National Climate Assessment Report. It is hard for me imagine that anyone would doubt the absolute necessity for immediate action to begin to stall the effects of climate change. But they are still out there, in force. Thank you for taking on this most important issue.
Christine, San Francisco

Thank you for sending out the link to the National Climate Change report. I hope that you will be able to convince more of your peers to respond to this report with stronger environmental laws and more research into energy conservation, tougher regulations regarding harmful agricultural practices, and the immediate halt of all fracking. I appreciate your continued efforts in this area.
Crystal, Orange

With grandchildren who will have to live in this world, I am extremely concerned about the effects of climate change -- but don't see the issue getting much more than lip service. What, short of setting myself on fire, might I personally do? Thanks for your attention. And for the work that you have [done] and are doing.
Carol, Venice

Good news that the U.S. is finally taking seriously what the rest of the world has known for a long time, that climate change is man-made and that its effects are well documented and irreversible if not acted on immediately. Hopefully we can force compliance by corporations as well as individual citizens (money shouldn't be allowed to buy legislatures nor "pollution points" as a commodity any longer). We're all in this together so let's act like it.
William, Fontana

I would like you to know that as much as I disagree with you I do appreciate the information and the right to respond... Weather is local, climate is worldwide, a meteor strike is inevitable, all these things are issues to be discussed, none of them are at present solvable by man…. I know this is not your view point but I am not one to just accept this thinking, my education and my logic rebels and we mere mortals are just stuck with old mother earth and her whimsical ways, we can adapt, prepare and withstand, we cannot control the living planet earth or the naturally occurring environment that comes with our habitat….  I am sure that man will be gone from the earth long before nature takes it's course to make it uninhabitable, by the time this happens I too will be long gone...again I thank you for the information.
L, Suisun City

Thank you, a million times, for your continued concern about our climate. I've been following this issue since the seventies and have almost lost hope than we can transcend the divisions in this country that would allow us to truly address our challenges. Bravo to you for continuing the effort!
Wendy, Ojai

Thank you for your newsletter message. I have been following the climate disaster for the past 35 years, I don't know why most others, particularly those in public office have not. My question is this; with this the most remarkable catastrophe in the history of the human race breathing down our throats, what are you and the other 99 Senators, as well as the President actually planning to do (not just good sounding speeches)about this IMMEDIATELY. This issue obviously trumps business and political concerns. But who will put their career on the line to make something happen literally ASAP?
Susan, Forestville

I am along with the majority of Americans who do not believe in climate change that will hurt this planet. Others studies along with government studies show climate change to be a hoax and the only people who are getting ahead with this is the scientists working on it. We don't need all of these laws and what ever, so please join the majority of Americans and stop this nonsense.
Alan, Crestline

I have read and skimmed this report and cannot help but wonder why on earth humans have not paid attention, are so unaware of all that has been happening -- not just recently but for years and years already. Bein an elder (am 82) I have lived long enough to see the writing on the wall, so to speak. Each step -- everything a human being does has a ripple effect -- as in the example of a butterfly's wing flap affecting the whole globe. So here we are in a mess of our own doings. And it seems very little is being done to "rescue" us/the earth. I know you work hard to bring such about and that it's an uphill battle. But we do have to do it now -- or else -- and do it BIG in all the right places. Of course, the USA is not the only culprit -- but we are one of the bigger ones.
Thanks for letting me vent a bit -- and thanks for all the good work you do.
Bettina, Santa Barbara

Thank you for sending out the latest report on climate change. I am grateful that you take this vital issue seriously. Please continue to support measures to limit greenhouse gas emissions, deforestation and other contributors to higher CO2 levels in the atmosphere.
I hope you will be able to convince more members of the Senate that action now is needed to forestall further warming and disaster for our planet while there is still time.
Sue, San Diego

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Californians respond to my message on Lessons from the Senate's Climate Change All-Nighter (03/13/2014):

Thank you for the follow up on your climate change all-nighter.  I went looking on your website the next day for news in case you posted something there, and then got busy with life and I am embarrassed to say it slipped my mind. I am most grateful for your follow up email.
I appreciate the effort, passion and integrity you and your colleges invested in the program of the all-nighter. I am strengthened and encouraged to know that you have done this valuable thing, that you all have such knowledge of climate change and its effects on each of your states, our country as a whole, and our country's contribution to climate change within the global framework.  I wholeheartedly concur with you all that we must not wait for other countries to take the lead. The United States is responsible to take the lead for two reasons: One, because we are responsible for such a large share of the total global carbon production. Two, because we can. And, yes, without a doubt the solutions for climate change are good for the economy and the country--I am all for rapid movement toward sustainable energy sources and all other matters mitigating climate change. Thank you for having the Climate Change All-Nighter. And thank you for your communications about it.
Mary, Newport Beach

Thank you for taking a lead on climate change and participating in the all-night event. The Op-Ed in the Huffington Post was also very good-- concise and clear. It is extremely important to keep the focus on this issue and to take tangible steps toward a low carbon economy. The article wisely emphasized that environmental protection can create job and in the medium and long term is the best economic choice. Appreciate your hard work on this issue. Please keep the momentum going.
Sharon, Fresno

Thank you for your continued efforts to move congress toward action on climate change. As a wildlife biologist charged with protecting our nation's natural resources, I am well aware of the significant threats climate change poses to these resources. Your recent "opt-ed" is right on target. Keep up your good work - hopefully this will lead to the action we so seriously need.
Chris, Barstow

Thank you so much for hosting the "all-nighter" re climate change. Your four points in the summary proved the sad effects of human made pollution. And the national feed-back is so hopeful. Now, hopefully, the nay-sayers will get off their duffs and join the solution makers. This includes senators & representatives, like the Republicans, to start earning their salaries and pass solution type legislation. Great work to all who participated in the all-nighter and thank you again. May God bless you.
Sister Patricia, Los Angeles

I strongly and respectfully disagree with your stand on so-called global warming. It's just not the hysterical priority that you and your Senate colleagues are making it out to be and is a deflection to more serious and pressing problems facing the Country at present. My belief is that we should be focusing on repealing the ACA and fixing our economy by creating meaningful legislation that unleashes our industries and puts people back on the payroll.
Joseph, San Clemente

Thank you so much for participating in #Up4Climate. It was an important wake-up call to Congress and the American people. I also read your follow-up Huffington Post article with great interest. We have an extremely limited time to address climate change in order to prevent true disaster. Please take a few minutes to watch this interview with IPCC chairperson, Rajendra Pachauri discussing, among other things, the devastating impacts climate change will have on agriculture:  I appreciate your efforts to address climate change and encourage you to make this a central issue in your work in the Senate. After all, a ruined climate ruins everything else - including (if not especially) the economy. Thank you for your service to our state and our nation.
Colleen, San Francisco

Thank you for the review of the all-nighter. It's really satisfying to me, to have the good guys standing up so well. No mealy mouthing, just a straight "this is happening, and this caused it". And a nice review, too. Almost as if we were there. Thank you again, for the action and the report.
Jon, Los Alamitos

I appreciated getting your email about climate change. I agree that the planet, as well as our economic security and prosperity, rests in large part upon addressing this issue. I very much support reduction of subsidies and use of fossil fuels, and building our of our alternative energy industries.
Kimberly, Yreka

Your op-ed is a nice summary of the climate change issues but what I'd like to know is whether any action items came out of the all-nighter. What is the next step? What is the US going to do to lead the way? Without a clear starting point and plan, we'll just keep talking about it and hoping someone else will step up and do something. As you indicated in your op-ed, we can't wait for another country to take charge. The US is known for taking the lead on important global issues and I hope that you can ignite the fire of change under the right people to start taking the initial steps towards mitigating and hopefully stopping climate change.
Pamela, San Diego

I just wanted to thank you for the email with the link to Huffington Post overview of the important meeting. You have no idea how much I appreciate knowing that my lawmakers are finally headed in the right direction ... I have been SO worried about climate change for years and until now had pretty much given up on all of you folks in Washington DC. Please keep up the great work. Again, thank you for keeping me in the loop.
Bill, Altadena

The recent Senate all-nighter hopefully has changed a few climate change deniers' minds. As a 4 year survivor of nonsmokers lung cancer, air pollution is of grave concern to me. Keep up the good work!
Sandi, Orange

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Californians respond to my message on Up All Night for Climate (3/10/2014):

I want to thank you and the other Senators that are sacrificing to make a proactive stand against climate change. I hope the No Keystone decision by the administration is being supported in this all nighter, and I hope a fracking moratorium is being supported also. We need to get serious about limiting the removal of more fossil fuels from the earth and concentrate on using what has been extracted more efficiently and developing other energy technology. Thank you again.
Jeannie-Kay, King City

I really do appreciate that you and the other Senators are bringing this issue to the attention of others. I have 2 sons aged 6 and 7. I am very concerned about the future problems they will have to face. I really hope that organized nationwide plans can be eventually developed so all citizens can feel commitment to participate in solutions for our children's sake. Thank You!
Eddie, Lake Elsinore

Thank you and the Senators who are bringing Climate Change to the Senate floor tonight.
As a graduate student in Biology and as a citizen it is difficult to find the words that can motivate politicians to action on this overwhelming threat to our survival. Oil will do us no good if we lack clean air, water, and contaminate our land. Poisoning our environment will not improve the economy. I hope you and the group of Senators on the senate floor tonight begin to make the important public policy links between cleaning up the air, waterways, and land and good jobs.
Those of us becoming scientist are focused on the impacts of climate change in our everyday lives. The evidence is clear and visible.
Hali, Sacramento

I hope you will have all the lights off.  I would not think you would be using them if you really cared about the earth. Have you heard about the ice on the Great Lakes. Did Obama give them a waiver on this terrible climate change/ global warming. What do you people really want?  Everyone living in huts with no lights or heat?
Richard, Santa Clarita

We're about your age and know that all-nighters are difficult at our age. Thank you for taking a stand to do something about climate change. It is so important and so neglected a subject.
Thank you, thank you!
Kim and Alexandra, La Crescenta

We greatly appreciate that Democrats in our Senate are acknowledging science and the fact we are heading for the 6th Extinction, this time caused by human GREED aided by politically useful idiots. But what about a Democratic-lead series of legislative efforts to get us off the fossil fuel energy dead end?????  If President Obama approves Keystone XL, the party will lose millions of Democrats as there will be little else of great consequence to set us apart from the plutocratic Republicans as our planet hurtles toward self destruction.
Sheila, Newbury Park

Thank you for spearheading this 24 hour climate change event in Senate. I listened to about 3-4 hours and was amazed at the many effects throughout the United States. Frankly, I have been disappointed in how invisible the Democrats have been on many issues. I hear and read so much about what the obstructionist TPers/Repubs are doing and very little from the Democrats. Stand up and be heard on the ideals that the Democrats have been known for. Fight more visibly for the Presidents Health Care plan, immigration reform, campaign reform, minimum wage. Where there is political will, there will be change. Thanks for all you do.
Ali, Petaluma

We're sweltering here and we're running out of water. The Republicans want to improve the economy, they can do so by creating long term jobs that will ensure a sustainable climate. Andrea and James, Sunland

I want to first thank you for your never-ending dedication and hard work for all of us in the State of CA and for America on a whole. Secondly, I have been watching and listening very carefully to the “all-nighter” on the Senate floor to urge action on climate change- in your own words. I am overwhelmed with the amount of compassion, urgency, the graphs and words of proof for the devastation that we are experiencing now and even worse of what's to come in the future.  I support you, Senator Sanders and the other Senators and House members 100% in your amazing efforts to reign in the toxic effects of fossil fuels, and implementing a clean energy future for all of us. Please thank every Senator who spoke, tonight. I bow to all of you in honor, and thank you for speaking on behalf of the majority of Americans, and doing what you can to reduce our output of global warming additives.
Diane, Santee

While you work to draw attention to global warming and climate change, sadly, the GOP just continues to plunder our water sources and environment - claiming it’s all in the name of "growing our economy" and creating jobs. :(
Marlene, Irvine

Thank you so much for using this clever vehicle to demonstrate the urgent need to do significant legislative work in the area of climate change. My immediate response was a bit of relief that others are literally losing sleep over this issue too. I hope that your effort and that of your colleagues gets things moving in the direction you envision. As always, I am proud that you represent the citizens of our Golden State.
Michelle, Portola Valley

I'm glad about the all-nighter; I just hope it leads to good legislation! How can ALL the Republicans deny the science??!! I think the only thing that will move them is showing them definitively that it is beneficial, even essential, for the economy that we take care of the environmental crisis, complete with numbers showing how much money could be saved by good environmental actions. TAKE IT TO THE PEOPLE! EDUCATE!! Thank you.
Aline, Saint Helena

Thank you, Senator Boxer for your efforts and those of your worthy colleagues for not shying away from the very real issue of climate change, notwithstanding the renegade deniers "out there." Paradigm change, in this case the ways and means of energy policy, and the need to change the daily habits of millions of us, represents an obvious challenge to an individual's ethos and that of entire legislative bodies. Our successors may certainly prevail as a result of those who remain keen on Truth and action in an increasingly irreverent plutocratic setting.
John, Santa Monica

It is very commendable what you are doing, however, without the rest of the world (in particular China) participating we are just a drop in the bucket. The news was just discussing this event on the TV, and it was reported that you Senators have no agenda in this regard, so I ask, what is your purpose?
Carol, Yucaipa

Thank you, thank you, thank you Senator Boxer for helping to spearhead this urgently needed discussion about climate change in the U.S. Congress, which has been lagging behind public opinion for years now on the need for action. Please convey my thanks to the other participants in the all-night debate. Personally, I have become convinced that a carbon fee and dividend is the best policy to pursue, and I am grateful to you and Senator Sanders for your bill on the subject.
Grace, Anaheim

REALLY appreciate you drawing attention to climate change as the crucial issue that it is. so important that we try to stave off the worst effects before it’s too late. as a father of a three year old, THANK YOU for the event last night!! now if we can just get republicans on board.
James, Los Angeles

I just wanted to say thank you to you and the other Senators working with you, for your commitment to getting the word out about climate change. ..........We as Americans cannot afford to be complacent about this and you and the other Senators are helping to bring this subject front and center.....thank you.
Carolyn, Laguna Beach

You are so wrong senator. The science of climate change is still developing. For any group to arbitrarily proclaim "the science is settled" is preposterous. This is nothing but a scam for environmental wacko's who seek more control over the activity of our citizens, and a new way to tax another productive activity so that government can afford itself, and of course create more hair brained regulations that it will have to enforce. Bigger government equals less freedom for our citizens. Wake up please, you are sending all of our manufacturing to other places in the world and the USA is diminished in econommic strength and opportunity.
John, Covina

Kudos to you and other Senators who spoke on climate change - now take action!
California is a leader in this, please get the rest of the country to follow. The drought in California this year has been really scary, and only the beginning of things to come.
Jill, Santa Monica

Thank you for spearheading last night's all night event on climate change. I watched much of it, some with my fifteen year old son. It was a brilliant thing to do. I particularly liked your speech. Hearing from senators from various states and the particular challenges that their states face due to climate change put a very specific face on the crisis. Often, it is simply perceived as a general disaster.
Lisa, Venice

While participating in the all-nighter, why don't you discuss the energy companies impact on the environment and climate change. If the Senate and Congress were serious about preventing climate change energy companies would not be exempt from the Clean Water Act or the Clean Air Act, would be required to report all chemicals they are using, proprietary or not, and would legally be held responsible. These are not companies with ethical practices and unfortunately too many in our government have been bought off with constant lobbying. We CAN live without their fuel. It may make life a bit more inconvenient until technology infrastructure for CLEAN energy sources are more completely developed. But, we can live without them. We CANNOT live without clean soil, food, air and water! Our government needs to protect the people, the land and the environment, NOT MAKE CONCESSIONS FOR THE CORPORATIONS!!!! Reverse their exempt status and make them accountable to the people for the damage they are causing and their part in climate change.
Crystal, Ontario

Thank you for sending the link for this historic night -- I won't be able to stay up and watch it all, but it's fascinating! And very inspiring -- I have more hope that we will finally do something meaningful to address this critical issue. I hope many more than the 125,000 viewers Sen. Whitehouse noted on so many different websites right now will see at least the key elements. I also hope Sen. Schatz's optimism, that there are a few Republicans who may be ready to partner with us on the issue, proves true. Thank you for continuing the fight to bring reality back into governance!
Elizabeth, Sherwood Forest

It is reassuring to know that there are people in Congress willing to take principled stands on climate change, the environment, women's issues, health care, etc. I am sorry that there aren't more senators willing to stand for what is right. Sometimes it seems as though only a monumental disaster is capable of moving people to act. Will it take a large oil spill, or the poisoning of an aquifer or river, or some accident of that sort, to start people thinking and taking control of the world around them?
George, Santa Clarita

The repubs don't believe there is going to be a tomorrow. They just believe in profit$ for now. Your and my grandchildren must not live in a tainted world. We must stop exploitation based on personal profit and save the world for future generations..... starting with Keystone pipeline
Bo, Daly City

I am heartened by the resolve to keep climate change on the minds of a diverse constituency both in the Congress and otherwise. However fossil fuels will be a continuing part of America's economy and the notion that we will be on "renewable" energy by some specified date is unlikely and self-defeating. I do oppose the Keystone Pipeline because it does not seem to be about jobs. Rather it is transhipment of a toxic, malicious sludge for refinement and sale on world markets. The US would bear an unreasonable amount of risk with insignificant jobs. Better odds in Vegas. I so support strongly Fracking. It is needed and welcome. Even as a San Franciscan it should not be blithely assumed that everyone is against it. It is a bounty that MUST be leveraged. Common sense regulation is the best medicine. Sadly the upshot of all the talk about climate change is that no one is really doing anything about it. If you can't monetize this in some fashion no country, state, or industry will realistically do anything as it presently is structured as a zero-sum game.
Edward, San Francisco

I am watching CSPAN 2 and I'm so grateful that you are a part of the Climate Change all nighter on the Senate floor. This is the most important issue of our time. If we don't act NOW, none of the other very important issues will matter. I know how difficult it is to turn this Titanic around...but the time is right now. Our children and grandchildren are at stake. Fracking is a huge problem and I hope we can hear some real truth about that issue as well.
Mary, Beaumont

Thank you for standing up--& staying up--for the Climate, which I now view as a metaphor for life in general. Sadly, it looks like it will take many more all-nighters and far, far more daily action to make the kind of difference that must be made. Your efforts and intentions are to be lauded, but only if the efforts & intentions are in fact deep commitments to make the necessary change happen--whatever it takes! We can do this together. Major priority now is stopping Keystone XL...BUT not just stopping it. A NO on its own is never a solution...that firm & unequivocal NO must be aligned with a much more profound & far-reaching YES to truly-renewable energy & the infrastructure required to wean us off fossil fuels & ramp up green energy as rapidly as possible...bringing FAR MORE JOBS & FAR MORE STABILITY than oil, coal & gas can ever offer. In Michelle Obama's words "LET'S MOVE"!
Thom, Sausalito

Thank you for getting this issue front and center at the US Senate. We need to let science resume a role of bipartisan guidance rather than allowing it to be steamrolled by non-fact-based ideologies.
Stephen, Lafayette

I applaud you for your effort to get Congress to address the urgent problem of climate change. I support you 100%. I do my little bit to live sustainably. I recycle, have solar panels, make compost and grow my own food, but it's not enough. Things need to change on a political level.
Natalie, Van Nuys

Thank you for losing a nights sleep over something that's nearer and dearer to me than my own life. I've lost YEARS of sleep over this... this planet that gives us all life is at a breaking point. It's health should have been and should always be our first and most important responsibility. Ask any indiginious person, no matter how uneducated and they already know this. Frankly it's embarrassing how little responsibility those in control have shone for something so rare, unique and fragile as this beautiful glowing life sustaining planet. Man has been looking to the heavens since the beginning of time for anything remotely like it but its twin has never been found. We MUST preserve this gem!!!!!
Karolyn, Dobbins

Once again you act to show your commitment to Californians, Americans, and all humans, present and future, to maintain the integrity of our life on Earth. It saddens me that you need to give up sleep to bring attention to a subject that by this time should be common cause. But your action tonight, and throughout your time representing California, is heartwarming (not global warming).
John, Saratoga

The Democrats talking about Climate Change shows the contrast to the Republicans talking about repealing Obamacare, or Ted Cruz filibustering all-night reading Doctor Seuss's "Green Eggs and Ham" and reciting Duck Dynasty quotes as pearls of wisdom, therefor when the House and Senate are stuck in perpetual gridlock then the Democrats do look good saying something intelligent.
Steven, Pleasanton

Our grandparental thanks for missed sleep! Your Congressional all nighter to wake up toward action controlling climate change comes not a moment too early. Please make this your sacred mission among all your work. The next 7 generations will bless you. And, speaking about Native Americans, is there a way to include elders from Reservations in the proceedings? And cutting edge scientists? And clergy from all faiths to testify on behalf of the Earth and her "children"? And the parents of a child who died of lung problems due to carbon dioxide pollution, carrying a video of their youngster?
Joy and Dan, San Diego

Thank you for all you are doing to turn the agenda to protecting the environment. We need to do all we can to change to alternative energies. Let's start by making all government and military buildings carbon neutral. Our troops coming home can learn the new skills for making and installing solar panels. Let's get started. I support all your efforts to stem global warming and lead the change to alternative energy. The answers are already here; we just need to do it. Thanks for the news on the Senate Vigil. I will stay tuned.
Sarah, Los Angeles

Thank you for tonight's ringing of the bell of alarm! My great grandaughter Maizey thanks you too. Our society can no longer have the privelage of living in denial of global warming. We must act now! In CA, 25% of our carbon footprint is used to move water around the state. We did not have to rob the bay delta watershed to water golf courses and lawns in Santa Barbara. They must utilize 21st century water science technology using recycled water. We took down most of our dams to achieve better fish spawning. We must replace the old dams with the new low face fish ladder dams and recapture the green energy from our rivers. We can do this and create ideal fish habitat. We have an opportunity here in Santa Cruz to accomplish this goal. We have a treatment plant at the base of San Lorenzo River that can be converted to produce tertiary for river augmentation. We can utilize the green energy to deliver the water upstream for river recharge. We can bring the salmon back to Santa Cruz. We need solutions to global warming. We need federal dollars to start these developments here. We admire your tenacity and courage in taking on those who would destroy our planet for greed and self interests. These are the worse criminals to walk this earth. They are doing more then robbing a bank. They are robbing our future.
Stengthen the EPA. End oil subsidies. Force the oil corps to create a 50 year super clean up fund. Declare access to clean water to be an inalienable human right. We must manage our water resources on a regional basis for the common good. We must create sustainable water systems in balance with nature.
Craig, Santa Cruz

Just want you to know, I am a constituent who believes that climate change is THE issue. All other matters are dependent on it. Your efforts are appreciated.
Thomas, Los Angeles

Thank you for standing up for the people who recognize the danger of continued use of fossil fuels. My family has installed solar, we drive a prius,and have drought tolerant plants/trees.
Please, please stand up against FRACKING!!!! Our access to fresh water depends upon stopping the catastrophy of fracking!!
Cynthia, Vista
You are doing exactly what needs to be done! I am so proud of you for literally standing up for what you believe in. Our precious Earth needs your courage and determination. Please keep in mind the children we pass this world on to and what they inherit from us. As your supporter, please let me know how I can help here in CA.
Lynn, San Rafael

When I was in Junior High and High School and then my freshman year in College. All of the science departments were teaching us about the upcoming Ice age. I remember my professors trying to get grants based on that up coming event. The average temp has not changed by 1 deg over the past 18 years. The ice caps have not melted away like your buddy AlGore said. In fact how many ships were ice bound this past year down at the south pole??? The climate has ALWAYS changed, that's what it did in the 1800's, 1600's 1400's ...... They tried to eliminate SUV's back in DaVinci's day, but it was to hard to transport his drawing and experiments.
I understand that with out you spending the night at the Capitol there is nothing you can claim to be doing that will end something that you can not control and thus make government less important since it can not rescue us. But if that is the cheapest way of making you all feel good, go for it. Maybe order few pizzas from Little Caesars, and have a good time.
Gene, Escondido

I wish you the strength, endurance, and energy necessary to carry out this commitment and thank you from the bottom of my heart for doing this! I pray that it works!
Maxine, Agoura Hills

I support your efforts to make a difference in climate control. We also need to have China one of the largest polluters be involved, especially with there effects on CA.
Ronald, Castro Valley

I am humbly grateful that you and the other senators engaged in the 'all night for climate change' are taking on this very important work. This is true leadership. I thank you, and my children's children thank you.
Mica, Sacramento

Jeryll, Los Angeles

Climate change is real, it will have real impact, we need to address it now, not later. Thanks for your leadership on this.
Shanda, Menlo Park

Thank you, thank you for spending the whole night with other senators to bring the importance of climate change front and center. I believe it is the most important topic our country should be dealing with, for the consequences of continuing to ignore it may be catastrophic for our children, grandchildren, and the future of our earth as we know it. Already we have seen huge personal losses and costs due to climate change: droughts, fires, floods, hurricanes, and tornados all more extreme and more frequent than in the past. We must stop supporting and rein in the fossil fuel industry's greed as they wantonly extract carbon fuels in ever more destructive ways. Instead we should put research, subsidies, and money into creating a robust green energy industry in our country. With the will to do so, we may begin to turn this catastrophe around; our determination will be matched by others in the world. Doing nothing allows the destruction to continue.
Cheryl, Redondo Beach

Thank you for your attention on the crucial matter of reducing climate change from human activities. Convincing ALL your colleagues will be difficult, but please continue to give this effort your all.
Jim, Costa Mesa

I simply thank you and your colleagues senators for your special effort to thoroughly dialogue about the not yet fully known, but indisputably already occurring climate challenges to healthy survival of our nation and the planet Earth. To know that there are mature leaders in Washington, my senator among them, is seriously encouraging.
Olga, Huntington Beach

Global climate change is the most serious threat to world stability and our own national security.
The Putin power grab shows us how much we need to get away from all forms of fossil fuel, including fracking. This meeting has my full support.
William, Los Angeles

I can't begin to tell you how proud I am of the democratic senators who are participating in the all-night talks on climate change. It is a subject that must be addressed. I saw a talk on C-SPAN Book TV last weekend entitled "The Sixth Extinction," in which a map of the world was shown, which had been drawn up by NASA scientists. The patterns of carbon emissions were illustrated in a high speed demonstration of how the alarming accumulation has occurred since the beginning of the 20th century, right up until today. Anyone seeing that map could not fail to be shocked by how dramatically we have affected our world. Though it's a mystery to me how those in denial can have missed the droughts, the terrible hot summers, the storms and the wildfires which have intensified each year in so many of our states. Thank you and all of your colleagues for standing up to the corrupt climate deniers. It means the world to me.
Paula, Palo Alto

Thank you for taking a stand for climate change action! Don't stop until it's enough - I won't either. And please pass the appreciation on to your colleagues who are staying up as well.
Lynda, Grass Valley

Thank you Senator Boxer for striving to bring sanity to the CLIMATE CHANGE discussion, to wake up deniers to take the actions needed to "stand with science", rather than polluting interests' greed!!! WE MUST LEAD in our defensive actions. So grateful for your strong stance!!
Grace, Menifee

I am former physicist and proud owner of Electric Vehicle (EV) - Nissan Leaf. There is real threat that our Civilization will be dead after 50-100 years from the Air Pollution!!
Steve, San Jose

if you all drag your cowardly feet long enough you probably won't have to do anything other than watch the ship go down. I suppose I should congratulate you'all but I don't have the heart.
Marco, Richmond

Thanks for the message regarding the all "climate change" all nighter. On the world stage, fossil fuels must be replaced with alternative fuels. Our way of life depends on it. For your efforts, you have my support searching for solutions to ward off climate change. It's a daunting task, complex and scientifically challenging. Pedal to the medal, don't relent.
Ralston, Bellflower

It's not before time, but glad you are all in there pitching. I want my son to inherit a planet he can live on not just barely scrape an existence from. The huge gasoline tax and expensive car registration in the European Union doesn't sound like such a bad idea any more, does it? Certainly we need to do something to encourage conservation.
Nancy, Oakland

Thank you so much for doing this! This is so important. Please push really hard to move us into the clean world of small scale, local, renewable solar and wind power. This is the way we need to go to have a beautiful future for our children's children and theirs. We need to keep our thoughts focused on the world 1000 years from now, more than our own immediate comfort and convenience.
Jo, Fairfax

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Californians respond to Senator Boxer on the UN Climate Change Conference (11/21/2013):

Many thanks for thanking Warsaw for how they're helping alert the world to Climate Change & many thanks to you for telling the world that California is moving toward renewable energy. I'm so thankful that you're doing all you can in that direction for the U.S.
Marilyn, Nevada City

Thank you for addressing the conference in Poland. While we have watched it all through Demoracy Now on TV, we note that it has not even been mentioned at least in the mainstream we read or watch. I am sorry beyond words that this arouses such little interest and applaud those brave and dedicated souls who speak out, especially the Philippine delegation, as to the present and future manifestations of climate change. I do however detect some discouragement as the years go by with only increases in the causes and effects of this catastrophe, but at least you have taken notice and I thank you for that.
Laura, Indio

This is such a challenge that we all must face and do our part to cut down on our emissions of Carbon Dioxide. But without the recognition on the part of the major contributors to Climate Change, it will not accomplish what needs to be done: Developing ALL sources of Alternative Fuels!!! Developing all sources of alternative fuels will lead to fantastic opportunities for businesses to develop a wide variety of alternative fuels!!!  Thank you for your leadership in this most important area for all of us.
Joyce, Santa Paula

Barbara you are one of the better ones in congress but you must be kidding. By claiming that something constructive, important, and necessary is being worked out is a very bad joke on all of us; and it is deplorable and heinous. 133 countries walk out, including China. Obama and Kerry are obstructionists. Our government is doing nothing but subsidizing fossil fuels and the coal industry. And in the meantime countries are being devastated and people dying. Animals are threatened and going extinct. This will only escalate with devastating consequences and we do nothing. The EU, Australia, Canada, etc. obfuscate. Don't be part of the denial that threatens all of us.
Katlyn, San Rafael

I do not feel the Conference is adequately addressing the real facts because of the power of Big Oil and other carbon-based sources of energy. I do agree with the organizations that walked out of the conference to make that point, and am surprised that you did not note any of this in your message.
Nancy, Boulder Creek

If you truly support the "work" being done in Warsaw I am truly disappointed. The talks are being steered by big business, coal, and oil. Nothing of value is coming out if these talks. Corporations are trying to find ways to make money off of man-driven disaster. Disaster we may not survive. Indigenous people and the-man-on-the-street are not being allowed to speak. Countries at the highest imminent risk of climate change catastrophe are being ignored.
Please, make sure you know more about what's happening in Warsaw than the pap fed us by mainstream, corporate media. Please have the courage to challenge the foot-draggers and procrastinators. Your constituents count on you being informed and brave. The world needs for you to be informed and brave. the world needs the strongest nations tomake dramatic changes. It needs real advocates in office in the one of the biggest, strongest, richest, and most polluting nations in the world. Thank you for listening.
Maureen, Novato

My question is: Will the response of the US government be adequate to avert the most dire consequences of climate change (assuming other countries follow our example)? I gather that this would require a radical reduction in our use of fossil fuels, and I have yet to see evidence that the energy and transportation industries are willing to make such a great transformation to their production and conversion methods. My concern is that the inertia of our existing systems is so great that any changes will be too little and too late. Thank you for your work in this area.
Clinton, Petaluma

Yes, climate change is a reality and you are addressing it along with those that are more conscious in the World. There will always be those that will impede the Truth of the  circumstances simply because the awareness is not there and there is no convincing them
otherwise. It takes a long time for evolution and even greed is not more than a lack of true consciousness??we have a long way to go, especially in the USA where we stand in the World as a leader! Thank you once again for you excellent work. I applaud you and the efforts you make on behalf of the planet.
Jeane, Colfax

Thank you Senator Boxer for your ongoing support on the issue of climate change. We desperately need our elected officials/leaders to drive us toward a healthy solution for our planet and all her citizens for the next several generations, all of which will be impacted by what we do, or don't do, NOW! As native Californians we are grateful that our representative is on the leading edge of this movement to get the rest of our senators and congressmen to admit climate change is real before it's too late. We have a frighteningly short period of time to do that.
Please don't give up! We're behind you 100%! 
Sharon, Westlake Village

Thank you Senator Boxer for your video addressing climate change, it's impacts, and what we are doing to combat this man-made problem. What I was sorry to not hear on your video was how we would, as a country, hold up our promise to provide a significant portion of the 100 billion that developing countries need for responsible climate change response. The lack of willingness of rich countries, like ours, to fulfill their promise to meet the $100 bn finance commitments promised 4 years ago is threatening the entire international process at the Warsaw talks. It could even kill prospects for a deal in Paris in 2015. So while we are still advocating for disastrous fracking, tar sands development, and continued coal extraction, we also now trying to back away from significant climate change action on the world stage. This relegates our words as hollow and tells our children we don't truly care what world they receive. A sad commentary on our great country.
Dan, San Diego

Praise to those who honor Mother Earth and take seriously Climate Warming. Some people believe it won't happen in my lifetime so why should I care. And I tell them...what your generations down the line. Native Americans respected Mother Earth and there is a lot to learn from them. If we don't change our ways now, there won't be an Earth left for future generations.
Melissa, Susanville

Senator Boxer, thank-you so much for your concern about climate change, and your support of President Obama's efforts to curb greenhouse gas emissions. If all our country's senators thought as you do, I believe we'd be leagues ahead of where we are now in the fight against global warming.
Edythe, Clovis

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Californians respond to my message on Helping Communities Prepare for Climate Change Impacts  (11/1/2013):

Thank you for sharing the two messages regarding President Obama's efforts to bring good minds together to help us weather the effects of global warming. I am glad to see some substantive effort. I appreciate you helping to keep our citizens informed.
Nancy, Paradise

Thank you Senator Boxer for sending along the President's Climate Change Executive Order. Though long overdue, the President's action is encouraging. Let's just hope it is not a matter of too little too late. Please continue to keep the spotlight on climate change!
Jud, Sutter Creek

I very much appreciate that you are working on the climate change. It is an enormous danger, and we need to do all we can to avert the worst damage. Please vote against the Tar Sands pipeline. It will be a disaster for us and for the world. The President is being pressured by the republicans. Please work to prevent it. We owe our children a livable world.
Lisa, Redondo Beach

My hope is that we will do all we can to reduce greenhouse gasses and other things that contribute to global warming because this is a problem for the entire planet not just the U.S.A. I'm concerned that the President's focus on coping with climate change means he has given up trying to do anything to reduce the factors that contribute to climate change. I'm concerned that he will place all the money and focus on reducing our discomfort by building structures to hold back the sea from flooding people's homes, for example. I would much rather see him use his power and his Bully Pulpit to encourage our population (and that of the world) to reduce our use of fossil fuels and reduce our population growth. I don't want to watch the wildlife become extinct and poor people in other countries starve or drown while America is safe, warm, well fed and comfortable behind our Fortress America.
Shirley, Santa Rosa

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Californians respond to Senator Boxer on the Latest Climate Report  (09/27/2013):

Thank you for your email. I had seen that report & I am sick at heart. I am 85 yrs. old so I don't expect to take the brunt of climate change - but oh! my family - my three children & their spouses & even worse, my two wonderful granddaughters.  Thank you for all you are trying to do!
Trina, San Diego

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Californians respond to my message on A Clear Warning on the State of the Climate (08/13/2013):

I fully support you and President Obama in enforcing the Clean Air and Water Act. We need to do away with the special exemptions given to energy companies. We have probably already reached the point of "total no return." Therefore, it is imperative that we do something NOW.
Cheryl, Laguna Niguel

Climate change is a major concern for everyone on planet earth. Hopefully, you will be able to persuade members of congress that this is a factual situation that has the power to ultimately do unparalleled damage to families, agriculture and the general wellfare of the earth's ecological regions.
Beverly, Santa Rosa

The work is great, the time is SHORT.  We have an 8 year old granddaughter and would love for her to have a life free of the natural consequences of our disregard of the needs of our planet. Thank you for your efforts and may you be blessed to gain more support for your work.
Bob and Sara, Berkeley

Thank you for your message concerning the scientific reports confirming that climate change is happening right now. I so greatly appreciate being represented by you. I am horrified to realize that so many US Congress people and Senators choose to believe that climate change does not exist. Please continue your good work to try to move the Senate toward reality. Is it ignorance or a choice made according to the demands of money? It is hard to know. But the resolute Flat Earth society in Congress will be responsible for the end of the earth as we were fortunate to know it. This is no longer an extreme statement.
Leslie, Mountain View

This study doesn't confirm that, "climate change is happening now and the evidence is all around us." You seem to be very confused about it.  Carbon is not a significant pollutant in general. You need to be specific and indicate exactly what molecules you are talking about. I think if you are going to remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere through the Clean Air Act, where it is wrongfully called a pollutant, you need to be very careful about disturbing our wonderful green earth. You can't take the US temperature out of its global context to prove this, and everyone knows you are wrong if you believe the Arctic Sea Ice is disappearing. We need a realistic approach to the climate, and a realistic approach to altering the Clean Air Act.
James, Encinitas

The effects of global warming are becoming more apparent and increasing at an astonishingly alarming rate. Please do everything in your power to convince those who don't believe it's happening or are too greedy to care that the reduction of greenhouse gases must be our foremost goal.,
Genie, Big Bear City

Thank you for this notice and I very much appreciate your tireless work on climate change. Simply put, this is the most important issue facing mankind.
Aaron, San Francisco

PLEASE continue to press for legislation that deals with solutions to the very pressing problem... we cannot afford to wait any longer. The well-being of future generations will depend on our willingness to act today.
Ann, Huntington Beach

I think the only way anything that is going on around the world and in this country will change is that the mature adults that are in positions of power will become serious about curtailing
the selfish over zealous acts of those in power that insist on behaving like greedy juveniles in a candy store with no concern about anyone or anything except what they can hoard for themselves. I think if righteous people step forward the right path will be revealed.
John, Santa Rosa

While we agree climate is changing, we support a common sense, rational approach. In too many instances, this administration has put the economy and job growth at the bottom of the list. Wasting billions of job stimulus money on green failures got us no where. Some of these pie in the sky projects resulted in tens of millions spent per job. We support an effort that doesn't send energy prices through the roof. Thx for listening!
Phil, Saratoga

I am aware of the recently released "National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) annual State of the Climate, a peer-reviewed report by more than 380 leading scientists", and understand the ramifications of "Climate change" and the need to curb our use of fossil fuels, addressing climate change so that we CAN protect our people, local communities, the nation's economy, and most importantly the health of the planet. As far as I am concerned, the President should not only call for enforcement of the Clean Air Act to address carbon pollution, he should MAKE it happen. Those who are in the position to regulate and enforce the laws are supposed to be representing "We the People," and that means cleaning up our air, water, and land, while we still possibly can. My own commitment has been to live off the grid for close to 40 years, starting with 12 volt lights, to now having enough solar power to have an electric (120 volt) refrigerator, toaster oven, bread machine, computer, washing machine , power tools etc ,, if i can do it , anyone can , its not rocket science. Maybe it will not be as profitable for those who are profiting now from big oil and coal , but we need to think like those who lived before us on this soil, of what the ramifications of what we do now will effect seven generations down the line. What will our legacy be?
Paul, Garberville

I strongly feel that the issue of global warming should not be softened by using the euphemism "climate change." The Climate Change euphemism was created by big oil and gas in their attempt to fool the public through their well orchestrated and heavily funded "anti-global warming movement" commonly referred to as the "anti-climate change movement." It's a complete sham.
Please be vocal about global warming and address this critical issue using the proper description of it and avoid pleasing big oil and gas by using the euphemism "climate change."
The criticality of global warming may end our species and others. It could have been entirely avoided with smart leadership. Actually one does not have to be that smart to know that emitting tons of CO2 in the atmosphere would cause imbalance to Earth's life-support system for biological life.
Paul, Ventura

Thank you for your brief and direct message on the need to address climate change now. You have my complete support to pursue aggressive policy to combat climate change, even if it has an impact on cost of living and economic growth.
Richards, Michael, Berkeley

I am so glad you realize the importance of this subject and the part each and every one of us plays in this dilemma. I am a member of California Nurse's Association and also National Nurses United. At a recent Staff Nurse Assembly the main topics included global warming. Our world, our health. Please keep it in the forefront of your concerns as you consider legislation.
Linda Rae, San Francisco

Yes! That is why we as a community need to address environmental issues above all else - even jobs. I have said time and time again, "You can't work if you're dead!" A bit morbid, but an unfortunate truism. I urge you to do EVERYTHING in your power to ban fracking in our state/ off the coast, and to stop the Keystone Pipeline. I try to bike and ride public transportation every chance I get, even though it is frequently inconvenient and more costly (BART specifically). I obviously am a champion of many conservation efforts as well, but a few people cannot do the work for everyone. We all must pitch in, and I am counting on you to make the environment and climate change a priority right NOW! Thanks for listening.
Natasha, Orinda

I share your concern about climate change's effects on America. In a way, though, we are just reaping what we have sown. What about the innocent victims around the world, who can aspire only to put food in their mouths, and who cannot even imagine the "American lifestyle?" As their islands and shorelines are flooded out of existence, we still have a pollution-centered economy. If our representatives took effective action, they (including you) would be forced out of office by PAC spending backed by major polluters. How do you propose to get beyond this dilemma?
Joseph, Santa Rosa

Dear Sen Boxer: thanks so much for your interest in global climate change. I am very concerned about this (due to grandchildren)and hope you will work hard to advance serious measures to address this, including moving US away from fossil fuels, in part by stressing conservation and efficience; and in part by supporting low carbon footprint alternatives.  We may all need to make some sacrifices and suffer inconveniences. For example the 55 mph speed limit at time of oil price spike probably saved many lives as well as a lot of oil.
John, Arcata

In addition to carbon trading, all new houses built in the US should have solar electric and there should be federal credits for 5-10 years to reduce the cost to buyers, or until the cost of solar panels is reduced. There should also be federal credits to encourage retro-fitting solar panels. There should be more pressure put on car/truck manufacturers to increase the range of plug ins, with the intention of eventually having all cars run on electric (solar panels should be built into car hoods and tops and there should be a big increase in plug in stations). Solar electric and clean cars will be a major improvement in air quality and carbon into the air.
John, Claremont

My wife and I appreciate your attention to the issue.
Piruz, Carlsbad

Thank you, Senator Boxer, for joining President Obama's leadership on fighting global warming and climate change.
Esperanza, San Jose

Exactly what I've been saying for the last 30 years. A bit late now though, isn't it?
Tony, San Diego

Thank you for your position on this most important issue! We so need eloquent, articulate people in high positions to move this topic forward. Even though I know we cannot turn the clock back in my lifetime, if we don't start, I believe the human race I grew up with will become extinct. Yes, the planet will be okay, but we will not.  I know it is natural to lose species, but for people who should know better to continue denying the existence of climate change, no matter what the cause, is deplorable. I believe it is just greed on many corporations part that fuels this hanging on to fossil fuels and all of the old bad ways.
Shari, Laguna Woods

I know you are doing your best to convince your colleagues that science has proven that man is responsible for much of the climate changes/warming. Thank you for all you do to protect our environment.
Jo Ann, Redding

Climate change has been happening for billions of years. You need to be working on real matters that can be resolved. Stop wasting tax dollars, time and killing jobs with this climate change stuff. For every new regulation you put in place you put 3 people out of work.
Robert, Huntington Beach

You know that even if the U.S.A. stopped all carbon pollution? There would be NO change because of CHINA, INDIA, RUSSIA. Work on them first. The U.S.A. is 100% cleaner than those countries and you know it!
William, El Cajon

Thank you for keeping us informed by email & letting us provide you with our feedback.
Referring to climate change: because of the unconscionable obstructionism of Republicans, my husband Lewis and I wonder if it might not be smarter to go around them by mounting a massive information & help program to turbo-charge the development & commercial viability (cost-effectiveness) of sustainable & environment-friendly energy sources (solar, wind, etc.)? We know this is a tall order, but backing the Reps against the ropes by encouraging private sector investment in innovation (R&D)in these promising industries--to which the GOP could not possibly object, at least not without showing their hypocrisy--would also be propitious for us the pragmatic Progressives.
Dina, La Jolla

Thank you so very much for your email about global warming. I applaud your courage to stand up to climate-denying bullies. If we don't convince these people that the problem is very real and all life on earth is in danger, the window of opportunity will be lost forever. I wish you all the luck in the world.
Amir, Northridge

Thank you so much for your message and your support of President Obama's stance on the Clean Air Act.  I have to admit, however, that I am in despair regarding this issue. I think we're past the tipping point. My associates who are well informed on this... well, the information they share with me is grim and from my layman's understanding, I don't see the tidal wave turning around.
So I thank you and applaud you for your message. But it's with sadness in my heart that I say "It's not enough". We need a national movement to catapult this country ahead of this malignant curve. We need a movement that is even stronger and more unified than the resource conservation our parents and grandparents partook of during WWII. Most of all, we need a commensurate action to get corporate money out of this debate.  And we need it yesterday.
My despair is that this won't happen. Please do everything you can to prove me wrong.
Mark, Valley Village

I just received your email about the NOAA report. Forgive me for being blunt, but the Emperor has no clothes. The President has finally decided to talk about the climate after 6 years of silence, yet he proposes no meaningful action. Congress, clearly, has done no better.  As the President offers platitudes one day, the DOI auctions off millions of tons of new coal leases on the next.
As your letter plainly states, climate change is happening now. Six years into the Obama Presidency carbon output only grows. Hearing the empty words only makes the reality more painful.
Adam, San Francisco

Thank you for letting the people know your position on climate change. In the time that has passed since Al Gore's movie on the subject a number of changes have occurred in the world, none of which bode well for climate stabilization and or reversal of current negative trends in industry and manufacturing sectors. Cars are getting smaller but still rely on fossil fuels. Coal fired power plants continue to be proposed built and maintained throughout the word and here in America. You have a pressing and perhaps the most important job of all in your chairwoman position. I pray for your strength and resolve to build a consensus among your colleagues for rapid advancement and forward thinking to address the seemingly overwhelming task of changing the course of the Titanic!
Daryl, Berkeley

Right on Barbara!  The deniers have egg on their faces as the years pass.  Let's hope that our government can reign in the greenhouse gasses and save this planet for future generations. The oil companies should be part of the solution in promoting alternative sources of energy...Let's hope they'll quit wasting money on lobbying for fossil fuels and apply it toward a better future for everyone. Get Elon Musk working on it!!!
Frederick, San Francisco

Thank you for the email message calling attention to the NOAA - State of the Climate 2012. It is heartening to see the acknowledgement on the part of this important government scientific entity, as well as the National Research Council, and the World Bank which are warning about the many threats and consequences of these current and future changes. These reports point to massive food shortages, a rise in conflicts, and security threats. Let us hope and work for stabelizing the climate as best we can. A carbon fee and dividend would be one method that is gaining support from many quarters. I find it amazing that there are still those who are in such denial, and think that persons who are concerned with this are "global climate change fanatics". I would scarcely label any of the entities above as such!
Sara, Los Angeles

While we have been messaging congress, you have been entertaining the Republican obstructionists giving them the "other side of the argument" equal time and respect, entertaining fools as equals. Get out of your equal time slumber and do something while your children and mine still have a chance. Get tough, if only for their sake. Don't "GLADLY SUFFER FOOLS!"
Bill, San Diego

You cite 380 scientists who believe that climate change is happening and that the US had the warmest year on record.  IF all that is true, why do the weather records show that 1887 still holds the record for hottest year every in Fresno, California? What was the greenhouse gas situation 125 years ago?  Yes, I believe there is climate change ... it is called "weather". 50 years ago when you were a young woman, these experts could not accurately forecast the weather 3 days in advance. Today, the computer models have improved to where 10 day forecasts are reliable. But there is no model or data to explain Fresno or even a 20 year climate cycle ... much less a 100 year one.
David, Yorba Linda

I am so pleased that you recognize the dangers and potential for catastrophe from climate.
My fear, based on my years of experience as Assistant Attorney-General of Montana in charge of enforcing the state's major environmental laws, is that the scientists (who are a conservative group [not politically but professionally]) are not declaring forcefully enough the prospect of abrupt climate change far ahead of their forecasts fifty to one hundred years out.  All it would take is one anomalous event that pushes us across a single threshhold to set off a chain of events that would be disastrous.  I know you are dealing with some neanderthals in the Senate (and more in the House) who continue to deny the reality of climate change. You must find a way to wake up the nation to the nightmare that awaits us if we do nothing.
Richard, Sherman Oaks

If a statement like that is the best you can communicate, why bother?  (1) You're telling me the obvious, and then trying to affiliate yourself with it. Remember, this is known as the most "do nothing" Congress in history. What do you and the Democrats plan to DO about climate change? (2) There is a lot more at stake than just local communities and our economy. Try survival of human life on this planet!
Larry, Vista

Thank you for the scientists' report on climate change.  However, it is something that many, many of us are already convinced of. The real question is what we can do about it. We in California have made a start in emission standards, renewable energy requirements in power generation, etc.  But it is really imperative to reject the Keystone XL Pipeline and all of the other ways in which Canadian Tar Sands oil might reach U.S. and other refineries.  And it is vital to create strict oversight of the fracking of natural gas in our state before more of it is allowed. The leakage of methane at each stage of production makes it a dirtier source of energy than coal, according to Cornell Professor Anthony Ingraffea (Op-Ed "Gangplank to a Warm Future," NYTimes, July 29, 2013). He argues persuasively that natural gas cannot serve as a bridge to a distant renewable energy future, an idea that anchors the Administration's energy policy.
We have to regain control of our resources and economy from the fossil fuel industry.
Audrey, Berkeley

Thank you for your work to reduce carbon emissions. Climate change is the most serious problem we all face now. Nothing is more important.
Christel, Anderson

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Californians respond to my message on President Obama’s Announcement (06/25/2013):

I am so grateful for the way you've outlined the strengths of President Obama’s speech today without assuming too much on the Keystone Pipeline. I am still very worried that his emphasis on the partnership with business to solve problems is a curious way to approach the problem we are facing since business is as much of a threat as it might be a partner in solving problems. That is what gave me pause and kept me from cheering today. I will do what I can to support organizations that will resist the pipeline and all other dependencies on fossil fuels, including ethanol, which is not sustainable. I am so grateful that I can trust you to do the same.
Emily, Fresno

Thank you so much for your support of reducing carbon emissions which are devastating to our planet. As you say the Keystone XL pipeline will enable the dirtiest of fuels to be extracted and shipped off. Please continue to use every effort to hold the President to his promises and well-spoken goals and not allow this tarsands project to proceed. Otherwise, it’s just talk.
Paula, Sebastopol

Your message about the pipeline is a breath of fresh air. Keep up your good work!
Peter, Santa Monica

Please do all you can to defeat the XL Pipeline. We need clean, renewable energy sources not dirty tar sands oil shipped across U.S. soil. As the spill in Arkansas demonstrated, this has the potential to be another ecological disaster. Didn't we learn anything from the BP spill in the Gulf of Mexico or from the Exon Valdez? Renewable, clean energy and the incentives to make it possible, please.
Patisu, Trabuco Canyon

I am pleased to learn that President Obama is doing some things to advance clean energy. I am most passionate about stopping the development of the XL Tar Sands pipeline. I hope this is one of your highest priorities as well.
Patricia, San Bruno

Thank you for your message regarding the President's statements on use of tar sand oil. Please continue to fight to prevent this from going forward. Your commitment to obtaining transparency and keeping a watch dog eye on the status and process is greatly appreciated, and just one reason I chose to vote for you, and will do so again if given the opportunity.
Lynn, Ventura

I am very pleased with today's announcement by President Obama stating that he has concerns about the tarsands project's environmental impact. Let's do whatever we can to hold him accountable. He has disappointed me hugely by not standing up to BIG oil in the past. He has not stepped up with any real changes since mentioning environmental concerns in his initial speeches.... let's try to get him to really implement the most important changes on which he ran his campaigns... working to address the catastrophe of doing nothing. thank you very much for representing those constituents who actually care about the planet.. and all life living on it.
Linda, La Jolla

There is no such thing as climate change in regards to carbon.The climate changes all the time and has nothing to do with carbon as true history proves and as true scientists have shown,you are out of touch and show that you will ignore the facts.The global warming myth has been debunked and we have been in a period of cooling for several years,look up the facts youself and stop trying to extract more taxes out of the American tax payer,no amount of money can effect the climate one way or the other!!It is not a priority!
Randy, Bodfish

I am relieved and proud to see that President Obama has taken a stance against pollution despite the Political capital it might cost him. I agree that the Tar Sands project is an experiment with disaster and that longer term vision is required to learn how to extract clean energy. Without taking a hard stance on this aspect of Global Warming, there will be no progress.
Ravi and Sangeeta, Dana Point

I recently returned from a trip to Tahiti. Two thing struck me as a result of my visit. 1) With global warming and oceans raising several of the islands will be overrun with water as they are coral reefs and not very high above sea level. This is true of several islands in the world. This actually is a slow form of murder for the people and their homes. 2) I have COPD and every day at home I have severe coughing and trouble breathing at times as do almost all people suffering from COPD. Within a couple of days of being there my symptoms were gone. Upon arriving back in Los Angeles they returned within one-have hour. The air pollution must cost the United States billions of dollars in medical costs and lost productivity. Much more so than to reduce air pollution.
Joseph, Torrance

While everyone thanks the president for choosing to hold off on the XL pipeline, the tar sands are being delivered by train from Canada right here to the Bay area oil companies in Martinez or Benecia for processing. If we really want to cut back on all this pollution, etc. California needs to STOP allowing the tar sands into the state. Apparently it has been determined that sending the tar sand material via train is cheaper so we need to do something about this instead. So while everyone is looking the other way at stopping the pipeline, the polluters have found another way to keep up with their tar sand utilization plans.
Cheryl, Rio Vista

Thank you for your email about Obama's speech on climate change. It was very encouraging to finally hear him lay out a plan to address this urgent issue. If we don't find a way to reduce emissions now, we will have to live with the devastating consequences down the road.
Of course, we really also need legislative action and so I applaud and thank you for your efforts.
Katie, Goleta

I am also excited by the President's speech today, and will do what I can to support these efforts.
But I think we both know that this does not go far enough and we need to take much broader action from here at the legislative level. Please continue to keep raising the profile of this issue so he can hopefully take additional steps in 2015.
Geoff, San Jose

Thank you for your opposition to the Tar Sands Project. This is a filthy, dirty project with tremendous potential for destruction of our ecosystem, and I am grateful that you are opposing it with such devotion. However, I wonder if you are also supporting efforts to expose the suppression of the so-called "Free Energy" devices that would bring pollution free energy to our country and the world?
Carole, Altadena

I agree that a carbon tax is not only necessary but should be instituted as soon as can be. I don't believe that a tax will begin to curb the pollution that will result from the proposed pipeline. I might consider if the tax or fee would be sufficient to clean up or prevent the damage to the environment the pipeline, processing, and distribution of the fuels would cause.
Robin, San Pedro

Don't lose this incredible opportunity, make this real change happen. DO not let the evil lobbyists get their fake arguments in edgewise. Please be a leader in doing what is RIGHT!!!
Laura, San Francisco

I was gratified to see your email supporting President Obama's policy announcement today on climate change. I strongly support an objective reading of the relevant science and policy initiatives to mitigate this environmental disaster. Thank you for your work on this issue.
Andrew, Arcata

Although a step in the right direction, I am concerned. I do not support the approval of the XL pipeline. I did not hear a definitive answer on this issue from President Obama.
Art, South Lake Tahoe

I am currently in Quito (waiting for my flight back to CA), near where a long-standing glacier that used to supply part of the city's water recently melted, after a trip around the Galapagos Islands, which are very sensitive to local climate conditions, in turn dependent, as far as we know, to ocean currents, also dependent on global warming. This irreplaceable resource for science, apart from other things, can surely be expected to suffer if we continue to increase the CO2 levels in the atmosphere well above levels that have not been seen for 800,000 years at least (proven by ice core measurements), and probably many million years (inferred by species identification), so probably since the islands were formed. Tar sands oil is a terrible idea. The material has lots of problems above normal oil production, and its extraction will cause substantial additional CO2 generation, and just because this will be in Canada does not make that any better, we will see the results in the US within days at most. In my youth, I worked in a coal gasification plant, where the most horrible byproduct was the tar, very similar to the tar sands oil byproduct, and the sulphur compounds, that were reduced by special equipment at the plant, but not completely.
Jean, Sunnyvale

There are many issues or problems that we face as a nation today than the one he talked about today. That problem of carbon emissions ranks way down on the priority list. Thank You.
William, San Diego

I agree that President Obama's speech today is hopeful. Is there anything we can do to stop the next disaster of nuclear energy? The money it would and does take to support those power plants could go to some assistance to those who will become unemployed by the decrease in the use of coal.
Evonne, Mckinleyville

Thank you for recognizing the single most important issue facing mankind. Well educated people like you and the president cannot help but see the profound significance of what is taking place on our fragile planet. I urge you to make this issue the legacy of your administration. Educate the people about the importance of what cannot even be called an issue. This should not even be an issue. This is tantamount to our very survival. Keep up the good work, and thanks for standing with the president.
Mark, Los Angeles

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Californians respond to Senator Boxer on the UN Climate Change Conference (12/07/2012):

Once again I am proud to have you as my senator. In spite of our failure to join others globally in signing the treaty to commit to efforts to reduce green house emissions, you have expressed to the UN that there are many people here who actually do care about the damage to the planet and want to reverse it. I appreciate your efforts to convey to the people across the globe, that there are people here who understand the urgency of changing our ways for future generations. Please continue your work to make our voices heard in Washington D.C. and to join international efforts and commitments to be responsible. Let's sign the treaty and move forward with strength, courage and creativity.
Karen, Nevada City

Our lack of national action on climate change is deeply embarrassing as well as suicidal. We need your strong leadership in the Senate. And let's hope that the President demonstrates strong leadership in his second term as well.
James, Davis

I just wanted to express my support and thanks for your continued effort to address climate change in this climate (excuse the pun) of politically based denial on the part of the Republican party in this country. The wisdom of people like Al Gore to risk anything and everything to help get this message across is done justice by the continuing efforts by individuals such as yourself. Please continue to do a great job of representing the people of our country and not the greedy special interests.
Richard, Los Osos

I just read your letter and wholeheartedly agree. Besides American jobs and the "fiscal cliff", I don't think there's anything more important than climate change. We must begin to take action, now. I hope you can get the President to take action, soon.
Fran, El Granada

I do not agree with your position on climate change. The climate has changed many times over the millenia and scientists are still unclear on differentiating natural versus anthropogenic change. The measurements have a lot of variability associated with them so the models have a lot of variability and uncertainty. Please do not waste our time and money on trying to deal with something that we may not have any control over.
Marco, Salinas

It is good to hear that there are more senators joining the effort to make a difference with the climate.
Cheryl, Orange

Thank you, Senator Boxer, for taking this matter seriously and for acting on it in Doha. You represent me in this action. I'm Grateful!
Elaine, South Pasadena

Thank you for taking a stand on the importance of the environment and especially with the United States as a world leader and not a lager in such a crucial subject to the world's survival. What we do now will be important not only for those currently living but also for those in the future. Without a healthy environment all other considerations fall short in importance.
Lark, San Diego

The billions of dollars requested by the UN is an unnecessary waste of my Tax Dollars. I'm all for being environmentally responsible, however, policies should be implemented at a local level that does Not require us to be fiscally responsible for other governing bodies. We are Not governed by the UN nor should we ever. I Do Not support your stand on this.
Branden, Porterville

We are doing too little, too slowly! Raping our environment, and over populating it! We MUST try to stop this self-centered approach of nations and people, before we cannot prevent this train wreck from occurring... the world will look back on this time, and we will be ashamed we did so little...
Keith, San Ramon

Thank you for sending so clearly stated, committed message to the UN Conference. It will show that in the United States we do care about saving the future of livable Earth.
Olga, Huntington Beach

Look, there is no concerted effort to stop global climate change. What do we expect in an industrial world with an exponentially increasing population? What do we expect when huge amounts of fossil fuels are burned just so we can go on having fun and consuming? We say we are worried, but not enough to change our daily behaviors. And what would advertisers do if the problem became front page news on a daily basis? Hotter summers and higher air pollution are causing my yard plants to die and bees to drop dead in my pool. Large drivers of world climate change are a doubling of world population in the last fifty years, politicians who lose their jobs if they stand against energy interests, and a public in denial satisfied to have fun and consume. Like James E. Hansen (NASA), I am not optimistic about the future of my grand children and planetary health. Things may change when the water and food are gone, but probably not until then. Humans will not solve the ocean acid problem; the earth will. Population collapse will be driven by climate collapse caused by capitalism run amok. CO2 rises as more and more people think that democracy guarantees them the right to travel where ever for business, pleasure, sports, or politics. The earth does not get mad, but it will get even.
Roger, San Diego

Thank you very much for you statements and support on the need for U.S. and international (China) action regarding production of greenhouse gases and our need to try and curtail the long term effects of climate change. We are a frogs about to boil to death and it's happening so insidiously we're not taking action to stop it. We can't ignore this. Everyone needs to take action. I grow as much of my own produce as possible. We have solar panels on our roof. I drive a hybrid. I recycle. I would happily do more, and accept more changes in my cultural way of life to help address this situation. Every educated person I know would do the same. That's not enough, we need to reach everyone, and it needs to come from the bottom up, and the top down. The crunch on resources will be intense. If we can't stop climate change, then, ultimately, there will be a reduction in population, through drought and starvation, disease, inundation, economic collapse.
Barbara, McKinleyville

I do not agree with the agressive proposals coming out of this conference. They will devastate economic activity and work toward a "one world" dictorial body. Carbon taxes and trading are a huge scam for the financial elite. Please research the other side of the global warming argument before proceeding with your support.
James, Santa Monica

I'm delighted to hear of your activism regarding climate change. It is surely the most important issue facing the planet. There has been a distressing reluctance by both parties to face up to it. So, please soldier on for the sake of all of us who will be ultimately deleteriously affected by it.
Sybil, Berkeley

I am proud to continue my support for you as you urge leaders to address Climate Change. This is my top issue. I am involved in organizations striving to improve awareness and understanding to build public support. In the end this is about the common good, and it requires government action. Best,
Mark, Cupertino

Thanks Senator Boxer for addressing climate change as I believe it is one of the most important topics of our day. We also need to consider population control as a factor into this equation. How to do this in a manner that is not punitive will require some interesting work. In the meantime, thanks so much for making our world a healthier place for today and for my two brilliant daughters.
Kathryn, Rancho Cucamonga

I believe that the climate change debacle is a scam. If man left the planet tomorrow it would not make a noticeable difference in the climate. Man has been trying to control the weather forever and still hasn't been successful. Science has determined that mankind contributes about 4% of the co2 to the environment. If you figure a way to control the volcanoes you might make a difference. Not likely. Limiting production of petroleum is having a terrible effect on our progress and our economy. We pay a large toll to obtain our energy from countries that hate us when we could be energy independent on our own resources. Seems counter productive and self destructive. Thanks,
Don, El Cajon

Thank you for your work on making climate change a priority. I know there are many important issues that you must address, but I always feel that caring for the environment is so basic and so important. If we don't take care of our planet we will not survive! I recently got solar panels on my home and they just got hooked up yesterday! It is very exciting just to feel like I am doing a small thing towards decreasing greenhouse gases. You are doing much more than I, so again. thank you for all you hard work!!
Kathryn, Oakland

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Veterans Day

Californians respond to my message on Honoring America's Veterans:

I am a Vietnam Veteran. I was drafted into the U.S. Army in 1966 and served as a combat infantry squad leader in Vietnam for the last half of my one year deployment. I am writing to thank you for all the work you do for the Veterans. The Vietnam Veterans ranks are thinning mostly due to the delayed effects of Agent Orange and we still need our countries support. The young men and women involved in our last wars still need much more help than they are able to get. They did not give up on their country and our country must not give up on them. Again, thank you very much for all your efforts.
Jay, Culver City – C 3/7 199th Light Infantry Brigade
It was a privilege and honor to serve our country. I appreciate your time and effort in giving all vets recognition they deserve. Ex-Air Force, 1950-1953.
Francisco, Lompoc

Thank you for your nice message on Veteran Support dated 10/10/14. After wars so much is thought of as paid for and no longer needed but especially now when we bring back so many members that survive war wounds that were impossible to survive just 25 to 30 years ago we need to continue to make sure they are cared for. Also as a retired veteran I see the meaning of the care that had been at least implied making a huge difference in support for those who still serve directly or are contemplating serving. Wars do not end for veterans when they retire or decide not to continue.
Richard, CMSGT USAF (Ret), Lompoc

I, being a E7 USAF Retired, thank you for your letter of support. I agree we do need to ensure those who need services get those services. But I have some negative feedback for you. The services that are being talked about, and pay & benefits that were promised have been eroded and often changed without notice. A promise is kind of a contract. However, it is apparently one-sided. We give our all, and get thrown away. I'm certain our fine elected officials don't see an ethical problem with voting themselves very good benefits, while limiting ours… I feel let down.
David, San Bernardino

The best way we can honor our vets is to pay them a decent wage so their families do not have to live on food stamps! What a disgrace for a country with the quoted reputation of being the richest and strongest country in the world.
Susie, Santa Maria

As a Veteran, I would like to thank you for your support of Veterans and our families. I am a disabled veteran. My family and I use the benefits that I have earned. Without those benefits, I am not sure where my family and I would be without them. Things have gotten better for Veterans and their families over the years, but there is still more that can be done. Once again, thank you for your support of Veterans and their families.
Michael, Fontana

Your tribute is indeed on target - but, words are cheap. Why hasn't the Congress been dutiful in the care & treatment of our vets?
Beverly, Lompoc

As a Vietnam Era Veteran, the son of a WW2 Vet, and the father of an active duty Iraq and Afghanistan Army combat Veteran, I would like to thank you for your support of all Veterans, and I will continue to support you in your progressive Democratic agenda. I am encouraged by the recent focus of yourself and President Obama to improve the treatment of my fellow Vets by making the necessary changes to the failures of the Veterans Administration. There is one more glaring deficientcy that the VA fails to provide to our Veterans that recieves very little attention, and that is providing Dental Care to ALL Veterans. Please be the first to pick up the banner for this much needed treatment to the Veteran Community. I need not tell you the importance of good Dental Hygine, but as a former Mental Health Social Worker, I saw first hand the devestating effects of poor dental hygine on the over all health of many Homeless Vets that I worked with who were unable to recieve VA dental care and could not afford the care from the Private Sector. Thank you for looking into this much needed service that is not currently being provided to the majority of our Veterans.
Arthur, Littlerock

It is too bad we did not have respect for the veterans of Lyndon B. Johnson's Viet Nam war. We
probably wouldn't have as many homeless and destitute veterans as we have today. I am a WW2 veteran and I am ashamed of the way Viet-Nam vets were and still are, treated.
Rex, Santa Maria

Thanks, good to know that there are some Demos who appreciate military service of so many for our great Republic.
Steve, USMC Viet Vet, Lemoore

Thank you so much for caring and remembering all of us Veterans, it’s a key reason for the way the block of Vets have voted all the years you have served the United States and all Californians. We love you and God’s Blessings to you and your service to all of us that are serving or have served our country and its Freedom.
Reverend Arthur, DD-CISM, USMC Vietnam era, Alta Loma

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International LGBT Human Rights

Californians respond to my message on Creating a Global Envoy for LGBT Human Rights:

I am so proud of you and the other senators for supporting the appointment of a special LBGT Envoy to the State Department to address Global LGBT human rights issues. I couldn't agree with you more about the importance of this position as well as the plight of LGBT persons in so many countries around the world, even in the U.S.  Thank you so much for all of your fine years of service and help for civil liberties and rights for all Americans, but especially for your representation of Californians.
Nick, San Anselmo

My partner is from the Democratic Republic of Congo and was persecuted because she was gay. She worked as an arbitrator for gay families with children, helping parents with children custody issues. She was arrested, imprisoned and tortured. Miraculously, she was able to escape and came to the US as a refugee where she received help. That is when I met her through the help of a friend translator. She did not speak a word of English, she was sick and depressed, without any resources, but in spite of all those adversities, she managed to survive, with a will to re-construct her life. I have been with her all through the process and I can safely say that it has been a journey. Today we are together and thanks to the help and support of PTV, who gave her a chance here in Los Angeles, we are able to share our lives, backgrounds , and my family together. She has a lot to be thankful for but I am sure her story is not unique and we must fight for liberty, equality and freedom of lifestyle, and fight against such crimes against humanity.
Very sincerely and thanks for making a difference and promoting justice for all human beings. There is too much violence and persecution in this world!
Marie, Santa Monica    

Thank you so much for your support of the GLBT Community. We need to support our brothers and sisters all over the world. I hope you will do your best to keep us out of another long war in Iraq. The middle eastern nations must take the majority of the responsibility to solve this problem. We must not let war mongers in the Congress drag us into more years of American young people sacrificing their life in religious wars. Thank you for your efforts.
Richard, Glendale

It was a pleasure to receive your communication about protecting human rights throughout the world. Having relatives who were exterminated during WW2, I am sensitive to this issue. We are a very imperfect society. It is always good to hear about some positive actions taken by our government. Thank you for your leadership.
Esther, San Francisco

Thank you for asking President Obama to establish an LGBT envoy. Your progressive leadership offers a beacon of hope to millions of oppressed people around the world.
Francesca, Sonoma

While I wholeheartedly approve of this request for a special envoy for LGBT people, I personally request the addition of protection and representaion of nontheists, athiests and agnostics as well. In many places around the world it can be as dangerous to be a nonbeliever as it would to be a LGBT person! I worry about this spread of aggresive theism around the world. It is obvious that a well educated populace is more successful and happy. I really wish rational thought would be championed more around the world, not to mention in our great nation!
I do hope something of this message or at least this sentiment reaches you and our government to the benefit of us all.
Pedro, South Pasadena

This should be very very low on the US priority list internationally. We need to reestablish the US as an international leader before we can ask other cultures to reconsider their stance on the very personal issues of homosexuality.
Monika, Santa Barbara

I would like to request a simple action on your part: change your request to include the secular/non-religious community. Multiple countries require the DEATH PENALTY for atheism. People are harassed, arrested, and beaten just for expressing disbelief. This problem is just as much a human rights issue as LGBT discrimination is. I support both communities wholeheartedly. I hope you do, too.
Jo, South Pasadena  

Thank you, I think it is an important position. We should do what we can to help people who are gay that are now being harassed by their government in some countries.
Michael, Berkeley

Why single out Uganda and Nigeria? Is it because they have largely Christian populations? Somehow, I doubt this new envoy will press the Muslim nations in the same way.
Ryan, Burbank

Thank you for picking up the mantle during a time when the very lives and freedom of LGBT around the world are threatened and world leaders, such as those at the UN, are failing to recognize gender equality as a priority.
Heather, West Hollywood 

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Campus Sexual Assault

Californians respond to my message on Urging California Schools to Do More to Combat Sexual Assault on Campus:

Thank You ! I am very interested as a grandmother with 3 college-bound grandchildren next fall and one this fall. Our children should be safe on campus. I think all sexual assaults should be handled by local police not campus administration and police. They are crimes, and should be treated like any other crime. I would like to know whether Sonoma State University, Santa Rosa junior College and University of California at Davis accept and implement your voluntary pledge.
Marcy, Santa Rosa

I want you to know how much I appreciate your efforts in setting up a support system for students dealing with sexual assault issues. Students should not have to live in fear of sexual assault. I don't know the statistics as to how many men and women have been victims of sexual assault, but I do know that part of the problem has been the mind set of some who believe it is acceptable to take advantage of an individual because that individual has found themselves in a vulnerable position. Some men refuse to understand the issue of respect. I hope that changes soon. Until then, efforts like yours are needed. Keep up the good work.
Richard, Kings Beach

I thank you from the bottom of my heart. I wonder about the stats. 1 in 5 assaulted. There isn't one girl/woman I know who hasn't in some way been assaulted. a grab, an exposure, actual contact, a peep in the window. females are at such high risk in a run-away society and this will help those who get caught in the cross fire.   
Gabrielle, Alameda

I like what you're doing. It's the right thing to do. You're on target, as always. Please keep following your convictions. You're making a positive and meaningful difference.
Thomas, Guerneville

Thank you for all your efforts, and particularly the request for colleges to do something about the terrible figures on sexual assault on their campuses. I have a granddaughter entering Chico State this fall and, although we have discussed this topic with her, I don't feel she is ready to do battle with some male coed. When I went to Sac State, we had … a physical ed teacher who was skilled in teaching women how to protect themselves, indeed to be agressive. She was wonderful! I think phys ed for women is a must on campus.
Barbara, Granite Bay

IF 20% of female university students are sexually assulted, why not make it easier for them to get a CCW permit and carry a weapon. I suspect only 10% of the women would participate, BUT, There would be a lot fewer assulters tempted to follow through on their evil desires if they were afraid that their victim could be armed. Self defense is a personal issue. Very few attacks occurr in front of a policeman. You have enabled a wonderful system where the victim gets attacked and she can watch the police arrest her attacker from her hospital bed or the morgue!
If you don't believe in guns for self defense, you probably don't believe in fire extinguishers because you'd rather wait for the fireman!
David, Yorba Linda

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Californians respond to my message on Combating Sexual Assault on College Campuses (7/30/2014):

Thank you Senator Boxer for your commitment. As a survivor it means so much to me. So many universities sweep it under the carpet and make the victim feel worse, as if they have done something wrong. Keep up the good work.
Gigi, West Hollywood

Thanks so much for working on and submitting the new SOS program on all college and university campuses. This is a vital program and most important for all students and their families and communities.
Patricia, Banning

I support this legislation, although belated. My stepdaughter was molested in her junior year of college while living off campus and no advocate then. I hope more teeth in this issue escalate the process of evidence collection with swift punishments.
Cress, Los Angeles

Thank you for spending your time and resources on this very-important problem. Young women and even some young men can have their college experiences destroyed by an attacker. Shedding light on this is of high priority to me, so I appreciate you standing up for victims. Bless you.
Kim, Los Angeles

Thank you, Senator Boxer for taking on this very serious issue. I trust that you will follow through to make the important changes needed to ensure the issue of sexual assault on our college campuses is not only brought to light, but is throughly dealt with to ensure the rights of all students to a safe educational setting.
Laura, Point Reyes Station

Finally we have common rounds on an issue, S.O.S. Campus Act. My agreement of course is contingent on the schools that are already receiving government funding and/or private funding for educating our children should pay for the program. On campus security and student protection should already been provided as a part of tuition. We should not reward the institutions by giving them additional funding for having not provided adequate security to date.
Thomas, San Diego

I believe this is an issue of the utmost importance. It is my personal experience that the mishandling of sexual abuse/rape during the college years leaves wounds as deep as the abuse itself. I appreciate your efforts to create preventative measures.
Bonnie, Culver City

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Wilderness Act

Californians respond to my message on Celebrating 50 Years of the Wilderness Act:

I want to thank you for the e-mail regarding the 50th anniversary of the wilderness act.
This important landmark legislation is constantly under attack from diverse interests whose primary goal is to destroy the integrity of the act. I strongly urge you to stay vigilant and make sure that those who would destroy these protected areas for selfish financial gain are thwarted in their efforts.
Richard, Walnut

Thank you for sending that interesting information about the Wilderness Act. It's wonderful to be reminded about all that President Johnson was able to accomplish. How I wish every Democrat realized how much can get done when they get to the polls and vote for politicians who care about what's good for most Americans.
Gloria, Pasadena

Thank you for everything you have done and are doing to protect our natural resources, including the wilderness act and adding more acreage to the original act.
Howardine, Loma Linda

You have our full support for saving the environment. Thank you for all your efforts and we're happy for your success in saving more land.
Jay & Cheryl, Orange

Preserving more and more wilderness is WRONG. Yes there has been and may be to a very small extent some unique areas that need preservation. But for the most part we need to be managing these areas, rather than locking them up. We are losing many of our natural resources and particularly to wildfire or lack of good management practices. In many cases some the existing wilderness areas need to be turn back to private ownership. In many cases it can be shown the public ownership cannot wisely manage these lands.
Dennis, Shingletown

Thank you so much for your devotion to the wild places of our beautiful state. The work you and Congressman Buck McKeon have done to augment and protect our wilderness areas is not a small victory - it is huge. The interactive map was nicely done, and much appreciated by my family: we have had a cabin in June Lake for 20+ years, and spend as much vacation time as possible in this gorgeous and restorative area. We just returned from a week in the Eastern Sierra, visiting the Bristlecone pine area, with trees radiocarbon dated at 4,300 to 4,700 years old. It was an awesome experience. These treasures cannot be replaced, and I am proud to support leaders such as yourself who continue to defend these remarkable regions. Your continued efforts will support our wilderness areas, large and small, for the enjoyment of all Californians, and will continue to draw domestic and foreign visitors, boosting the economies of the Eastern Sierra region.
Louise, Arcadia

Thank you, Senator Boxer, for your leadership in environmental preservation. Kudos to you for sponsoring bills protecting 1 million acres of wilderness. I know I can count on you to consistently take a leadership position on matters of the environment.
Helen, Oceanside

This is just a quick note to say thank you so much for your very effective efforts in the area of wilderness preservation. We are most fortunate to have you as a California Senator!!
Sally, San Francisco

Thanks for all you have done for the wilderness. In my younger years I spent a lot of quality time there. I still do when I can, and it is nice to know it is there for future generations too.
I am proud to have you as one of my Senators. Keep up the great work.
James, Bonita

Thank you Senator Boxer for looking into the future and legislating the Wilderness Act. My children and grandchildren will be able to enjoy California's beautiful wilderness thanks to your vision for the future of our great state.
Albert, Placerville

Just a note to thank you for your long standing leadership and support for the important Wilderness Act and the current 50th Anniversary Celebration activities. Your efforts are helping to preserve important lands and species for future generations.
Brett, Turlock

Thank you so much for your efforts to dedicate more acreage for more permanent preservation as permanent wilderness areas. Once they are gone, they are gone forever. We need more elected officials like you. Thank you for your ongoing dedication.
Melynnique, Escondido

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Distinguished Flying Cross Memorial

Californians respond to my message on President Obama Signs the Distinguished Flying Cross National Memorial Act:

Thank you for your legislation to designate the Distinguished Flying Cross Memorial at Riverside's March Field Air Museum as a national memorial. My late father, Jerome A. Lovelace, was a recipient of the Distinguished Flying Cross for his service as a pilot in WW II. He was part of the Greatest Generation who survived the Great Depression, saved the world from fascism in WWII, and built the world's strongest economy. I look forward to visiting the Distinguished Flying Cross Memorial and museum.
Allan, Redlands

Thanks for putting through this legislation on behalf of our courageous vets. My father, Capt. Halcott Thomas, ret. is a DFC recipient in WWII flying a B-17G on 30 missions over Europe. He just celebrated his 93rd birthday. Since I live in Riverside, it is great to know that it will be housed there.
Erin, Riverside

Thank you for all the effort you gave. This Memorial is as it should be for all who are giving and gave so much.
Sara, Riverside

Thank you, Mrs Boxer, for keeping the military man's mission, accomplishments and sacrifices in the public's eye.
Leo and Martha, Rancho Mirage

I am so glad that a bill has been approved to honor our brave soldiers. The flying cross national memorial is a fitting recognition to those who have fought and died for our freedom. Thank you for your efforts.
Claire, Ontario

I would like to extend a very appropriate 'Thank You' for your efforts to recognize the Distinguished Flying Cross Memorial. It is the men and women of this country that put their lives on the line to preserve our freedom and our rights to keep those freedoms that truly deserve recognition.
Daniel, Menifee

Congratulations on this accomplishment. Now really impress me and get our military veterans the proper health care they deserve through the VA system.
Justin, Corona

I think it’s a wonderful & respectful thing u did by introducing & helping this awesome MEMORIAL get passed & will go into fruition 4 our California & National AVIATORS that is so overdue & well deserved!
Teri, Martinez

Dear Ms. Boxer, I don't always agree with your accomplisment or what you would like them to be. But i do admire you for some of your accomplishments and some that you have or are working on. I can no longer remain in a standing position even with the equipment i now use to get me here and there. I have been to March AirForce and wondered if that Base was going to be taken from us also? I salute You for Saving that Base, for all Americans, and The Bravery Veterans such as myself to Honor The Bravery of the Veterans,Pilots, and Ground Troops, that have Past, & Still Survive Where Ever They May Be! I have Friends & Family Buried or Resting across from the Base, & Visit when able. The Enlisted Ranks of the Brave Men & Women aren't Listed above in your Prefix. Don't Forget Them, They were the Backbone to all the Military,
that Served with Honor & Bravery Also ! Thank You.
Lawrence (Enlisted Man), Yucca Valley

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Water Conservation

Californians respond to my message on Water in the 21st Century:

My family wishes to thank you for introducing "W21" legislation. This water conservation legislation will be a positive force by calling attention to California's severe water crisis and getting all Californians prepared to brace for the future.
Laurence, Pismo Beach

I really feel that it is about time for this legislation. Where I live, our county imposes harsh regulations, then stiff penalties if you are a smidgen over your allotment of 10 CCF's. I inquired with our utilities, and they informed me that the penalties go into the general fund, not a specific fund to solve the problem. We have an ocean that lies beside us, yet they say the public doesn't want desalination after three long years of public hearings. It truly isn't the public's fault that it hasn't rained and we are in a severe drought. We look to our elected officials to solve our water problems, not scold us, penalize us, then use the money how they see fit. Obviously, this approach isn't working. I think it is great that this legislation provides incentive, not punishment. I feel incentive is a much better solution and doesn't induce anger and blame. So, thank you--this is a refreshing idea--I was beginning to think the only solution was a rain dance.
Kathy, Santa Cruz

I truly believe that the ultimate solution to our water problem in CA is to start investing in desalination plants. We cannot continually by cutting down on water use. There is a bottom line of water conservatin below which one cannot survive. Add to that the thousands of people who come to live in CA every year and soon not matter how much rain or reduction in water use is done there will not be enough water. We might as well start looking into desal plants. If we have enough water then mothball the plant until the next water crisis occurs.
George, Oak View

I support your bill to help California deal with water issues, and I respectfully suggest the addition of funds to increase and expand the water collection, storage, and delivery systems in the state. I was the Director of Environmental Protection for the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Health, and water issues were frequently a focus of concern during my career. We currently do not have the capacity in our state's water infrastructure to meet current demands, and as the population of the state is sure to grow over the coming years, additional infrastructure will surely be needed. I applaud especially the recycling component in your bill. The Hyperion Waste Water facility in the L.A. south bay discharges BILLIONS of gallons of water to the Pacific Ocean that could be treated and re-used to irrigate landscaping or for other re-cycled water uses. An aggressive re-cycled water policy combined with increased spending on potable water infrastructure (dams, aqueducts, pumping stations, etc.) is the way for California to attain a future with water security. Thank you.......
Ken, Westlake Village

I still can't understand why Calif builders do not offer water conscious front yards instead of lawns and drought intolerant trees/shrubs. It's time to change the thinking on yard lawns. Maybe some kind of incentive option for new houses as well as change over for homes with existing lawns.
John, Lancaster

please make sure this bill includes protection from water resource privatization. i don't want our water "owned" by the bush family or any other wealthy people. our water was put here 4 all of us! thank you
Kristina, Albany

My son and I wondered why California can't build sea water conversion plants up and down the coast. Using that water for agriculture and home use. It could be designed to look beautiful while using the one resource that does not seem to be drying up the ocean. It may be costly at the beginning but it would make jobs and help solve a long term problem. More people working in California more taxes and make sure the contractors are American companies using California workers.
Linda, Simi Valley

Gov. Brown and the Feds should focus their attention on increasing our water storage by raising the height of Shasta and other dams. Forget about the HSRR system which is mostly a project for increasing union members. We do conserve water here in Palo Alto. We need simple methods for "recycling" water or use it for crop irrigation. The recent rupturing of the 100 year old water lines in L.A. indicates we need better water and gas line refurbishment in out state. Try to use a water purification method developed at Stanford which is simple and effective for recycling our used water in some simple way. Too many houses do not have metered water input lines for homes, this needs to be changed immediately. I know of some people who are constructing pools for their personnel use. This is a horrible waste of water while there is such a shortage in our state. A big fine would help prevent this problem. This type of personal use of water must be removed. Water police might help uncover neglect of conservation in our cities.
William, Palo Alto

This issue is regularly debated but never solved. The clear answer, and quite obvious, is to desalinate. California has access to unlimited water and if we would have tapped this resource years ago, we wouldn't be in such a desperate situation. Forget about sanctions and other temporary measures, and do the right thing for the future of California. We need to desalinate!
Cynthia, Newport Coast

The issue has greater urgencies than rationing water. I allude to the rampant development of Southern California as well as other arid portions of our state. Southern California water service is begged, borrowed or stolen from outlying areas and adjoining states: Owens Valley + Eastern Sierras, Sacramento Delta, Mono Lake, Colorado River to mention a few. Take a ride east along the I-10. What once was a few farms and cities is now a developed zone rife with residences, retail groups,even an Indian casino. Fontana, Rancho Cucamonga and the southern expanse of the Mojave were not, too many decades ago, barren/arid wastelands. Now, all of it is verdant, populated and bustling. How so?..poorly allocated water from sources not indigenous to Southern California. The end of this expansion is not readily in sight. How will denizens of newly developed desert areas water their sumptuous lawns or wash their expensive cars and boats?
Paul, Oxnard

It is reassuring to know that an effort to correct our water shortage in California is being discussed. Our very real problem is the LACK OF WATER .. not the size of the storage reservoirs .. as has been recently offered. We are SURROUNDED BY WATER .. we urgently need to provide a means to desalinate our salt water just enough to provide usable water to our farmers and growers in our Valley .. they are getting 80% of our current water supply. This would provide enough remaining water for California residents to exist on. We do not need a 700 MPH train from SF to LA .. we already have airplanes for that. Use the funds allotted for the train for the very real need of acquiring water for our dry State. Thank You !
Naish, San Jose

I think the government should be building sea water desalination plants asap. Conservation will certainly help but California has always been a desert and the population will aways grow. recycling alone is not going to fix this problem in the long run..
regards Richard Baxter, Laguna Niguel

Very disappointed in this. We are not going to conserve our way out of today's, and especially tomorrow's water shortage. We have a huge opportunity with most of our (CA) urban population being coastal, to use desalination to ease this problem, and at the same time free up Sierra water for food production. While mentioned, $3M a year is not a desalination program, sounds like just something thrown in as a check off the box. At the state level, lets step up to the challenge of a state wide desalination plan, powered by non-fossil fuel power (solar or nuclear) to insure we have fresh water in an uncertain climate. Far less environmental danger than tunnels under the delta, and it is technology proven in many other countries with sea coasts, and little fresh water.
Eric, Mountain View

It is high time to institute mandatory rationing in CA. IMMEDIATE BAN on lawn and golf course watering. IMMEDIATE BAN on hosing of streets sidewalks. IMMEDIATE BAN on car washing in driveways/sidewalks. IMMEDIATE BAN on new construction of pools. In agriculture an immediate reduction of %25 in water usage. You go over? no more water. Agriculture wastes water as well, it is not untouchable. This is no time to dither and dilly dally.
DO IT. Next year is too late. This all should have been done March 1 2014, when it was clear we were in the midst of a 3 year drought. Thank you.
Suzanne, San Francisco

Please tell me why no one is proposing desalination plants on our coastlines? At least in Los Angeles, then we in Northern California would stop sending our water to LA and we would have plenty. Our Navy ships have desalination, many Carribbean islands have desalination plants, why not us??
Floyd, Woodside

I will try to be brief? The 1st mention, the water main brake on Sunset? It took them so long to get the water turned of?! I understand the valves are old etc? You would think by now (it's not the 1st time it's happen'd?) there w/b a solution to avoid this waste?! That water can somehow get collected and used where needed? 2nd, I've seen in the news that shows water being wasted? The locations, I don't know? Sprinklers are broken & water is running down the street or sidewalks. Cities all over need to start checking to make sure the sprinkler heads are not broken. City workers are already driving around the neighborhoods and need to take notice & do something? It could simply be leaving a notice at the property & follow-up in # days to check that concern has been resolved? I'm sure there are more things to mention but these are the main 2 I had noticed...
Sara, Pasadena

California has faced droughts in the past. This is by far the longest and most significant. Weather patterns will always change and affect our environment. Long standing droughts can propagate worsening situations as climate is affected by many variables. California's population has grown and this also impacts water consumption. We need to increase our water storage systems. This includes building more reservoirs, and construction of water desalination plants. Improving our infrastructure not only provides for better living conditions, it puts people back to work. By refocusing our economy, we get people out of welfare programs and increase revenue through income taxes. More really can be done. The government needs to work together. Instead of representing the democrats or the republicans, why not represent us Californians!
Karen, Sunnyvale

Thank you for your message about water. I am deeply concerned and often wonder why, we have no measure of recovery for fresh water discarded and flowing to the ocean. I understand these waterways of discard are for drainage and flood protection, but certainly there must be a way to capture and purify ordinary runoff and rain from our riverbeds. We live in Southern California and every season I see waterways rushing out to sea. I would rather invest in such a measure of capture and below ground storage rather than "water police" issuing tickets which is by the way an overreach of government and demeaning. The water we use is purchased, so to punish for its use is bad policy. We have timed sprinklers and do no hose down our sidewalks, we a pool and we try very hard to be cautious about our daily water levels adding water, when we know the pool is going to be enjoyed that day. Perhaps we can stop serving water (except upon request) at restaurants, and I am sure there are a hundred other small ways to conserve. Thank you.
Elizabeth, Cypress

I support your Water Conservation legislation and wish to share with you areas that need special attention. Along with public announcements about residential water use restrictions; Public utilities, local agencies, and municipalities should also have guidelines for restricted water use in a time of draught. I regularly see inefficient use of sprinklers along our highways and roads, spraying water in the air and on pavement during high evaporation times of day. A drip line would be much better and the use of draught tolerant plants. We just experienced a major pipe burst that spewed millions of gallons of water onto the UCLA campus. Our 90+ year old infrastructure is desperate for replacement. This has been a known issue and progress is painfully slow. Thank you for taking the time to hear my two cents.
Charlene, Tujunga

When is the legislature going to come to grips with grossly dysfunctional water laws in California. This is the 21-st century, why is our legislature still operating with archaic, atavistic laws? Is money that consequential in your lives that the public good is secondary?
Gary, San Francisco

We completely agree that water is a precious resource and needs to be treasured. We are curious that you would place even more power in the EPA, an agency that is already power hungry and thirsty to drown the average citizen in paperwork, regulations and fines. We would like to suggest that CA, via support of the federal government, undertake production of multiple water desalinization facilities along the Pacific Coast. This would create jobs for CA, insure the CA of the future has fresh water to meet growing demands, and would re-establish CA as forward thinking and willing to work for the good of all it's residents. We truly don't need Bullet Trains, EPA regulation, monitoring, and fines. Citizens can only cut back so much and then the hard truth hits home. We still don't have enough water. Then what? Please undertake concrete measures to establish facilities along the Pacific coast that can produce fresh water to increase the amounts currently available to CA residents. Thank you.
Thomas, Thousand Oaks

I am a Licensed Wastewater Treatment Plant Operator Grade III for the State of California.
What we need is someone with a vision to make the State of California never again have water issues. I do not like the idea of San Francisco having claim to water that originates in the High Sierras as their water. That water should be going to the Central Valley Farmers. With all of the water from the ocean available as a water source for San Francisco, Oakland, San Jose etc. why are we allowing shipment of water to these cities? The Cities of the Coast need to provide for Desalination Water Treatment Plants. These plants are no different than Wastewater Treatment Plants. Saudi Arabia has 90 percent of their water coming from the ocean. The State of California and Cities should be able to do likewise. The whole planet of Earth is 85 percent water, yet we continue to survive on the simplest method of retrieving water. Let us show the way to the rest of the nation that we can use the Oceans' water to alleviate the need for water. We should be using water from the ocean and piping the water up stream to the valleys and inland United States. The United States created a large interstate system on a vision of providing mass transportation, likewise the United States can provide the same for water by having large desalination plants in the gulf from Texas ship desalinated water up to New Mexico and the Western desert areas of Texas. California likewise should have large desalination plant piping water to Utah, Nevada, Arizon and the arid western states. Just a vision that will take real leadership to accomplish. Respectfully,
Primus, Santa Clara

I am sure that there are many experts engaged in the study of water conservation, but I have noticed that since Governor Brown has asked all of us to conserve water, there seems to be MORE water wasted in my area. There seems to be a "I am going to get mine before it's gone mentality." I suspect that part of the problem is that while government is asking all of us to sacrifice our lawns and gardens, we see sprinklers being installed in roadway medians to water the lawns and other plants there, we see sprinklers along the freeways on in the middle of a hot day, etc. I believe that state and local agencies need to be models of water conservation by planting xeriscape and watering little, if at all, at night. Another massive loss of water in California is caused by the open aqueduct that takes water from northern California to the southland. Why not invest the money to cover the aqueduct? This would provide more water without costing any of our neighbors to the north or the east any more of their precious water.
Finally, we need to renegotiate with the farmers who are still growing water-thirsty crops because they have water rights going way back. I don't want to kill farming in California, but I believe that there are other places better-suited to growing water-intensive crops like rice and raising dairy cattle.
William, Downey

Outlaw: lawns, hydro-fracking, cooling NSA mega-spy facilities, cooling nuclear plants, swimming pools and other similar wastes of water needed for people, plants and animals!
Shirley, Greenview

W21 is certainly the kind of legislation we need in CA. As native Californians my husband and I have been concerned about water usage and conservation for years but the current drought and growth projections for our state make it seem that the need to achieve sustainability has reached a critical state.  In an effort to conserve water this year we've kept a bucket in our kitchen sick to catch water that would otherwise go down the drain. It's been eye opening - and a bit shocking - to see how much we collect. There is enough to keep our garden watered. Rain water is another example. One good rain can fill up several trash cans. I know some households create cisterns where the water can be stored for use throughout the year and I can see us doing that as well. If something like this was required for all new residential development this could add up to huge savings. And incentives for retroactive installation for existing homes would do the same.
I guess my point here is that everyone in CA - businesses, farms and residents - can and should be encouraged to not only conserve but to also recycle. W21 is definitely a step in the right direction.
Jacquelyn, Belmont

I wish you the best. What is absent from your proposal in creating a method to provide water storage or source other plentiful water areas to allow our thriving agricultural business to serve the people. Review prospective reservoir sites, work with the State of California to identify other areas that our conducive to water storage. In addition, our neighbors to the North may qualify for sending water via pipeline to California. Naturally, desalinization is an obvious choice with our access to the ocean. Your proposal is mandatory, however, an expansion of the vision for water is essential. Think 50 years in the future.
William, Menlo Park

It appears that water is still too cheap to conserve. Many farmers who still have water are still watering in the hottest and windiest part of the day with Rainbirds. Water is still too cheap to conserve, thanks to the farm lobby. We also need new sources of water and the logical place to get it is salt water conversion, but this is never mentioned. The City of Santa Barbara built such a plant years ago, then abandoned it when the drought was over because that water cost twice as much as water from Northern California. The water shortage is probably permanent so new sources are mandatory. I would like to see more emphasis on new sources of water. There are limits to conservation, but we should use all options.
Sarah, Camarillo

please keep up the good work 2 conserve water not just in California but nationwide. Enough is not being done at the state level 2 restrict water waste in California. for example: last week I drove along the 60 freeway by Whittier Narrows and although it was 1130 am the sprinklers were all fired up in the park. I sent the park management in email to express my “disappointment” but I doubt it did any good. Good luck with your bill.
Satya, Brea

During the span of 50-100 years, California's "built" environment [incl farms] has lost more than half of its recharge capacity. things that promote runoff & drainage: ditches, culverts, bare ground. As UCCE says, roads are built to be artificial tributaries of the watershed. What we need are crowned roads, outsloping rather than inboard design, ditches and culverts that channelize flows. We need cover crops to replace bare ground. The plow destroys anesic worms and poisons destroy te work of those hydrologic engineers - gophers - and if we exclude the ecosystem from our farms, we must replace the ecosystem services. But we haven't- we have less & less groundwater recharge.
Bud, Glencoe

None of us know when the next normal rainy season will occur. Nonetheless, my husband and I drove up through the Central Coast and the Salinas Valley and there is winery after winery and irrigated farm land as far as the eye can see. In addition brand new wineries are under development throughout this region of California. It seems to me, given the dire drought we are in, that a moratorium is absolutely needed on further land cultivation for wineries and for other property development. The bottom line, in my view, is that California doesn't have and never has had the water supplies to support the rampant housing growth that has been allowed to occur over decades. Sponsor a water moratorium until feasible solutions are in place. It's the small people who are paying for this, not big agribusiness or land developers.
Gail, Santa Barbara

Water Conservation begins with the BIGGEST ABUSERS/USERS: Mansion Lawns; Golf Courses; & FRACKING Operations (2-3 million gallons of clean water per well). Also, let's look at those people who are now in the midst of building & filling new swimming pools! How about people who water their sidewalk, patio, & driveway? Let's work to stop the abusers first, because I for one RESENT the CalTrans signs urging me to "Save Water".......
Kimberlyann, Tujunga

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Republican Obstruction

Californians respond to my message The GOP Should Try Governing for a Change:

Thank you for not being worn down by the GOP continuing to act like Ostriches. Your op-ed in the Huffington Post says it all. Please continue speaking out for American government, for governing, for the president and all Americans. Sincerely embarrassed with the continued deaf, dumb and blind GOP.
Sheila, Martinez

Once again, I'm letting you know how important it is for those of us who feel dismayed about the non-governance you correctly name, to hear your clear voice speaking the truth and calling out for sanity, intelligence and non-partisan action on the multitude of critical issues facing our country. We are thankful that in a situation that must also be extremely frustrating and disheartening to you, you are continuing to write, propose, sponsor, and push for legislation that you ~ and we all~ know will be of maximum benefit.
Terra, Sebastopol

Thank you for stating the obvious. The Republican behavior is unethical, immoral and downright 'unchristian'. We are a country of immigrants, misfits and the unwashed. We have enriched ourselves each time a wave of the unwanted has come ashore.
Judith, Studio City

YES, YES, YES... We are so very tired of the games that the Republican Party is playing and their inefficient ways of doing their jobs in Congress. The waste of time is unbelievable and our wasted finances are also, beyond belief. That "Lawsuit" is so ridiculous that they should all be fired, especially that so called speaker of the house, Boehner.
Rosemary, Lomita

As usual, you are spot on. I am beginning to agree with Chris Matthews, who thinks that the President should sue Congress for their obstruction techniques, which are putting our people at risk in so many ways. I also believe they should stop getting paid until they start to do the work of governing. We are in serious trouble when elected officials get paid to do nothing and tear down the government and harm the people they promised to serve.
Gale, Santa Barbara

It would be nice if anyone would take the time to govern because quite frankly I see a bunch of children with a "my daddy's bigger than your daddy" attitude and no governing from either side. I am very sorry for the mess the world is in but we are not the savior. The border problem needs to be dealt with. I am sorry that it is children and if I saw them I would cry and want to take every one of them home with me. Just as I cannot do that neither can the country. Time to stop the border. Time to stop the blame game in Washington and it is time those serving the people go back to serving the people and doing what is right for the country not their political party.
Patricia, Riverside

Wow, thank you for your courage to speak up. I agree with all these issues. It boggles my mind that there is such stubbornness, such heartlessly closed minds. It is unfortunate that often the white and/or privileged find it impossible to place themselves in the worldview of the lesser fortunate. Thank you again for your presence in our government. May we never have to cloak the Statue of Liberty and her caring invitation!
Maria, Occidental

Thank you for putting in print the thoughts that many of us are thinking, and the feelings that we are feeling. Right now I would say that we are not the greatest democracy in the world, even though I believe that democracy is our greatest potential. The things you have outlined about our current batch of Republicans stand for me as most of the reason that we are not currently living up to that potential. As a simple, singular example, I was a twelve-year-old when President Eisenhower, a REPUBLICAN, convinced Congress to tax EVERYONE, in proportion to their income, so that we could have systems of freeways and national highways, in promotion of safer travel and more efficient interstate commerce. Nowadays our Congress, as a "governing" body, does not accept the responsibility of maintaining our highway system's integrity, putting us all in economic and physical danger.
John, Riverside

You are wrong about this. Our immigration system is not broken. It's not enforced. The Republicans did the right thing. You are out of touch with Mainstream America… The average American now pays more in taxes then they do on food, housing, clothing and shelter combined. And now you want Americans to pay to feed, shelter, cloth, educate and provide medical care for millions of Central American children and families… TAKE CARE OF AMERICANS AND AMERICA FIRST.
Doug, San Diego

I really appreciate the op-ed piece you submitted to the Huffington Post and thank you for informing me of same via e-mail. Your content was dead on point and it is just amazing to me to realize there are ANY sane supporters of the Republicans current agenda. What's even more scary are news reports that say there is even a possibility the Republicans may take control of Congress in the next election. Have the majority of U.S. Citizens totally lost leave of their senses? As you point out, all the Republicans do is obstruct any attempts to pass meaningful legislation, while offering nothing as a viable alternative. They truly are the party of "NO". Please continue your good work for the citizens of California and let's hope the rest of the country soon awakens from their stupor and helps restore some sanity to our government.
Peter, Santa Rosa

I agree with your comments about how the Republican members of Congress have consistently negated their duties to resolve the many problems we currently face. Their mean-spirited and anti Obama stance has severely damaged this nation's capacity to resolve many of its domestic and foreign problems. As a World War II veteran, who remembers arguing with Republicans both before, during and after the war, the present stalemate beats anything we experienced back in those days.
John, Spring Valley

What you say is so right on! Thank you for persisting in speaking the truth. Please do not stop letting your voice be heard. It is so hard to see what is happening to our country because of such maddening Republican obstructionism. Even my young granddaughter feels this country is going to hell. That is the most disheartening of all. You have my strong support and I only hope others are listening.
Sonja, San Diego

Senator Boxer you nailed the House Republican agenda for what it is, and has been for 6 years. They come up with every negative criticism of the President they can think of but very little resembles actual reality. Our esteemed President Obama has done a great job in so many areas but the other side has tried to negate those things. "His economic agenda will never work and in fact it will worsen the US economy" said the Republicans. Well we're are a 6.2% unemployment and the economy is jumping back up toward 4% growth, dah! Let's keep getting the Democratic agenda out there and push for more movement on it. With their lack of success in immigration reform cooperation, the Republicans better prepare for an election surprise because they aren't going to get a Senate majority and may even lose it in the House. This "November Surprise" is possible if Americans really get out and vote.
Terry, Redding

I want to thank you for this and all you do (95% of all you do) as my Representative. On this I agree with you 100% - yet, I feel it is a lost cause. Ever since 9/11 (ever since Reagan, actually), more and more Americans are living in Fear - fear of Job Loss, Fear of death, Fear of people and things they don't know, Fear that their lives aren't really theirs to control. Fear that something they can't quite put a finger on is slipping away from them - Fear of not understanding what, if anything, they can do. The Republicans (most, not quite all - but most) are skilled users of Fear as motivation. In concert with the takeover of major media by groups like the Koch Brothers and people like Murdoch, they feed and expand on people’s fears for the sole purpose of either getting elected, increasing their wealth - or both. As America moves yet further towards 2nd world status - as jobs are automated and moved overseas - as Burger Flipping becomes not a job for summer high school students but for entire families to depend on - as the Tea Party and Republicans milk fear for all the cash it's worth, and as many people fall back to the (false) sense of comfort, hope, and belonging provided by Religion, there is absolutely nothing you or anyone else can do about it… I believe it's too late already. Still, thank you for trying!
Alfred, Joshua Tree

Congratulations. Your email hardly missed any party talking points. Seems like you and President Obama are really, really looking for avenues of conciliation with the GOP. Your writer's slants on virtual amnesty for all, the "War on Women", and the president's abdication of his entrusted domestic and international responsibilities are so hollow to be ludicrous… Perhaps of greater significance is that your email fails to address the dismal failure of the Senate's non-performance under the "leadership" of Senator Reid. For instance, why did the administration not take action regarding immigration reform when the Democrats "owned" all three branches of government? Were you and your colleagues not so mired down with passing the ACA, some progress in this and other issues may have been achieved. How many House bills have been aborted under Senator Reid's leadership? I enjoin both parties to get their acts together and "Try Governing for a Change"? (Catchy headline, that.) Thank you for your time in this matter.
Michael, Camarillo

Your op-end piece for HuffPost was so spot on and true but too bad shaming does not seem to work as a motivation for the Republicans or TEA party candidates. It seems they are motivated by hate and fear… I hope this next election changes things, but I doubt it.
Jean, San Francisco

Thank you for finally standing up to the right wing zealots of the Republican Party who refuse to compromise and view their mission as obstruction and reduction of government. Thank you also for putting forward the accomplishments of the current Administration regarding the economy, jobs, business. You should add health care under ACA as a significant advancement as well.
Kenneth, Oakland

Your op-ed in the Huffington Post was "spot on" of what I see happening to America due to the antics of the Republican Party. How a political party can preach such hatred and connive to undermine our republic all for the sake of trying to humiliate the President of the United States is disgusting. They are humiliating the good people of this country not only our President.
Please continue your efforts to expose these people for the clowns that they are. Thank you for keeping us informed.
Alfred, Cathedral City

I was quite surprised by the tone of your op-ed. Why is it that politicians have to degrade each other when things don't go their way? I am quite appalled that such language is used by professional people. This goes for both sides. What have you done to get the parties together for some common good for the US? It gets old to hear the same thing over and over again.
Didn't the Republicans complete an immigration bill before they left on vacation? Wasn't the Senate already gone? Isn't there a number of bills sitting on Harry Reid's desk that he refuses to bring up? Aren't there still two wars going on in Iraq & Afganistan? Just because the US quit doesn't mean the war is ended. I would not be so proud of this op-ed. It is beneath the office of a Senator. Be constructive.
Frank, Huntington Beach

Thank you for articulating the single most monumental problem facing our country today – GOP obstruction and failure. I can't stress highly enough how important it is to shine daylight on this very serious failure of governance, perhaps even outright malfeasance on the part of some of those elected to serve the people. We must, with the help of your leadership, swiftly and comprehensively educate our population on how many have been led to vote and even think against their best interests, and most importantly that those elected officials who continue to destroy this country must be called out and replaced. Please, begin to end this madness, and create a team and a plan and LEAD this country forward.
Marc, San Diego

EXCELLENT LETTER Senator Boxer AND, SADLY, TRUE! I am SOOOOOOO fed up with republicans (just so you know -- I'm not a Democrat either.) President Obama was saddled with so many problems left over from the Bush/Cheney administration and contributed to by the GOP, and they DO NOT put the welfare of U.S. citizens (except for the rich 1%) and our country above their stupid, petty, selfish agendas. Also, the very sad truth is that they are a scared bunch of old white men, and racism is alive and well. (I am a 64-year old white woman, so I can say that.)
Becky, Pine Valley

I would listen to what you have to say except you are just as one sided, as evidenced my your above statement, as the Republicans are. Neither party is learning to give to the middle. We need another Moderate Party. You two (Dems and Repls) are not cutting it. Time to vote all of you out. We Americans are tired of the inability of our two party system not working together.
Yes, Obama has done some good. But, he has done just as much damage, as well. I see you did not mention the Health Care situation. Holding up the pipeline to advance oil product for US use and exports. Failing to correct errors in judgement quickly, instead choosing to ride out the storms. I do believe he is an intelligent man, maybe it is poor advisory staff that is misguiding him. Your statements of how great he is or has been, do not fly. Why has he not tried to revise and simplify the tax code? This would solve a lot of problems, financially. Why is he not pushing for tax changes so large corporations bring their money back to the states? And, the economy is not that good. Why is it that working Americans are not able to make ends meet? The earned dollar is still worth less every year. Why is it that increasing the minimum wage is supposed to solve all the problems? It is only going to cost jobs and increase consumer prices in certain markets. Why was it not introduced and pushed for on a graduating scale? The influx of South and Central American children is a sad situation. Guess what brought it on in the increased numbers? We opened the door. Why not put heavy pressure on their governments to fix their countries problems? Again, your above statement is not as honest as you would like for us to believe. Yes, he ended two wars. At what cost? Look at the mess in the middle east now. He should have shut the wars down much more slowly. Now, we must brace for a Radical Islamic uprising with Iran at the Head. Think we are in a good situation? Again, maybe he was poorly advised. The Democrat party is just as diabolical in their comments as the Republicans.
I trust you will continue to strive to be a good politician. And be totally honest with your remarks.
Bob, San Luis Rey

As bad as the Republicans response was to immigration - I think it was equally as horrible to the unemployment benefits extension. People have gone homeless and some have taken their own lives. I got a job in the nick of time, but it doesn't pay for all of my bills. There are people who've been less fortunate. The government has become corrupt, and I hope the American people can see it. I'm sure the hispanic communities will not like the GOP's response to immigration reform. I hope that party has finally cooked it's goose.
Yvonne, Culver City

I disagree with your op-ed in the Huffington Post on the flood of immigrant children currently occurring on our borders. This is a fake crisis that has been deliberately generated by the policy of amnesty for illegal immigrants. If this were a genuine refugee crisis these people would be in refugee camps bordering their home country, but no, they make the arduous and dangerous journey through a large and wealthy country to the US. The existing citizenry of the United States are suffering greatly due to massively excessive numbers of people immigrating to the US both legally and illegally. This influx of foreigners has directly resulted in large scale US citizen unemployment and income suppression with all the adverse effects that generates.
Michael, Antioch

Oh I am crying, Thanks for sending this view of what's going on. I hear it from Elizabeth Warren but now I can see it is the feeling of more officials there. It is as I thought, sadly. So glad I took the time out of my busy 3 jobs as an autism teacher as my husband (a Dartmouth grad) & I struggle to maintain our ever falling middle class status and my quest online working toward financing my son going to UCSB next year transfering in at Jr status. Sweating it to have enough to buy groceries each week while people filibuster their worktime away. So sad the pres gets such a beating. I've been around since Eisenhower, and my mother and I agree it is a new horrible way going on there in DC. Thanks for your work.
Jody, Venice

Do you leave the doors to your home unlocked so who ever wants to come in and partake of the things you worked for are welcome to do so? A rhetorical question of course. However that is the exact kind of thinking you are suggesting we all adopt concerning illegal entry to this country. The only difference is you wont bare the economic burden the American tax payer will. Its easy to be generous with someone else es money did you ever think about that. As a liberal politician who never really has to be concerned with the economics of their policies I'm sure you don't or wont understand my thinking, but maybe for a change you will give this reply some thought from another point of view.
Ron, La Verne

Thank you for forwarding your eloquent and accurate comments to me. I know you are ready and able to govern on my behalf. I truly appreciate the battles you fight for fairness and the reason. It is lunacy that even basic maintenance of infrastructure is a battleground now. Thank you so much for fighting the good fight.
Donna, San Diego

Well said. I just wish it could be heard by the folks who really need to hear it and be acted upon. What most Republican members of Congress are saying about undocumented immigrants in this country is outrageous and flies in the face of all I was raised to believe that were our values. It makes me sad and discouraged because I don't see it any time soon. But thanks for speaking out. Everyone has to keep trying.
Carolyn, Sacramento

Agree with everything in your newsletter, especially about the immigrant children. It is shameful how some want to treat them. Aside from this though, I just want to add one small comment. As an American who frequently lives abroad, it is utterly CRINGEWORTHY when American politicians say things like "We live in the most advanced democracy in the world", as you stated in your newsletter. It is one thing to have pride in your country, but these sort of comments are ridiculous, and a slap in the face to the rest of the world. America is in fact ONE of the most advanced democracies in the world, but there are many other advanced democratic countries as well. Why on earth, do some Americans feel the need to see themselves as better than everyone else? It is immature and inaccurate. As well as being an 'advanced' democracy though, I think there is also a lot that is broken in American politics (as well as in many other advanced democracies). Sorry, but had to rant a bit. "We live in the most advanced democracy in the world" just strikes a nerve!
Odessa, West Hollywood

Thank you for sending me a copy of your op-ed in Huffington. Your piece blew away all the bluster of the GOP as just that, bluster, and heartless bluster, at that. Excellent.
Helen, Oceanside

I have no hopes of you ever reading this, but I will try anyway; I have no problem with the people that have come here legally, have worked hard, paid their taxes, respected our Military, and speak English, and are not on Welfare for eternity. HOWEVER: The illegals coming in who are carrying deadly diseases, and we are expected to house, care, and feed them on the taxpayers dime, send them BACK NOW!!!  In other words: Let's take care of our own Americans First and foremost!!!!
Kathy, Sonora

Thank you for sharing you op-ed in the Huffington Post. You spoke very eloquently and I agree with your statements. Thanks for trying to make a difference. I support you.
Tracy, Keene

I am in complete agreement with your description of the do-nothing GOP led House. It has become exasperating to witness this Congress' failure to address what are the real issues we as a country should be tackling. Thank you for representing those of us who only want the best for the country and would like to see partisanship out of the debates.
Leticia, Playa Vista

You are absolutely right. I'm a middle of road Republican and like many of us voted for Obama in 2002 (could not vote for Palin) and Romney in 2012. Clearly the Republicans have made some very bad moves over the past years but at the same time if Obama had put his mind and heart into being the President of all Americans rather than the Democratic party bulldog we would all be better off. Clearly the times for being partisan are over. Democrats and Republicans should understand that they are elected to manage a country not play political games. Again Republicans have shown a great lack of leadership but then that is one more thing they share with the Obama administration. Sometimes I wonder whether history will be kinder to Bush than to Obama... our grandchildren will find out!
Linos, Santa Barbara

I recently received an email from my representative Paul Cook. His message was about how he was able to vote for a bill that will send these children swiftly back home to their families. It is hard to understand how his perspective could be so twisted. Even without knowing the children myself, it is obvious so many kids do not have families or homes to return to. Representative Cook's language seems designed to misrepresent the truth. I do not usually write letters to congressmen, but your letter is inspiring me to finally send a message to Rep. Cook.
Mary, Redlands

Thank you for your recent correspondence. As you point out, many of us don't agree when it comes to politics, and I find your views progressively further from mine. Our current President has failed, not succeed as you claim. My taxes pay for YOU to solve our problems, not the president's executive powers to get things done. Your claim in taking the office was you can, do and have worked together to solve challenges with the other party, so take the blame…. The GOP has continued to work with your party, but you fail to work things out as you professed in your election efforts.
Chris, Newport Beach

Amen! to your OpEd! The GOP is really so out of touch with the real world due to their racism and hatred of our president. Keep on fighting and I continue to support and vote for you! Thank you for doing a great job!
Dennis, San Jose

Thank you for your comment letter, Senator Boxer about the GOP's actions in this century.
I just wanted someone to note that if they continue what they have been doing then they might find that they totally lose their status as a major political party in the very near future. The internet is here and it is (thankfully, due to our collective, vigilant efforts) transparent and free for the most part. This free internet will eventually destroy them if they do not adapt and support sustainabiliy in government. That is my hope anyway.
Francis, Arcata

Thank you for telling the truth about the apathy demonstrated by so many in Congress. It's embarrassing to witness. It's no wonder so many are becoming disillusioned with our political system. Thank you for remaining strong and consistent in your support of all Americans (and those trying to become contributing citizens). We support your efforts to educate and persuade action in order to improve our communities.
Connie, Petaluma

We voted for you. We voted for President Obama. BUT, PLEASE HEAR OUR VOICES!! we STRONGLY DISAGREE with you on the issue of those in the U.S. illegally. California and other states CANNOT support the tens of thousands of people who chose to come here without going through the normal immigration application process! This is NOT about children with Teddy bears! Our infrastructure, education system, and health care system (Medical, Medicare, and Medicaid) are already hugely overburdened by the residents we already have. Our public school teachers try as hard as they can, but the flood of thousands of children who enter public school not knowing ANY English is overwhelming their ability to teach necessary subjects to those children here legally. This HAS TO END. What President Obama is proposing to do to override Congress is horrible for us middle class taxpayers!
Eric, Vacaville

Super editorial, Senator Boxer. Obama's achievements, despite obstruction from a brainless majority in Congress, need to be broadcast loud and clear. Keep up the efforts to bring America to the compassionate and truly egalitarian society it is meant to be.
Stan, Northridge

Great post...if only Obama could raise his voice a bit...and come out strongly for issues Progressives care about: Net Neutrality (he did appoint a Mr. Wheeler didn't he?) No Keystone pipeline over our most important aquifer, .and for duplicity in the USDA and FDA regulations, Monsanto et al given basic support despite nationwide opposition to GMOs. In short, I find enormous fault in what he's advocated behind the scene.
Theodora, Berkeley

Please inform Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid that moving legislation is a two-way street. You, Senator Boxer, complain about House Republicans not moving legislation important to Senate Democrats. But, you have no problem to stopping the Senate from considering legislation that has passed the House and is important to the party in control there. Majority Leader Reid will not allow consideration of these bills. Not to mention that he will not allow Senate Republicans the opportunity to amend Senate bills and have an up/down vote. Please be consistent with your outrage. If you are mad at House Republicans for not considering your bills, then Senate Democrats should bring up the House legislation to have an up/down vote.
Greg, North Hollywood

You are so right, the House Republicans are not governing but they are simply working against anything President Obama tries to move us forward. I hope the Republicans don't take the Senate! Keep working for us Senator Boxer, we really appreciate all that you do!
James, Sacramento

To me immigration reform is sealing the borders first then think of what to do about all the people that are her illegally.... And compromising means both sides giving a little not just doing it your way. I think that bot sides of the isle are at fault and all of you should be voted out and all new people voted in in both parties. Thank for listening
John, Santa Barbara

Thank you so much for this brilliant summation of the GOP's scandalous inaction in governing - for not doing their job for which they were elected, and for which the American people paid their salaries, and benefits. I have forwarded your letter to many friends. And I hope Pres. Obama will act like Pres Truman on the campaign trail by lambasting this "do-nothing" Party.
Sister Patricia, Los Angeles

I am so angry at both major political parties. I had been a lifelong Dem but have watched while they continued to erode everything good about this country after I thought the Repubs had allowed the banks and big business break our economy. There has been no staesmanship in our government for many years. We need some political parties we can believe are serving the citizens, not themselves… Stop complaining about the GOP and get down to work. The same message is for the GOP also.
Janet, Thousand Oaks

Unfortunately the constitutes of some of those apathetic Senators, it seems to me, do not correspond with their elected officials and just let "their" representatives go their merry way.
Unfortunately our Country is suffering because of this. It is sickening. There are so many issues that could have been addressed and perhaps resolved this year and it sad it has been an unproductive time. Too bad Senators are not unpaid volunteers or paid by legislation addressed.
Pat, Mountain View

I don't blame individual political parties when I find fault with the government. I view the government as a team. Successes and failures are attributed to the team as a *whole*.
You are part of this team. This team is supposed to work together for the good of America, regardless of party affiliation, in spite of difficulty. Each member worked hard to obtain their position within the team, knowing full well that leadership is rarely easy. It is the responsibility of each and every team member individually to do their part in helping the team accomplish its goals and fulfill its duties. I expect team work.
Christopher, San Diego

As a legal former refugee, I totally disagree with the senator Barbara Boxer. Everyone who has come illegally must go back and use the legal channels to enter the USA. Otherwise we will have a influx of the whole world here. In the state of California we have thousands of children go hungry and with no help how can we spend our money and energy for illegals who enter this country a cross the border every day. It is not going to stop unless we have a firm stand. I think republicans are wright about this issue and I we support their actions. Let save America first then others! Thank you.
Naseh, Encino

God Bless You, Barbara Boxer! But what are the People willing to do about it? Nothing but gripe & complain & worry. This is what happens to a country that forgets it's roots and takes GOD out of the country, out of the schools, out of the courts, etc. I am saddened, yet glad that I don't have children that will never know how great this country used to be and how far it has fallen. As a senior, I am ashamed of our lack of governing FOR THE PEOPLE and instead governing for self interest. You are one of the few exceptions.
Gail, Chula Vista

I loved your, 'Try governing for a change.' I am feeling that we need a united expansion, not a closed door "My way or the highway" policy. Pitting one against the other doesn't work. We should be one family. Our Congress needs to be united into one family and to finally represent a larger family, THE PEOPLE. But this just isn't happening and being just one of the people I am frustrated. You are making the difference. You represent hope. You are a person I trust. Thank you so much.
Leonard, Culver City

I heartedly thank you for your stand on the current dilemma re immigration, but also for your saying it like it is re government and governing and Obama. I am just so sad at all this non-thinking and blaming going on, in both Senate and House, just can't believe this is the USA anymore. And I wasn't even born in this country. Thanks for your speaking out.
Bettina, Santa Barbara

I could not agree with you more about the way that the House Republicans act. I am a conservative and not a member of the G.O.P. I quit the party when President Bush left the White House. I was outraged then as I am now about the fact that the republicans refused then as they have now to fix the immigration problems that this country faces. I did admire President Bush courage in try to get the republican controlled senate and house to pass immigration reform. He tried for the eight years while in the White House. Six of those years his own party ignored his pleas to fix the broken immigration system. Now here we are as a country facing the same problems which are worse fourteen years later and the same people as before won't act now as back then… I just wish that the people of this country would stand up and vote for people who want the best for this country and not politicians that put themselves first instead of this country.
Ethan, Bakersfield

The GOP should not govern. They have tried it before and really messed up this country. They should just dissolve.
Robert, Salinas

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Offshore Oil Drilling

Californians respond to my message on Protecting California's Coastline:

I love the California coast and want to continue to experience its glorious beauty. It is foolish to even consider any drilling for oil as there are never fail-safe options for drilling. This is our ocean, our Pacific. No more BP spills or the fouling of Alaskan waters here or anywhere. Put our resources – taxpayers’ money - into environmentally safe and sustainable energy. Let's do it now!
Joan, San Francisco

Thank you for sending the letter to the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) you co-signed with California congressional members to protect the California coast from more offshore oil and gas lease sales from 2017-2022. The California temperate marine ecosystem is unique in the world due to its year-round productivity largely attributable to the magnificent kelp forest ecosystem. The ability of this ecosystem to fix the sun's energy and transform it into abundant and diverse marine life is unmatched on Earth and must be cherished and protected from any unintended consequences of short term industrial development. Your leadership has been key in protecting this resource of planetary significance, and I am grateful for your and all the lawmakers' recognition of this precious resource that is a linchpin of our State's ecology and economy.
Steven M. Moore, P.E., Board Member
California Water Resources Control Board, Sausalito

Thank you for your letter to Interior Secretary Sally Jewel urging her to prohibit any new offshore oil and gas drilling leases along the California coast. On the North Coast, we recently celebrated the designation of the Point Arena-Stornetta California Coastal National Monument. In our small coastal communities, we work hard to preserve and enhance the pristine beauty, and the ecological and economic viability, of our onshore and offshore lands. Your active participation and support is an essential factor in our success.
Marilyn, Elk

I just heard that Norways economy is veery good. Why, because of offshore drilling. We MUST not depend on the Middle East for our survival. Our economy would be much better off with using our own resourses. There was a documentary of Norway, their country is beautiful.
Our shoreline wii remain beautiful with offshore drilling!!!! Please reconsider
Pat, San Francisco

Thank you for urging Secretary Sally Jewell to prohibit any new oil and gas leases along our California coast. This is so important for the future of our coast, and all the sea life we have there. We support you 100%, and thank you again for standing up, and fighting for our great State.
Dolores & Ira, Cotati

Thank you so much for fighting for our California Coastline! God Bless You! We appreciate what you are doing! Let's hope that we as a nation can move off of oil and onto free solar power as soon as possible! Instead of Congress voting to fund more wars in the middle east, how about we take that money and give everyone in america solar panels on their roof and a big tax break for buying an electric car? This would put electricians/contractors to work! Wouldn't that be great. America could be an innovator and world leader again! God Bless America!
Richard, Los Angeles

I respectfully disagree with your position on offshore drilling in the letter you recently sent to Secretary Sally Jewell. I think our country should look at every possibility to supply ourselves with American oil. As a native born Californian I think California should be part of this solution.
Judy, Penngrove

I am very glad that there is a California delegation that is also concerned with this very serious problem. I am thinking not only of the rare beauty of the California coastline, but of the dangers to the very valuable wildlife that is threatened by the pipeline. California, as well as the entire United States, has already lost so many species of wildlife recently, and I am glad to learn that people in government share my worries. Thank you so much, Senator Boxer.
Bryna, Burlingame

Dear Senator Boxer, I appreciate all you do for California. I want to reinforce your position to oppose drilling off the California coast. Never again.
Gerry, Yorba Linda

Giving permits for more offshore drilling is entirely opposite of what we should be doing,. We know better. The BP spill should have taught us something. We must stop the new permits for the East Coast or anywhere else in the world. The oceans are not renewable! Wind, solar and water power is available. Develop it before it's too late.
June, San Mateo

Thank you, thank you for your efforts toward stopping additional off-shore drilling along the California coast. As a resident of Santa Barbara, we have the "joy" of looking out daily at nine drilling platforms off of the Santa Barbara Channel. Enough!
Holiday, Santa Barbara

Thank you for your letter requesting that the California coast be spared additional oil and gas drilling. We humans must live on Earth with more wisdom and respect for its complexities. It's such a relief to know that you live this principle as an elected official--more precious because uncommon.
Elizabeth, Cambria

I do not agree with you that we should be stopping offshore oil and gas drilling. Do you realize how much you rely on oil in our daily lives. Our country doesn't need to be dependent on Mideast oil. We should be selling to other countries which might help to get rid of our deficit… More offshore oil drilling would also help for much needed jobs in California. We've let the environmentalists takeover. Not only are spending huge amounts of money on unnecessary studies, but we are causing more water problems like protecting salmon to the detriment of the farmers trying to grow crops with the drought problem.
Eileen, Santa Maria

I respectfully submit that your position against any new oil production along California's coast is completely wrong. Modern society runs on energy...all forms of energy Oil. Gas. Hydro. Nuclear. Wind. Solar. Biomass. ALL. We can and should tap into any and all forms of energy available to us. With today's technology using slant drilling, offshore oil and gas can be safely extracted from onshore wellheads that are safer, easier to construct and maintain than offshore platforms, and easier and safer to shut down and contain the results of any accidents. If this country would only flood Europe with our abundant supply of natural gas (using LNG technology), the Europeans would not be dependent upon Russian gas, and THAT would be the best "sanction" ever against Russian imperialism and militarism.
Steven, Santa Barbara

Thank you for endeavoring to keep our California Coastline free of any new oil or other drilling, fracking, etc. It does not benefit our state and does endanger us in many ways as it has over past years. We cannot relax our vigilance on this issue since there are countless repeated attempts to endanger our environment.
Emily, Santa Barbara

I live near the coast here in sunny Santa Barbara and I have no problem at all with safe off-shore drilling. We all need oil and use it daily and if there is oil off our shores, then let's get it. I find it hypocritical to use oil and gas and then to burden other part of the country (or world) with oil related issues. When I first arrived here in Santa Barbara in 1956 our beaches were filthy with natural seepage. When the oil companies were allowed to drill much of that seepage disappeared. (I have not forgotten the blow-out we had many years ago) Now there are occasional oil spots (all caused by natural seepage) and our beach are much more oil-free. I urge you to reconsider your support for off-shore drilling restrictions and instead support it and energy independence for our country. I think Europe's energy dependence on Russia should be a warning and an eye-opener for us.         
Bernd, Santa Barbara

I do not agree with a "blanket" prohibition of offshore coastal oil/gas drilling. New shallow and deep ocean drilling methodology has been proven to be entirely safe in recent years, and such drilling could be the means to alleviate our continuing poor economic condition, while also providing the USA with tremendous economic/political advantages by providing Europe with an alternative to Russian oil/gas supplies upon which those nations singularly depend.
George, Burlingame

Thank you Senator Boxer for being vigilant to protect our coasts. We are behind you.
Janet, Santa Cruz

Thank you Senator Boxer for standing up and saying NO to offshore drilling off the coast of California. This is what needs to be forever held sacred that our coasts stay pristine and protected from the drilling rigs and gas leases.
Karen, Rohnert Park

I am encouraged to see your letter to Secretary Jewell and I wanted to thank you for taking this stand. It is so important to take every step we can to increase our focus on renewable and environmentally safe energy solutions.
Kirsten, Sausalito

It is hard to believe that this issue is still alive! We have been fighting it for 50 years. The evidence is clear that it is not a good idea.
Wendy, Sebastopol

Your comments on drilling off our coast are woefully misguided. I can't remember when we had an incident off our coast and it is a very small price to pay if it helps us become energy independent.
Leslie, Corte Madera

Thanks for supporting a ban on new offshore gas/oil drilling leases on our coast. I hope you'll also stand up against fracking in California. We don't need polluted air/water/increased earthquakes and oil spills!
Lynne, San Francisco

This country needs to get away from foreign oil dependence ASAP. A major war is building in the mid east. It would be wise and prudent to permit exploration of new sources of oil along the CA coast. There are sufficient regulations and technology in place to minimize the risk.Wells have been operating along the southern CA coast line for many years with out an incident . Furthermore, we need the good paying jobs that come with the oil business.
Jim, Scotts Valley

Thank you Senator Boxer, for your continued support of saving our precious coastline from oil drilling. I appreciate your long-term thinking in this matter.
Vicki, San Luis Obispo

Thank you for signing the letter to prohibit offshore oil and gas drilling along our California coastline. It is crucial that we protect our coastline and I appreciate your concern.
Carol, San Francisco

I am one of the US California citizens that do not want oil Rigs off of California. We have had enough problems with ships losing their oil and killing our sea life and fowl. My sister is one that helped clean up each time this happened. If there are oil rigs of shores there will be a very big problem with this oil on are shores. NO OIL RIG OFF California SHORES.
Janice, San Francisco

My family relocated to Santa Maria in 2013 after a few years in Portland, Oregon. We missed the sunshine and California weather too much. I hadn't realized that big oil now has such a destructive hold on the central coast and central valley. Big oils plans for expansion in these areas are frightening. The water resources we have need to go to agriculture. Oil companies have poisoned and used billions of gallons of precious water in Tulare County. People are being sickened from the drinking water available to them. Is this the same water that is used in watering our farmlands? How can these oil companies get away with no regulations, no responsibility to clean up what they destroy. How can we allow them to take our water and poison it? How can we stop them? Why are there no bills being passed to protect the residents of California? It is unconscionable that we have allowed oil companies this much power. This letter is a good start, but it has gone too far already. What else can be done to take back our protections? Please help me to understand.
Donna, Santa Maria

Thank you and Senator Feinstein for your No on New Offshore Oil and Gas Drilling Leases letter. Your views are thoughtful and logical and represent virtually everyone I've heard discuss the issue from the Monterey Bay to Crescent City.
Karen, Arcata

Your action to protect our coastline is not going unnoticed, at least not by myself, and I appreciate that you stand up for the environment!
Shiona, Goleta

Please redouble your efforts to protect the coastline of our state from offshore drilling. The proposal of off shore drilling for short term profits leaves every resident of California paying the long-term consequences of polluted beaches, reduced fishing and compromised marine wildlife habitat. I suggest visiting Santa Barbara and sit on the beach and experience the unmistakable stench of oil from the drilling platforms that are several miles from shore. Just imagine what our beautiful coast would smell like from dozens and dozens more of these things. I support your efforts and I particularly support more development of renewable energy sources.
Linda, Los Gatos

Thank you for your efforts to protect our beautiful coastline here in California. I've lived near the coast for most of my 75 years in Southern and Northern California and value it and pray we do not have any more off-shore drilling. It scares me completely when I think of what could happen to our sea life, to livelihoods that depend on a healthy and beautiful coast, and our personal enjoyment.
Kathleen, Boulder Creek

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Hobby Lobby Decision

Californians respond to my message on Why Are We Still Fighting Over Birth Control in the 21st Century?:

Thank you so much Senator Boxer for continuing to champion a woman's voice and a woman's health care needs in Washington. As a 57 year old wife, mother, and elementary school teacher I was appalled by the Supreme Court Decision. That disturbing decision made it clear that a woman's right to seek best health practices for her body still remains a decision for a man to oversee. Outrageous. I plan on doing whatever I can to support the Not My Boss's Business Act. Thank you again for your tireless actions.
Ruth, Martinez

I support the new bill and hope we are successful. The Supreme Court’s decision is a slippery slope. As a medical professional, I can foresee many other negative consequences.
Judith, San Jose

The decision of the court is a major setback for the country. We are faced with population expansion without the resources to support any more people. People have to realize birth control is for humanity not religion.
Matteo, Valley Village

Thank you. This has been such a hard couple of weeks, watching the court abandon any premise of fairness and balance on this issue. As a woman, a mother of daughters, I am discouraged beyond words. But it's no time to retreat, we must use our outrage to make change. Thank you for finding a way forward.
Margaret, San Jose

Though I am always reluctant to give politicians credit, I am forced to thank you for your swift action on the Hobby Lobby decision. I want to point out that as a woman of color, I recognize this has special impact on our communities. Women of color face unique issues when it comes to birth control, this decision would only make these worse. First, women of color already have issues of access (because of language or cultural boundaries) when it comes to birth contol; a situation which would be worse if they had no health insurance coverage for these services (because you could not go to your regular provider where you feel comfortable). In addition to this, women of color tend to be of lower socioeconomic status, and tend to hold jobs that are not as well paid as their counterparts; they are disproportionately affected by this decision. The cost of birth control is a DEFINITE barrier for these women. Given the choice of birth control or money for basic expenses, one can understand why women of color often forgo it. For me, the Hobby Lobby decision has a troubling undertone: it says that only those who can afford it are truly entitled to birth control. And that group looks increasingly different from me.
Maritza, Los Angeles

Being raised Catholic I understand the difficulty of Religious controversy. The US has separation of state and religion. I believe that government decisions should NOT be held accountable to any religious bias. A person should be free to make their own medical decisions without the restrictions of corporate interference. Medical availability should not be subject to BUSINESS or Corporate regulation. Employees are just that... Employees not religious followers.
Susan, Danville

Thank you, Senator Boxer, for your continued Progressive efforts, especially on behalf of women. That conservatives still believe that they are entitled to use women's bodies as political fodder to distract and redirect away from meaningful, egalitarian debate, is an obscenity in and of itself.
Lorraine, Encino

You seem furious over this decision because you feel that women are being denied something that men get. I am an MD. I don't know of a single insurance that covers male contraception. I believe that contraception should be legal and accessible. That being said, people can choose not to work for Hobby Lobby and people can choose not to shop there. I think your proposal is a terrible overreach of government. How can you force a private citizen to pay for something they morally oppose outside of a government program? I thought this country was great because of our freedoms. Can you please work on the big problems in government?
Arnold, La Jolla

I am a 70 yr old widow, and a Christian, who stands STRONGLY in favor of your Not My Bosses' Business Bill to counteract the disastrous Hobby Lobby decision by the Supreme Court - I actually think someone needs to sue THEM for failing to uphold the Constitution re: the separation of Church and State, not to mention the failure to provide private citizens Equal Justice Under the Law - this actually goes to both the Hobby Lobby ruling and the "Citizens United" ruling - how absurd and backward, if not downright illegal, these rulings are!
Diane, Simi Valley

You are so right. I don't understand Republicans very much...but...what is up with the Supreme Court? I like the Supremes with Diana Ross more than those black robed charlatans, the Supremes in the Court. They are intent on sending the US back to the freedoms of the 50s. It is like the upsetting of my whole life. Keep up the good fight.
David, Novato

I'd like to change just one word of your last sentence - instead of "important" health decisions, it should be "all" health care decisions. Our representatives in various governmental agencies weren't elected on the basis of their medical knowledge, even though some seem to think they have some of that. It's time for them to grow up and stop "playing doctor." Get to the work of keeping this country going, not stopping progress by nonsense such as the issue of contraception, or just basically trying to make the President look bad by not allowing anything he approves of to be accomplished. Don't those Republicans see themselves as others do - an embarrassment to the country?
Milford, El Cerrito

No matter what ANY Doctor prescribed medication a woman agrees with HER Doctor she should take for HER medical condition, it is not the business of her employer. There are doctor - patient confidentiality lines that no employer should be allowed to cross. Equal and a living wage is what employers should concern themselves with not controlling whether I am using a Doctor approved medication.
Vanessa, Inglewood

We desperately need this legislation. Not just for birth control but other challenges as well. What I can't figure out is why they would want a say in an employees private health concerns. It does not make any sense.
Laura, Bakersfield

As a Health Professional I strongly support your stand on Woman's health. As a Community Nurse for many years I have seen the impact on women who are not given equal standing in our society, the burden of unwanted children, unsupporting men and lack of income that affect their lives. Why should they not be independent decision makers? Why are they considered second class citizens by having men make their personal decisions as well as the Supreme Court? This is 2014 not 1700. They need to have time to strengthen future generations and give their children a chance to be strong and significant society members.
Nancy, Garberville

Wow, I find it hard to believe that in the year 2014 women are still fighting to be able to afford birth control! After reading your speech I am hopeful that more people get the message. If men got pregnant, there wouldn't be a debate over affordable birth control. If men got pregnant the world would be very different.
Gail, Novato

Senator Boxer, I am begging you and all of the U.S. Congress( especially the women) to call out the hypocrisy of all those who wish to determine what women's healthcare should or should not be and who should make those decisions. #1. It must be strongly emphasized, that some medications instruct women not get pregnant while taking the medication that may be a life saver for that woman. #2. Has Hobby Lobby stipulated that they are opposed to vasectomies for men who do not wish to be fathers? #3. What does Hobby Lobby think about men who sell their sperm for money and demand that the recipient sign a contract that relieves him, the sperm donor of all parental responsibilities. #4. If Hobby Lobby and all companies that share the same philosophy are so against the medications and devices that may be essential to the health of women, why are they not "storming the gates" of the manufacturers of the products that they find so "unholy"? Oh, I forgot, you can't say anything against the "Free Market". WHAT HYPOCRICY!
Elvira, Norwalk

Your comments made me angry. Five Republican men ruled against women to be treated equally by corporations? Really. Could you be any less leader like? Those men are supreme court justices. The highest law of the land. Law, rules we all live by. Not ALL corporations fell under the ruling either. We must create corporations so we are not held personally liable for our actions by the way. All men are to created equal. Should say fairly since we are are not equal, but how does that mean our employer should pay for birth control? My husband had a vasectomy so I don't need birth control. (He paid for that procedure back in the day when personal responsibility was the norm). Now the government tells insurance how to run their business--what to cover. When is the government going to start mandating me, a private citizen, what to buy, what to eat, what to do? Probably soon. My grandchildren are going to live a very different life than I have been privileged to in this country.
Donna, Carpinteria

Sounds like selective health coverages on the thoughts, whims, or religious believes of another. It is truly no ones business but mine. You have my total support.
Linda, Scotts Valley

Thank you so much for introducing the "Not My Boss' Business Act" and for your op-ed in the Huffington Post! When you juxtapose the Supreme Court's Hobby Lobby decision against putting a man on the moon over 40 years ago, it makes you wonder about the mentality of the human species (or, more appropriately, the male GOP's of the human species).
Christine, Palo Alto

It is disappointing: Hobby Lobby, a stupid decision that should have gotten an all-encompassing answer, not one restricted to "war on women". It is also a war on families, our children's future and our country's well-being. 1. It is a direct attack on the American family's right to decide how many children and when. The average American 2-children families will become 4-children families (average oscillating between 4 and 6) -an added weight on the American family, on the local infrastructure, finally, on society itself; 2. It divides America further: Catholic, Jewish, Protestant, Islamic, Buddhist, atheist companies, etc., one for each religious group? How else would any of us "fit in" the working environment? 3. Our nation is secular, thus, the SCOTUS has no ruling assignation with respect to application of religious preferences in public life, including commercial ventures legally licensed to work. Adding oil to the fire: the SCOTUS ruled that companies were persons. This only goes as far as the legal person, not comparable to a human being: Companies do not think, they do not eat, drink or cry, they do not drive, swim or swallow or love. The SCOTUS ruling, to give them the right to religion is absurd in the sense that companies don't believe in God.
Veronique, Kensington

THANK YOU for co sponsoring the Not My Bosses Right Bill to undo the Supreme Courts stupid decision. What is the matter with those people? By the way, I am a (Progressive) Catholic and the issue of contraception for Catholic women has been decided decades ago and not by the Church. Hopefully, the reality of life is actually being considered by Pope Francis and I am hopeful.
Jane, Santa Barbara

Where is the equal justice if people are forced to go against their religious beliefs? Do you really want the government to dictate what we can and cannot do? Think about it!
Anita, Los Angeles

I recently received your email regarding legislation to reverse the Hobby Lobby decision. While I believe that the proposed legislation infringes on the religions rights of individuals and oppose it, that is not what concerns me. In reading your email and the accompanying op-ed, I was alarmed by your demonization of all who held different views than yourself. Furthermore, I am troubled that you misconstrued the issue so severely. Both sides of this argument have legitimate points. Instead of offering your own however, you chose to use a scare tactic and broadly claim that this decision allows CEO's to dictate the health care of their employees. By doing this, you polarize the country and hinder read debate. While I disagree with your position on this issue, I respect your beliefs. I wish you would do the same.
Samuel, Walnut Creek

Thank you for your spirited response to the outrage of five Supreme Court justices imposing their personal religious beliefs on to the entire United States, via their decision on both the Hobby Lobby issue and on Wheaton College's desire to be freed of the smallest of requests. It is egregiously absurd for Wheaton College to argue that signing a release form may encourage 'women toward abortion and contraceptives that are abortion-causing' (paraphrase, not a quote).
Your action, and the actions of Supreme Court justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Sonia Sotomayor as they have written passionate and deeply reasoned dissents to these decisions, give hope that intelligence and the American drive toward individual freedom of choice will in the end prevail over narrow bigotry.
Mary, Calistoga, CA

Thank you for your rational approach to this issue. I sent the following letter to the president of Hobby Lobby:
David Green
Hobby Lobby Corporation
7707 SW 44th Street
Oklahoma City, OK 73179
Dear Mr. Green:
I am the mother of a highly successful teenager who is the salutatorian of her high school class, earning a 4.4 GPA. In fall, she will be attending Berkeley to study biology and women's studies. She is well loved and cared for. She was wanted long before she was born, which shows in her self-concept and self-confidence.
On the other hand, my mother did not have access to birth control in the late 1950s and early 1960s. As a result, between 1957 when I was born and 1961 when my sister was born, my mother lost three children who were born alive, but prematurely. These terrible events left both of my parents depressed and often unable to take care of their four living children because they were overwhelmed by life.
I find it interesting that a billionaire with all the resources that he could ever use could make a decision not to support the women who work for him by helping them take care of their health in a way that my mother could not. While I believe in your family's right to make decisions for yourselves, I do not believe you have the right to prevent your employees from protecting themselves from pregnancy and all the responsibilities that come with being a mother. You do not have the right to make these women and their children live in poverty or near poverty.
I am a scrapbooker and cardmaker who also loves painting, decorating, and flower arranging. However, I will never shop at your stores again. I am appalled by your hubris, flying in the face of our revered Constitution and Bill of Rights, which clearly require a separation of church and state. Your religious beliefs should not dictate laws that affect women across America. The fact that you own a corporation that pays women for their hard work does not give you the right to prevent those women from obtaining birth control. You actually have a responsibility to take care of the women who work for you, but you are neglecting this responsibility and behaving like a tyrant. Shame on you.
Carol, Valley Center

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Californians respond to my message on Responding to the Hobby Lobby Decision (07/10/2014):

Please add my name to your list of supporters of what you are trying to do.
Jerry, Mountain View

THANK YOU for co sponsoring the bill that will fix this unfair ruling by the conservative MEN on the Supreme Court. I am person who could not take regular birth control and the only recourse for me was an IUD. If I worked at Hobby Lobby, that would be one of the things they would not allow my health care to cover. To me this is wrong. THANK YOU for speaking out once again on behalf of the women of our nation and CA.
Diane, Oceanside

I applaud your action to legislate around the confounding Hobby Lobby decision. A corporation can now have religious beliefs and they can override the religious beliefs of their employees? Unbelievable! What would those 5 catholic male justices say to a Muslim corporation wanting their employees to adhere to sharia law? I guess as long as it discriminates against women they would be OK with it. Whatever happened to separation of church and state?
Eli, Foster City

I am a woman past child-bearing years and a practicing attorney. I am appalled at the Supreme Court's decision on this. I am with you all the way, an employee, to get a job, should not have to give up her constitutionally protected rights at the door! Why should Hobby Lobby decide when I should have children (which would be anytime because I can't get contraceptive coverage through my health plan through Hobby Lobby). Really? Will Hobby Lobby be supporting these many children who were not planned in the first place? Please fight for this for all American women! I know you will. Thank you!
Claudia, Mission Viejo

It's because of decisions like this made by Republicans is why in my "older" years i have become a Democrat...The Republican party has consistently shown it does NOT care for woman thanks for caring about us.
Janice, Santa Clarita

This issue is not as straightforward as many portray it to be. Hobby Lobby is covering many methods of birth control, so it is inaccurate to assert that they are "not covering birth control".
While many disagree with their interpretation of when life begins, including me, they should not be forced to do something that directly violates their religious beliefs. I would be more troubled if their stance was not so consistent with how they run their business -- they are closed on Sundays, have always paid a fair wage (even in hard times), are family-friendly, and do not force their beliefs on others. If we can have legislation allowing businesses to be "people" with the right to donate unlimited amounts to political campaigns, we can certainly accept the REAL people who are running their business consistent with their faith.
Heiden, Palo Alto

I just want to thank you, Senator Murray, and Senator Udall for introducing the NMBB Act! Our Supreme Court used to be a reasonable and well considered court; now it has become a partisan joke, except these recent decisions are anything but amusing. I am somewhat doubtful that the bill will go anywhere, given the influence of Republicans, but I absolutely support it, and you. Thank you for all you do for the families of California and the rest of the country.
Elizabeth, Klamath River

We (my immediate and extended family and me) are not in support of your position on this issue. We concur with the Supreme Court's decision to allow religious freedom to prevail. Please do not make a political issue out of what is a constitutional right.
Cindy, San Jose

Thank you so much for trying to turn this decision around. I was so upset by it, what will be next. It seems like this is an open door to allowing employers total control over all our medical needs, and that is totally unacceptable.  Not everyone has the ability to quit and find another job. Outrageous decision - thank you again.
Lyn, Menlo Park

If I read your email correctly, you make it sound like there are no contraceptive allowances in the Hobby Lobby decision. But there are 16 different birth control methods that are ok in the Hobby Lobby decision. Pills, Diaphragms, IUD's, Posts and other methods are included in the Hobby Lobby list contraceptives that they will allow, with a lot of them not even costing what the co pay is. You appear to have not read the bill, but are taking the opportunity to do a mass email that espouses you particular political leaning.
Dan, San Jose

Thank you for standing up against the bizarre Supreme Court decision supporting Hobby Lobby.
I believe that these so called 'religious' arguments are discrimination undercover. Today it is women having the right to decide their own healthcare, but it would never be something that affects rich white men, for example disallowing the use of Viagra on religious grounds. This Supreme Court decision would be the thin edge of the wedge to allow any corporation the right to discriminate based on the opinions of a minority, and confirms in the minds of everyday Americans, that the Supreme Court is bought and paid for the the ultra right wing. A 'religious' argument can be an extremely vague thing. A company decides that it does not want to employ a particular race? What if a health insurance company decided that a particular treatment was too expensive? All could be 'religious if given the right spin. I applaud your efforts to stand up and represent us in the face of this cynical and corrupt Supreme Court.
Lisa, Redondo Beach

Thank you so much for doing everything you can to correct this "legal" ruling. The next thing is no blood transfusions because my religion doesn't believe in them or no organ transplants or no whatever. My health decisions should be between my doctor and myself. They are none of my employers business. If you don't believe in birth control don't use it but keep your religious beliefs and restrictions out of my life.
Kathleen, Tustin

Thank you for introducing a bill to correct this outrageous situation. The Supreme Court ruling was an offense to women and to the separation of church and state. Health care decisions should be made by a woman and her doctor, not by her employer. Corporations are NOT people and cannot have a religion nor should the religious beliefs of an owner be forced on his/her workers. Thank you again for fighting this injustice.
Margaret, Woodland Hills

Nice to know that some senators are not living in the Middle Ages!
Deena, Albany

I want to express my gratitude for introducing the Not My Boss’s Business Act. Like many other women and men, I am disgusted by the Supreme Court's Hobby Lobby decision, but I am thrilled to see members of Congress working to restore the rights of citizens taken away by the decision.
I truly appreciate your continued efforts as a champion of women's healthcare and basic human rights.
Trinity, Pasadena

Thank you for sending me information about the bill you are working on to address the Hobby Lobby decision. This decision was so wrong on so many levels. It needs to be rectified--an soon!
I also want you to support a bill that requires the Supreme Court to adhere to a code of ethics. My understanding is that right now the Supreme Court justices are allowed to follow their own ethical proclivities. But several of the current Justices have abused their position, in my opinion, by attending conservative meetings, etc. But there is nothing anyone can do about it. They are not held accountable for their actions.
Jan, La Quinta

Thank goodness for elected officials like you, Barbara Boxer. This was an outrageous decision! I am relieved to know that we are actively opposing this heavy handed Republicanism.
Phyllis, El Monte

Thank you for sharing with me the introduced legislation regarding women's rights to counteract the SCOTUS decision re Hobby Lobby. I believe that no employer, or religious organization for that matter, has the right to determine that they are exempt from a law. In this case, it is blantant sexism but I agree with Justice Ginsburg that it opens the door to a minefield. What will be challenged next? I hope that this legislation will be passed soon though I fear it will have trouble in the House of Representatives. Those who are crowing that that have inflicted damage to the ACA should keep in mind that 2014 is an election year.  I would not care to defend this decision to voters.
Marvin, Santa Ana

Your are wrong on this one. Freedom of choice should belong to the belief of the religion not mandated by the @#% Government. During our life time all the means for birth control were up to the individuals and compensation for the means chosen were exactly zero. Why now does birth control have to be paid for by anyone other that those implementing it, especially if ones religion forbids birth control of any type other than abstaining. Stay out of this the courts have rules leave it alone.
John, Anaheim

I appreciate your quick, intelligent and legislative response to the Hobby Lobby decision. These type of restrictions on, and judgements of, women's reproductive choices can't be tolerated - and especially not from a male-centric court. I urge you to make this a very public fight - and a loud one - to ensure that women's reproductive choices aren't set back to the 1960s. Thank you kindly,
Moira, Berkeley

I totally agree with what Senator Boxers is proposing. Everyone should have human rights and religious rights. This takes women’s rights away and sets a dangerous precedence for the future of peoples personal health care.
Linda, Santa Margarita

I think it’s about time to introduce legislation removing the tax-free status of ALL religious organizations. If they want to meddle in politics and gain control of the Congress and Supreme Court, then there is no longer a separation of Church and State and they should contribute to the welfare of the country just like the corporations that are funneling money into Congress for special treatment. Fair is fair.
Rick, San Francisco

Regarding to the action you are attempting to take regaring the Sup.Court decission on Hobby Lobby. This is all well and good but getting a bill passed is not very likely. This kind of treatment of employees is terrible and should not have ever had to be ruled on my the Sup.Court. Under the new health care law I didn't think that employers were going to be allowed these kinds of action.
Pat, Modesto

One of the central concepts of our Constitution is freedom of religion. I am pro-choice, a feminist, and a lawyer -- and I'm not Christian. But although I support maintaining the legality of all types of birth control, Hobby Lobby was correctly decided. I find it deeply disturbing that you and other members of Congress would recast this First Amendment decision in an effort to pander to what you think my views are for political gain. I would be far more impressed if you said you disagreed with Hobby Lobby's view, but supported their Constitutional rights. Too bad it won't happen....
Jill, Moraga

It seems to me that lost in all the emphasis on the contraceptive/abortion question the majority
court members have missed that the real issue is health care. Women need these options available for reasons of physical and emotional health. Some women need these options because a pregnancy is not a physically good or even viable option. No one should intervene between a physician and patient. It’s as simple as that. The person most needing the option quite likely also may be someone who cannot afford to pay separately from their insurance. Finally, when did a corporation of any sort become a person?? Please make every effort to overturn this decision.
Eva, Carmichael

I do not believe Hobby Lobby's position is outrageous. They are not denying contraception; they are merely exercising their right not to contribute to the destruction of a fetus. If we ARE truly independent women who have control of our own lives, then we can pay for our own abortions.
Destroying a life should not be an employer's responsibility.
Celeste, Canoga Park

Thank you so much for moving forward on this issue. Not that I wouldn't have expected it of you, but we do rely on your good judgement in these matters. We are so grateful to have a Senator fighting for us every day,
Carol, San Leandro

Senators Murray, Udall and you have my complete support for this bill, and I will forward your email to my friends and colleagues whom I know will agree with you. Thank you for standing up to those who would like to roll back the clock to a time when women were marginalized and held hostage by restrictive patriarchal and religious values.
Anita, Los Angeles

I have been a long time NOW member and Pro-Choice advocate and I am tired of fighting the same fights over and over. It is time for you and your Democratic allies to prevail in stopping white male dominance in our lives. Change this climate of sexual, reproductive and sexist repression or we will vote in someone who can make those changes. I helped elect you in 1992 along with Sen. Feinstein and former Pres. Clinton and your work has been exemplary for many years but we need you NOW! It is time for the rabid right religionists to be put in their place by letting them know that almost no one accepts their religious beliefs and we are tired of them stepping on our religious and personal freedoms.
Sandra, Oxnard

Hobby Lobby claims it is OK for them to invest in and profit from companies that violate their religion because they have no control over what those companies do. Hobby Lobby has no control over the medical choices of their employees, either. The employees can still get abortions if they want. Hobby Lobby does not provide abortions to their employees when they pay for a medical plan as part of their compensation. They are providing compensation in exchange for labor. The employees could demand more wages so they can buy their own medical plan.
Is Hobby Lobby then going to claim that they can deduct from the employee's paycheck any amount the employee pays for things that are offensive to the bosses’ religious beliefs? A logical outcome would be that Hobby Lobby could refuse to hire employees who practice a different religion than the boss. These same people are opposed to sex education and family planning.
Lying hypocrites. Hobby Lobby as a corporation is not even capable of getting pregnant. Again, amend corporate law to make it clear that corporations do not have religion. Corporate person hood should be limited to just those elements that are in the public interest. When you operate in the public arena, you are subject to the same public rules as everybody else, NO EXCEPTIONS.
Gary, San Jose

THANK YOU!! The conservative ruling is turning the clock back to the days of back alley abortions. I totally agree that this recent ruling will create so many bizarre..."I have the right to deny..." in schools, business, clubs, etc.; rights now guaranteed to all Americans in so many areas. What a horrific Pandora's box has been opened by narrow minded, shortsighted, bigoted, conservative members of the Supreme Court. Let's hope that moderate Republicans will have the courage to join you in passing this act. Sincerely, Proud daughter of a WWII War Bride and first generation American father who loved this country and passed on this pride and passion to their children.
Jean, Porterville

I wanted to write express my STRONG support of the 'Not My Boss' Business bill' you have introduced. I think the decision of the Supreme Court regarding Hobby Lobby's ability to limit healthcare support is appalling. It establishes a poor precedent both with regard to the ability of businesses to gain exception the Affordable Healthcare Act as well as the establishing religious rights for corporations. Neither of these are in line with principles I can support. Please fight hard to counteract this damaging decision.
Robert, Davis

I resent people on both sides who take extreme views and use extreme rhetoric to scare people. You are as much of the problem as tea party people who use the same tactic. I'm not sure when contraceptives became a constitutional right or a bazooka for that matter, but using fear to further your political cause is just wrong.
Joe, San Jose

I disagree with your stance in regards to the Not My Boss's Business Act. It is ultimately up to the employee to decide which employer he or she works for. If the employee isn't satisfied with the employer's health benefit plan then it is up to the employee to terminate his/her employment and seek more suitable employment elsewhere. It's not yours Orr your fellow colleagues' responsibility...stay out of business affairs and allow the market to determine which employers prosper and which don't. I'm opposed to your stance on Not My Boss's Business Act.
Joe, Sacramento

Thanks for standing up for women - of course I knew that you would. It's extremely disheartening as a woman who has spent her life advocating for reproductive rights for women to see these stripped away - apparently by men who care little for science or the rights of women. But this Hobby Lobby decision really gives me pause. What about MY RIGHT to be protected from the religious beliefs of others? Isn't that in fact the real purpose of the religious freedom amendment? So that begs the question - What does it take to impeach a member or members of the Supreme Court? Alito, Scalia and Thomas HAVE to go and I suspect that at least with Scalia and Thomas there might be cause.
Dawn, San Francisco

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Californians respond to my message on The Hobby Lobby Decision (06/30/2014):

This ruling must reach the ears of women. It is up to us to ensure that we do not see our rights slowly diminish. I am a child of the 60's and remember the time when my Mom had to have my father's permission to get a credit card; I was fired because I was pregnant and there was no recourse; not being able to find an apartment because I had a young child. We fought hard for our rights and they can go away, and the ruling of the Supreme Court (Hobby Lobby) is evidence. I will stand and fight with you, Senator Boxer.
Gail, San Diego

At 78, I'm not affected by the Hoppy-Lobby decision, but please help the young women who will be. The idea that corporations are persons is ridiculous. I'm sick of the men who want to control women's rights and take away all of the gains that were made in the past. Please keep up the good fight.
Jacqueline, San Diego

I am horrified at the supreme court's decision. Medical care is between patient and doctor and what a doctor decides is proper for a patient is not the concern of the people for whom she works. I hope something can be done about this issue.
Diana, Santa Barbara

I am very upset about this ruling. Do people who have religious beliefs have more rights than the rest of us? Religious groups have the power to take away our right to choose? Are they above the purported law? This is scary.
Ana, Los Angeles

Your e-mail is not clear, and actually rather misleading regarding the Hobby Lobby decision. It would be important to add that notwithstanding the Supreme Court decision, Hobby Lobby offers 16 contraception alternatives for its employees paid for by Hobby Lobby under its health plan. Your e-mail leads the reader to believe that the Court's decision is denying female contraception, by using words such as "injustice", and "put the ideology of closely held corporations above the health and religious freedom of thousands and thousands of their female employees." I look to you as my Senator to be fair and unbiased. Please present all the facts in your reports to we constituents.
Mike, San Diego

I would like to personally boycott the businesses of these closely held corporations that are going to take advantage of this Supreme Court decision to deny health care for women employees. Could you publish a list of these corporations? Public shaming is a good thing.
Amy, Los Angeles

This is why we the people should Elect all Judges in every Court. Every fifteen years. Not lifetime. An if congress can't help our president ? then maybe congress should move aside. this Judges are not schooled in our Constitution of the United States of America. Any Business can't discriminate and is not a person regardless of it's owners beliefs. These Judges ruled against our Constitution doctrine and should be Removed.
Luis, Sacramento

Thank you for your email regarding the appalling "Hobby Lobby" decision made by the Supreme Court. I am disgusted that such a case could make it to the docket, let alone pass in the highest court in the land. I am very happy to hear that you are working to remedy this decision and support you in your efforts. This type of hateful legislation cannot be allowed to exist in our society.
Jane, Santa Ynez

Corporations and/or businesses who provide health insurance for employees have no business selecting/making decisions related to contraceptive/reproductive issues. Either they provide the full range of coverage or none at all. Have yet to identify any areas of coverage that are denied to men. Hope congress can address issues related to healthcare coverage for women.
Maria, La Crescenta

I am horrified that the belief system of the bosses control what happens to their female employees, thoroughly disregarding the woman's own personal beliefs. Sounds like a form of slavery to me!!
Loretta, Aliso Viejo

Thank you, Senator Boxer, for reacting quickly and sending a message to your constituents to assure us that you are just as outraged at this recent Supreme Court ruling that seems to favor the rights of corporations who have "religious" beliefs above the rights of women and their doctors to make very personal and private healthcare decisions. I am also concerned that the Supreme Court recently ruled that "buffer zones" around health care clinics are unconstitutional, but still allow a much larger "buffer zone" around the Supreme Court. It seems unfathomable to me that the Supreme Court would rule unconstitutional a safety that the Supreme Court Justices are able to take for granted. If the Supreme Court can continue to enjoy the luxury of being able to go to work without being subject to harassment and intimidation, it should be even more important to extend that right to every person whenever they are seeking access to basic health care services. Please continue to do the important work of fighting for women's rights, and for the right every person has to seek healthcare and make healthcare decisions without corporations and fanatical protestors standing in the way. Thank you again for taking a stand on such important issues. I look forward to hearing what steps you will be taking in the future to ensure that women's rights and everyone's access to healthcare will continue to be upheld and defended by our elected officials.
Jennifer, Scotts Valley

I am at the very least devastated, and further I am so fearful that we are seeing the loss of our very constitutional rights slipping away, due to this decision made by our Supreme Court.  How can this happen, is there no remedy ?? I I can't believe this can be true. Please add me to any list of people who want to see an examination of this decision.
Penny, Santa Rosa

I am pleased with the ruling today. Abortion on demand does more harm than you choose to realize; to women individually and to society as a whole. Thank God that the judges in the highest court in the land came to this decision.
Karen, Big Bear City

Barbara, thank you so much for working to support the many women who will be affected by this ruling - it is as if "corporations are people" and have to have their religious beliefs respected...BUT women are NOT people so their beliefs can be ignored.
Annie, Claremont

I disagree with the Supreme Court about corporations being people. They just aren't, so how can they have religious beliefs? They don't. It's the people who do. Those people do not have to use contraception if they don't want to, but the corporation should still make it available to its female employees. I'm surprised and saddened at the continuing erosion of our hard-won right to control our own bodies.
Overpopulation is stressing our planet. Human activity didn't cause climate change until there were just too damn many of us! Birth control needs to be readily available to every woman so that each baby born is planned for, and can be cared for.
Martha, San Diego

In response to your email regarding the courts decision in the Hobby Lobby case, I want you to know that at least one of your female constituents supports the ruling. I don't believe anyone should be forced to support someone's personal choice when it goes against their own beliefs. Although a corporation, there is a person/persons behind the business, and that person has a right to run his business according to his religious beliefs. In this particular case, I believe the main concern of the company wasn't contraception, which is being made out to be the case by some, but abortion. No one should be forced to support the taking of the life of a child.
Cheryll, San Carlos

Thank you, Senator Boxer, for responding so quickly to the outrageous and horribly misguided decision of the Supreme Court denying equal and adequate health care to women in this country, if they should be so unfortunate as to work for a religiously radical company like Hobby Lobby. This will, no doubt be another long and brutal battle to bring us back to the 21st century and the rational governance of a first world country.
Virginia, Pacific Palisades

Good. I'd really like to know what can be done in practical terms about this outrage.
Geoff, Los Angeles

You're right. The court seems to belong in another era. I'm appalled at the recent decision regarding contraception coverage. Why do men seem to feel it's ok for Viagra to be covered, but not contraception. I'm praying that you will be part of the correction to this great injustice to all women.
Oralia, Whittier

Does this mean if I work for a Jewish firm I can't eat ham? Silly, yes, however now it's possible! This decision is so wrong. It can lead to such injustices! I am totally sickened. I am sick of these supposed "Christians" invading my life. Religion belongs at home. NOT in our government. I know you will work against this decision and the anti-union decision. We have now regress back to 1911! I am sure you will fight for us, the real people of the USA!
Eleanor, Westminster

Thank you for trying to do something about the newest form of insanity ruled by the Supreme Court.
To say that the "justices" are religiously prejudice against women is an understatement. I thought Citizen's United was bad, but it just continues to get worse.
Myrna, Palm Springs

Please do everything you can to help overturn, object to, and publicize the idiocy of the Hobby Lobby ruling by the Supreme Court. I agree with you 100% that it is extremely harmful.
Bonnie, Los Angeles

Thank you for your email pledging to work to pass legislation in response to the Hobby Lobby Supreme Court decision today. I am appalled by the majority opinion and applaud Justice Ginsberg on her crystal clear analysis of this issue. Women in this country should have access through their healthcare to birth control. It is disheartening, in this day and age, that birth control is such a controversial issue. Please do all that you can to promote the rights of women.
Audrey, Mountain View

Now the place where I work is going to tell me how to conduct my life! How dare they! Yes, pass a law to keep corporations out of my personal, private business!
Karen, Santa Clara

The Righty Five strike again. Not that you don't have enough to do with many fundamentalist church missionaries having gotten elected to Congress. The influence of religious sects was, as you know, a profound concern of the Constitutional Convention, and I think the fellows went to their graves believing the state was separated from churches. Turn over in your graves, gentlemen.
Diane, Hesperia

You call the decision narrow. I say it's broad. The Court did not describe or even hint at what constituted a sincerely held religious belief. Nor did it consider the religious beliefs of the employees. It has been suggested that Sam Alito was looking to the Federal Government to fashion a way to pay for employee's contraception without "forcing" the Greens to pay for it out of company profits. In other words, let the taxpayers pay for contraception. So are we talking about saving Hobby Lobby an insurance premium or are we talking about deeply held religious beliefs. This ranks with one of the worst reasoned decisions by this Court. It ranks with Dred Scott.
Sheila, Santa Barbara

I disagree with you. Religious Freedom is essential to a Democracy. Those women are free to seek employment elsewhere if they don't like the religious stand their employers believe in. Or they can pay for their birth control pills on their own. Many of us have to pay out of pocket because our health insurances don't cover certain things. When you start attacking religious freedom you pave the way for a governing body we don't want in America! I'm really disappointed in your stand.
Anita, Los Angeles

Whatever we can do about the travesty, we MUST do. Our country is falling to pieces!!
Jack, El Segundo

Thank you for continuing to fight for all of us. I was also depressed to hear about the ruling today. This is a sad day for all of America.
Julie, Stockton

I can NOT understand this ruling! What if a religion (Christian Science?) does not believe in ANY medicine or medical care? Does that mean they are exempt from furnishing any medical insurance? Or a family does not believe in any vaccinations does that mean their children can go to school unvaccinated and spread diseases that could be prevented by available vaccines? This is an insane ruling!
John, Seal Beach

Another loss for women. A closely held corporation of 23,000 employees - what is that? I am a 68 year old grandmother with 2 granddaughters and I thought we had already fought this battle. After hearing you at the Women's March a few year back it was obviously just beginning. We are now definitely going backward! But I do want to thank you for continuing to battle for our rights. It is greatly appreciated.
Mary, Los Gatos

As a Jewish liberal woman I am disgusted with this decision. This is obviously anti-woman, but it's also anti-religious freedom. Where is my religious freedom in this decision?
Claire, Grass Valley

I remember when single women couldn't get birth control, and married women needed their husband's permission. The result was that thousands of us had illegal abortions. This wasn't so long ago, either.
This Supreme Court has us heading back in that direction. I'm so glad that people in power, like you, are doing something about it!
Sally, Los Angeles

I am enraged at the ruling by five Roman Catholic men that women must now be subject to the ultra-pious foibles of their employers in the matter of contraception. Their decision cloaks the Republican War On Women in the robes of religion, and drags us backward by a century. We need more than Justice Ginsburg's dissent to push back, and I hope to see that leadership from our all-too-few women Senators.
Frieda, Pasadena

Thank you for your message re: The Hobby Lobby Decision. All my friends and family agree that it feels like we're living in the ancient past. It has never been more clear that many of our politicians live in the pockets of the obscenely wealthy lobbyist that have infested Washington, DC, like the worst of the worst plague. The SCOTUS has, indeed, violated the religious freedom of many thousands of women with this one horribly misguided decision. More importantly, it could potentially endanger the health of many women and young girls for generations to come. This must be overturned. Thank you for always being on the correct side of justice. 
Cindy, Los Angeles

I was very encouraged when I received your email about the Supreme Court decision to limit birth control access to women for religious reasons. As I had just read the article written about "Ginsberg's Last Stand", she is someone we must be very grateful for. Please fight to get more demos in the senate and to overturn this decision.
Julie, Lower Lake 

I am outraged. As a woman whose age is well past birth control needs, but having granddaughters, I feel we have stepped back in time to the 18th Century. How can Hobby Lobby claim having to go against their religious beliefs by having to pay for contraceptives as part of their Obamacare coverage for their employees, when part of their financial portfolio consists of investments in contraceptives including the Morning After Pill? Investing 73 MILLION DOLLARS worth for their retirement funds....please explain how Hobby Lobby can justify this total hypocrisy. What kind of religious belief is this? It is okay to MAKE money from contraceptives, but not SPEND money on contraceptives????.... As an artist and still active in many creative endeavors, I naturally will never step foot in a Hobby Lobby store.... EVER.
Sylvia, Fountain Valley

The decision to allow Hobby Lobby and other companies to refuse to pay for certain contraceptives is blatant discrimination against women. It singles out women employees and puts a roadblock in the way of getting contraceptives. In my understanding, it doesn't even leave them a clear path to getting them at all. This is a real step backward for these, and all, women. And it leaves the door open for more  discrimination in the workplace and in society.  
Linda, Culver City                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   

I'm not sure what the Court was thinking when they came to this decision. I thought Church and State were suppose to be to different things. I hope ALL of THE SENATE will start working on this at once and correct this mistake that will affect all women. I for one will never shop in any of their stores and hope others will follow this example. I want to thank you for all that you do. It's nice to know someone is fighting for us.
Norma, Lancaster

Thank you so much for continuing to fight the good fight! I am now almost 54 years old. When I was a teenager, my mother took me to our local Planned Parenthood to get contraceptives for me proactively and with respect. Planned Parenthood has always been a positive, safe place for people to go and get advice and healthcare without judgement. When I was a student at UC Berkeley, I volunteered to do rape prevention education and contraception counseling, as well as assisted in the Student Hospital during gynecology exams, helping my fellow women. Later years I did Planned Parenthood clinic defense in San Mateo. I have fought for years for "the right to choose" as my own mother nearly died from a Mexican abortion in the 1950's while she was a professional working in San Francisco. I am APPALLED that we women are still having to fight this fight! "Every sperm doesn't deserve a name" is as true now as when I first heard it in 1978! The Supreme Court's double injury (in just one week!) of reducing the safety zone around clinics, and in letting an individual company sidestep the Affordable Care Act due to their so called religious beliefs is aggregious! The misogyny of the current Court is reprehensible! And once again I am shocked that women are among the pro-life protestors. Their self esteem, self preservation and self awareness must be at zero. Please persevere in this constant battle that has continued through both of our lifetimes. The women, and awake men of this country need your help!
Lydia, Napa

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International Violence Against Women Act

Californians respond to my message on Combating Violence Against Women Around the Globe:

Thank you for pushing this issue which is so critical throughout the world. We as American women are so fortunate to be here. We need to be the voice for the voiceless. Thank you for doing just that!
Anne, Los Angeles

As an Executive Director of an agency that serves women who are raped or abused, we must join in a worldwide effort to stop violence against women and children. Whatever I can do to support your efforts, I will
Jean, Redding

Give absolutely no financial aid to those countries who mistreat women. Hit them where it hurts, in the pocketbook. But I think the U.S. is too weak to say "NO."
karen, Irvine

THANK YOU FOR YOUR WORK ON THE International Violence Against Women Act (IVAWA). WE DO INDEED NEED NEW LAWS TO PROTECT WOMEN, OUR RIGHTS, OUR HEALTH, OUR SAFETY. many patriarchal cultures and countries are plain and simply heathens and haters of women who birth their own children. It is sickening to see the news with a young mother about to be HANGED for no fault of her own. It is shameful. So is it shameful in our own country to hold women's lives in such low regard that MALE POLITICIANS still have control of our bodies. It is sickening that they use us for mere political gain and control.....we are NOT MICE. Please continue to fight for women’s rights in our country and internationally.
Susan, Los Angeles

So glad you are taking this initiative to CEDAW more visible and the need for passage so urgent. Women around the world salute you and your partners in the Senate.
Carol, San Leandro

I want to thank you for your role in fighting against violence and discrimination against women.
Elizabeth, San Diego

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Californians respond to my message on Introducing the International Violence Against Women Act (05/09/2014) :

Thank you for resubmitting the International Violence Against Women Act (IVAWA). I pray that this passes and that for the current situation in Nigeria we are able to respond quickly enough to bring those poor girls back home. I hope there is more going on behind the scenes to save them than what we are hearing about on the news. It really seems like a lot of precious time was wasted.
Tamarah, Morgan Hill

This is wonderful news. As the electronic era has allowed people to see more clearly into the shadowy niches around the world where women and girls are treated below the level of very basic humanity, we need to take action to protect and support them. Thank you for participating in the creation and implementation of the IVAWA.
John, Saratoga

Fantastic! Best of luck with passing this. Hopefully, crossing party lines to write the legislation while it's a hot issue will help. I'll be watching and hoping for the best.
Claudia, Carlsbad

Thanks for your work on this. The sexual assaults against women on US campuses is finally getting overdue increased attention. This plague is curable with persistence.
Roberts, San Diego

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Californians respond to my message on Ending Violence Against Women (09/19/2013):

As an abused woman in the 70s, I had no safe place to go. I slept in my car, on friends’ floors and had to take my little girl with me to be safe.  My wish is for today's women to have support and safety that I would have used during my married years.  Thank you for doing all you can to provide women with an alternative option.
Susan, Alamo

Thank you for asking for comments regarding violence against women. I appreciate the invitation to support your efforts in this continual struggle for women's rights. I work with 100's of women in the healthcare workforce and find that far too many are caught in abusive relationships that are compounded by the unending discrimination at work, in public and now by our legislative representatives. Please continue the aggressive stance bringing these issue to light and for taking action to overcome the power hungry, domineering influences of self serving persons…. Thank You and may you continue to have courage and wisdom in this important struggle. I will am eager and willing to stand along side you and do what I can to also make a difference.
Doreen, Anaheim

I'm so proud that you're my Senator and willing to shine a light on these horrendous attacks. The world needs to become a more loving and equal place, beginning right here at home. Your speech was as powerful as it was painful. It's difficult to understand how men can have such a low opinion of their own humanity to allow themselves to be beasts and inflict so much violence and pain upon another. Surely we can do better.
Peggi, San Marcos

I am so grateful for your support of women. I was raped at 4 yrs of age then again in my teens. There was NO help for me. It has affected my whole life. I would have been a different person if these rapes had not taken place. I'm now 65yrs old and I still go to a women's healing group every week. I am very active in promoting & signing petitions concerning women’s issues & equality. You made my day today when I opened my emails! Thank you so much for all you do.
Pamela, Fullerton

Thank you sincerely for sharing the transcript of your keynote address you delivered this morning at a forum sponsored by CARE and The New Republic dedicated to ending gender-based violence here and around the world. Thank you for all you do on behalf of survivors like myself and murdered loved ones. Please do what you can to pass Erin's Law written by Erin Merryn in California requiring schools to include sexual abuse education and reporting in the curriculum in grades K-12. For too long schools have swept this vital issue under the rug and retaliated against those who report incidence. This bill will not permit them to keep secret reports of abuse and students will know they can seek guidance and protection from the perpetrators of these heinous crimes.
Anna, Los Angeles

Thank you so much for everything you do. I am 62 now and happily divorced for 35 years. Getting out of that trap was the best thing that ever happened to me. It is important to keep protecting women from the violence. And I am glad to see you are still doing that.
Cherie, Oakland

Thank you for sending me the text of your speech. I am very grateful to you for leading the way in this important matter. I wish you continued success in your efforts in putting an end to these horrible crimes.
Barbara, Daly City

We must first stop violence against women in our nation before we try to influence other countries. Right now they laugh at us because we cannot keep our own house clean. Let's clean up our own act and be that shinning beacon not only in word but also fact to the rest of the world. The simple fact remains that there are many other places in the world where violence against women is almost non-existent.
George, Brea

All i can say is thank you. You'd think that in the 21st century this would no longer be an issue.
Cheryl, Studio City

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Californians respond to my message on Protecting All Women from Domestic Violence (07/25/2012):

Thank you for you continued support of Women’s issues. We are all in this battle together & I appreciate you standing up against the misogynists in Congress!!!
Penelope, Grass Valley

Thanks Barbara Boxer for all you do in the area of protecting women who are abused by supporting legislation which helps and/or supports prevention and intervention. We need more consequences for abusers - our state has moved us back 10 years in the legislation and laws that now allow victims to be revictimized by courts who make her face her abuser or they won't prosecute. So sad that we worked so hard to move forward and laws keep us down and back 10 years.
Kathie, Panorama City

Thank you for your unwavering support of the renewal and strengthening of the Violence Against Women Act. I am proud that you represent me in the Senate and that you have consistently represented the best of California.
Angela, Oakland

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Highway Trust Fund

Californians respond to my message on Facing a Mayday Situation for the Highway Trust Fund:

Please save the Highway Trust and adequately fund it. We need our transportation network for the future of our children.
Laura, Valencia

I agree with you that your colleagues need to get moving on this project. Not only to keep all roads and highways safe, but it provides many jobs that are sorely needed.
Patricia, Manhattan Beach

I think the diesel tax should be raised. With cars getting better mileage, electric vehicles, fuel cells, there won't be enough money raised to keep up. If trucking costs are raised the companies can pass the cost on and we will all pay in goods. Besides, the trucks are what do the most damage to the roads. Thank you for your service.
David, Manhattan Beach

I hope Congress will fund the bill allowing for Highways to be maintained. The GOP is trying to gut our country and turn it into a third world entity under the ownership of the Koch Bothers and their partners. Stand fast and fight hardball whenever you can. There are millions of us who are fighting these idiots and their misbegotten policies.
Lisa, Sacramento

I agree the Transportation Trust Fund update is very important to keep, not only our highways maintained and improved to address the increasing use be pedestrians bicyclists.
Clement, San Luis Obispo

We MUST maintain our highways until and unless we provide mass transit to relieve the worsening congestion.
Emily, San Rafael

Absolutely this needs addressing. Bridges, highways - all things that facilitate public/private transport needs to be safe. This important part of the infra-structure is the right of citizens who pay taxes and should not be a political toy. Don't build new - repair what we already have - not as glamorous maybe and not many kudos for politicians but provides the same or more amount of work in a world where we need increased working people.    
Kathryn, El Granada

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Californians respond to my message on Moving Ahead with MAP-21 Reauthorization (05/15/2014):

Thank you for pursuing this long-overdue, critically important transportation reauthorization bill so diligently.
Rosemary, Rancho Santa Margarita

It is admirable that transportation is an issue that is being discussed. To many of us, a new highway is not the answer. Not having a car, my challenge is getting to doctors' appointments and store at a reasonable rate. Public transportation in this country is a joke. Meanwhile we use up natural resources to power huge vehicles with low gas mileage. The investment in public transportation would ease the demand but it seems that government is more interested in destroying land by piping in tar sand oil than take the necessary steps to reduce dependency on oil. A trip to my doctor for a 30 appointment costs me a minimum of 3 hours. If the investment were made, more people would be willing to use buses and trains. As it presently stands, most have cars as there is investment in the alternative. How sad the government sees fit to join this insanity.
Cynthia, Carmichael

Highways and transportation of people and goods is essential to the economic health of the Nation. However, decreasing the national debt is more important. Let’s get our efforts turned toward reducing our National debt and increasing the solvency of our currency. Continuing on with our current policy of spend and borrow will soon lose our financial standing in the world and another and stronger currency will become the world reserve currency. What would that do to your highway construction, maintenance, etc. plans?
Duane, San Luis Obispo

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Californians respond to my message on Maintaining a Strong Transportation Infrastructure (02/14/2014):

I agree with you 100%. Instead of subsidizing oil companies, why not use that money for fixing our roads, thereby creating jobs.  It would be wonderful for everybody.
Sondra, San Francisco

I am in full agreement with your opening statement. The funding of this trust should not even come up for debate; it’s a no-brainer on the necessity our highways and roads play in our economy. As the President stated it: (business) did not build it.
Arnold, Orange

Don’t our gas taxes go to roads? If there aren’t enough funds you should raise the gas taxes and they should be on a percent basis. We pay more when the oil companies raise their rates. Cars get better mileage. There are more cars. We need to pay more. There should also be a royalty for extraction and a royalty for oil exports.
David, Santa Rosa

Please consider funding alternative transportation infrastructure in the bill you are proposing. Trails and bikeways are great alternatives to more massive spending on highways. If you MUST raise the funds for this bill, please do so through increased gas taxes. Please don't borrow more money to do this. We're already levering our kids’ futures.
Brian, Dove Canyon

Thank you for your continued support of a strong transportation infrastructure, for all Americans. Please make sure the needs of cyclists and pedestrians are not left out; presently they represent a disproportionate number of accidents and fatalities on our roads. We need an infrastructure that keeps all of America moving and safe.
Michael, Redwood City

Support for transportation infrastructure must include all forms of transport not just motor vehicles and trucks. Transit and bicycles must also be included. Just building wider highways does not address the country's needs for more efficient transportation.
Nancy, Santa Barbara

Thank you so much for standing up for transportation and the funding thereof! I also believe America runs on its highways and railways, and if it's full of potholes, so are we. I also look forward to the California Bullet Train, efficiently carrying my wife and I from L.A.'s Union Station to Oakland before the end of this decade!!!
Chris, Los Angeles

Why did this get to a crisis? Why did congress ignore the funding and waiting to let this funding be ignored? Is congress so busy with bickering on issues without doing the will of the people? Congress will and should get their act together.
Lee, Sacramento

I am afraid it's the time has come for the Demo's to get tough. I think you will have to call out all the Repub's and Dem's who are against this nesasary bill. By Name. What kind of elected by the People person, is willing to vote against the "General Welfair", and Provide for the common Defence, !? These infrastructure systems are crucial to the safety of us all. Not just the private jets and chauffeured limos of the top 2%. Why is it the Middle Class has to fight and plead for every little crumb the republicans what to cut. It frightens me that our Country has lost the revolution, after Two Hundred years to the Hudson Bay Co. and George III. Time to step up.
Charles, Oceanside

I am writing to oppose the proposed infusion of funds to the Highway Trust Fund (HTF).
It is questionable that the HTF would have a shortfall. Why there is/would be a shortfall. Does the government not fund this with the gas/road taxes that everyone that uses the roads and highways(including bridges) pays for? Or has the Congress and Senate in their usual practice, diverted the HTF to other government programs, or perhaps even to pay for your exclusive health care plans that normal U.S. citizens cannot participate in? How about raising the gas tax by one cent per gallon, that would seem to cover additional funds for HTF? That is assuming that those additional monies would actually be used to fund HTF.
Michael, Auburn

Thank you for emphasizing the critical need for a healthy transportation system. I believe our transportation infrastructure significantly contributes to having a vibrant economy and quality of life. The American Society of Civil Engineers has produced a study, "Failure to Act". It shows the impacts on family budgets, employment, transportation costs and the economy. In many cases, transportation is not appropriate for local and state financing. Our highways, airlines, ports and trains are distributed throughout our country. We are all interdependent on our transportation systems to be in good shape whether they are in our own communities or somewhere across the country. George Romney asked, "Is the program so critical that it's worth borrowing money from China to pay for it?" In the case of our transportation infrastructure, the answer is yes.
Anthony, Bakersfield

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LGBT Pride Month

Californians respond to my message on Celebrating LGBT Pride Month:

Thank you for your LGBT message. Yes, the goal has not been reached, but I would never have believed that in my lifetime there would have been so much progress towards equal rights for all Americans. We are getting there.
Robert and Miguel, Solana Beach

I want to thank you, Senator, for all of your efforts on behalf of the many LGBT Americans and their families and friends. I am a family member of some of those people and the family has had to face the suicide of one, the bewilderment of others, and especially the young kids when they start observing society’s reactions. It is unbelievable to me that there are still people, like the Governor of Texas, who are convinced that there are "treatments" to return LGBT community members to “normalcy.”  Thank you, again, for all your efforts,
Sally, Palo Alto

I’m a very different person Mrs. Boxer. I try to shy away from this situation. I don't believe in LGBT. I was disturbed when the courts overturned the will of the people. It’s like a dictatorship where the vote of the people mean nothing.
Ike, Los Angeles

I was so thrilled to read your letter. With so much negative happening in this country and revisiting Iraq, it seems so wonderful when we find out just how far our nation has come in protecting everyone’s rights.
Merrily, San Diego

Thank you for all you've done to improve the lives of LGBT people. Bless you for your good efforts. We’ve come a long way in establishing equality among all our citizens.
Frederick, San Francisco

Thank you very much for your work on this very important subject and gaining equality for all Americans. Am aware of your fighting DOMA since 1996. This was a sad moment, when it was decided to 'take a right' away from an American Citizen by law. The deeper impact of 'marriage equality' is that it will show some 13 year old boy, living in Podunk, Idaho (no disrespect to Idaho), that this is 'normal', and his feelings for his friend Larry are 'natural', and he can hold his head up high, and he will live ...
Clinton, Thousand Oaks

Thank you for your work in moving toward equality for all Americans in every aspect of life. The bigotry that I see in many of your colleagues is really unacceptable. I am not LGBT but I do want everyone to have the same respect and opportunities available to them.
Sharon, Morgan Hill

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Californians respond to my message on A Victory for All Our Families (06/26/2013):

My partner and I have been together for 27 years, always wondering when we'd be recognized as "equal" citizens of our beloved country. Although we had a joyous commitment ceremony with friends in 1998, it wasn't and could never be the same as a legal marriage. I can't tell you how grateful I am for your unequivocal support of all issues related to our community. You are a true friend and I thank you from the bottom of my heart.
Lisa, El Cajon

Your willingness to stand for equal rights for LBGT citizens is appreciated in ways you could not comprehend. My wife and I were part of the 18,000 couples who married in California in 2008. We have been together for 17 years. It wasn't until today that the oppressive effects of bigotry on our lives was fully realized as the decisions of the SCOTUS brought me to tears of joy and a profound sense of belonging and validation. A weight was lifted. We are no longer second class citizens. We have more work to do for our brothers and sisters who live in states that prohibit same sex marriage. But today we have taken one giant leap forward. I am grateful for your continued support.
Tammie, Cool

Actually the main reason I am writing to you today is that when my daughter that I adopted when she was in Jr. high school let me and her mom know that she was gay it made me feel bad only because I understood how a lot of people did not treat them right and that worried me knowing how so many people looked down on them. I am very happy that people are changing the way they feel about gay people and I am glad that you understand how important the vote was for so many people.
Bob, Milpitas

Dennis and I appreciate all you have done to further equality. We have been a couple since 1975 and legally married in California in June of 2008. The struggle for equality isn't over, but a great victory occurred today. Thank you for your work to this end.
Arthur, Glendale

Thank you so much for all of your support over the years of my community. I was in tears yesterday after DOMA was thrown out, although now I understand only parts of it were? I am thrilled to have the same federal rights once I get married, but will I have all the same rights? Our work is not done until we ALL have equal rights in every state and I trust you will keep on fighting for us.
Jennifer, Los Angeles

Thanks so much for your help on this issue. It affects me personally. My partner I have waited almost 20 years for this!
Charles, San Diego

Now it's time to STOP DISCRIMINATING against single people. Please tell me what you will do to spare single individuals financial burdens that married people avoid just by being coupled.
Annette, Irvine

I respect the equality and dignity of those professing lgbt attractions. However, I do not and cannot accept the long standing tradition of marriage as being that between a man and a woman to be given a status of marriage to them. I voted for prop 8, and if on the ballot would continue to vote for marriage only between a man and woman. I know you do not agree, but just wanted to let you know that one of your constituents feels this way.
Jeanne, Garden Grove

Thank you for your support of equality for all persons who love each other and want to be married regardless of who that may be. My beloved brother whom I lost over 20 years ago had to keep his sexual orientation a closely guarded secret at work for fear of reprisal, would be so proud of the progress we as a society have come in the last few years. My husband and I also have a gay son of whom we could not be more proud. Knowing that he will be treated the same as any other citizen warms our hearts. Our son may never want to get married, but if he does he can and that is an amazing symbol of progress to us and many other accepting and supportive parents in this country. My husband and I have always chosen to be supportive and loving to our son in whatever life choices he has made. We love him beyond measure.
Jan, Redding

yes, crack the champagne. In my experience, most highschoolers see sexual orientation about as relevant as what their friends had for breakfast. It's sad to me that so many people wanted to stick to old traditions for purely emotional reasons. Hurray, we can finally ditch this and move onto something that actually helps us. It was clearly only a matter of time ...
Andrew, Los Gatos

My partner of 42 years and my self will take advantage of this wonderful event to make our lives together valid.
Jack, Lake Balboa

I'm really at a loss. Is the court telling me not to believe in what my bible says? I'm not a protester by any means. We took prayer out of the schools and the students are suffering for it, big time. What will be the long range effect of the court's ruling?
Joe, San Francisco

Thank you for your unwavering support for the rights of all people to have the right to marry. We truly appreciate you voting against DOMA in 1996 and your consistent fight to reverse DOMA ever since.
Robert, Berkeley

I had to write you and say; thank you for standing up for my right for equality, as well as thousands of LGBT men & women. I am a proud Gay Veteran of the U.S. Army that served my country for all. Now I stand proud of my service to my country and proud of my Senator.
James, San Francisco

God put Adam and Eve on this earth not Adam and Steve or Mary and Marie. I feel that the Supreme Court and You are wrong for striking down DOMA and supporting same sex marriage. The vast majority of this country and the Federal Government don't consider same sex marriage as legal and neither should you. They shouldn't receive the same benefits because times have changed or it's the right thing to do. Yes I have and have had friends that were gay, but I didn't support their life style then nor do I now. I mention it so you know my position isn't based on prejudice.
Ronald, Montclair

Thank you for your actions in '86 and for your confidence in your convictions today. I have several family members who will now, hopefully, be able to live lives inclusive of tall of the same rights that I have enjoyed as an American. When my faith in humankind gets shaky (and it has been lately) I will remember today for what happened in Washington DC, and in Texas.
Carol, Huntington Beach  

I cringe to hear that your spirit soars regarding the Supreme Court ruling on Prop 8 when the MAJORITY of the people you are supposed to represent voted in favor of Prop 8. You were not elected to represent your own personal opinions but rather the interests and opinions of those who elected you. We the people of California already have to do the job of the lawmakers we hire and pay to represent us through the Proposition system. Just as we have to tolerate the things our lawmakers do that we disagree with (the idea of a democracy) so we expect of our lawmakers to tolerate and represent us even if your personal opinion differs.
Sharon, Santa Cruz

I'm not known for my writing or public speaking skills, so this probably won't be a glamorous message, but I really wanted to thank you for supporting equal rights. Many of my friends are gay & have to struggle in ways straight couples dont through illness, death, & other circumstances. I breaks my heart to watch because they shouldn't have to. One of my best friends (who I've known for 13 years) talked to me about the idea of getting married for the first time last Wednesday though I've talked to him many times about marriage. He said he never breached the subject before because it was just a dream & it hurt too much. He is one of the greatest human beings I have ever met & deserves so much more than he asks for & more than I could ever give him. So, thank you for your actions & voice. You are helping make his & so so many other's dreams come true.
Shannon, San Luis Obispo

You may be happy about this development, but don't include the majority of your constituents in your celebration. This a Christian country, that follow moral, ethical and cultural standards established thousands of years ago. Whille no one disputes the right of a Homosexual to live in peace, we, the moral majority are of the opinion that homosexuality is evil, a sin, and totally unproductive to society. Your vociferous gay right stand, exclude and isolate you from representing your constituency.
Edward, Palm Springs

I just want to thank you for standing up for my rights. I have been with my partner for 27 years. We got married in 2008. We have both felt strange that our marriage was legal but yet other couples could not get married. And felt enraged that after helping each other through life's trials that we had no rights for federal survivor benefits. Last week still seems surreal to me still.
So, thank you very much Senator for all that you do.
Laura and Edna, Santa Clara

Sorry but I disagree with you regarding Prop. 8. It was voted on and passed by the people of this state. We get sore people like you that can’t accept the practicality that marriage is a sacred thing and is for a man and a woman. All the newspapers wrote articles supporting the gay issue and never once voiced an opposition to it. Shows how corrupt the papers are. If you say you are not in favor of it you are automatically labeled a bigot. I am not a bigot and do not support the courts decision. Gays are not discriminated against; they have the rights of others this has been rammed down our throats from day one. Now it is taken into our schools and rammed down their throats. As a former teacher gay clubs were set up on campus to council young people?..sorry but the councilors were lay persons and all I could see was a recruiting stand to guide adolescents into a gay life.
Chuck, Los Gatos

All I can say is: A giant step for mankind. I am not gay, but if I were, I would not want to be treated as a second-class citizen. It is about time.
Janis, San Rafael

I want to personally thank you for all of your support and effort in getting this issue of DOMA defeated. It, along with the decision on Prop 8 affects my partner and I tremendously.
Vance, Huntington Beach

What you have seem to have forgotten is that the majority of the people in the State of California voted to resend Prop 8 but with the finagling of the courts you and others have managed to get the courts to do what the citizens don't want. All you do is manipulate to get what you and a few like you want.
Joseph, Palm Springs

I am so glad my gay friends will be able to marry now (and yes, rights AND responsibilities!) and not be treated like second class citizens. As a straight person myself, I could never understand why we discriminated in the first place and am glad that's over!
Sherry, Silverado

My spouse married the first day it became legal to do so. I am happy to say that we are still happy and still love each other very much. we are however going on thirteen years of being together as a couple. We were the first couple to marry in Butte County. I an ecstatic that DOMA was repealed, that it was unconstitutional from the beginning.
Cappi and Michelle, Chico

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Californians respond to my message on Equal Benefits for All Our Families (07/01/2013):

Thanks for all your efforts on our behalf. My partner and I were married in Palm Springs in the brief period when we could and it would be great to be able to protect him with some SSI if I go anytime soon. Since I'm close to 80 that tends to be on my mind and I'm especially grateful to you for all do.
Don, Cathedral City

My husband and I just got married yesterday, the first full day of renewed equality. We want to THANK YOU VERY MUCH for all your support and confidence through this time.
John and Lee, Los Angeles

I just wanted to thank you for you work on extending benefits and equality to the LGBT community. Last week's historic victory is huge for the momentum that will be needed to help the rest of the citizens in states that still discriminate. It is because of representatives like you that have continued to fight in congress to get things done. Thank you for your quick response to the need for social security survivor benefits to surviving family members whose marriage was not previously recognized.
Jennifer, Herlong

I think this is terrific. If America cannot stand for Equality under the law what can it stand for.
Jeanne, Venice

We appreciate all the hard work you doing to help extend Social Security Benefits for Same Sex Marriages, however those registered as Domestic Partners need to have the same protections. My Partner and I encourage you to work on reforming the Federal tax law to include not only same sex married couples but those register as domestic partners. We are planning on marrying now, but there is still the disparity of a recognized marriage when it comes to taxation. This is yet another hurdle for loving couples to surpass.
David, Colfax

My husband and I thank you for addressing Social Security benefits for married same-sex families.
Robert and Raoul, Los Angeles

I just wanted to take a moment to thank you for acting so swiftly for Social Security Death Benefits for same sex couples. It is an important step forward for equality.
Karen, Van Nuys

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Student Loan Interest Rates

Californians respond to my message GOP Blocks Relief for Student Loan Borrowers:

Thank you for standing up and fighting for those of us that have CRUSHING student loan debt. I would expect nothing less from the Republican party than to block something they could never understand; poverty. Perhaps if they had compassion for the poor it would be possible to agree on student loans. I come from a poor family and had to work my way through college. Unfortunately working was not enough to pay for school, I had to take out student loans. It changed my life to be the first one in my entire family to graduate with a BA. Hopefully one day this important issue will be resolved and help will come to those of us that desperately need it.
Charles, Montebello

My daughter owes $60,000 at 6.25%. Such greed is unbelievable!  I believe that what goes around comes around, and the pendulum swings. They will pay one way or another. I hope it is in the next election.
Carole, Santa Cruz

This is just a short note to express my gratitude for your efforts and hard work regarding the students loans refinancing project. I am very sad that it could not progress in favor of all the students affected, and consequently our society, but I want you to know that your efforts mean a lot to common citizens and parents like me. I am not surprised of the blocking by the republicans. Although your e mail brought sad news it is comforting to know of your dedication and vision for our country.
Marcela, Santa Rosa

When are Democrats going to get a spine? Remember the start of the term when You should have changed the filibuster rules. Have dems learned nothing?
Gary, Durham

No one forced the students or their parents to take out loans. They signed a contract to repay the loan and agreed to the terms and conditions. Why should those terms be changed now? Is it because the Democrats need to find something to deflect attention from the sluggish economy?
How many bills that have been passed in the House has the Democrat Senate Majority Leader refused a chance for a vote? The average student debt is less than the cost of a car, $30,000. If the student chose to major in a subject that is not marketable is not a problem that needs to be solved by the rest of the country. You will only be able to tap the rich so many times before they just leave, close their businesses or lay off employees.
Jerry, San Diego

I agree it a slap-in-the-face to any self-sufficient American citizen trying to improve themselves that Republicans have thwarted an attempt to refinance these loans. But the time has come to stop labelling these kind of efforts in generalities, and directly call out those who opposed such measures. Name names!
Arnold, Orange

Thank you for the update on what is happening in Washington. Personally, I am very happy new and additional Federal spending is being blocked. Our children and grandchildren are already in serious trouble handling the debt our country has now. We work very hard, we pay our taxes ... Please use them wisely.
Kathryn, Simi Valley

No surprise that Republicans would block a measure to reduce interest rates on student loans. Students are not rich enough yet to be rewarded with more favorable rates. My personal feeling is that the interest rate on student loans should be zero. Having people of any age acquire knowledge and skills has a social and financial value to our country and our governments. That should be obvious. This is just more of the Republican agenda of sorry you have to endure this childish behavior.
Raymond, Oceanside

Yet again a badly needed measure has been blocked by a MINORITY! I'm sick and disgusted with every effort our Senate makes to do its job being blocked by the filibuster rule! It is anti-democratic and should be abolished! Our government has become a mockery not only to Americans but to the rest of the world. Why don't you guys fix it? "All provisions which require more than a majority of any body to its resolutions have a direct tendency to embarrass the operations of the government and an indirect one to subject the sense of the majority to that of the minority." "The history of every political establishment in which this principle has prevailed is a history of impotence, perplexity and disorder." – Alexander Hamilton, Federalist No. 75
Ben, Ben Lomond

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Californians respond to my message on Giving Students a Fair Shot (05/06/2014):

Absolutely! And I'm not just saying that because I have three daughters at college. Helping young adults get out from under these debts and functioning with their full earning/buying potential, is in the best interest of everyone.
Teresa, Berkeley

Am very pleased to see the Bank on Students Emergency Loan Refinancing Act. I have 3 children who graduated college / law school with student loans. I do not understood why the interest rates are so high especially when these loans cannot be discharged. I am so disappointed in the educational system. The outrageous tuition, lack of classes in state colleges after paying outrageous tuitions, the high interest rates, and the LACK OF JOBS once our children graduate. Our generation has totally done a disservice to our children. Keep working on it!
Jean, Modesto

Thank you! This would be an exponential benefit to me. I have been feeling like I was drowning and never able to catch up. Thank you for your work.
Laura, San Francisco

Thank you for supporting this very fair and needed bill. The interest on these big student loans are really hurting our kids futures as adults. We personally have felt this as our own daughter not only had financial support from us but needed to have student loans too. She will be paying $600 per month on student loans for many years. We realize the value of her education but the interest they sold will compound the debt too heavily for a young adult trying to move towards independence.
Steve, Pacifica

I'm really happy to hear about this bill, and I hope it passes. I can't tell you how stifling student loans are for me. I'm making the most money I've made from any job after graduate school, but the "American Dream" of owning a house or supporting a family couldn't be farther away for me. I've had to sell some of my loans to banks just to get them to 7% from 10%, and I'm always shocked when I hear from friends that they're locked into rates below 3%. Thanks for standing up for this and godspeed!
Jason, Los Angeles

Kudos for supporting Sen. Warren's bill. The pathetic fact though, is that this country is rich enough that there should be NO NEED for student loans! Just canceling that ridiculous and insanely expensive unneeded 1.5 TRILLION DOLLAR waste, the F-35, [triple the cost of the entire existing Interstate Highway system], would pay for college, room and board through bachelor's degrees and likely all through doctorate degrees for EVERY capable student in this country!
David, San Francisco

We are very happy that you and Senator Warren are working to allow people with student loans to refinance those loans at the much better rates of today. We are old (69 & 68) and we did not have to have student loans to finish college (BA and PhD respectively) thanks to vibrant, effective public university systems. We feel very very badly for the poor young people of today who are encumbered by student loans they have to incur if they want to better themselves, loans that may not lead to effective education given so much false advertising and lack of regulation, and loans that cannot be shed in bankruptcy when those leans clearly have the potential to destroy people's lives economically. So, THANK YOU.
Michael and Richard, Watsonville

I want to sincerely thank you for your sponsorship of the bill to revise and reduce the interest rate on collegiate student loans. As a longtime fundraiser for my undergraduate college, ostensibly for student scholarships, I have been concerned about the so-called 'aid' packages proffered to students. Recently the college has been much more responsive to my concerns, especially the amount of outstanding debut these students leave with. Yes, it's an excellent and outstanding education they receive, and the students express that themselves. But it still leaves the reality that many of them are challenged when seeking to pursue the kind of social service avocations (typically of modest pay) they hope for, when faced with the need to pay their loans?? That our US government makes money off of them, well, it's unconscionable. Thank you for your outstanding leadership on this.
Hannah, Altadena

As a public health, community and rural nurse I feel there is such a shortage of family physicians that we should let them have their education loan free. It is taxing enough and their salaries when finished are minimal for their status.
Nancy, Garberville

The only grandchild who managed to graduate so far owed $30,000 at graduation time. She would like to go for a higher degree, but this loan is such a burden, and she can't even refinance it! My other grandchildren are somewhat discouraged by her situation, so it is having a snowball effect on their decisions with regard to education. I applaud your stand on this issue.
Mavis, Mountain View

I rarely take the time to write to my representatives, but I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart for supporting the bill aimed at allowing students like myself to refinance our student loan debt. I went to law school so I could help ensure that my mother and sister (both disabled) would be taken care of financially for the rest of their lives. That dream seems less possible now since I am $160k in debt and will likely by paying a minimum of $1,200 for the next 20 years.
Nonetheless, I believe in my ability to overcome this hurdle, and the opportunity to refinance my debt would greatly reduce the burden on recent graduates like myself all over the country.
WE are the individuals that will be powering this economy as this country reaches the next phase of its development.
Ravinder, Vacaville
P.S. Wish you could be our commencement speaker. You and Elizabeth Warren are my heroes.

Thank you for co-authoring a bill to allow students to refinance their college debt at a lower - rate at which the rich can get money financed. It’s abominable that young people graduate with such outrageous debt.
Julie, Lower Lake

Thank you, Senator. You would think that after the tax payer bail-out of these sleazy financial institutions they would have the common decency to respond in kind. They should not have to be asked or mandated to lower student loan interest rates. One would think they'd be eager to give something back and OFFER to refinance the kids' student loans. Unfortunately, they have learned nothing and seem even more emboldened and obnoxious than ever. Only fools throw dust in the faces of those who have saved them. I fear these money worshipers will neither cease nor desist until they've taken this country completely down and out. No doubt, they are gearing up for the next fleecing of America.
Sharon, Oakland

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Californians respond to my message on A Bad Deal for Students (07/25/2013):

Thank you for standing with Elizabeth Warren and Jack Reed on this issue. I believe that we need to guarantee very affordable student loans to ensure that all students have educational opportunites regardless of their financial status.
Kathy, Diablo

Thank you so much for standing up to this very misguided legislation. I knew I could count on you to support Elizabeth Warren's bill. We should be trying to assist students to go to college but not by getting them into deep debt before they ever graduate and get jobs.
Lorraine, Woodland Hills

I agree, students need affordable higher education. We have 4 kids and know the rigors of applying for financial aid and loans. One is an MD and those loans are steep! I read in todays paper that California has a new UC president and her salary is twice the amount of our governor and there are almost as many employees as students. Wow. Maybe if that was balanced out a little better the tuition wouldn't be so steep.
Donna, Carpinteria

I'm surprised by your opposition to the student loan deal. It was negotiated to be tied to 10 year treasury rates (which is what it costs the government to borrow the money to lend to the students) and to be as close to revenue neutral as possible. Wanting lower rates means relying on a tax increase so tax payers subsidize the difference.
Eric, Mountain View

Senator Boxer, thank you for your efforts in trying to make education more affordable for those who do not qualify for grants. My 7.5% interest loan from going back to earn an MBA is now doubled due to interest. The laws for refinancing require an 18% fee and prohibit lowering the interest rate. Trying to do the right thing by entering a repayment program has cost me $18K, twice. My first agreement was ignored after I made nine thousand dollars in payments, but the govt agency was still able to charge my account the $18k fee. None of my payments up to now count toward the ten year limit rule. I will be paying my loans until I'm over 70, while also paying for my son to attend college. Did you know, a British national's college education is free? It seems our govt. penalizes tax payers' efforts to further their education w/ such high interest rates.
Marion, Bakersfiled

Senator Boxer, who was the one(s) responsible for not signing the bill at keeping the existing student loan as they are now, acceptable and payable. Was it the Republicans? Wouldn't doubt it. I was just about to put in for another student loan, but I also have a $10,500 active loan in place but with this fiasco I'm not going to put in for it and wind up paying $85,000 in interest. I'm within 3 classes [of] getting my degree but won't be able to go to school because I subsist on a paltry VA pension check. Are the Republicans trying to destroy our college school system?
Juan, Long Beach

Being of Bolivian decent and coming to this country at the young age of 5 back in 1963 with my mother and two brothers was a huge risk for us as a family, but what my mother had counted on is that with hard work and determination we as a family would have, more of an opportunity here in the US. My mother worked hard and learned english while we went to many different schools some bad some good. My mother struggled most of our lives trying to give us the best life possible, we grew up not having much but did ok. Living in Marin County since i was 11 was the best and safest place we could have ever lived in, my mom with her hard work ethic somehow BOUGHT a home in Fairfax after we had lived in apartments for most of our life here in CA. The reason i tell you my story is that since i was a little girl i knew that without my moms hard work and love and resoect for this country i would not have turned out to ne who i am today nor not met my wonderful husband of 30yrs. We have been blessed to have two wondeful children who are now adults working and following our steps much like i followed my moms. I unfortunaltely did not attend college back in the 70 s after graduating high school, i was somehow blessed to find work in advertising without having even an AA. We know now that this is NOT the case any longer especially with the economy the past 5yrs.After raising my own children being fortunate to stay home and work part time i had always hoped that my own two kids would go off to college and have the careers that they each wanted. Well thats not what happened completely, my daughter from the time she was very young was a very bright child (gifted) and had loved school and learning, we as parents were so thrilled to see her plan her future and have such goals. Her dream since she,was 6 was to be a doctor. She did very well in school and continued to make plans to study medicine, so she was planning on going off to college. Well what happened soon after high school,is why im writing you, i had gone back to work full time we had two incomes and so we thought we could afford college knowing that our daughter was going to be thr FIRST to attend in our entire family! We could not be happier nor proud, well being that we have no control over what happens in life i was injured and ahve not been able to work since 1995. We have been struggling since our daughter bless her continued with college she tried going to JC but then wanted to attend USF so terribly so we supported her and she continued with her love for in medicine. USF at that time was failling in giving her the BEST education and professors that she fell behind in her school work, dealing with her loans and now the reality of changing her major rather quickly in order to graduate she now is in DEBT with 150,000 all for a major in History!! HOW does this happen? How does a well know private college NOT provide the BEST?? For us to be co-signers on this loan it means we,live with a nightmare for our daughter its disgust and such disappointment! She HATES the even mention of going bsck to college, she is struggling with taking ANY job in order to pay OFF this incredible LOAN that is destroying our lives. Coming to this country and always being an honest hard working tax payer I have to agree with her and wished she had NEVER attended college. College is for the WEALTHY we are NOT wealthy we live on one income since 1995 my husband works hard to keeps us comfortable. HOW can you ask us to even pay MORE on these student loans?? This is already killing our daughter she wakes up thinking LOAN goes to bed thinking LOAN 24/7 365 LOAN!! To have this HUGE DEBT overmher head worries us as parents. Had she been a doctor with this loan i would not be writing you. This country is all about oportunity not about killing our new grads with such a HUGE debt all due to wanting to LEARN and be productive tax paying citizens much like our parents!! I never believed in Bankrupcy BUT i no longer have respect for the education system that is destroying our future students that graduate and have such a BURDEN DEBT when starting their new life. i hope you can somehow speak for the many families that are suffering TODAY all due to STUDENT LOANS THAT ARE KILLING US with so much stress!!
Susana, Novato

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Californians respond to my message on Stopping the Rate Hike on Students (07/09/2013):

I graduated from college in 1963. I cannot imagine how students can take on this onerous burden of multiplied student debt!  I'm firmly in your camp on this one, Senator Boxer.
Virginia, South San Francisco

Please stop the raise on student loans. Students are having a hard time finding jobs, let alone paying off their debt. To raise the interest rate is a slap in the face of these students.
Jeannette, Pacifica

I happen to be a student loan recipient with a $10,500 loan. I'm also a U.S. Air Force Veteran (circa 1960s) and I find myself perplexed as to what the reason of raising the student loan to 6.8% from the 3.4% it had been is going to break me. Reason I state that is because I only subsist on a meager social security check, and it's not much. This action to raise the student loan rate will seriously hurt thousands of fellow students all over the U.S. In addition, jobs are not exactly wide open, many students who graduate are finding it quite difficult to find a good paying job, let alone pay for the necessities of life. As a footnote, I'm well into my late 60s and while I have manage to graduate with 2 career certificates I'm only 3 classes away from my Associate Degree in computer science. This action is really disgusting and not fair at all. Sign me out as confused and sad.
Juan, Long Beach

I am so disappointed that this country has decided that "ignorance is bliss" works well for those plutocrats looking to sew up their power. By upping student interest rates, they sadly ensure that fewer persons with little money get to attend colleges, thus further weakening our society and the ability to move up in the world. With the doubled student interest rate, we find that a second mortgage is a better solution for our son. What does that say about this country's interest in education? For shame!
Kathy, Diablo

I ask that you vote for the reduction in the Student Loan rates.  My son and his wife, both have student loans. On top of the costs of living, they get by but if the increase remains, they may have difficulties.  They live in Tulare, California, splitting the difference in their drives. She works, as a teacher in Earlimart and he is a public library assistant in Hanford, California.
Again, vote DOWN this increase of student loan rates.
Kenneth, Chula Vista

How can the senate kick down the students even harder.  No jobs for them and now the interest in their loans is going to double?  Is college only for the rich ?
Juan, Bonita

Thank you for your efforts in keeping education costs affordable. As with everything, keeping the essentials affordable is a huge priority. But, having a sound education makes a difference.
Scott, Laguna Niguel

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Children Detained at the Border

Californians respond to my message on Ensuring Humane Treatment at the Border:

Have been so concerned about the unaccompanied children at the border and the conditions in which they are housed. Thank you very much for your letter to President Obama and your legislation addressing exactly this issue. I wish there was a chance for comprehensive immigration reform and legislation this year, but with Eric Cantor’s defeat, this seems even more unlikely than ever.
Jill, San Diego

It is indeed commendable to forward legislation to our president for the innocent children. However, there is an urgent need to work with the GOP to pass immigration reform and stop deportation of parents of US born children. If Republicans continue to stall this problem, then our president needs to be more proactive and issue executive order. This should ensure more democratic vote and perhaps control of congress.
Alejandro, Oakley

Thank you so much for your interest in the immigration issue, in particular regarding the treatment of children and adults in holding facilities. I think this is the minimum we can hope and strive for till a just and most needed immigration reform comes about.
Alan, San Bernardino

I somewhat disagree with message to the president. We cannot continue to accept illegal immigration in the country. We are driving this country under. Governments where these people come from should take care of their own. There seem to be no end to this trend. I disagree with your message to the president on this issue respectfully.
Ike, Los Angeles

Thank you, Senator, for your stand on helping unfortunate immigrants in our country. I, too, am a descendant of an immigrant to California. He was a Sergeant in the Spanish Army who accompanied Father Junipero Serra to San Gabriel and helped found the Mission there. I deeply resent recent arrivals to my home state who oppose immigration! (Perhaps they should go home to where they came from.)
Glenn, Coronado

I notice the amount of Illegal Immigrants that are flowing into our country. They are being given welfare, food stamps and WIC because they had their babies here Illegally. My son who was born here as well as My wife and Me also born here were denied benefits because I was on unemployment. You must stop giving these Illegals benefits. That is what is driving them here. The thought of free money, child birth, housing, and numerous other hand outs is why they are flooding here. So please on behalf of all of our fellow Americans. Please stop the flow and start deporting them now. Thanks.
Steve, Colton

Why does this continue to be a problem? There are growing numbers of Americans who don't want to bear the burden of schooling, housing, medical care and incarceration of illegal immigrants. I don't think amnesty is appropriate for people who have disregard our laws-- they have, in essense, performed a "B & E" (that's breaking & entering,) in so instances, more than once! It would be good to see pressure put on the Mexican government to improve the conditions of its general population, instead of increasing the wealth of such a small portion of its citizens. Most Americans are aware of the corruption south of the border. This American wants to know why we turn a blind eye and continue to not resolve this problem.
Amy, South Lake Tahoe

I thank you for being upfront in how this country treats immigrants. I strongly believe that we need an Immigration reform that unifies families so children/youth don't have to expose to any dangers by crossing our borders illegally. Thank you for your support for a Comprehensive Immigration Reform.
Teresa, San Bernardino

The Border Patrol guards are overwhelmed by the sudden influx of tens of thousands of children. They do not have the manpower to handle the situation. Half of the guards are now used to baby sit. Your insistence on "fair treatment" beggars the problem. The public's insistence on more border patrol guards has largely been ignored by the congress. Add also the loose implementation of our laws om immigration has given essentially a free ticket to come to the US. This administration has created this problem. The question is does the congress have the courage to fix this problem now. Not tomorrow but NOW
William, Temecula

The President is breaking the law by not enforcing our immigration laws. I am requesting that you stand for US citizens and LEGAL immigrants and join with your colleagues in forcing the President to enforce the laws. The biggest responsibility the President and Congress have is to secure our borders and defend this nation. I would recommend that when SecDef Hagel cuts 130K troops from our force that they be offered employment securing our borders. The mess at the border right now was created by the President. He needs to backtrack on his statements and start enforcing the law. The people should be processed and sent back to Mexico. Let Mexico decide where they should go after that. We will NEVER change the behavior of future illegal immigrants by rewarding current illegal immigrants.
Michael, Corona

Thank you for taking serious and caring concern for our many immigrants, especially children. We must pass humane and caring immigration reform.
Paul, Los Angeles

Our family commends and supports your efforts for humane treatment of individuals and families in government custody.
Dina, Playa Del Rey

While I would also require humane treatment for anyone under US control, I am constantly irritated by the particularly California approach to immigration. We're providing driving licenses, tuition, welfare, jury status and other tax paid benefits to people who have broken the law; entered this country illegally. If you want the process to be more equitable, change the law instead of skirting it at will for pet projects that are politically appealing.
David, San Diego

In America we now seem to lurch from crisis to crisis. That's a pretty bad state, especially when the two main parties are firmly opposed more to the other party than firmly in favor of what's good for the country. The lesson of Eric Cantor's loss will probably be lost on the GOP even though it doesn't have to be. The democrat party can also learn something from it. We are supposed to be "a nation of laws" which espouses equal treatment for all. It's time to put our ideals into practice. Immigration is an issue that is cleaving our society, but it doesn't have to. We simply have to practice our ideals and ensure that the path to citizenship is the legal one and only the legal one. There can be no reward of any kind for illegal border crossing regardless of who does it. As my representative I expect nothing less from you.
Jim, Santa Rosa

Please keep pushing. We are being inhumane. We don't need more fences, we need talks and soon.
Margaret, Lafayette

Are you going to come up with this money for the humane treatment of all these people. Why don't you push for their country to take care of their own people. Why Is It that the United States of America has to take care of everyone else. You should have us return him in one day if they are from Mexico. Need I remind you that children can be hired killers also. Someone once said that children make the best soldiers, becarful of letting all these "children" into our country. Why don't you worry about taking care of our own problems.
Jose, San Diego

Thank you for your efforts to secure humane treatment for people crossing our borders, especially the increasing number of children and youth crossing alone. I join with our Catholic bishops in calling for serious reform of immigration policies with a view to protecting human dignity and family integrity. It is truly a national shame that a so-called "nation of immigrants" cannot dedicate itself by law and practice to a just and humane treatment of these vulnerable individuals and families. We sadly have not learned the lesson of our own history of shabby treatment of immigrants of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries and developed a more enlightened and just view of the "huddled masses" coming to our borders.
David, Fresno

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Pause for Safety Act

Californians respond to my message on Preventing Gun Violence:

Thank you for this effort to reduce these senseless killings. For some time now, we have needed new ways to deal with firearm violence by the hands of unstable personalities. I totally support your goal and will actively work to gain the support of others.
William, Castro Valley

Thanks so much for recognizing and pushing these bills to alleviate the violence of guns and knives. We are fed up with the violence today. We are ready.  Vote NOW.
Eugene & Mary, Inglewood

I think it's a very modest effort in light of the huge amount of violence we have today from guns, but at least it's something that could have helped in this case and might help others. Good for you.
Diana, Fallbrook

I applaud your efforts to get a reasonable gun safety law through Congress. The NRA has dictated the terms of this discussion for far too long, as have the minority who believe any restrictions on their right to bear arms is a travesty. They are noisy and hard to ignore and my best wishes - and thanks - for introducing this important legislation.
Gail, Sacramento

Please keep the pressure up to change the laws for gun control. We need to keep guns out of the hands of anyone with mental illness or previous history of violence. It is a fine line between protecting people and infringing on their personal privacy rights, but there must be better methods to stop this madness from continuing. Also, we need to relook at what mental health facilities and other help is available. Too many people are falling through the cracks and then the innocents are the ones who pay dearly.
Ali, Concord

I fear that this type of legislation may arm lawyers with tools to include family and friends as partially responsible for an attack, if they did not seek to remove the guns from the gunman's possession prior to an attack. I am also concerned that everyone is completely ignoring the fact that the "gunman" killed THREE of his victims using KNIVES (and possibly a drug?). Will we then have KNIFE control? Why not? Because we know full-well, KNIVES are not the problem...the KILLER is. Thanks for listening.
Becky, Goleta

Anything you can do to rein in the obscene influence of the NRA and its flunkies is applauded by us. Thank you.
Em'n'Georgia, San Diego

Thank you for this new bill idea. I loathe guns and believe that we need to rewrite the 2nd amendment. In looking at pro-gun chats after the Isla Vista massacre, all those yahoos were saying that California has the strictest gun laws and that the assassin followed all the laws. So, it looks like we're pretty screwed no matter what. I hope your law helps. Thank you for pushing it forward.
Melinda, Burbank

It’s time we put an end to the proliferation of guns. Don’t be afraid to tackle the NRA, They’ve done enough damage. From Brady to Giffords Reagan not to mention Columbine and the Isla vista shootings. I could go on and on. Please stop this.
Diane, Encino

Thank you so much for attempting to set forth legislation regarding gun control. The slogan that has come out of UC Santa Barbara NOT ONE MORE is so appropriate. We must stop this gun madness somehow and save our children. My granddaughter is leaving to go to UC Chico this fall and I am afraid - afraid that some unsettled sick person will use a gun on that campus. Please support whatever you can to remedy gun control in the U.S.
Barbara, Granite Bay

I cannot see why the average citizen needs to have machine gun or an army weapon that holds 20 30 bullets in a clip. Our country has long had a well-regulated militia. People who hunt for rabbits or for food do not use weapons of mass destruction.  Regarding gun safety, Californians need more safety. Perhaps there could be a mandatory course on gun safety that a gun-buyer needs to pass before he/she is allowed to buy such a weapon. If elected officials would stop listening to gun-nuts maybe there would be less murders. When a person wants to buy a motor vehicle he/she has to pass the test. Why not with guns too? Psychologists are not going to catch all the crazies, but maybe better gun registration laws will slow them down!  
David, La Habra

After the UCSB killings, I am TOTALLY with the father of one of the murdered - Mr. Martinez - CONGRESS must STOP dithering and DO something about background checks, Psychiatric evaluations and immediate search warrants if parents call about a troubled child - REGARDLESS of age!! Something must be done. I wrote to President Obama and said until I see action on guns, no more contributions to ANY Congress member - no one. I am a life long Democrat, but enough is enough. I am sick and tired of a do nothing Congress.
Jayne, Santa Monica

The tools you propose are a good first step, but I am firmly convinced that only the military and police should have access to semi-automatic and automatic weapons. There is no legitimate right if they are not part of a well-regulated militia to own or possess such weapons of mass destruction. Please do more to protect innocent lives. Why can't the U.S. do a better job of protecting innocent people from gun violence?
Allen, Castro Valley

You have my full support in seeking expanded options for limiting gun access to those whose families, friends and authorities deem at risk of violent behavior. However, it does not go far enough. A restraining order will not keep guns out of the hands of those who are bent on committing mayhem and mass destruction. Guns are easily obtained illegally, and alternative methods, such as knives and explosives are also relatively easy to come by, if destruction is the goal. We must work toward gun control AND address the ever-growing problem of mental illness. Reagan closed mental institutions, which were not optimum, cut mental health funding and turned the mentally ill out onto the streets with no support. I know you have stayed in the Senate far longer than you planned because the country has taken such an ugly turn. Please make sweeping, comprehensive reform of the gun laws and mental health classification and funding your priority in your last years in public service. Too many innocent people are being killed or otherwise damaged for a lifetime, all because the gun lobbies have a stranglehold on our representatives in Washington. As always, I stand in strong support of you and your efforts on behalf of Californians and all Americans.
Sheryl, Burbank

We are the only country in the Western World that allows gun ownership by the citizens. This should not be this way. All this business about the checks people wanting to buy guns – their mental stability or their criminal record is a bunch of bologna. It is like putting a pacifier in the month of a crying baby. The NRA puts a lot of money, by publicity of their cause, gives lots of money for political campaigns) because if gun ownership was banned, that would lose money from the selling of guns. Money is their main motive. They say that it is a constitutional right to bear arms. Things have changed since the Constitution was written. For example, if you feel threatened, you can phone the police and they can be there in minutes. When the Constitution was written, there were neither phones nor cars. As there father of one of the victims in Isla Vista said, so eloquently, "My son had a right to live."
Sue, Benicia

It is tragic that the family knew their son was in trouble but couldn't stop him. They did the right things informing the police that he was a potential problem but in the end couldn't prevent him from killing 6 people. The other piece to this puzzle is background checks which the entire country supports but the gun lobby prevents. I blame the NRA for Travon Martins death. That stand your ground law is a recipe for murder. Now Georgia allows people to carry guns anywhere even into a bar. Now there's a recipe for trouble. What are they thinking?
Jan, Los Angeles

This is a feeble attempt at winning votes from people who need Congress [to] care about loss of young lives more than they care about votes or money. In most cases no one even has tried to intervene on the gun and ammunition purchases. This business of laws with "if" clauses that depend on the courts is a scam that pleases the NRA. How long will we tiptoe around while our kids (including the kids who kill) are dying?
Roberta, Santa Barbara

Please keep up the good work. I am Executive Director of One SAFE Place in Shasta County a non-profit agency serving victims of domestic violence and sexual assault. We are building a new shelter in memory of a young woman and her two small girls who were shot to death by the husband/father. Good Luck,
Jean, Redding

Your proposed bill is a good start but only a tiny piece of the puzzle. Too many little pieces may be as problematic and confusing as not enough. The problem is the interface of an inadequate national mental healthcare network, the role and coordination of law enforcement personnel, an intractable gun lobby and its supporters, and dysfunctional families or families with no-win choices of how to deal with mentally ill relatives. In California, we emptied and closed our mental care institutions and are now substituting for them with jails. Our police are not trained to be counsellors for the mentally ill, nor should that be their mission. Families, too, are not trained to identify or deal with mentally ill members. Gun advocates refuse to acknowledge that any form of regulation to prevent the mentally ill from getting easy access to guns can be consistent with their interpretation of the 2nd admendment. Compromise has become a dirty word in politics, but the only way to solve this epidemic of gun violence against civilians is for mental health experts, law enforcement authorities, and gun lobbyists to put their heads together and find a workable compromise. There are plenty of viable role models out there. (Look at Switzerland.) Best of luck.
Mike, Irvine

I fully support your measure. I live in a rural community and my big political sign for District
Attorney was riddled with bullet holes, the stop signs, pedestrian crossing and school signs as well at considerable cost to tax payers. I am very concerned with the waste and disregard of the public arena. AS a psychiatric nurse I believe in early intervention of issues of concern to families and the whole community. We must do more. School education about violence and guns would help.
Nancy, Garberville

You start of with in the wake of the tragic SHOOTING in Isla Vista and proceed in all three of your points emphasize GUN violence, with not one mention that three of the six were killed by stabbing. Where and when do you mention the deaths by the nut cases that involve other means of killings knives, hammers, etc.  You people really amaze most of us that understand that what you and your constituents propose will not even reduce the violence, and the real truth is you know that as well. There were certainly early warning signs for this one and it seems that the tools needed to stop this before it happened were either not used of unavailable to those that had these signs before them. Lets please quit the political self promotion on the gun violence issue and get to the a solution that makes it better for all of us. I admit that i do not have the solution but by concentrating on GUN violence is in my mind taking away from getting to an overall plan covering the many aspects required to help reduce all violence,
John, Anaheim

I applaud your efforts. This sounds like a good start to help curb some of the violence against school-aged children and innocent bystanders we are reading about all too often.
I feel stricter laws need to be enacted to curb the proliferation of guns with the ability to fire many rounds quickly. Also stricter laws on backgrounds check before the purchase of firearms is approved. The statistics of 37,000 deaths due to firearms does not scratch the surface of the harm guns do. The injuries, medical bills, family losses, etc. When the first line of defending one's self is a gun, the outcome is not going to be positive. The carrying of concealed or non-concealed guns in public is not only unnerving to me but, I feel, likely exacerbates the problem.
Catherine, Santa Barbara

I'm proud of you for being part of this act. Gun violence of this type is sickening. My heart broke when Mr. Martinez told of his frustration of the gun registration laws that are being blocked by the cowardly NRA controlled legislators. Between you and Diane Feinstein, you are my favorite. I am a lifelong Democrat and Viet Nam vet. I was against the war, but got drafted and went for 3 yrs. anyway. Keep up the good work.
Jim, Sonora

Your proposal sounds like rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic. More complex rules for the courts and law enforcement to follow that will probably not help anyone. How about you propose some substantial gun control that actually removes millions of guns from our society?
Joe, San Jose

Your proposal for another gun law based on the violence at UCSB is nonsense. First there were SIX (6) murders - THREE (3) murders committed by a KNIFE. Your legislation does not address that, so it's easy to conclude that all this is is another reason to try to circumvent the 2nd Amendment. You can't always "FIX" things with quick knee-jerk legislation. In this case mental health was clearly the problem and I suggest you look to that area - not taking guns away from law abiding people because a mentally ill person killed THREE PEOPLE WITH A KNIFE AND THREE PEOPLE WITH A GUN. I was in law enforcement for 31 yrs and this is not a solution to the violence at UCSB.
Ron, Camarillo

The recent Isla Vista killing spree was indeed a horrific event. While I agree that more needs to be more done to stop certain people from committing violence, we must also make sure that we know the full facts of the case and not respond with knee-jerk quick fixes. I believe that there should be a cooling off period with additional investigation by a diverse panel to determine the whole story, not just the sensational news story. From what I have read in the papers, the police were aware of the individual's history and publications, but decided to not do anything. It also appears that the parents were aware of "problems" but didn't fully explore options. I can only imagine what it would be like to have a child exhibit murderous tendencies. There are many constitutional issues at hand that must be considered. Violent people will commit violent acts - the trick is to figure out who they are and what to do about them. I don't think what you have outlined properly addresses the full scope of the problems. Cool off, grieve, fact find, then act.
James, Cambria

Thank you for working on the crucial piece of legislation. I am so thankful that you are my representative in the Senate, and that you represent the will of the people, not the interests of the gun lobby. I have been heartbroken and outraged over and over again at the unwillingness of Congress to enact legislation to make our country safer from gun violence. It is shameful and I applaud your courage in taking a stand.
Mary, Topanga

My wife and I have experienced 18 years of dealing with a schizophrenic sociopath and have asked for help just like the parents of the young man asked for, and got none. Please, I ask you, not to make this bill just a GUN issue when the real issue is that people need help to care for those that are mentally ill and to help protect them from harm to themselves or to the public at large. Remember that three room mates were stabbed to death before the shooting spree started. Should we include in the bill to have the right to remove any type of weapon that the mentally ill person could possess or purchase to do harm? This in no way takes away the pain and suffering both sides are feeling from this horrifically violent act that he perpetrated on these parents. But the fact remains he was a very unstable person who needed help and did not receive any. We need more stringent laws to deal with the mentally ill in order to force them to receive the treatment they need, so as not to let this continue. How about only paying their benefits if and when they comply with regular doctor visits and/or therapy and medication? You have started with a great idea, but think what is going to come from the other side of the discussion. They keep repeating the same old rhetoric "guns don't kill people, people kill people." Take the guns away and these mentally unstable people will still find a way to complete their mission; whatever it may be. May God help those who may need his love to heal the wounds of grief and help to carry the heavy burden of loss. God Bless all those on both sides who lost their loved ones....
Mark, San Diego

I am pleased to hear your announcement about introducing a legislation that would help our community of potential dangerous people with new options to help prevent gun violence. It is a tragedy to hear that our mental health system failed us and that young lives had to end in order for us to notice that we have a crack in our system. Maybe this is the time to reevaluate how our social services and police department help people with special needs get the attention they require when it deals with their inner anger and frustrations of life. Just because a person is young it does not mean we need to ignore their emotions and move one and hope it’s a phase there are going through, but to take it serious enough that we do more than just make a report and move on to the next case file. But to pay attention to them and watch them, help them or give them a shelter were professional can help them deal with their emotions. And I am not talking about another jail, 51/50 hold or state hospital but a place more like a rehab center that allows them to go in and out and stay and have professionals help them with their emotions. People with autism have a difficulty understanding how others respond to them. I know that because my young sister is diagnose with autism but is fully functional in public however our family has notice that she does not understand everyone why's and do's. So we try the best to help her understand. She does get frustrated and its takes a while to cool down. And this is where our mental health system has a crack. Now that my sister is out of high school and is a medical patient, there is limited assistance for her. Although we are trying our best to help her out live in our world it is sad to hear that young adults with autism to not have much help unless they harm themselves or others. Which is something I do not want my sister or anyone else with autism go through. Thank you again for making a difference and for reading my letter.
Doris, San Pedro

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Benghazi Hearings

Californians respond to my message on The GOP’s Benghazi Witch Hunt:

Thanks for standing up and calling out the Republicans who are wasting precious taxpayer dollars and the nation's time on yet another pointless attempt to make the Benghazi tragedy a political opportunity. I am so fed up with this political theater when there is so much real need for mature legislative processes that would address issues that actually matter to ordinary, average Americans, such as the dire need to accelerate the development of renewable energy sources.
Linda, La Crescenta

Thank you, Senator Boxer, for standing up to Republicans in their quest to make a tragedy into political fodder. Never give in to them.
Linda, Apple Valley

Benghazi was preventable.....and a US Ambasador was killed because of incomepant handling of the situation. The GOP is not on a witch hunt....someone should go to jail for this atrocity. Democrat...or Republican. It is unacceptable that no one has been fired (and not just moved within the DC system).
David, Huntington Beach

Thank you for standing up against the witch hunt. Had the state department had better funding and had we a crystal ball - this wouldn't have happened. Time to act on short comings and move on. It is amazing that the  GOP wants to witch hunt a terrible situation over 4 deaths. They seem to have forgotten WMDs and tens of thousands of deaths. That was by far a greater tragedy, cover up, and lie.
Jana, Valencia

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Nuclear Safety

Californians respond to my message on Increasing Safety at Nuclear Power Plants:

Thank you for your diligence in raising awareness of and seeking remedies for nuclear plant decommissioning. I am heartened by your quick recognition of the additional danger posed by Mother Nature/wildfires and your proactive stance.
Carol, Garden Grove

Thank you for your prompt communication in the wake of the recent evacuation of SONGS personnel during the So Cal fires last week. I live in South Laguna Niguel and this was of great concern to me. I'm afraid most in our community are unaware of the dangers still posed to our community by this plant due to the unresolved issues about on site nuclear waste. There is a false sense of complacency since the plant has been decommissioned and, other than the activists who pay attention to these issues, there is a general lack of awareness of what is happening there. Thank you for keeping a focus on this important issue.
Burchfield, Laguna Niguel

Please make sure everyone realizes the TOTAL cost of nuclear power in general ... INCLUDING the cost of closing plants and storing waste when considering any NEW facilities.
Holly, Irvine

It is good to know that the nuclear plant at San Onofre is now closed. There is literally no way to safely operate a facility like this when it sits on or very near the San Andreas Fault. An earthquake in that area is inevitable, not merely a possibility. Thank you for your great work.
Ruth, Laguna Beach

Excellent work.on the safety legislation regarding the decommissioning of the nuclear plants. How timely , with the horrendous fires in our neighborhoods these past few days. Thank you for keeping the attention laser focused on this situation.
Iki, Tina, Escondido

Why are we closing the most efficient and "green" sources of energy? Ignorance should not be a factor in making decisions affecting millions of American taxpayers' ability to access low cost energy.. Closing nuclear power plants further depletes our national security posture, increasing our dependence on foreign energy sources. Senator, please put the interests of ALL Californians ahead of you liberal power base. What a great legacy to leave--were you to encourage an honest approach to energy and water management for California. On your current legislative path, you will be remembered as a key enabler of the demise of the once great Golden State.
Coulman, Michael, Carlsbad

Thank-you for all of the excellent representation that you have given residents who surround the San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station. My family has followed this issue closely and we have been reminded of your great efforts often.
Georgina, San Clemente
I just wanted to thank you for all your hard work and tenacity in getting the San Onofre Nuclear plant decomissioned. Every day I worry for my family that there could be fire, earthquake, leak, terror attack, etc. at the plant causing havoc and a leak of radiation into our air. I am wondering what damage the plant has caused to our ocean and marine life. We need everything removed from the plant as soon as possible. Time is of the essence.
Kathy, San Clemente

Thank you Senator Boxer and staff for the research, time and public safety proactiveness in drafting this bill! Your introduction to the bill was such an education on how commissions that are supposed to regulate and enforce in the interest of public safety have jumped into bed with those they are regulating! The ability to walk away from the responsibility of ensuring the safety of the public and protection of the earth and to have a blessing while doing this is ludicrous! Whatever happened to ethics and responsibility!
Again thank you for watching out for the citizens of this great state, the land and our cherished natural resourses! If this bill does not pass, please publish the names of those opposing the health and safety of the public so we can take action to remove them from a position (s) that mandates responsibilty, an ability to research and make EDUCATED decisions and most of all enforce and/or enact compliance that ensures the best interest of the global community.
Donna, Vista

I agree fully with your letter to the NRC about the Emergency Response Originations at SONGS and maybe other nuclear stations. I was a member of the SONGS ERO for about 25 years and tried to improve it and provided many suggestions. SONGS generally ignored my suggestions and began retaliating. Then I reported this to the NRC and provided copious documentation, which they ignored and did nothing. As time passed the SONGS ERO continued to decline in quality and effectiveness, and some of the problem personnel quit or were terminated and went to other stations, some in California. I hope the NRC and SONGS ERO can be brought up to standards. I was laid off in November 2012 and no longer work there. Good job!!! -
Bob, Dana Point

I appreciate your concern for the safety of nuclear power plants. I work in the nuclear industry and do not appreciate what I consider misinformed decisions and what I believe are incorrect statements regarding nuclear power plants, operating or decommissioning. Plants going through decommissioning do not have their emergency plans terminated. They have them reduced commensurate with the reduction in risk associated with not being at high temperature, pressure, or reactor power. Additionally, after being shutdown for some time, there is significantly less decay heat that has to be removed. A wild fire near the plant poses a threat of loss of off-site power which, in an operating plant, would cause a plant transient. At San Onofre, the fuel has been removed from the core so there would be no plant transient. Please, before you sensationalize the threat, look at the science and facts behind what you are about to say. Please have someone knowledgeable explain what it would take to get a nuclear fuel fire as you call it.
Greg, San Clemente

Thank you for your work on nuclear safety for decommissioned nuclear plants. As a San Diego county resident living 35 miles from San Onofre, I truly appreciate it.
Marcia, Encinitas

Nuclear energy has not been proved to be any more hazardous than any other source, so why not repair the plant? California definitely needs this site to stay open. It will cost as much to dismantle this facility as to repair !!
Betty, Carslbad

Thank You Barbara for working on this very serious issue of nuclear decommissioning. As a concerned local resident near the San Onofre Plant, it comes as a great relief to know that your solid action is helping to ensure positive long-term safety for our communities.
Paul, San Juan Capistrano

Thank you for all that you are doing to make the decommissioning of the San Onofre plan safe.
We live fairly close to it, and I am grateful that you are working on behalf of the safety of our community.
Lynette, Encinitas

Keep the pressure on the NRC. I, for one, would like nothing better than to shut down all of the nuclear plants until a safe method of energy and disposal (or neutralization) of spent materials can be established. Solar, Wind, and other clean energy sources is the way to go. We think we are smart, but why did we build on the coast of California in the first place? What were we thinking? Look at what happened in Japan with their sea facing plants. Here we too have earthquakes and fault-lines, tsunamis, fires and just plain old human error, any one of which can result in the loss of hundreds of thousands of lives, and still nowhere for the spent fuel to go. Really. Keep the pressure up on the NRC, who needs nuclear power plants to justify their existence, keep other plants in California safe with your pressure and oversight and stop the building of any more nuclear power plants in California. Thank you for continuing to keep California safe.
Shaun, Carlsbad

I understand the need for safety at Nuclear Power Plants but at the rising costs of electric energy we need to keep them running instead od shutting them down. The energy companies are constantly increasing costs and apply surcharges to customers. The can seriously hurt lower paid people with unnecessary costs. These costs can sometimes double the persons bill. All utility companies are doing this so it would help if the government looked into these unnecessary extra taxes.
Ronald, Riverside

Thank you for representing California residents so fiercely on the issue of nuclear plant disolvement. I like the way you write and think and that you have taken action to protect us through legislation. Please continue to represent us in meaningful ways.
Barbara, Laguna Beach

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Californians respond to my message on the Permanent Closure of the San Onofre Nuclear Plant (07/07/2014):

Thank you very much for the wonderful news that the San Onofre nuclear power plant is closing down for good! There was radioactive steam coming from their steam generator tubes, releasing radioactivity into our atmosphere, and nobody needs that.
Karen, El Cajon

I share with you a great sense of relief that the SONGS facility will be shut down! As a resident of Fallbrook, I feel that this power plant remains quite threatening, even if not operational, due in large part to the remaining stored nuclear waste on site. This is the next problem waiting to be addressed. Removal of this hazardous waste should be a national priority!
Jonathan, Escondido

As a Captain with the Orange County Fire Department (now Orange County Fire Authority) I was part of the team that set up the Off-site Dose Assessment Team protocols for San Onofre. One of the items required was radio communications. They were very happy to show us the radio, but not as happy as when we told them we needed to try it out. They had neglected to install the antennae. You really need to watch them like a hawk to ensure that they do things correctly.
Gary, Irvine

It's about time that this dangerous plant be closed and decommissioned. I understand that we will probably have to have some new nuclear plants before we can be nuclear free but they must be built in safer places and with better engineering. Let there not be any corner cutting etc. Hopefully we all can learn that safety outweighs profits and the public has right to know and then have their say. Not only a right but a duty and may we not be too busy or too tired.
Shirley, Douglas City

So you think an emotional reaction is the best solution to an engineering problem. No wonder there is little trust in our Washington representation. Why not have qualified engineers review the design and recommend a solution that does not waste the investment made in the power plant? Or do you really believe all those wind mills, killing all those birds, is the best answer to California's energy needs?
Harry, Long Beach

I worked at Units 1, 2 and 3, and am disappointed in the fact that strict standards were not followed in the repairs of Units 2 and 3. I recall very strict standards while working at all three units. Unit 1 should have been refueled one more time in my opinion. We put lots of work into the unit for safety, and running it for one more cycle would have paid for the costs, and provide billions of watts to the area. Due to the reduced standards I have seen in most construction industries over the last 20 years, I agree with your assessment. Please do follow through with the investigation, and keep in mind the heavy economic costs of a few people wanting to cut corners by ignoring set standards.
William, San Diego

All of us within the 50 mile radius of San Onofre (We are about 5 miles away !!!) Thank you Many Times over for you efforts in getting beyond the shenanigans and Shutting It Down. Scary, it was ! ! ! ! Thanks : )
Stephen, Oceanside

Thank you so much for protecting our environment and the citizens of California by supporting the permanent decommission of the San Onofre Nuclear facility. With our known propensity for earthquakes, Lord knows we don't need another Fukushima in the world!
Kim, Simi Valley

I received your email and wnted to respond and let you know i am elated to hear this news!! I have been waiting to hear this my whole life. Thank you for sharing, keep up the good work!
Yvonne, Anaheim

Thank you for your efforts to close San Onofre. This is a huge safety improvement for SoCal. Nobody wants any risk of the disaster from which Japan is still recovering. Of course I favor Wind, Solar and the newly emerging wave energy sources. Wave energy seems well suited for SoCal. Perhaps it would be a good research project for our local engineering colleges. There are several alternative methods currently being tried in various places and we should understand which is the best for SoCal. Perhaps local energy companies could work with our universities to evaluate alternatives. Again, thank you so much for your efforts on our behalf.
Billie, Apple Valley

Absolutely stupid move. 40 years of safe operation. 1500 valuable jobs 20% electricity to San Diego 2 cents per KW, compared to 12 cents wind power Consumer prices will go up yet again No carbon emissions Repair the bloody pipes The repair is even cheaper than dismantling Repair the bloody pipes And you're proud of this? Absolutely stupid move.
Howard, San Diego

Thank you for the update on the San Onofre plant. I too have been concerned about the safety of the plant following the redesign and its subsequent problems. This is likely outside your perview, but I feel compelled to say that the cost of the decmmissioning should be borne by the corporation(s) that produced the faulty updates (and likely misled regulators and investigators). The customers had no voice in any of the decisions leading up to the current state. They should not be financially liable for the mistakes of the corporation.
Timothy, San Diego

I cannot disagree more with the intentional roadbocks put into play to prevent this critical electric resource to be brought online. As a Southern California resident tired of the "save even more power" campaigns, brownouts, blackouts, and very high costs for power, what have you and your office done to improve the situation? Bring solutions to the table along with your applause. Otherwise, you are simply a contributor to the challenges we have in California. We regretfully look forward to higher electric costs as a result of your actions.
Robert, Fullerton

I live in the area around San Onofre that would be affected by a leak or meltdown. I am delighted to hear that it will not be restarted. Thank you for all you have done to call attention to the fact that it was a disaster waiting to happen. I still have concerns about what will be done with the material remaining on site. I will look forward to your representing the citizens in solving the rest of this difficult problem.
Helene, Bonsall

I wanted to thank you for your leadership and diligent efforts in bringing about the closure of the SCE nuclear power plant in San Onofre. SCE's past actions have clearly demonstrated that they put profits before safety and this plant closure ensures that there will not be any horrendous accidents that could result in a heavy human toll. I would very much appreciate it if you were to take a leadership role in ensuring that the decommissioning is accomplished in a safe and diligent manner.
Ravi, Aliso Viejo

I have personally worked at San Onofre and spoke with the NRC after the townhall meeting and am dissapointed with your stance, jumping on the bandwagon to be politically correct. It is rediculous to assume a like for like steam generator replacement and would be foolish as well as unsafe to do so. Technology has made major advancements and those improvements were icorporated into the design. Edison went to extremes, and used Misubishi Heavy Industries, who had a reputation for some of the best metallurgy on the planet. The design modelling is what went wrong, and the NRC publically stated the Edison was not guilty of any wrong doing. Although you portray this as a victory, California will loose big time because of the loss of power generation at home, jobs, and paying the premium to the other scum bags in the industry, and your comments raise doubt to your loyalties.
David, Newport Beach

Thank you for your support in helping raise awareness of the critical need to close the San Onofre Nuclear Power Plant. I am relieved to know the plant will never run again. Now to dispose of that radioactive waste material and to ensure that those employed at the plant will be able to find new greener jobs.
Nona, San Clemente

Thank you for all your work to get the San Onofre Nuclear power plant closed. I surf at San Onofre regularly, and news of the coverup culture of Southern California Edison has caused me to worry about contamination in the water and air surrounding the plant. This citizen of California thanks you!
Vanessa, Los Angeles

I am greatly relieved as well that the scarey power plant in the middle of a huge earth quake zone in the "pacific rim of fire" is closed as well.
Pam, Costa Mesa

I am beyond thrilled to hear that San Onofre is going to permanently shut down. We do not need another Fukushima like event. Thank you for all you have contributed to make this happen. Thank you for the safety inquiries which were instrumental in the result. Hoping for a nuclear free California, meaning no license renewal for Diablo. Hoping for the same for the whole country. We can do it with decentralized energy, solar, wind, and other renewables. We can do it with better building standards and transportation efficiencies. We need a healthy environment.
Donna, San Luis Obispo

Thank You for your influence and inspection activities/influence in shutting down the San Onofre, though I think they/we should have built a New SUPER SAFE efficient facility to service the southern area of California. I believe in SAFE nuclear energy,, like we have been using for at least the past 20 years in our Country and on Naval Ships, etc. With what we know today, and with a long ocean coast, California needs to have super safe nuclear powerplants. So let's build a new super safe & efficient facility on or next to the old plant.
Craig, San Diego

I would like to thank you for helping to see through the closure of San Onofre Nuclear Power Plant. After having lived through the terror and uncertainty of the earthquake and subsequent meltdown of the three reactors at Fukushima Daiichi as a resident of Japan, I can no longer trust nuclear energy as the "safe alternative." Especially when facilities are located in earthquake/tsunami-prone areas a mere 50 miles from major metropolitan areas and operated by private companies that just consider the bottom line (even in the closing of this plant). Please continue to follow-up on Edison's decommissioning of this plant. As it will sadly never be safe there as long as radioactive substances or contaminated parts are in storage, the plant will need to be closely overseen for years beyond our lifetimes. Please see that Edison and friends do everything legally and morally required to protect this plant from natural and man-made disasters... and help us to learn to be more responsible in conserving energy so there will be no need for nuclear plants. It's a lot to ask, I know. But you have shown that you can do the work that needs to be done to protect the people and environment of the state that you represent.
Roxanne, Sacramento

Are you and your "green" friends going to employ the 1100 people who will lose their jobs? Are there "green" jobs for engineers and technicians who don't want to become organic farmers? SCE didn't decide to shut SONGS down because it was "defective". They decided that the unpredictability of the Regulatory process made continuing to work on restarting the plant economically unfeasible. But that was the plan, wasn't it? Delay, delay, delay and go to court. Then you can wait out any business or person who believes that the creativity and aspirations of anything more lucrative than scratching in the dirt for subsistence should be rewarded by the fellow humans they benefit. As a constituent ( that means someone who you represent.) I object to the idea that the government's unelected agencies are better equipped to decide what is "safe". I have lived within 15 miles of SONGS for 25 years and have never felt threatened. The Red Herring you keep tossing about regarding the safety of nuclear power generation has become offensive to my intelligence.
Patricia, Aliso Viejo

I am pleased with the closure of the power plant for the safety of the community. However, just a couple of years ago we experienced "Brown" and "Black" outs due to insufficient power during the peak times of the year. With plant off line, where is the power coming from to make up for the the plant. I know the Sunrise Link is complete but the solar fields are not ready and the wind farm is shut down. Also of concern, the beauty of the coast line. Is Sempra responsible for returning the coast back to what it was like prior to the plant or do we have to look at the eyesore along the coast?
William, San Diego

I was becoming increasingly alarmed at their dodging of issues and their confrontation of the Channel 10 news team that went out to take pictures of San Onofre from public property and were bullied off the public land by security forces at San Onofre. What were they trying to hide??? Kudos to you for keeping tabs on this issue. And thanks, in advance, for making sure that the decommission doesn't pose an even greater threat to our community.
Cynthia, San Diego

With the plant closing what happens to all the workers that loses their jobs. This is not good for California with an already high unemployment rate. What are you doing about that? Will my bill go up?
Sheila, Wildomar

I'm grateful for your work to shut down the San Onofre nuclear plant. Nuclear power has such serious risks, both for present generations of human, plant, and animal life, and for future generations thousands of years into the future, that a sane society would never consider use nuclear energy as a power source.
Julie, Nevada City

So glad it is being closed. I am greatly concerned about the nuclear plants in Southern CA in El Segundo on the coast line with the possibility of earthquakes and other natural disasters it is the same type and built in the same year as the plant in Japan that has caused the entire area to be evacuated due to radiation. I have often thought of the lack of wisdom in putting a plant so close to the ocean where so much damage can be done. There may be no known time frame for disaster but with all the changes in climate and earth one thing I know for sure it is eminent.
Rebecca, Los Angeles

If it`s unsafe without an earthquake, how would it hold up in a Japan size earthquake? Please see it through that it gets safely disassembled so it doesn't get dumped into the Ocean.
Elemer, Vista

I read your email resoundingly applauding the permanent closure of San Onofre. I am one of those, with my wife and children, that are part of the 8 million residents affected, and yet I strongly DISAGREE with your position and promotion of your position. The nuclear plant could have been amended and repaired and would have continued to provide low cost power - instead, the burden of decommissioning will be thrust upon the same 8 million people that you claim that you want to protect. I don't hear you offering to have the Federal Government pay for the decommissioning. You just don't like nuclear, I sense. Regardless, your pressure to close this valuable asset has been persuasive to Sthn Cal Edison - they don't care since they can so to the Utilities Commission and get a rate hike to have me pay for the decommissioning - I feel that you have done the community a disservice by promoting this cause, and I want to register my disapproval of your action.
Patric, Laguna Hills

As a California resident, I was delighted to learn from you about the closing of the San Onofre nuclear plant. The use of, and the suggestion that the use of nuclear power should be expanded, absolutely terrifies me. As you already know -- nuclear power plant waste poisons this planet and all of its inhabitants: be they animal, vegetable or mineral.
Deborah, Belmont

I live a few miles away from San Onofre, and I feel a great deal more secure knowing the potential for a nuclear accident at San Onofre is gone. Thank you!
Barbara, Thousand Oaks

I, too, was greatly relieved to read in this morning's newspaper that the San Onofre Nuclear Plant was permanently shut down. Besides the more recent operational defects, it has always alarmed me that it was built on or near a fault line.
Barbara, Cardiff By The Sea

I read your relief letter with interest given our need to produce clean energy. There is more to San Onofre than simply the nuclear reactors. What should have been done is (1) redesign to meet your criteria or whoever is complaining about the design, or (2) produce the steam another way, such as using natural gas boilers and steam turbines. Simply killing off the plant should NOT be a relief to you or anyone else. It should be viewed as a signal that while we are looking to using clean fuels and more electric cars, our representatives are not thinking of alternative ways to use existing technology. What about all the electrical distribution equipment, is that all now going to be removed? Why? I'm amazed that you could not come up with a way to help avoid losing a power generation facility along with all the other infrastructure (wires, towers, security, etc.) and that you seem delighted by the prospect.
Jeffrey, Laguna Niguel

I agree that an unsafe plant should be closed. As the impact of that will cause higher rates for electricity and possible black outs, which can in themselves be life-threatening, maybe we should reinvest in energy to meet the needs of Californians. I would be in favor of a modern nuclear plant at the same location taking into consideration all possible dangers that we know of. Not only would that create a sustainable energy source, it would also create many jobs in the dismantling of the old plant and the building of a new one. In any event, doing nothing in regards to our energy needs will be just one more problem for residents and businesses of this great state. Please turn this into an opportunity to move forward! If in need I suggest you review the Fortune Brainstorm Green conference for some other solutions.
John, Woodland Hills

I completely agree with you. Thank you for standing firm with your position.
Mary, Laguna Hills

Thank you for all you have done to get this dangerous plant shut down forever, and for calling for an investigation. I wish all the atomic energy generating plants could be exterminated forever. This is a passion of mine because no one has figured out what to do with the spent fuel. Sticking barrels in a salt mine is laughable, but truly a sad accident waiting to happen.
Paulette, San Diego

I share with you a great sense of relief that the SONGS facility will be shut down! As a resident of Fallbrook, I feel that this power plant remains quite threatening, even if not operational, due in large part to the remaining stored nuclear waste on site. This is the next problem waiting to be addressed. Removal of this hazardous waste should be a national priority!
Jonathan, Fallbrook

Thank you for the notice and for your continued due dilligence regarding the San Onofre power plant. Although we know the power is needed the plant has always been a concern in our community.
P.T., Capistrano Beach

Thank you for your involvement in bringing about the closure of SONGS. My family lives in SC, within 10 miles of SONGS. I thought we really have to fight hard to get it closed. Thanks to your work and the public disclosure of the memo, Edison was forced to realize their position was untenable. Thank you for representing the people of SC and for being concerned about our health and safety.
Nadine, San Clemente

I want to thank you for all your hard work on this issue. As you might imagine, the closing is a great relief to those of us who live within 20 miles of this nuclear plant. I still have deep concerns about the amount of spent fuel that is stored at the facility and perhaps you can address those concerns in the future, although I know it is a thorny issue with no easy answers. But again, I thank you wholeheartedly for your dedication not only to the problems at San Onofre, but to many others, about which I am passionate.
Elizabeth, Dana Point

I think that this is a wise decision in view of the design issues. The ability to limit exposure in the event of a mishap or worse yet a catastrophe such as the one Japan recently suffered heightened the importance of this swift and timely action. I also understand that this facility has other issues associated with spent fuel rods that required a permanent solution. I think that considering the enormous population living within strike distance of the plant it further validates the decision to shut it down and subject it to further regulator scrutiny.
Andrew, San Mateo

We need to keep San Onofre power plant operating. Wind and solar power will not give us the power we need at a reasonable cost. We cannot allow these environmental terrorists to control this country. Please reconsider your stance on this issue.
Robert, Huntington Beach

I realize that this plant had defective equipment and needed to be closed. Due to this we lost a clean energy source, CO2 free. In the summer more electricity shortages will occur. I highly recommend that we build a new Nuclear Power Plant on this same site, using the latest and safest Nuclear equipment technology. Transporting electricity from fossil fuel plants in the desert east of us is inefficient. Much energy is lost over long transmission lines. Burning Fossil fuels to replace nuclear power is going backwards.
Norm, Vista

I gave up five days of my life to stay in jail to try to shut down the Diablo Canyon Nuclear Power Plant. At the time my daughtr was five years old and I felt it was the right thing to do and while we protestors served our time we received the news that there had been a design fault detection that would lead to the temporary shut down of the plant which was built on an earthquake fault. I thank you from the bottom of my heart for your part in the shut down of San Onofre. May this lead to the shut down of all nuclear powered plants everywhere!
Patricia, Santa Rosa

Thank you for any effort, time, and energy you put into this shut-down. Nuclear energy is at the bottom of my CA energy resources list. I much prefer this state endorse and support safe and renewable resources such as wind, surf, solar, and geo-thermal.
Ilof, Madera

I thought of you immediately after reading this morning's news that the San Onofre Nuclear Plant would be closed permanently. What a relief to have it settled the right way. I appreciated your firm stand not to allow it to re-open until tests proved it was safe, and I'm sure that stand played an important role in its closure.
Janet, Costa Mesa

Maybe it's a good thing or maybe it's not. We all want safety but we also need reliable sources of efficient low cost electricity. If San Onofre will permanently be shut down, what are you doing to see that the future power needs of Southern California are met. Rates keep going up and now rate payers will be hit for the cost of shutting down the plant without receiving any benefit of needed electric power. There will also be many good jobs lost because of this. Nobody wins in this situation. There will be less power, fewer jobs, and higher electic rates.
Raymond, San Diego

I am a widower, having attained the age of 87, so I am not terrified of the goings on at San Onofre. However, my children and grandchildren live close by. For them, I thank you for your efforts.
Bill, Oceanside

Swell - When you are through crowing about the San Onofre power plant being shut down for good consider: (1) Unfortunately we customers will be stuck with the $$$ billions for the cost of closing it out. We customers are already paying for the ongoing screw-ups. (2) The reduced generating capacity has to be made up for somehow. Tell me where you think it might come from. There isn't anywhere enough wind or solar generating capacity and coal burning generation from the four corners is a giant step backwards. (3) Our do nothing, dumber than dirt Congress needs to come together in the realization that America's infrastructure is in serious need of upgrading, including power generating capacity, which, for a number of reasons, must be renewable and environmentally neutral, if not positive.
Robert, Capistrano Beach

I appreciate the fact of decommissioning a nuclear site, but then what? National developers coming into California to develop the land? I hope not...why? because developers do not care about the beautiful land of California. They care about profits. SO I really hope, because that is all I can convince you of - that California will not develop the land but keep it preserved and beautiful.....development by mindless profiteers are irreversible.
Genna, Oceanside

I am wholly against the closure of the nuclear facility and against all attempts to stop new nuclear facilities. This is a clean, safe and efficient way to produce power on a large scale and until we can find another way it is better than coal and oil.
Steven, San Diego

I believe strongly that San Onofre cannot be truly safe until the nuclear fuel and spent nuclear fuel stored onsite are removed. I request you work to persuade Senator Reed to allow removal and shipment of nuclear waste to the mountain site in Nevada. That seems to be the safest of all options, and should not be blocked for the sake of a very small number of Nevada citizens who would be subjected to a very slight risk, mostly during shipment which can be very tightly controlled.
Jim, San Clemente

Thank you Senator for your hard work and efforts leading to investigations and closure of this dangerous and costly plant.
Inese, Del Mar

I, too, am relieved that San Onofre is closed. But I do not appreciate having had to pay for its failure, not do I believe that we should have to pay increased rates this summer because of this failure. My electric bill last summer was ridiculous, and I do not look forward to another summer of increased rates. I hope that you and your colleagues have the influence to prevent such continued highway robbery.
Myra, Newport Beach

Your prejudice against nuclear power has been demonstrated by your internet message and prior statements. Your claims of radiation hazards to the population within 50 miles of the plant are ludicrous and confirm your prejudice. The small steam leak that led to the San Onofre shut down led to no release of radiation, a situation that would have been replicated in the worst case had that plant been allowed to operate at 70% power. The absence of locally produced base power in San Diego County may well lead to power shortages and damaging oscillations in times of peak usage. We will know who to thank for that.
John, San Diego 

Thank you so much for all that you have done to ensure that unsafe plant was shut down for good! I was so concerned, and afraid they would put it back online.
Amelie, Vista

Thank you for bringing to light the dangers of old and outdated nuclear energy technology. In the future I hope community based renewable energy is the way to go.
Jordan, San Diego

Thank you for representing us well in this case, and in your continued efforts with DOJ to investigate SCE. Nuclear energy is nowhere near clean. Thank you for your support of actual clean energy sources. Well done!
John, Los Angeles

Thank you so much for all your hard work & continued oversight of San Onofre and its problems. Back in the early 1970s, when this site was submitted for approval, The Center for Law in the Public Interest (in Los Angeles) sued to stop construction because of its inherent dangers to the community and to the ocean. Located on an earthquake fault, as well, San Onofre should never have been approved, but it was. The late Ric Sutherland, a CLIPI attorney, and a confirmed environmentalist, would have been so relieved to learn the plant will be closed for good. As I drive past it, I always mutter "I am now passing one of the most dangerous places on earth." -- A big sigh of relief from your constituent who knew about the history and the problems. I will closely monitor its deconstruction.
Sydney, Oceanside

I am so elated that the closure will now be permanent and we don't have to be in fear of any number of things that could set off a horrible disaster.
Gerry, Laguna Woods

Gee that is really neat the you have managed to shut San Onofre down permanently. So just how do you intend to make up for the energy that it has provided. Are you going to allow us to have rolling brown outs this summer or are you just going to cut off the current all together?
Jim, Murrieta

Many of us who live within miles of the plant are breathing a sigh of relief. This plant should never have been built on the cliffs of the Pacific Ocean to begin with and has always been a seismic tragedy waiting to happen.
Christine, San Diego

Your message is right on target, the ratepayers cannot allow SCE to walk away from their financial responsibility and must follow up with the OII investigation. There is to some, the sense of a back room deal with CPUC and SCE in the shutdown of SONGS; and if Judge Darling rules in the favor of the Edison "criminals" who tried to bilk the NRC and California ratepayers, SCE will not only reap hundreds of millions in their bill-of-goods nuclear plant charges but also be rewarded with SAFSTORE funds for the storage facility they will build to contain the nuclear waste on site. Not only does the public need to keep up the pressure on illuminating the press and public about the manner of SCE's profit schemes, but also we must stay in the discussion of the determination of the replacement energy sources for the SONGS production, and insist that it includes a large amount of renewables along with renewable friendly grid improvements. There are 1100 SCE employees unemployed, and that is what I and others are working on right now in hopes of shaping an employee owned cooperative. This is a completely new idea of a worker cooperative and the discussions are yet to be arranged, but with help from a caring community of South Orange County we hope to bring the workers into an environment of cooperative management and self-determination after the SCE-SONGS decommission.
Ron, Dana Point

Now that the plant will shut down, DO NOT ALLOW THE PUC to raise the consumer rates for electricity. The cost should be borne by the company and it's stockholders just as every other company incurs a loss.
Frank, San Diego

I strongly disagree with your enthusiasm for the plant closing. As we speak, SC Ed is trying to figure out just how much of a rate increase to present to the PUC. Nuclear Power has a stellar safety record, and now we will all be paying more for electricity.
Rob, Mission Viejo

Thank you for the wonderful work you have done and continue to do on San Onofre. One hopes that the nightmare of a California Fukushima can now be put to rest and that the decommission process will be safe and effective.
Alexandria, San Diego

Thanks for standing up for us and putting pressure on Edison to do the right thing. Corporate interests are too powerful, and they really don't care what happens to the public. BP and Fukushima are only the two most recent examples. And unfortunately, our government is too weak and dysfunctional to oversee most of the important things.
Dorian, Trabuco Canyon

ridiculous...and how much are you going to spend to shut it down??? Billions? Yes! Nuclear energy could help us all in years to come. Your flawed thinking is like everyone else in Washington.
Patti, San Diego

This is excellent news. Thank you for your concern and diligence in making this happen.
Lindsay, Petaluma

Who is going to pay for the decommissioning of San Onofre? I have been paying for years to have the plant brought up to code now you say it is unsafe. Where were these great inspectors who were checking the work being done and let them continue to bilk me and my fellow California's out of the fees were charged every month. I don't think the public should be liable and have to pay the billions it will cost to demolish the plant. The electric companies made a pretty penny so they should be responsible for the demolishment.
Robert, San Diego

Thank you for your efforts to shut down the San Onofre nuclear plant. On behalf of the communities surrounding San Onofre, I can say that we are greatly relieved that this hazardous plant will be closed forever. It is time to look to clean (non-nuclear) energy and to conservation for solutions to our energy needs.
Gloria, Trabuco Canyon

The next step is to insure that the ratepayers are not stuck with the cost of dismantling. We've been paying for years. The stockholders should have to eat this.
Charles, San Diego

I completely disagree with the closure of San Onofre and feel we should have more nuclear power here in California. The plants fail safes worked as intended so no large outlay of toxins were released. There are numerous power plants all over the world, and yet we in the US,as one of the largest consumers of power in the world, have the least number of plants. They are designed to operate safely everywhere else, just not here? I feel this is just the response to nearby residents who moved after the plant was already there and new the "risks" and now prefer to just pass the buck.
Rene, Anaheim

Thank you so much for your hard work on this matter. We have a long way to go and with your help, we will achieve much!
Glenda, Los Angeles

I support you 100% in continuing efforts toward the finalization of decommission of San Onofre, including getting rid of all the radioactive and contaminated water, etc., without further damage to our environment and oceans.
Lisa, San Anselmo

I disagree. The plant could have, and should have, been properly repaired. The loss of 2GWe of emissions-free power that operates 24/7 is unconscionable -- it will be made up for by gas burning, aggravating our climate problems which are now looming even closer than decades -- ocean acidification is just years away from shutting down sea food chains and the natural carbon cycle's sequestration to seafloor limestone. The San Onofre problem, along with our naive spent-fuel legislation, are the results of misunderstanding the importance of nuclear power as the best environmental choice along with local solar. It demonstrates to the world that we're being led foolishly into unimaginable environmental tragedies without concern for facts.
Alexander, Menlo Park 

I agree if the current nuclear power plant is unsafe it should be closed but the ground work should be put in place immediately to secure another nearby site for a replacement nuclear power plant.
Thomas, Escondido

I suggest you need to rethink your position on nuclear power in view of the fact that nuclear is one of the important ways to meet our electrical needs while also cutting green house gases. Times have changed and your thinking has not. I do not support your view.
Barney, Walnut Creek

San Onofre put out exactly zero carbon dioxide emissions, and yet you celebrate it's closeure. Are you willing to do anything...anything to cut CO2? Does global warming have any significance any longer. To actually show joy at the end of this CO2 free energy production is sadly misplaced, and just plain sad.
Jim, San Diego

I am relieved and delighted to hear your efforts to permanently close the San Onofre nuclear plant worked. Brava Senator, and many thanks for a job well done.
Jim, Costa Mesa

I disagree vehemently with your support for the closing of the electric power generating San Onofre Power plant. That plant has operated safely for decades providing cheap power for So. Calif. The current problem is easily fixable for those who really know what is going on. Washington regulations are strangling the repair and re-opening of that plant. Losers will be those served by that plant. As President Obama famously stated at one time, "Electric rated would necessarily increase". This closing is bad for California and bad for rate payers. I'll follow up in the future when rolling brown outs occur again, and rate hikes are dumped on consumers.
Robert, San Diego

Thanks for your attention to the particular case of San Onofre. Independent of San Onofre's particularly situation, nuclear power should have a place in our energy portfolio. All energy production technologies have substantial lifecycle issues and risks; there are different risks and concerns for different technologies. No technology can be risk-free. Our overall goal should be towards a diverse, environmentally cautious, and affordable energy portfolio. Of course we hope to minimize both known and unforeseen risks, whether health risks or supply risks. I hope that you will continue to promote transparent energy policy (giving high priority to energy conservation) within California and the United States, and help Americans to make informed decisions about their energy use and energy sources.
Lisa, Coronado

I was impressed by this phrase I heard recently. It exemplifies your contribution to keeping us safe. "Humanity is derived from what we do for others" You constantly demonstrate that intention.
Elsa, Laguna Beach

Your belief that all nuclear power plants should be decommissioned is naive and clearly indicates that you are driven by political philosophy rather than by reasonable thinking. Instead of encouraging deployment of modern nuclear power technology with smaller facilities, and supporting research in this vital area, you have taken the opposite tack. NO ONE WINS with this decision! Shame on you for doing the wrong thing!
Kevin, Newport Beach

I can't thank you enough for your help with this matter and I hope that you will continue to make sure they clean up the nuclear waste in a safe way so no harm can come to the citizens who live in the area or to the environment.
Sue, Dana Point

You are waisting a huge amount of time and money to remove and destroy a low cost safe power supply. I would like to know the true underlieing reason for the destruction of this plant. This is a huge mistake that you are backing.
Richard, Escondido

Regarding your recent letter about the closure of the San Onofre nuclear power plant, thank you for your great work on an issue of which I was naturally aware was a problem in principle, but which I for one did not know existed as such. Until the much-desired and anticipated cleaner energy sources are fully available, we still live in a world where our power needs force the un-sustainability (due to its role in global warming) of burned substances or the un-sustainability (due its risk) of nuclear power, and it is my belief that a properly run nuclear program is probably still the better choice. France seems to offer a model of a well-run program, though I am not qualified to speak to this. As one who has, merely as a concerned citizen, noted the issue and participated in very many discussions on this topic, I have reached the provisional conclusion that if, and only if, the standards of scientific oversight are continuous and, basically, the best that are possible, there is better hope in power sources that at least have the virtue of being fewer in number and subject to strict scrutiny than the current well-known mega-proliferation of cruder sources of conventional combustion-oriented ones. Please permit me to take the opportunity to say that I believe that nuclear power for the peaceful use of energy is a valid idea and the unrelenting persistence with weapons is not. It is my fervent hope that the station's radiation leak, which you mention in your letter, will be repaired without one single person being put at risk.
Christopher, San Mateo

Thank you for keeping me in formed on matters of concern in my county. I often wonder what is happening at that plant when I drive by it. I appreciate having a senator who is concerned with her constituents.
Rougenia, San Diego

Can I run an electric cord to your house when we have brown-outs and insufficient electricity for our homes. Are you now going to work toward drilling for oil in CA? That would provide badly needed jobs and income not to mention energy for our state.
Sharon, San Marcos

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Californians respond to my message on Safety First at San Onofre (04/09/2013):

San Onofre's current operating license requires running at 100% power for 22 months. Edison wants the NRC to lower safety standards to 70% power for 5 months so they can run their defective steam generators. Please do everything in your power to stop this. Southern California Edison has repeatedly demonstrated they do not have the management skills to run a nuclear power plant.
Donna, San Clemente

Living in San Diego so close to this power plant, it gives me peace of mind to know that you are overseeing the most comprehensive investigation possible before this power plant is restarted. I want to take this opportunity also to let you know that I feel so fortunate to have you as my Senator. I can always rely on you to have our best interests at heart in California.
Merrily, San Diego

I live in Laguna Niguel a few miles north of the nuclear reactor, and I appreciate that you oppose the utility company in its attempt to restart San Onofre and gamble with my life and those of my neighbors.
Barbara, Thousand Oaks

The delay on restarting the plant has gone on long enough and I think SCE knows what its doing to restart and keep it operating safely. I think you are siding with the enviro freaks who want to shut this plant down when we need it most with hot summer months coming. Enough delays are enough!
Karl, Glendora

Thank you for sending your message to the NRC. I live within that 50 mile radius and have been very concerned about San Onofre reopening. It is frightening to think that strong lobbyists may force the plant to be put back online when there are still serious safety issues to be resolved.
Carol, Huntington Beach

Thank you, Senator Boxer, for standing up for the safety of the millions of people who live within the area affected by a possible San Onofre incident. I was one of the protestors when the decision was made to put this dangerous facility in a totally unsuitable and unsafe location. Most politicians (who do not live close enough to be threatened by this facility) verbally pat us on the head and say that things will be all right. I appreciate your speaking out.
Helene, Bonsall

I greatly appreciate your firm stance to the NRC and requiring no restarting of the reactors at San Onofre until safety can be assured. I am willing to reduce my electrical power use when required. I have a solar photovoltaic system on my roof that I feed into the grid and last year participated in the SDG&E reduction in usage program. I will gladly do so again.
Craig, San Diego

I am supportive of all initiatives that require health of the environment which means the whole of the web of life and human health prior to short term profits. We need more people with the vision to stand up for people and the planet first over the interest of corporations.
Brad, San Diego

So you've told us what you are doing to keep the plant in shut down which may or may not be fine. What are you doing to help replace the power that is not being generated? We pay such high prices for power and other utilities in southern California. We continue to pay for the costs of a power plant that does not operate. I do care and I have invested in solar power for my home, but a one sided approach to environmental concerns is wrong.
Raymond, San Diego

Thank you for your steadfast position on the reopening of the San Onofre nuclear power plant. Being old enough to have lived during the 3 Mile Island fiasco, I am no fan of nuclear power, period. In my opinion, we would be far better off investing in and developing renewable energy sources. At least for now, however, I am happy that you are refusing to allow another "rush job", as has happened many times in the past.
Tom, Calabasas

We live within 60miles of San Onofre and to know you are there fighting for the interests of the people is very comforting. Please continue to do so. Thank You!
Donald, Pomona

The San Onofre power plant should not be reopened, ever. As usual, the power companies and powers that be are only thinking about money, not the thousands of lives that could be lost if this nuclear power plant reopens at less than optimum operating capacity and a consequent disaster occurs. Hopefully enough people will speak out, no, shout out their concerns about the reopening of this facility.
L., Dana Point

We are part of the 8 million who live within 50 mi. of this plant. 24 miles to be exact. I applaud your efforts to make sure it is safe prior to reopening. there have been rumors for years of releases of radioactive water to the ocean from this plant - that should be checked too. The depleted but still radioactive rods that are being stored on the beach should be moved to a permanent repository prior to start up also. No plans for that. Nuclear is neither safe NOR CHEAP. We will have to guard and store rods from ALL the plants for a mere 10,000 years.
Kasey, Carlsbad

Please keep up the pressure. Don't let San Onofre open until it's safe.
Martin, Laguna Woods

Thank you Senator Boxer for demanding a full report on San Onofre including the opportunity for public participation. This is a very old facility with significant problems and suggestions of lax standards and possibly malfeasance. The public is rightfully anxious about the plant's safety and reliability. There is no room for miscalculation where nuclear safety is concerned..
Nora, La Jolla

Thank you for pursuing your current course of action concerning San Onofre Nuclear Powerplant. I think the concerns are warranted, and while there is evidence that nuclear energy can be operated safely, the risks outweigh the benefits. If we have to pay more for electricity, so be it; the half-life of nuclear fuel is far pricier if not contained.
Robert, San Diego

I very much appreciated your email about resisting the premature restarting of San Onofre. Their equipment failures show the what we've known for a while. This is an aging plant which has functioned beyond its intended time. Having seen what can happen in Japan, it is no longer conscionable to allow Con Ed to operate this facility. It is located in a tsunami zone, adjacent to a major earthquake fault, and lacks adequate security. The huge populations north and south are all at risk if the plant is restarted.
Matt, San Diego

I believe your letter to the NEC will just keep the cost of electricity to continue to increase and will have no actual effect on the plsnt running safley.
Robert, Laguna Hills

I agree with many of your public positions but I disagree completely with your stance on the restart of the San Onofre nuclear power plant. California needs low cost carbon emmission free electrical power. You are choosing high cost, high emmissions electrical power.
Ian, Corona Del Mar

This is a very serious subject with all of our friends and family. We do not think this old dinosaur should be used again ever. As usual the industry puts profits before safety. They always have done this. We don't want to have a Fukushima here. Nuclear is not the way of the future. The sooner we get over it the better. It's futile to continue with this nasty, dirty, unsafe, polluting-for-eternity way of boiling water. It's so backwards! We applaud your efforts in keeping watch over this very important situation. It really makes us want to move away from all Nuclear Power Plants!!!
Pamela, Encinitas

As a resident of South Orange County who lives approximately ten miles from the San Onofre nuclear complex, I want to say, "Thank you!" for doing the 100% correct and prudent thing in NOT supporting any weakening of regulations that would allow SCE to expedite the reactivation of their nuclear power plants at the expense of public safety. Enough information about the problem at San Onofre has leaked out (no pun intended!) to cause great concern for any citizens living in the beautiful and vital area of South Orange County who have been paying attention. That the cause of the prematurely deteriorating cooling system is still unknown mandates that caution must prevail over expediency.
John, Ladera Ranch

We are outraged at the possibility of any reactor at the San Onofre plant reopening, in view of the fact that it has been proven that it would unsafe to reopen even at 70% capacity with the tubes eroding as they have. We are in strong agreement with those who claim that the reopening of any portion of this plant would be a careless science experiment, which has not taken into consideration the potential loss of lives in this land of earthquakes. Afterall, the plant sits next to two faults, one with the probability of an 8.0 earthquake when it was designed to sustain a 7.0. Without question, there should be a license review. The safe operation of the plant has already been compromised. Safety modifications were rejected, and we have already witnessed the shortcuts that resulted in damage to hundreds of steam generator tubes that carry radioactive water. Do we really want to risk becoming the next Fukushima? Please, we implore those who are reviewing the reopening of the plant to look through the eyes of integrity rather than financial consideration.
Leah, Rancho Santa Fe

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Californians respond to my message on Investigating New Safety Concerns at San Onofre (2/7/2013):

Shut it down. It is not safe nor can it be made safe. Hindsight is always better than foresight, but we don't want to suffer the same conditions like Chernobyl or Fukushima. San Onofre has been idled too long. It only means that the engineers don't know how to make it safe to operate. Err on the side of caution and shut it permanently.
Rodney, San Diego

Thank you very much for expressing your concern about the San Onofre Nuclear power plant. I live in San Clemente and it scares me to know how the plant has been operated.
Ulla, San Clemente

Thank you for your continuing follow through with the nuclear power plant. I just had solar panels installed on my roof. Please continue those incentives. In SoCal why can't we gather more energy from our sun?
Mary, Laguna Hills

We see eye to eye on some important subjects. Such as the fact that if there is to be Nuclear Energy is must be truly clean and truly safe. Currently it is neither. Thank you for updating me with this extremely important issue.
Shannon, Bethel Island

I think we need to go even further and shut down nuclear power plants. Safety and nuclear power plants is an oxymoron.... Thank you for your continued support of this view.
Tanya, Huntington Beach

The vast number of residents of Southern CA do not want the San Onofre Power Plant reopened under any circumstances. The plant is old and has been poorly maintained -- it is simply a major disaster waiting to happen. We trust that you will use your common sense to make sure that the plant remains closed permanently.
Gary, Laguna Niguel         

Please do not let your prejudice against Nuclear Energy interfere in getting San Onofre full back on line. I suspect your real intent is to shut all nuclear power facilities. That is a dreadful ambition and bad policy.
D., Aliso Viejo

Thank you Senator Boxer for your efforts to protect the safety of all who could suffer from a nuclear mishap.
Silka, San Diego

Thank you Senator for calling Prof Hirsch to the NRC hearing. He paints quite a different picture than Edison does. Is reopening San Onofre worth the risk for a fairly small amount of electricity? Imagine the economic destruction if something happened there. And we are not even factoring in seismic possibilities there. Edison and Mitsubishi have tried to pull a fast one here so they didn't need to undergo a full review. It is time for that now.
Anne, Laguna Beach

Our family is among the 8.7 million people who live within 50 miles of this power plant. In fact, we live in Oceanside, only 17 miles from there. We, along with our neighbors, are VERY concerned that San Onofre Nuclear Power plant NOT ever be reopened, until and unless we know it is TOTALLY SAFE. Otherwise is it like living with a nuclear time-bomb in our neighborhood, ready to go off. Furthermore, given the geologic, fault situation and propensity toward major earthquakes within 50 miles of this nuclear facility, My family questions the wisdom of ever reopening it again.
Sunny, Oceanside

Thank you for keeping an eye on the liars at SCE and Mitsubishi. Nuclear fission is the most expensive method of boiling water ever invented. It has the potential to be catastrophic. In California we have a lot of sunny days. My home is powered by solar panels. For the price of the idiotic Iraq war we could have placed solar panels on every, single roof in the United States of America. We the taxpayers are on the hook for all meltdowns and releases of radioactive material. The waste materials will remain radioactive for hundreds of thousands of years. Providing a target for terrorists for that long as well. Shut down all nukes.
James, Huntington Beach

I live within 10 miles of SONGS. Although they may have some problems, I believe that they are operating a safe and efficient power plant. Nuclear energy is vital to the future of our nation. To look for a boogeyman behind every slight problem makes no sense. We need to be energy independant. Safe, efficient nuclear energy allows us to be that. One cannot be for renewable energy and not be in favor of nuclear energy. Wind and solar will not provide enough energy to meet the challenge. Nuclear can be safe and efficient. Let the utility and the NRC handle the situation. It does not not need the Senator's involvment.
Harold, Dana Point

Thank you for your stance and communication regarding the need for closer scrutiny and regulation of replacement segments for the San Onofre nuclear energy facilities. I appreciate your effort and acuity in monitoring those activities.
Frieda, Pasadena

I am grateful to you for your continuing concern and oversight regarding the San Onofre Nuclear Power Plant. I urge you to also follow-up on the seismic concerns associated with the Diablo Nuclear Power Plant also.
Sandy, Santa Cruz

The power plant at San Onofre has served us here in Southern California for many years. The amount of energy it is capable of producing is far beyond ANY current energy generation methods. The plant has never had a problem and now after finally realizing the high costs of building and maintaining the plant YOU and others want to destroy it...for what? Wind and solar are part of the future, but not realistic for powering cities yet. Before tearing the nuclear plant down or decommissioning the plant we here in Southern California want a replacement source of energy. Energy costs are the highest in the country and nothing but higher costs will come from ANY other type of generation plant. On behalf of me and my family I want to see San Onofre rebuilt, recommissioned and put back on-line to serve the reasonably- priced, safe, energy needs of much of Southern California.
Joseph, San Diego

The San Onofre Nuclear plant has never completely passed a safety check. Southern California Edison thinks close is ok. It is in a heavily populated area, next to Camp Pendleton, near or on earthquake faults and close to the ocean.
Joan, Dana Point

After receiving and reading your news flash regarding your request to the NRC to launch an immediate investigation, I am compelled to respond. If you were genuinely concerned about helping Californian's, rather than trying to delay or discontinue the nuclear energy generation at San Onofre, you would be helping to secure new nuclear power generators, including this site.
Jeff, Del Mar

I would love to see San Onofre Nuclear generators shut down completely. They are not safe, have never been safe, and will never be safe. It is built on a fault, ocean front where tsunamis can hit (their wall is inadequate as shown by Japan). The area is perfect to convert to solar, wind, and wave energy generation, all clean energies which nuclear is Not!
Pattie, San Clemente

There is always a line between safety and cost/time. Always. We could save lives on our highways by driving at 20 MPH and having cars that weighed 10 tons and had 50 airbags, but we don't. Your memo and action seems to insinuate that SCE/MHI didn't do all they could, especially when doing so would trigger regulatory review (cost, time). I'm not sure there's enough information here to make an informed judgement, and your publicity here does little to help that assessment. I'm all for safety, especially given the proximity of SONGS. But I also accept that there's some risk - there always is.
Bill, Laguna Niguel

I heard it on the Radio and was very pleased you are keeping So. Cal. Edisons feet to the fire! We are very concerned that we could have an Nuclear disaster at that plant. So. Cal. Edison modifications to the plant has put our safety at risk for profit. The Nuclear Regulation Commision should investigate immediatly and provide the people in the vicinity with all information . Our health and safety and financial risk in our homes is at stake. Members of the Nuclear Commision should not give Edison any benifet of any doubt , they choose the modifications in order to avoid inspections and save money for profit. They should have to pay for their actions.
Bridget, Laguna Niguel

Thank you for your message and for looking into the matter going on down here in our area. Not only do we not have the power that the plant is supposed to be generating and may be in harm's way if things go wrong but it is my understanding that even though Southern California Edison is a publically traded company owned by shareholders that the SCE customers are paying for this problem through their electrical bills. If this is true is there any way for customers to recover their money that SCE has forced them to pay for SCE's poor judgment and mishandling of this situation?
James, Capistrano Beach

These nuclear facilities must be closed! As the catistrophie at Fukashima has more than demomstrated there is no safe way to use nuclear technology. The SCE Nuclear plant is too dangerous to stay on line. Get rid of it! Before its too late.
Keith, San Jose

It is clear, now more than ever, that this plant should never be reopened and that there was fraud committed by So Cal Edison and Mitsubishi who knowingly installed something they knew wouldn't work! How they can pretend to have any concern for the safety of the millions of people who live within the 50 mile radius of the plant is unfathomable. Please help us to make sure this plant never, ever reopens. I live well within the 50 mile radius and have been thankful every single day the plant stays shut. I only hope it will be permanent. The NRC must look out for the best interests of U.S. citizens and not the power company or Mitsubishi. This is another Fukushima waiting to happen. Thank you for your time and actions on this horrendous situation.
Gerry, Laguna Woods

You have made a small first step toward shining some much needed light on what happened at San Onofre, thanks to SCE poor in-house design of the replacement steam generators!! By giving the Industry permission to consider most documents private, there can be no true oversight by the public! Case in Point: The report you mentioned was not made available to the public, if it was then by now these problems would have already been identified by the DAB Safety Team, and that could have saved SoCal residents $54 Million a month! SCE is trying to "game" the evidence against them, and your EPW comm. cannot allow US Nuclear Safety to become yet more Party vs Party Politics, the USA cannot afford a Trillion Dollar Eco-Disaster like Fukushima! The NRC hearing today was yet another sign that the NRC is trying to say that everything is wonderful when in fact we now have a 1.4 Billion dollar problem thanks to SCE trying to circumvent the NRC regulations, because they can!
Don, San Diego

Thank you for your recent efforts calling on the NRC to investigate possible problems at the San Onofre nuclear power plant. I applaud your dedication to ensuring that existing plants are safe and I hope you will work to stop the construction of future plants. Though we need to move away from our reliance on fossil fuels, nuclear power is not the solution. Conservation, education, and improved efficiency, along with green energy options can solve the problem.
Bruce, Long Beach

Thank you for your quick action on this. My faith in you is well founded! That's saying a lot, coming from a registered Republican.
Kathie, Laguna Niguel

I live in Oceanside approximately 15 miles south of the San Onofre Nuclear Power Plant and it scares me to death. Please shut it down permanently. Nuclear is not the answer to our energy needs. I understand this plant is similar in design and vintage to the Fukishima Nuclear Power Plant that have devastated life in Japa. Using nuclear energy to boil water is like using a shot gun to kill a fly - more collateral damage than effective action.
Steven, Oceanside

I hope and pray that the San Onofre Plant is closed down. I feel it is not safe and also that we residents have been charged for a plant that has not been operating.
Helen, Mission Viejo

I am dismayed by the apparent glee with which you announce the problems at San Onofre. Our future depends on clean nuclear power. There is no alternative. It is time you become informed and supported immediate construction of 4th generation nuclear power plants in California. Is may already be too late.
Keith, Davis

Thank you for pursuing this investigation. We do not need a catastrophic disaster as in Japan!
Michael, Santa Rosa

San Onofre should perhaps not be restarted at all, certainly not without engineering data/computations made available for independent analysis. The NRC is a captured agency. As Arnie Gunderson has remarked, San Onofre is a giant experiment with Southern California as the guinea pig. Let's not have a nuclear accident here.
Bradford, San Diego

Nuclear Power Plant safety has been a concern of mine since the opening of Diablo Canyon in the 70's. I have lived in San Diego, San Luis Obisbo, or Orange County throughout my adult life. This is too beautiful of a state, and too populated to take chances.
Patricia, San Diego

Thank you for taking up this urgent matter concerning the safety of the San Onofre nuclear power plant. This is proof once again that the private sector cannot be responsible for the welfare of the people and nuclear power must be replaced with renewable energy. It’s unbelievable that even after the disaster in Japan, these fools still gamble with our lives and that of the planet. This is a testament for the need for strong, well-funded government regulatory agencies. Don't let the Republicans cut the budget on the NRC..
Jill, San Diego

This makes a nice headline for the media, but in this case, I actually believe Southern California's denial. From everything released to this point, and from my knowledge of the engineering complexities of the steam generator design, I believe that the likelihood of knowledge of pre-installation flaws in the steam generators is unlikely. This news release only spins up the public living in the area (like me), and should have been fully validated and vetted before being released.
Ray, Oceanside

While I naturally share your concerns regarding the safe operation of any nuclear power plant, especially one near my home, I can't help but think that if there's a possibility that "SCE and MHI rejected enhanced safety modifications and avoided triggering a more rigorous license amendment and safety review process" then there is something seriously wrong with the license amendment and safety review process. It sounds as if, from a regulatory standpoint, additional safety becomes materially punitive. This should never, ever be the case.
Erik, San Diego

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Nigerian Kidnappings

Californians respond to my message on Bringing Nigeria’s School Girls Home Safely:

Thank you for supporting USA's involvement in helping gain the release of these girls. This is very important!
Richard, San Diego

I truly appreciate the energy you have put into expressing outrage over and gathering protests against the kidnapping of girls on religious grounds. I also feel very sorry for responsible Moslems whose hearts sink when, in the name of their religion, a terrorist minority behaves in a savage, entitled manner. I hope you will also work to protect Moslem-Americans from prejudice.
Jane, San Francisco

I know this is not politically correct to say, but radical Islam is a despicable abuse of religion, and until reasonable Islamists rise up to oppose it and oppose Sharia law, which truly is an abomination, allowing murder of innocents in the name of God, I believe we all have an obligation to do whatever it takes to wipe these evil perpetrators off the face of the earth. To say they want to return us to the dark ages is an understatement. I loathe and despise everything these monsters stand for. Thank you for your stance in this shocking act. I just feel so frustrated and angry that this can be allowed to happen to innocent girls, or anyone.
Paul, Granada Hills

As always, I'm very proud that you are my Senator. I fully support your resolution regarding the horrific kidnapping of the Nigerian girls and the need for action to find them and free them.
Suzanne, Davis

Thank you for bringing this horrific kidnapping of these innocents to the forefront of the media and to our nation. As you said, we cannot go quietly without protest of that heart wrenching act. May God hear our pleas and supplications for these young girls and that our thoughts and cares do go out to all of those families for their immediate return.
Rosemary, Lomita

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Californians respond to my message Condemning the Despicable Abduction of School Girls in Nigeria (05/02/2014):

I totally agree. thank you for speaking out on this issue. The Nigerian government needs to make this a priority and prosecute the criminal elements who have done this, to the full extent, if for no other reason than to make an example of it, to other right-wing and "religious" elements who seem to think that this kind of practice is somehow approved by God or whatever.
Tracy, Los Gatos

I hope that everyone in Congress and the President will pursue this matter vigorously and in a timely manner, i.e. not put to a committee or give a slap on the wrist. These young girls are no different than young girls here.
Kathryn, Half Moon Bay

The fundamental issue is not the kidnapping of little Nigerian girls as sad as that might be. The issue has been and still is transparent and effective government in Nigeria. Assistance going into Nigeria must be impeccably audited so that it goes to basic structural projects which can be accurately monitored. Nigeria is a critical country. It has a large Muslim population and has the potential for significant influence in West Africa. Having spent time in Western Nigerian as a U.S. Peace Corps staff member, I have a strong gut feeling about Nigeria. I hope we are not missing the boat on the real possibilities here.
Jay, Columbia

Thank you for caring about the fate and future of girls in other parts of the world. I have also read about the schools being burned down with students inside. Now the abducted girls are being forced to marry their captors and are paid $ 12. Hopefully, your resolution will put pressure upon the Nigerian government to protect their citizens. As a member of AAUW, I care deeply about these issues.
Marcy, Santa Rosa

Thank you for co-writing the resolution about the abduction of the school girls in Nigeria. It is appalling what happens to girls and women around the world.
Janet, Santa Rosa

Good for you for speaking out against this primitive and barbaric atrocity, which cloaks itself in the brand of false religious piety best suited to the ninth century. The hate fueled, xenophobic regressive force of Islamic fundamentalism continues to be tolerated in silence, if not applauded by adherents to that faith because it denies the very existence or progress, tolerance, women's rights, children's rights particularly if they can be used to challenge democracy. I am sick and tired of American Muslim silence about the ugly festival of atrocities delivered by their co-religionists across the world. Where is the voice of moderate Muslimism? Are they too afraid of their own "martyrs" to speak out, or do they support them? It's time to find out.
Ron, Beverly Hills

Malia got shot in the head for going to school. Girls in Afghanistan, Pakistan and other middle east countries don't want girls to go to school. Now, Nigeria where Islamists are killing, bombing and now kidnapping girls and selling them into "Marriage" It's horrendous. What will the U.S. do to stop these crimes other than attacking and bombing those countries?
Maxine, North Hollywood

I was recently speaking with a friend of mine who is a Nigerian national who lives here, about this kidnapping of these girls and was wondering about who is going to do what about this. He said the group is a Muslim insurgent group and they and other groups have been doing this for years, and now the press is making a big deal of it because of the interest the world has on women being mistreated worldwide. Not that he's belittling the situation, he's just bringing me up to speed on what has been going on for some time. Since we don't know a whole lot about what goes on in Africa, and pundits only let us know what they want us to, and often the truth isn't really being told to us about stuff anyway what am supposed to think about it anyway? I feel bad for the girls, but does making a statement condemning the act or making some kind of resolution really change anything? No, but it lets people know how we feel about it. And that does, what? A group of punks comes around, steals my daughter or son, and I say, "Hey, that's wrong! Don't do that!" Next week they do it somewhere else. The thing that really gets peoples attention is if the authorities get the info together and track these punks down, eliminate them, and get our kids back. That's what works. Walk the talk.
David, Vacaville

I commend you for your efforts in finding a resolution regarding the approximately 300 school girls abducted in Nigeria. Undoubtedly, you may also know about the multitudes of school girls who were subsequently abducted. ...Personally, I believe this invidious organization responsible for these heinous acts to be worse than AL Qaeda. Your colleague, Senator Amy Klobuchar, wants a resolution to declare them as a terrorist organization ... I urge you to consider joining her--if haven't already--and urge other Senators as well. These scumbags need to taken down and hard! Thank you in advance for your hard work and service.
James, Palmdale

I certainly agree that this is a horrible event. Being a father of a daughter myself, I can certainly empathize with their families. But there's not a thing I can do to help. There's no point for me to devote any attention to it. I have urgent problems here on the ranch I need to devote my attention to. I see no way that a U.S. Senate Resolution can help those daughters. I can conceive of ways that a U.S. Senator could end the drone strikes in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Yemen, Sudan, South Sudan... that kill more daughters every week. I could talk for hours about how the Senate could act to make the lives of not only Americans but people around the globe. The Nigerian kidnapping isn't one of them.
Clarence, Petrolia

Thank you for the Hard work on this Issue, It is a travesty for these young Girls, please try and get these young women back to there homes. Please try to find these unsavory men that think woman are only for them as there sex slaves with no rights at all. We need to put a stop to all this maddness, it is filtrating into our US System as well, with the sex trade. We as a Country should try and disembark any and all of this World Wide, and create safe havens for women to run too all over the World. It is a OPEN SORE that has been ignored for thousands of Years. Lets unite and fight for the justice of Womans Rights all over the World.
Lisa, Claremont

Thank you for bringing this to the attention of the Senate. I understand that the US will be sending some assistance in the search and rescue of these girls as well. I hope that those that have already been sold into slavery (in the name of marriage) can also be found and rescued.
This is a terrible circumstance and points out the ongoing need for telling the world that girls deserve education.
Geri, Redwood City

I have been unemployed for almost a year. I haven't received unemployment benefits for almost five months. My older brother is unemployed and my brother in-law is also unemployed. We are all over 55 years old… This country is on the decline and now you want to help 200 girls in Nigeria. Recently the Senate was giving aid money to the Ukraine. Why do our representatives in Washington care more about foreign aid than helping its own citizens survive? Why don't you please try and fix some of these problems here in the United States instead of spending so much time worrying about the citizens of other countries miserable lives. Our lives are plenty miserable enough to keep you busy.
Jeff, Meadow Vista

I stand with you in condemning the April 14 abduction of 234 girls from their schools in Nigeria. I also think there should be a condemnation of the men that would buy a girl that has been abducted from her family and forced into these illegal marriages without the girls and families consent. I hope the United States and civilized nations will not let this issue rest until ALL these young women are return to their families and this attack against women is stopped. The Nigerian government should receive pressure to make this kind of act very unrewarding. I agree women around the world should stand together for women's basic right to develop the brains that God gave them to better the world.
Alma, Los Angeles

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Minimum Wage Increase

Californians respond to my message American Workers Deserve a Raise:

Please continue to stand up for the working class Americans who deserve a living wage. This is a fight that needs to be won for those who work so hard for so little. It is unconscionable that those who work for the current minimum wage are poverty stricken. Thank you for supporting raising the minimum wage so eloquently and forcefully.
Alice, Lodi

Dear Senator Boxer: Thank you for what you are doing in Washington regarding raising the minimum wage. I'm not surprised that the Republicans blocked the bill. They simply don't care about the poor and the middle class. They only care about the rich. I do applaud you for your efforts.
Pamela, Santa Maria

I thoroughly enjoyed your speech on minimum wage today. Your information and arguments were very compelling. Kudos to you for supporting such a necessary element for the survival of America's working poor!
JoAnne, Los Angeles

Thank you for your eloquence at explaining the truth about how our nation thrives when Americans have access to a fair minimum wage that keeps up with inflation, creating jobs from the spending of those wages that help our local economies and the companies we work for.
It's too bad Republicans are like the monkeys, refusing to see, hear, or say anything but "No!"
Bruce, Anaheim

I don't agree with you or president Obama on this issue. we keep creating inflation which my look good on the surface but it causes companies to lay-off workers cut benefits and increase responsibilities for the workers that are left. bad idea!
Gary, Granada Hills

Thank you Sen. Boxer for supporting the raise in minimum wage. While $10.10 is a good raise from what the minimum wage is now, even $10/hour does not go a long way. Still, it's a start. It is tragic that the Republican party wants to kill off all but those who believe in them and have the kind of money they do. It is tragic that people who are older, disabled, babies, children, unemployed or simply struggling to make ends meet are counted as nothing by the republicans…
Every person is important. Every person's job is important, no matter whether they are a clerk in a fast food chain, a teacher, or whoever else serves in their work in some context. I wish I had the money to come to Washington, DC and tell the Republicans to their faces that I, as a disabled senior citizen MATTER. That my friend, Wendy, who is a cashier at a restaurant, MATTERS. That the cashiers in WalMart MATTER. That anyone who is only making minimum wage MATTERS. That not everyone thinks what the Republicans are doing is right - only those who are rich and that people below that economic strata MATTER! We are not invisible. We MATTER!  Raising the minimum wage would lead to a healthier country, that is not so weak from within. Thank you for letting me express these thoughts to you. Thank you Sen. Boxer for your good work in the government.
Michelle, Los Angeles

Yes, give workers a raise! End Employment tax. End FICA deductions. End withholding income tax. This also helps small business! And it would add up to more than any proposed minimum wage -- all workers would benefit. If you want more employment, stop punishing employers. California is the worst state in the union for small business. This is why. You've got to work you end to help us. Banks are loaning few dollars to businesses.
Burke, Mill Valley

Keep up the good fight. These Republicans (since Gingrich) are all unreasonable. Although I'm an old hippie, I'm still too much of a gentleman to tell you what I really think of them. I'm 63 and have voted for 1 republican in my life, Dennis Peron. Like Hillary, I was a Goldwater republican (but only 14) then saw the light on my second deployment to Vietnam
Jim, El Cajon

Have none of the Senate Democrats taken a civics course? It takes 51 votes to pass legislation. Maybe it takes more than that to get it put to the floor, but that's because you're not letting the repugnicans filibuster. Don't back off. Let them filibuster until they are all done talking, then pass the legislation. Filibusters have been defeated before - See Civil Rights Act of 1964. Let their filibuster bring the business of the Senate to a grinding halt for month after month. Let the ignorant and disinterested American public see what the repugnicans have done. Then, go out and use it to win an election. STOP CHICKENING OUT.
Samuel, Redondo Beach

Thank you for your message to the Republican Senators isn't a crying shame that they didn't hear. I wished that all those who continue to block this bill would be made to live for one month on only the minimum wage income. They would have to pay their rent or mortgage, pay utilities, pay car payment and car insurance, health insurance, etc. During that month they couldn't receive their pay for being a Senator and I am sure after the first week they would be pleading to go to the Senate floor and vote yes. I am an In Home Supportive Services caregiver in Clearlake, CA. We receive $8.75 per hour and we have no health benefits due to the Affordable Health Care Act. We were receiving a limited health medical insurance that we paid $20 per month for, but only 450 employees could be on the group insurance. We employ 1,400 employees in Lake county and only 450 of them could get the insurance plan. Don't get me wrong I'm not complaining, because I am happy for the Affordable health care, because now all of our employees hopefully will be able to get health insurance. However, like myself some of us have found, because we have to work so many hours to make ends meet our health care has gone from $20 per month to $134.00 per month, but my income hasn't changed. However, when the minimum wage in CA goes to $9.00 per hour on July 1st we will then receive $9.30 per hour….  I only have about 10 more or so years left I can work towards retirement, but it's all I can do at this stage in my life. I won't get retirement in the caregiving industry, which makes me sad for those 1,400 workers in my county who are young and not thinking about retirement in their futures. Thank Senator Boxer for standing up for the working poor who once upon a time were the middle class working citizens. Now we have become an addition to the lower income poverty level, which is why it's gotten so large in number. I will be praying for those Republicans who are voting NO and preventing the vote from going through that they never have to try and survive on our wages. Pay their housing, utilities, health care, car payments, car insurance, food, etc.
Ceva, Clearlake – Minimum Wage Earner for 45 years  

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Californians respond to my message on Lifting Up Women and their Families (01/30/2014):

What you and the other Democratic women in the Senate are doing is wonderful. The people in this country need to hear this message. That includes both corporate America and the person on the street. No one deserves to live in poverty while working full time. No one's job is unworthy of fair pay. I worked at minimum wage over 35 years ago and made about $8,000 a year. Given the rate of inflation, no way has the current minimum wage kept pace. All employees deserve fair pay for their jobs and women deserve equal pay for equal work. Thank you for working to make this happen.
Marth, Ventura

I’m really shocked that the minimum wage is still so low! 20+ years ago I earned $10 for a year while I worked in an office and I had some retirement income and social security and it was tough to make ends meet. I don't think even $10.10 is enough, but it is better than what the current rate is. Have no idea how people survive on such low pay. Or why so many are against raising it. I applaud the work of all of you working to improve wages for the working poor.
Mary Jo, Los Angeles

An increase to the minimum wage is of some help, but $10.10 is still not enough. I would like to see it go all the way to $15.00, but I realize that is probably not achievable with Congress as it is today. We speak about the shrinking middle class. Yes, that is a very bad situation. However most of these people who drop out are dropping down into the poverty class. That's who we need to address more than the middle class.
Jim, Oakland

I do not believe there should be any minimum wage. I believe it is inconsistent with freedom. The government should be forever denied the power to set wages or salaries in the free market. You are denying people who are not worth as much as your minimum wage, a job. You are knocking the rungs out of the bottom steps of the economic ladder. I believe your true goal is to make people dependent on government support. Free market wages are inherently fair because both the worker and owner have to agree on wages. The free market is the only arbitrator of fair wages. We are not mindless peasants who want to be ruled.
Henry, Orinda

San Jose has led the way with increase minimum wage and it hasn't hurt the economy.
Bob and Lorraine, San Jose

Keep up the good work. It is by sheer numbers that we can change the fate of women and children. I was a single parent for many years. I know the issues.
Marsha, Culver City

The picture would be worth a thousand words if there were women of color in the picture. While I understand the plight of working women, the picture is not a true reflection of these women. Especially when there are women students that are working every day and are sleeping in their cars while trying to get an education because they make too much money to avail resources. As a woman representing the San Francisco bay area the picture is NOT a reflection of the area or the population.
Doris, Hayward

In the past (Clinton was President) I thought of myself as middle class. As a single mother of one, working full time - I saw the light at the end of the tunnel. I believed I could buy a condo or a small home. Now in 2014 no. After 12 years of republican Presidents - the tunnel is gone! However I will never give up as I see you don't. This ability you have to keep fighting with these crazies is remarkable to me. I still see the republicans are getting their way. Which in my view is trying to make United States a third world county. Privatized medical, rich not paying their fare share and tampering with education for anyone. Your fight is not in vain! Thank you.
Kerrie, San Mateo

I and my family are absolutely in support to raising the minimum wage. Although we are not minimum wage workers I know that it wise to have a healthy economy and healthy citizens. My husband and I both had dads that worked 2 or more jobs so our moms could stay home to raise the children. This is the 21st century and our experience is not the norm, it helps all of us to for workers to have a live able wage.
Kathleen, Chula Vista

Thank you so much for sharing this with your voters. As a pastor I see all too often the devastating effects of minimum wage jobs on women who are the single head of households. What often goes unnoticed is that many of these women have educations and have been in professions impacted by our poor economy. Not only have they suffered job loss but as well the loss of health care benefits and when over the age of 50, often find it difficult to acquire new employment that pays them a living wage.
Harold, Inglewood

I can't tell you how heartened I am at your email regarding the women of the senate standing together to support an increase in the minimum wage, especially since, as you pointed out, 2/3 of the minimum wage workers are women, and most are mothers trying to squeeze enough value out of those wages to provide for their families. Thank you for standing with them.
Olive, Willits

This wage increase to $10.10 an hour is an improvement. However, it is not enough. Adults need to make more than $10.10 an hour - more like $15.00 an hour minimum....everything is so expensive. I know so many working breaks my heart.
Julie, Lower Lake

i don't know how a raise is going to take mothers out of poverty. what they need is gov't aid on child care. there are to many women on welfare that could be screened and trained for childcare. the banks have to many homes sitting that the gov't could purchase for these childcare homes.
a raise only means higher prices. it's all about chasing the tail and as a independent truck driver are wages won't go up because our gov't doesn't put a stop on outside our country trade.
it's sad how this country has really tried to paint a pretty picture and how all of you democratic women close your eyes to the real problems. I am a democrat women of 60 years and have watched my country put us (america) on the back burner. i wish the carrot would stop dangling and give us strong solid change.
Patricia, Stocton
It is critical that the minimum wage be increased to at least allow working people to keep a roof over their heads and feed their family. Thank you for your efforts to see that this happen!
Heather, Sonoma

I was home and raised both of my children. Raising children properly is one of the best things parents can do to ensure they become great people and citizens in the future. Women who work get tax breaks for childcare, but there is no such tax break for women who can stay home. When a woman stays home it should not be considered a privilege, but very hard work, and work that should be recognized as well. Not all people who stay home with their kids are wealthy, and can afford a nanny. Some women can stay home, but choose to work. Let's be fair to all women.
Kathy, santa Cruz

Thank you for standing up for higher wages. What is needed, is for the fast food places [where the majority of low-income workers are employed] to raise their prices. They only charge one dollar for a hamburger? They LOSE money on that, but use it to get people to come into their place of business. They should be forced to raise their prices, especially on meat products. The beef is often raised in South America, and the rain forests are being torn down to accommodate ranchers raising beef for America's fast food companies. I have never heard anyone mention this fact when commenting on higher wages. It's about time we talk about the fact that extremely low prices for fast food are what is perpetuating the low wages for workers.
Catherine, Scotts Valley

Before you can increase the wage you had better find jobs for these women. The seniors have been taxed to death and this health care has hurt the seniors. I used to be a democrat but it isn't looking great to vote for democrats who do not listen to the public. Help the older women who paid their share of taxes all their working lives.
Carole, Daly City

As a 72 year old single mom who raised two sons, I say, "Equal pay for equal work.... It's about time!"
Laura, Sebastopol

Using women again to promote damaging political agendas...typical Liberal actions! Raising the minimum wage, forcing business to pay unskilled labor more, will hurt more women and families more than it will help them! The cost of everything will go up to support the wage increases, and you all know that! Don't you people believe in a starting point for labor???...we all had to work at a minimum wage job when we were in high school and work our way up as we got more educated. For crying out loud, you are going to bring down this country if you keep pushing handouts… How long do you think it will take if you raise the minimum wage for the rest of the labor force to demand increases, also, which can only lead to higher and higher inflation, which will still make it just as hard for single working mothers to support themselves...this is NOT a solution!!
Patty, Ventura

You and I know it's impossible to live on $10 an hour in today's economy. It's a joke that this is something all of you are proud of.  Prices on food and housing have risen off the charts. $10 an hour for a 40 hour week is $800. Multiply that by 52 weeks with no vacation for the entire year, and it comes to #20,800 a year. It's poverty level. Could you live on that?
Elaine, Berkeley

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Californians respond to my message on Raising the Minimum Wage – Share Your Story (01/28/2014):

PLEASE vote and push for increasing the minimum wage. This is simply doing the right thing for our hard working people and will be good for the economy as that money is returned when they spend it supporting the economy.
Donna, Davis

Would you sponsor a bill to raise minimum wage for ALL workers, and apply that to Social
Security Disability, retirement, and Welfare, (since disabled people have to live on that while they're waiting to be recognized as disabled)? I was an aerospace machinist making half decent money. Now, as a disabled person, I barely get minimum wage! Worrying about losing ourapartment is causing me chest pain! Not nice wondering which necessities to cut! 
Roger, San Diego

I just wanted to thank you for working so hard to raise the minimum wage. It is the right and decent thing to do. I’ve no idea in the world how people are feeding their families on the minimum wage as it is now, and so many minimum wage jobs have cut hours to below 40 so as to not have to provide insurance benefits.
Margaret, Fallbrook

Thank you for your strong support for all our country's women & men who deserve living wages for their hard work.
Mario, Chula Vista

Yes, the minimum wage is not a living wage for a women who is trying to raise her family. If you're 16 and going to high school and working part time, a minimum wage will help in a savings account and toward social security later in life. Waiters and waitresses should not have to struggle to make ends meet, nor should walmart employees have to be on food stamps and medicaide. yes, raise the minimum wage for everyone who gets up every day and goes to work, even if they dislike their boss! Thank you for sending me this message and giving me an opportunity to respond to your legislative agenda.
Roberta, San Francisco

as usual, it's the democrats who are supporting better living wages for our fellows -- it is incredible that the minimum wage has been kept so low for so long, and $10.10/hour will be a good beginning.
Jennifer, San Diego

I appreciate the opportunity to share my personal and business focus on the socio-economic challenges we face in California and the Nation. We hear from Congress and the White House that small businesses are the backbone of America. I agree, however, we are not given the same consideration and opportunities that large and major corporations receive, yet we employ most of the American workers and we pay the majority of taxes; federal, state and local. So how is this impacted by the minimum wage increase proposed. I will share some California facts to make my point. During the 2000 Census we learned that about 94% of all Californians who get up every day and go to work actually work for a business or agency that employs 10 people or less. I am one of those employers and have been for over 25 years. There have been times when we were able to make payroll, pay taxes, pay for our office leases and equipment, provide employee benefits, including medical, pay worker's compensation fees, pay unemployment fees and did not have sufficient funds left over to cover our complete salary or secure benefits for ourselves and our families. I am not alone, there are millions of small businesses in California and hundreds of millions across the nation who fit a similar profile, but continue to seek access and opportunities to grow. So, what do we need? We need a firm and immediate commitment from the White House and the Congress that small diversely owned and operated, highly skilled, experienced and competitive businesses will "begin" to receive a fair share of federal, state, county and city contracts so that we can do more than just support an increase in minimum wage and necessary benefits -- we will be able to afford what we can all consider fair and respectable salaries and benefits for ourselves and our employees. Ultimately, this formula would begin to deliver more respectable salaries and benefits which would help newly employable Americans to continue working for small and mid-sized firms while they do their best to pursue the American Dream.
Until the White House and Congress put results in front of the words (small businesses are the nations employers) we will continue to struggle just to make ends meet while large and mega-corporations continue to receive tax advantages, bail out loans, special concessions and "massive" and "continuous" incomes from Federal, State, County and City contracts that allow them to pay their officers and executives obscene salaries, perks and benefits. These people are not generally or seriously impacted by recessions or downturns in the economy - - but we are and so are our employees and their employees. I leave you with the fact that corporate executives do not have a minimum wage because in their positions and the massive incomes of their large and mega-corporations . . . the sky is the limit. Ask Wall Street and the top 500 corporations in our Country. Or better yet, look at the collective and proportionate number of American (not European, Middle Eastern or Asian Country) employees and the collective or proportionate tax amounts they put into local, state and federal coffers vs. we the small business owners.
Again, thanks for the opportunity to speak.
John, Los Angeles

Thank you Senator Boxer for helping all people attain the American dream of hard work for quality of life...the dream has been taken from too many as fewer people (The 1%) do less, create more adversity for the masses to overcome and take all the wealth! People are beyond tired and frustrated and families with children are suffering the most!! Thank you for your compassion and dedication.
Nicole, Los Angeles

I retired just one year ago from a rewarding 35 year career as a Registered Nurse. I spent my entire working life in one incredible Intensive Care Unit at Children's Hospital Oakland along with 150 other devoted nurses. For 13 years I was married to an auto mechanic. I always wanted to earn a comparable wage to what he was paid, but always seemed to be 15-20% behind him in earnings. This disparity always confounded me. Do people really care more for their cars than their critically ill newborns? Is a mechanic's job responsibility really that much more than a nurse's? Before my nursing education I worked at minimum wage, then $1.25 an hour. It's a tough haul to try and make ends meet. Bottom line for all this is I think we need a fairer TAX SYSTEM for this country. Eliminate the loopholes for the wealthy and establish a FLAT tax that will be applied across the board to individuals and corporations. Cut out the incentive to "fudge" on your taxes. Make the whole process one which people would easily complete
without the need for hiring a professional to interpret the current mess we are subjected to trying to understand each year. Individuals who work should receive a decent wage and they should in turn contribute to the success of our Nation / Society. Education and a fair wage should be available to all who desire to contribute to this end.
Judith, Berkeley

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Earthquake Preparedness

Californians respond to my message on Preparing for Earthquakes:

Thank you for the email addressing Earthquake Preparedness. We all need to be reminded with those tips.
Michael, Rocklin

I just wanted to thank you for sharing the tips for preparing before, during, and after an earthquake. I live in Northern California but just so happen to be in Los Angeles when the last earthquake hit. Those tips are good reminders on staying safe.
Peggy, Susanville

Thank you for sending email re earthquakes. As a fourth generation native Southern Californian, who lost my place in the Northridge quake, I like reassurance Washington is aware. Sadly, since Los Angeles is so transient and nobody is from California, our next major quake will be quite a "challenge." I wish the info in your email could reach those people! We all need reassurance but the "how to's" or "what to do" is so important. Please continue to keep everyone informed! Now, will FEMA really be ready to handle "the big one?" I hope I never have to find out! Thanks again for the email.
Cindy, Studio City

Current earthquake insurance is about $5000+ a year. My regular insurance is about half.
We need affordable earthquake insurance.
Keni, Oroville

Thanks for taking the time to remind people of what they should do in case of an emergency like an earthquake. This is the type of Big Brother or Sister government should be. Thanks again.
Thomas, Fallbrook

Please add a short item about pet protection after an earthquake or other disaster. It's always best to take pets along when people must leave home. In cases of large animals like horses and livestock, local animal services can help to a degree and should be contacted. The Humane Society of the US published preparedness and action guides for various animal situations: How about posting a link to this information on your site and in future alerts?
Holland, South Pasadena

Thanks so much for your email list of earthquake preparedness tasks, for, although I've lived in California all my life and have experienced several earthquakes, the devastating 1971 Northridge one which threw everything off my shelves and caused so much damage, still I have to be reminded to keep your list handy and make sure I am prepared.
Barbara, Goleta

You just sent out an email regarding earthquake safety. There has been recent evidence that fracking has caused small earthquakes in several states. Since California is bracing for "the big one", how can anyone in their right mind allow fracking anywhere in California. This is the elephant in the room that no one talks about. I certainly hope that you are opposing fracking in CA.
Penelope, Pasadena

Thank you for the information on preparing for earthquakes. I agree that we all need reminded to be prepared just in case we experience a natural disaster. Thank you for your concerns for us and our families and your helpful tips.
Victoria, Sunnyvale

Interesting that you would send this message today. I'm chairman of the Emergency Preparedness Advisory Committee here in Sun City, (Menifee, CA). I had just received some of these materials you spoke of. Our committee was recently formed and we are moving forward slowly (baby steps). Ready and FEMA have been very helpful getting information to us and we really appreciate. Sun City is a Retirement Community in Riverside Co. Most of our residents age 55 or older. Many with conditions that require special attention and needs. We wish to thank you for your attention and recognition to our segment of society.
Gary, Menifee

Thanks for sending this out... Might want to add to the "before an earthquake" list that one should go out and purchase earthquake insurance...
Shawn, Northridge

The city of Oakland has an excellent EQ prep program called CORE, which comprises many hours of classroom training as well as hands on training. Our neighborhood group, "CABS" (Colton, Asilomar, Balboa) has a large number of residents who have taken the full course plus refreshers. Over the last several years, the group meets monthly to plan and help others organize; we have mapped out the houses in the neighborhood for gas and water shutoffs; who has pets; where are the eldrly and disabled. We have participated in the city-wide drills, setting up the incident command centers, first aid centers, etc. Most everyone has their own two way radios, and one member is trained in shortwave communications. I believe most of us could survive for 72 or more hours. Unfortunately, it is not mandatory training, but I'm sure glad I live in this neighborhood.
Jerry, Oakland

In your email regarding being prepared for earthquakes in California, I found it interesting that you failed to mention the recent earthquake of 6.8 in Eureka! We were very lucky this time. There was no damage but we certainly have in the past, as recent as January 2010. This area not only has some of the strongest earthquakes in California, but also the highest gas prices! Yet, this area is always ignored when it comes to talking about these issues.
Susan, Eureka

I want to thank you for the timely e-mail information that you have provided with regard to earthquake preparedness. As a corollary to that subject, I would like to express my concern with the status of the nation's electric grid. There was an article that covered this subject in the April 7 edition of the Los Angeles Times. I understand the difficulty with which Congress struggles to debate this issue. It is a complex and critical subject that may not be resolved for years.
However, I would like to point out a specific topic. Namely, the need for backup transformers. It seems to me that we do not have to wait for a national or regional emergency to find out that the warnings with regard to the lack of backup transformers (and the long lead-time for replacement) were true. I would hope that Congress could use its influence and authority to, at least, resolve this potential for catastrophe. Where would the money come from? I believe in a strong national defense. However, I am sure that the United States of America can do without a number of the almost 900 overseas military bases. I would still feel safe if we only had, say, 800 bases. My point is that the money can be found. Thank you for your consideration in this matter.
Robert, Huntington Beach

Senator Boxer, thank you for the reminders re: earthquake preparedness. These points are timely, relevant, and clear. You reminded me of bookcases that need to be secured in my own home. May all of your constituents follow through.
Mary, Vista

Recently, there have been many articles in our local newspaper regarding the Earthquake alarm notification system which is only working for a few scientists at CalTech and perhaps a few other locations. I understand that it would take a few million dollars to get this system up and running for all of California, however, the funds are not available for this to get enacted.
I think it would be more beneficial to use the funds that have been set aside for the speed train which costs a whole lot more and the billions required are not available and this isn't as urgent as alerting the West Coast including Washington and Oregon in the event of Earthquakes that could save millions of lives.
Cecelia, Murrieta

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Pay Equality

Californians respond to my message on Equal Pay for Equal Work:

As a young woman executive in the sixties, I was turned down for equal pay because I did not have a family to support. Even though I was the top producer in that department of all male peers. And this was a worldwide major corporation that is still listed on the NYSE. Thank you for being our spokesperson for justice.
Judith, Palm Springs

As a Husband and the father of two daughters I am very supportive of the paycheck fairness act. It is an idea that is both fair and logical. what a concept!
Don, San Leandro

Thank you for your standing on the subject. While I am not personally affected I do have an older sister that has labored in the trenches on that very subject. Currently retired, she had a successful career starting as a member of the von Braun team that put the first American satellite into orbit. She went on to become a NASA Program Manager and post Gov retirement a Vice President for Material Science at Lockheed Martin. Family and friends are proud of her. That Gal has spine! She fought a hard battle and won. Again, Thank you for your concern on the matter.
John, Northridge

I graduated from a top university for which my parents paid all my expenses (although they were not members of the "1%"), then worked at a science profession for 42 years at 70 cents for every dollar earned by my male colleagues, until retirement in 2006. Women also made up the majority of the science staff at the companies where I worked. That the pay inequity has narrowed only 7 cents in the 50 years since I started my career is galling.
Margaret, Napa

Thank you for your email. I appreciate knowing what your thoughts and actions are as my Senator. I am asking that you do not support this legislation. I understand that the 77% is not correct. Below is more information. A proper analysis of gender wage gap research shows that the disparity arises out of a multitude of factors that reflect the individual preferences of men and women, such as occupational choice, time spent at work, and non-wage benefits, among others. A Labor Department analysis of 50 peer-reviewed studies concluded: “This study leads to the unambiguous conclusion that the differences in the compensation of men and women are the result of a multitude of factors and that the raw wage gap should not be used as the basis to justify corrective action. Indeed, there may be nothing to correct. The differences in raw wages may be almost entirely the result of the individual choices being made by both male and female workers.” Women deserve equality in the workplace. Laws such as the Equal Pay Act of 1963 protect women from wage and employment discrimination based on sex. The Paycheck Fairness Act, however, is premised on bad statistics and seeks to facilitate class-action lawsuits with unintended consequence: reducing women’s opportunities in the workplace and paving the way for more rigid pay structures.
Stacy, San Jose

Women deserve equality in the work place. Laws such as the "Equal Pay Act of 1963" were intended to protect women from wage and employment discrimination based on "sex" The "new" Pay Check Fairness Act should be another improvement of if a women is doing the same job she should be the same as her male counter part. Equal pay for the same job. Balance the scales of justice. Remove the blindfold. Unambiguous conclusion that the difference in the compensation of men and women are the results of a multitude of factors. This is only a "smoke screen" to not pay the same amount to both men and women for the same "JOB" Pass this "Pay Check Fairness Act 2014" Pass this Act it is the correct moral thing, Government for the people.
Paul, Danville

As a man, I applaud yours and President Obama's efforts on this issue. I have many female colleagues and I am alarmed that they may be paid less than me solely only the basis of our sex. Even from the perspective of self-interest, knowing that my wife and daughter may get paid less than myself or my son, even when performing the same job hurts our family's ability to live the American dream. Equal Pay for Equal Work hurts no one and helps all of us. So why do the Republicans oppose it? The only reason I could imagine is that they live in a world where only men work outside of the home and they do not educate their daughters. What's the point?
Joseph, Torrance

Women continue to be the major group of people that are not treated equally in this society. It is about time we look upon women for the many roles they play to keep not only the future of our human race but their work in every aspect of our society keeping it working and together. There is no other group in our society which is asked every day to sacrifice so much for so many with the fewest rewards! They need to feel everyday our support and appreciation for what they do, equal pay should be only the beginning.
Dennis, Santa Rosa

Paycheck Fairness Act seems to be the right thing to do, I wonder why in this actual century we still haven't resolved issues like this. Hopefully this proposition will be accepted simply because is we are not asking for a favor but what is just fair. Thank you for fighting the good fight.
Ana, Whittier

I could not agree more. On top of unequal pay women are also still subjected to the idea that they should be the domestic in many situations. Because of unequal pay women have trouble qualifying for the purchase of a home and even of a car at times. It is extremely frustrating. I am glad to see how much progress women have made up to now, but a lot more needs to be done.
Dora, Whittier

I disagree with the position you are taking on this wage debate. I feel the government should not get involved with the gender wage debate. This is a debate that should be dealt with in businesses and board rooms and not by the Senate or Government. Little thought is being given to men who are trying to provide for families. Men are losing jobs or pay because women are taking both. It is almost impossible to survive in today's world without two income households which leaves no one taking care of the children (who happen to be the future of our nation). Back down Senator Boxer. Let businesses decide what is to be done. Let Women talk to their bosses and figure this out without legislation. Because your way of equalizing the playing field is creating great consequences in other ways. Women think we are gaining freedoms but look how many freedoms it has cost us to gain those freedoms.
Rachel, Moraga

I totally support your efforts to get equal pay for women. As a single mom, it was tough raising my son with no child support from his deadbeat dad and then to only earn about .70/$1 as a clerk. I don't understand why we women don't have parity. Of course, I don't understand why the ERA wasn't passed either.
Pamela, Norwalk

Thank you for your work to fight for pay equality for women. I truly believe that this is an important issue, and I urge you to continue your efforts!
Sylvia Chow

I am a divorced mother with a good fulltime job. I have rarely been paid equally with my male counterparts in the last 35 years of working in Los Angeles, but due to hard work and being good at what I do, I have always made a good income. I supported my family for the last 20 years while my ex husband kept changing jobs trying to find himself. This bill is very important for women who have low paying jobs to survive, and women in general as a matter of principle.
Amy, Tujunga

Thanks for fighting for Equal pay for women. As a single working mother of 3 kids, including two adopted foster children, I appreciate the recognition of our contribution. Please continue to fight for us.
Holly, Morgan Hill

I'm a machinist and I'm a woman. I have been in the trade around 33 years. I was told at one time, by a woman who had access to the information, that I was getting paid a lot less than the men who do the same work as myself. I couldn't do anything about it because no one was allowed to find out what others made. What can be done now? Anything? How can a woman know what her male co-workers make? Is there a legal way to do this? We need someone to help us find out.
Denise, Fremont

Thank you for supporting and bringing to the fore this disgraceful situation. I hope it will be resolved in the near future. I would imagine, however, that this will require legislation. I doubt companies will be fair just because it's right, but will continue a procedure that saves them money. Keep up the good work!
Laurie, Long Beach

You have my support for the Paycheck Fairness Act. It is TIME that women get equal pay for equal work as well as have equal opportunity for a range of careers!
Linda, Santa Rosa

This should be a human issue, not a gender issue; if you do the same work, you should get the same pay.
Rex, Daly City

This is probably the first time I have ever agreed with Senator Boxer's opinion since she took office in 1993. Equal work should definitely receive equal pay and if one is better at their job they should get higher pay than the other.
Eugene, Sherman Oaks

you know, or should know, that this non-issue is a pure fabrication to distract from the failed policies of your party's platform and this administration. "In 2009, the U.S. Department of Labor found that, after controlling for obvious education and job differences, the gender "wage gap" shrank to only 95 percent. The Labor Dept. report also noted women often make different choices than men: "A greater percentage of women than men tend to work part-time. Part-time work tends to pay less than full-time work. A greater percentage of women than men tend to leave the labor force for childbirth, childcare and elder care. Some of the wage gap is explained by the percentage of women who were not in the labor force during previous years, the age of women, and the number of children in the home. Women, especially working mothers, tend to value 'family friendly' workplace policies more than men. Some of the wage gap is explained by industry and occupation, particularly, the percentage of women who work in the industry and occupation." Even the 5 percent "gap" has a non-exploited explanation. The Labor report said:
"Research also suggests that differences not incorporated into the model due to data limitations may account for part of the remaining gap. ...(M)uch of the literature, including the Bureau of Labor Statistics Highlights of Women's Earnings, focus on wages rather than total compensation. Research indicates that women may value non-wage benefits more than men do, and as a result prefer to take a greater portion of their compensation in the form of health insurance and other fringe benefits." What's more, three years ago USA Today found that young, childless, unmarried working women ages 22-30 out-earn men of the same age: "Women ages 22 to 30 with no husband and no kids earn a median $27,000 a year, 8 percent more than comparable men in the top 366 metropolitan areas, according to 2008 U.S. Census Bureau data. ..." "The trend is especially apparent," said USA Today, "in cities where minority groups make up more than half the population. Among blacks and Hispanics, women are more than twice as likely as men to earn college degrees." They found the largest discrepancy in Atlanta, Ga., where woman out-earned men by 21 percent."
Daniel, Altadena

Thank you for your support of the Paycheck Fairness Act, S. 2199. I'm struck by the implicit assumption by so many (especially those with access to a microphone) that it is men that need convincing of the need for paycheck equality. This situation is reminiscent of Aristophanes famous comedy and social commentary, Lysistrata. Lysistrata was an elegant speaker, but required the assistance of Calonice and Lampito to convince the women to collectively stand against War. They also blocked access to the treasury with their own bodies to prevent more money being spent on war. I make this juxtaposition because as a woman in my 50's, I have lived through many years of gender inequality, and I'm always saddened by women who vote against their own best interests, or need to be convinced of the obvious results of inequality. This fight should bring all women together and can only do so when it isn't considered a partisan issue but a gender issue. Is there a way to make this about how paycheck inequality affects every strata of women? That it's not about color or race or social position or career path or working women just making ends meet whether Blue Collar or Professional?
Cynthia, Concord

Hopefully we might finally see equal pay for women. As a female engineer (now retired due to sex discrimination), I wholly support your efforts. Women start out with dreams and then find out reality and the system tries to squash them. What a waste of talent and resources.
Trish, Newcastle

It is my experience as a professional woman in the military for 21 years and a Senior Associate with Booz, Allen and Hamilton for 2 + years that if an individual, male or female, did the same quality of work, they were compensated the same. And if you do your job better, you will reap what you sowed. Legislation for women on this issue is not necessary and in fact will set us back in our expansion into the business world. All males holding the same title in a company and doing the same job are not paid the same salary...they are paid based on what they have contributed to the company's bottom line. I in fact when I went with private industry was making more than all of my contemporaries that had been in the job for the same amount of time and more than many who had considerably less time. Your legislation would not have made that possible. Woman who have the skills are sought after just like their male counterparts ....leave it alone..don't discriminate.
Joseph, Fort Bragg

Thank you for your outstanding speech that you delivered to Congress recently regarding the need for equal pay for women. It is almost unthinkable that in this day and age, we women are STILL being treated like second-class citizens. Yet we are and this is only one of many ways we are! I am retired now, but when I did work for a major home fashion company, my income was less than what a man's would have been. And my MALE supervisor thought that I should receive more $ for my salary and he added extra overtime hours to make up for what we both believed was an inequal pay situation, i.e. discrimination against women. I know what he did would be considered dishonest but in reality, I did work very efficiently and deserved the "extra" income. I was one of the fortunate women who did receive a fair salary After he (my "Boss") added in those overtime hours. Sadly, as you and I and millions of other hard-working women do NOT receive equal pay as men and clearly, this discrimination must stop!
 Christine, San Carlos

I want to thank you for standing up for women, especially single mothers. I also raised my children, and worked. I received $25.00 per week for my 2 children for child support, and I also could have used that extra $11,000 for our family. My children are grown now, and I just retired a couple of years ago, but there are still many women facing the same situation as I did. Thank you for being our voice.
Patricia, Sylmar

I have been a full-time member of the work force for forty years, enjoyed my job and had a pretty good career. Our children are both successful and I am now retired. While comfortable, I wonder how life would be different had I been paid the same as men. For the young women now who are also supporting families, many of them single and struggling, equal pay for equal work is essential and about time!
Sabine, Salinas

Obama's 77-cent number is based on a metric that doesn't take into account the fact that women tend to choose lower-paying professions and take time off when they have children. As a measure of unfair pay, it's worthless. When researchers consider these factors, the gap closes to 91 or even 95 cents to a man's dollar.
Susan, Chatsworth

Thank you for standing up for women! This is long, long, overdue. Too late for me, but making this equal would certainly make things easier for us seniors in our retirement by increasing our social security benefits for one. For two, some of us might actually have made enough to put into IRAs or 401ks to see us through our senior years.
Lynn, Escondido

It pains me to have to correct a U.S. Senator, but you are repeating the same misinformation promulgated by the President. In fact, today in the U.S. women earn about 92% of men's pay, and if they didn't often prefer the joys of motherhood to the dreary duties of the workplace, would no doubt earn more than the men. Women are already attending and graduating university in far greater numbers. In the future they will certainly out-earn their husbands.
Douglas, San Rafael

The $0.77 you cite for women's wage gap has been disproven by numerous studies and rejected by the U.S. Dept. of Labor. The figure has been long ago been discredited. And you are discrediting yourself by continuing to trumpet it. What wage gap that does exist is due to factors such as hours worked, years of experience, leaves of absence - short and long term - for family reasons, etc.
David, Pasadena

I would be happy to support your efforts on behalf of Equal Pay but I would appreciate it if you would be honest about the numbers. As the father of two daughters and grandfather of four granddaughters this subject is very dear to my heart but the truth is that if you compare apples to apples the difference in pay is 5 cents for every dollar earned. I agree that there shouldn't any difference but the reality is there are many difference between men and women and each of us, for a variety of reasons, make different career choices. I am a retired police officer and in my career field women make the same pay as men for doing the same job. But many female officers chose positions and career paths that are different male police officers and the jobs they interested in (Detectives etc.) don't always pay as much as supervisory positions
Next time don't cook the numbers but be honest. There are bigger problems facing our country.
Edward, Canyon Country

Please look into the data behind the accusation that women earn only 77 cents on the dollar as compared to men. You will find the alleged pay discrepancy a myth originated several decades ago by poor research done in the social science academic community. When adjusted for time-on-the-job, hour worked, and other factors, women and men are paid equally. This only makes common sense. No business will jeopardize their ability to attract top talent by overpaying men--or conversely--underpaying women. One aspect that may deserve the attention of the government is to make sure that women get on-the-job credit when they take time off for maternity leave. This action alone would send the message to women that they are valued for their unique contribution to the welfare of our society.
Carl, Canyon Country

It doesn't surprise me that it was filibustered. From my point of view, congress is acting like little children that are not getting their way. Just keep shining the light on the issue and eventually things will finally get right… My mother, who is still alive, barely (Hospice care) would have been an avid supporter of your cause. I her younger years, she would have been considered a women's libber. I can remember my dad telling her, he was hungry, like she was supposed to get up and cook him something and instead of doing that, she told him if he was hungry..."there is the kitchen...get to work."
Steve, Fields Landing

As a retired typographer and printer, I have yet to meet any female that could equal what a male does in the printing industry. How come women always got days of for female problems and the men had to fight to get a few hours off to bring their wives home after having had a child. Women were always the fair-haired employees and I hate to think how many asked me to do the bull work required in a printing plant because they were unable to handle the weight. my answer "You took the job be able to do the work. If it takes 2 people then get help, If it only requires one person be able to do it yourself.” I am opposed to special handling of the sexes. If the requirements are the same then be able to do the job to get the same pay.
Joseph, Canoga Park

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Californians respond to my message on Fighting for Paycheck Fairness (01/30/2013) :

As a student I kept thinking that by the time I was a parent, women would get equal pay. As a young parent, I was sure it would happen any day. Now that I am a grandparent, I can only hope it will happen for my granddaughter.
Bev, Carmel

I am so thankful for your legislation on fair pay for women. The last forty years, I have worked in a male dominated field of Public Works. My education level is higher, my staff larger and my territory broader than all of the males in our Department. That being said, I am the lowest paid employee. Males with no employees that work in an office and less education make more than I do. I love my job and the people that live in Lompoc; that is the only reason I have not sought employment elsewhere. Approaching retirement age, I hope this happens soon.
Cindy McCall, Lompoc

Thank you for supporting fair pay. It's very important.
Catherine, San Gabriel

Keep up the good fight! These unfair and completely outdated practices have been going on too long!
Janet, La Jolla

Thanks for doing your best to insure that women get more pay. My daughter is a single parent supporting her son and has a great job, but they don't pay her the salary that a man would get if he did her job. So unfair in this 21st Century! We need equal pay for now and for the future.
Hazel, Reseda

Women with children should not earn for men if they are primary care. Women by default don't deserve the reward people who don't show up to do the worke default ensure less pay by calling out to care for kids. People like me them have to cover for them. Of course they are paid less...deservedly so.
Alicia, Long Beach

That $454,000 lifetime wage differential that women suffer through their working careers -- does that take into account the eventual CONTINUED differential in social security and pension receipts? If it doesn't, then the penalty for being a women is drastically understated. I'm speaking from my personal experience, of course. And I get reminded of it every month for the rest of my life. Thanks for your efforts on our behalf!
Jane, Banning

I thank you for raising your voice publicly and strongly in support of women and their families. I am in a household of two women and so we would feel the pain doubly being paid less than our male counterparts. I know I work very hard with good results and evaluations as does my partner. We deserve to be paid equally. I appreciate all your work in bringing forth legislation that will truly make "more equality."
Angela, Oakland

Thank you, and about time too I have been retired fourteen years now, I worked until I was 65, so when I read about the above I really am pleased. Thank you again and good luck in all you do
Joan, Murrieta

I totally support your equl pay efforts. I am a retired Federal manager (GM-14) who fought for this in the 1980s/90s.
Ardel, Sacramento

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Military Justice Improvement Act

Californians respond to my message We Will Continue the Fight to End Military Sexual Assault:

to you and the others who voted to make changes in sexual assault procedures in our military service organizations. Please keep working on this project. As slow as change occurs, change must occur. The current situation is out of control and is just plain wrong.
Jane, Menlo Park

I know we can count on you to fight to protect the rights of women - especially those in the military. It's outrageous that these women put their lives on the line to protect our country and they themselves have no protection from their own leaders!
Audrey, La Crescenta

Please keep on fighting to remove commanding officers from overseeing sexual abuse issues in the military. Try again. Thanks.
Dorothea, Albany

The Military Justice Improvement Act should have easily passed by a landslide vote.  Unfortunately, the Senate, as well as the House of Representatives, have far too many political ties to the Military (the "good ole boys" syndrome); absolutely pathetic. Women should serve in our U.S.A. Military without fear of sexual attack or harassment! The failure of this Act to pass demonstrates so well how we Americans MUST clean house in Congress this year and in 2016!!!
Glen, La Verne

I truly do not understand why anyone would be against this amendment. Top Brass will not be relinquishing their command authority. On the contrary, they'll be in a better position because the onus of deciding what is and is not sexual violence/harassment will be out of their hands.
Jeffrey, Sylmar

Thank you for your on-going efforts to have these cases handled outside the closed, self-serving military society. It is horrifyingly obvious that the military CANNOT manage this issue themselves otherwise the numbers of cases would be diminutive or at least not in the tens of thousands. The chain of command has proved incompetent. I can't tell you how angry this makes me that a woman can't feel safe in her service to our country. To think that I suggested to a friend that her lovely daughter interested in criminal justice join a branch of the military! Thank God she didn't.
Jessie, Vista

As a veteran of 25 years of service as an enlisted member, I do not agree that the responsibility for ANY and all of the "assaults" should be removed from commanding officers for investigation and prosecution under the Uniform Code of Military Justice. How about finding a way for alleged victims to have a way to report outside of their command. There are the Judge Advocate Corps.
Michael, San Ysidro

Thank you for your support on this bill. I was deeply saddened by its failure to pass. Integrating the military by gender has been slow and awkward for America. This was not a vote for political correctness by liberal or conservation factions. If more civilians recognized how this particular institutionalized inequity does not protect military order, rather threatens it -- and how it effects and preserves a longstanding lack of check-and-balance within our military code of justice, they would insure that Congress corrected it. [Ironically, many who voted 'no' would vehemently disparage 'foreign' subjugation of women and flaunt in their speeches American freedom as if it were perfectly achieved already.] This issue also emphasizes to me the terrible problem of ignorance that an all-volunteer army creates--most civilians have no acquaintance with the facts of military life or that military law and justice "separate but equal". I would ask that someday we re-address the question of a universal draft in order to provide an accountable American Service corps.
Laurel, San Diego

It deeply saddens my wife and myself to hear that an attempt was made to place the proper convening authority in charge of this mess and it was turned down. The military is not what is was when we were in and with a military person safety in question by both sides(them and us) is not what it was. Today the military is just a job, with no "PRIDE". This effect us who served and makes us feel it was for "nothing", that we are just as bad as those who we fight or worse. How do one expect to do their job and watch their fronts and backs, with more emphasis on their fellow service members. I remember when the military took care of one another and today the care is for those who commit crimes against their fellow service member. Soon it will not be safe for any one servings in the military.
Melvin, Sacramento

Is taking sexual assaults out of chain of command something that can be done by executive order? You tried to do it what I consider the proper way but were blocked by the minority. It is too important to the soldiers who are suffering from this injustice to let it go on the way it is with the perpetrators getting advanced and the victims getting the shaft. Can we take it to the President?
Laura, Redlands

Do not give up the fight, Sen. Boxer. We're looking to you for leadership on this matter.
Marjorie, Walnut Creek

It is great that you are "fighting" for what is right--to remove the abuser as the next chain of command. The problem in the Senate is the 60 votes required to pass ANYTHING! It's time to make the Senate work again for the American people.
Nancy, Saratoga

I thank you for your efforts in attempting to put an end to harassment in the military. Please continue until we have a truly equal system for both sexes. We need to put an end to the 'good old boys club' mentality in our society(and the world!)This effort is a beginning. People are suffering,so there is no time to waste.
Nita, Carmel

It is a bitter feeling that comes to me after reading about the defeat of the military rape bill. It means the perpetrators and protectors of these perpetrators within the military will continue to debase those around them within the military. Needless to say, it will be license to keep on perpetrating their crimes and gloating in the worst way that it's within their rights not to pay for these crimes. How ugly!
Judith, Spring Valley

Thank you for your support of Sen. Gillibrand's bill on separating the handling of sexual assault cases from the chain of command, which failed in a craven support of Democratic senators of Sen, McCaskill's misguided alternative bill. All too often the attacker is within that chain, all the way up to the top, leaving no chance of justice for the victim.
Frieda, Pasadena

I am so disappointed in Democrats - they are the reason this bill did not pass.
Michael, San Francisco

I commend the work being put forth to ensure that sexual harassment and/or sexual assault cannot be tolerated in our Country or where our public and private residents do their work, fight battles or recreate. We need a law that creates a criminal justice forum and process where all complaints and incidents are commonly identified, addressed, investigated and adjudicated under a one size fits all process, regardless of status, gender, influence, authority, wealth and/or education of the accused and the accuser. I am a former Marine who would not have stood by and witnessed anyone being sexually harassed, assaulted, or abused in any way, on or off the battle field. I am also by choice, training and background a human resources, diversity and civil rights professional and am proud of the diversity that is the United States of America. We must step up and stand up for a law that is applied uniformly, justly and objectively.
Michael, Los Angeles

I appreciate your efforts and the efforts of others to get justice for military sexual assault victims. Legislation providing victims an alternative to reporting crimes up the chain of command may not provide victims a viable alternative. There is no proof that most adjutant generals are unlikely to subject sexual assault victims to “secondary victimization” (i.e., victim-blaming behaviors and practices engaged in by legal and medical personnel, which exacerbates victims' trauma) or that most adjutant generals think sexual assault is a crime that must be prosecuted or that most adjutant generals are immune to influences exerted by senior officers. One significant reason for wrong thinking by adjutant generals is military culture colored by the society in which the military exists. Years and millions of dollars have been spent trying to eliminate sexual assault/harassment from the American society. It seems that the threat of lawsuits in which a party is likely to have to pay huge awards has been one of the few effective deterrents. The deterrent affects of criminal prosecution are still debated. It is unlikely that any legislation requiring continuous sexual harassment training of all commanding officers down to squad leader levels will pass Congress. Legislation providing sexual assault victims the ability to report sexual assault directly to the FBI or Justice Department instead of someone in the military and providing those agencies investigative and prosecutorial authority is even less likely to pass Congress. I don't think sexual assault victims are likely to get justice until the military culture changes to the point that officers have an overriding appreciation of the detrimental affects of sexual assault on military readiness and until military officers think sexual assault is abhorrent.
Nonetheless, I hope you and others of like mind on this subject successfully pass legislation that provides sexual assault victims and those falsely accused the means to receive legal judgments that go a long way toward making them whole; e.g. honorable discharge, if desired; no negative impact on their military career if they chose to stay in; treatment for a disability if their performance is materially impacted; easy access to ongoing counseling, even after they are discharged.
Jerry, Los Angeles

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Californians respond to my message on Ensuring Justice for Our Servicemen and Women (11/22/2013) :

We support your efforts to stop sexual assaults in the military by using legal action outside the chain of command! Commanders tend to cover these attacks or delay any action on the guilty person.
William, Chula Vista

Thank you for working to end sexual abuse in the military, and for holding accountable those who commit sexual crimes. I agree that these crimes need to be taken out of the chain of command to assure justice for the victims.
Jo, Temple City

As a victim of sexual abuse and assault, and as a woman that grew up in a military family, and has a child that served, I am very happy to hear that we are in agreement. Serious change needs to take place in our military justice system. Thank you for stepping up with legislation to ensure the victims are protected and the abusers cannot continue to get away with their behavior or hide behind rank.
Sharon, Tracy

We are pleased that someone is trying to get to the bottom of this mess that was allowed to escalate to no end. We are hoping that you get enough support to take the punishment outside of the DOD period. My wife and I are both vets and it sicken us to continue to read that the "attackers" walk free while the victims are run through the mill, blamed for the act and otherwise non supported. We feel that all responsible for the act, up and down the chain of command, should be held sole responsible and punished accordingly, Dishonorably discharged and jailed. We thank you and other's for your efforts and wish you success in punishing those responsible for these act against fellow service members, thank you.
Melvin, Sacramento

Thank you for informing me of your work on sexual assault in the military. As a person who holds human rights issues close to heart, I am pleased that you are working to rectify the manner in which these crimes are handled. It is important that people feel safe and secure in their service to this country. Please know that I will pass this significant news along to family, friends, and colleagues.
Melbourne, Los Angeles

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Californians respond to my message on Ending Military Sexual Assault (7/16/2013):

The Military Justice Improvement Act of 2013 which you are co-sponsoring is balanced and spot-on.  We absolutely support this legislation.
Robert and Raoul, Los Angeles

Thank You Senator Boxer for your gallant efforts in securing the rights and freedoms of those who serve our nation.
Roberto, Los Angeles

thank you for standing up and saying it is wrong. It is wrong there are no if's, and's or but's about it!!  I do not understand how any person could say before our government that it was part of the job knowing very well that if it had been his mother, wife or daughter he be outraged!  How do they live with themselves for selling out their souls?  So thank you for stepping up!
Loree, Mount Shasta

Being the daughter of a Naval captain, the wife of a submariner and one who considered joining the Navy myself, I am appalled by the on-going rape, hazing, concealment, etc. of the various American armed forces regarding the women in their ranks.  Must women always be at risk because they are women?  Thank you.
Lena, Calistoga

I am glad to hear you are working to find a solution to the disgraceful treatment of victims of sexual assault within our military. Articles on sexual assault at Military Academies does not speak well for the military chain of commands ability to handle sexual assault cases. No one should live in fear of assault, especially those who are protecting our country. Thank You.
Douglas, Long Beach

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Californians respond to my message on A Stunning Proposal on Military Sexual Assault (06/13/2013):

I am very glad to learn of your efforts regarding a bill to remove sexual assault and other nonmilitary crimes from the military chain of command. One compelling reason, among many, why this should be done is that according to many women (and men) who have suffered rape and sexual assault while in the military is that the perpetrators have often been their commanding officers or people close to the commanding officers. How can anyone expect justice when the person to whom she or he would normally go to for assistance is the very person who committed the crime or who was associated with the perpetrator?
Dorothy, San Francisco

I spent four years in the Army, and while I was never the victim of sexual assault, I was very frequently the victim of sexual harassment and sometimes discrimination. My male colleagues in the Military Police were a strange mixture of protective brother and participating boor. It was a given that if we apprehended someone for either sexual assault/rape or child abuse, that person would "trip" and hit his head on the sedan (a "bumper-dumper") or would have to be subdued using "minimum force necessary" after "resisting apprehension" for such inexcusable behavior. But if one of them was suspected of any sort of sexual assault or harassment, they closed ranks and refused to believe the charge. Not unexpected, really, but difficult to reconcile. One of the primary reasons I left the military was that I felt I deserved to be treated better. Granted, I left military service 32 years ago, but unfortunately it doesn't sound like much has changed since then.
Gina, Hacienda Heights

This situation is unconscionable. There must be justice for victims of this horrific crime, particularly as they have volunteered their service to protect us.
Angela, Oakland

As a former sailor in the U.S. Navy, I see no reason not to take the responsibility for prosecuting sexual assault cases out of the hands of commanders. They have not proven themselves reliable, and the nature of the crime is such that "fear to report" is a key and irresolvable factor. For too long has the status quo had a say in what goes on with this issue. They have lost their rights, and this situation IS INTOLERABLE! Let me repeat that. IT IS INTOLERABLE! Please do not rest until this legislation takes this authority out of the hands of an institution that is NOT TRUSTWORTHY on this issue.
Dave, Menlo Park

I completely support your position on the issue of sexual assault in the military. I realize that you are up against some people who do not understand with the same depth that you have..
Karen, Sacramento

Thank you for seeking to stop the "chain of command" from deciding whether to pursue accusations of rape. When I was in ROTC many years ago, I saw the abuse of power even then by the officer in charge of us, especially in humiliating some of the black students under his command. It is clear that built into a system of the "chain of command," however necessary it may be in military operations, is a danger of abuse of power. Until recently I had no idea of the huge number of rape cases occurring each year & covered up by the use of "chain of command" decisions. I would be angry if they got away with this effort to subvert justice & cover up even one of these crimes, let alone the THOUSANDS that occur. I'm glad that you are pursuing this issue!!
Alex, San Francisco

Military sexual assault cases NEED to be taken away from the chain of command. Thank you for fighting for this change. It is unfortunate that the status quo, with some improvements, has remained. Important information from the other countries that have taken these cases out of the chain of command should be heeded. Unfortunately even Carl Levin disappointed us in this issue. Please keep fighting for this change. Too many just don't "get it."
Nancee, Santa Rosa

It is humiliating and tragic to think that women who are willing to die fighting for the USA are not given adequate consideration in sexual abuse cases. Please, is there anything you can do to stop conservatives from trying to control women's most holy possesssion, their own bodies? I feel sick at my stomach when I hear of more and more laws that ignore women's rights, and that destroy women's ability to care for themselves. That is hateful and wrong, and should never be brought up for consideration. Such hate is in actuality sexual abuse, akin to rape, and I feel it will destroy this country we love.
Eleanor, San Diego

What the Senate did yesterday was disgraceful, an old boys network at its worst. shame on them. Thank you, Barbara, for working for a real justice system in the military for those soldiers who sexually attack a female who is supposed to be their comrade in arms. I'm a male, but I feel that women will do a much better job of managing this planet when they have the opportunity.
Richard, Corte Madera

Please keep fighting on this one. For them to want to keep the status quo helps nobody but the top brass and the perpetrators themselves. This system has been proven not to work, so perpetuating it is ridiculous and harmful not only to the victims of sexual violence but those who may now be re-thinking joining the military forces.
Lyn, Santa Barbara

Please keep fighting! Don't let them get away with this outrage. It sounds like the foxes are still guarding the chicken houses, with no regard for the victims. Thank you for your efforts - and this does not affect me personally - but it is so unfair to those who are the victims here.
Jill, Redding

Your legislation is what is needed. I am outraged that Carl Levin blocked a key component removing investigations and prosecution from the chain of command.
Kathryn, Santa Barbara

As a former VA employee who worked with female veterans and published research findings on related issues in the 1980's, I could not agree more with your position. A qualified group, composed of at least a majority of women – outside the chain of command – must be given the authority to investigate and apply sanctions as needed, with due process for those accused, of course.
Gene, Culver City

I support you 100% in your work to get real reform in the process of handling military rape and other sexual harassment. I am outraged by the indifference and desire to maintain the process as it is that exists in the military. Keep up this hard and needed effort to protect every person from sexual violation.
Carolyn, Culver City

Thank you for your efforts. I am sad, disgusted and ashamed of the Senate Armed Services decision to maintain the status quo in regard to the treatment of sexual assault victims.
Leslie, Sierra Madre

The situation is absolutely shameful and a disgrace in this day and age! I can't support a military that is so without honor.
Luci, Paramount

How is such a vote possible?! Are not senate and house members not there to represent their constituants? Who are they listening to? That applies to Republicans and in too many cases also Democrats. This is just "nuts". Keep up the fight!!!
Robert, Palo Alto

I think your letter objecting to keeping the current chain of command structure in cases of military sexual assault leaves off important details - that commanders are usually more pro-active than military lawyers and that if a commander overturns a conviction, it will be subject to review. Maintaining chain of command is very important to military success. If the present solution to the sexual assault problem doesn't work, then another solution can be tried - for example, being sure women are in every command structure such that any assault cases will eventually end up on their desks for review.
Susan, Fresno

Well I think this is about a prejudice against women and gays in the military. This is Congress's way of saying this is payback for wanting to join the military. The reason this should be tried outside the military is because the chain of command may not see this as a criminal problem (or may even be directly involved. Maybe it is viewed as a "hazing" ritual rather than assault. Still in our society rape is viewed as the person asking for it by being seductive. Old views die hard as you said.
Sheryl, Pasadena

I strongly agree with your position on this legislation and was appalled by Senator Levin's proposed changes. Please keep up the great work you are doing for us, Senator Boxer. Don't give up. We really need you back there in Washington!
Karen, Magalia

Thank you for seeking a real solution to this problem. It is apparent that some military leaders are taking an unacceptable abuse of the status quo. It would seem many other nations have successfully changed their procedures without affecting military readiness. One can only wonder if the military was so against gays in the military because the leadership feared potential same sex sexual assault due to that status quo. Again, my thanks for pushing for a real solution.
William, West Hollywood

Until military commanders are removed from prosecutorial jurisdiction of sexual harassment and assault cases, victims of these crimes will neither come forward nor receive justice, and perpetrators of these crime will not be punished. I have read the objections to this legislation put forth by military leaders and members of congress. They are obstructionists who seek to maintain their power and control. Military commanders are trained to conduct military activities connected to the protection and defense of the United States. They are not attorneys nor are they qualified to engage in any aspect of the prosecution or defense of sexual perpetrators. Military leaders who refuse to follow the Constitution and submit to the will of "We the People" should be fired.
Robert, Los Angeles

Thank you for fighting for our military personnel. I'm so angry that the "good-ol'-boys" are still in control. This is such a slap in the face.
Elba, Fairfield

Thank you for continuing to fight to change how sexual assault cases are handled in the military. These cases need to be removed from the chain of command.
Barbara, Atascadero

I strongly support your position on this legislation. I'm appalled at the reports of sexual assault in the military. I think it's a disgrace to the country and completely unacceptable for women to have to face this kind of abuse in the workplace. On this issue, I think the military should be held to the same standards the companies are held. Employers accused of assault should face civil trials. The military has proven itself incapable of appropriately handling these matters. Please stay firm and continue to push for stronger legislation on this issue.
Anne-Marie, Los Angeles

Thank you for your hard work in fighting for victims of sexual assault in the military to have the same rights and protections as civilians. It is unconscionable that those who fight to protect us should be abandoned when they need our help. Please keep up the effort, we are behind you 100%
Duval, Anne, Ventura

I appreciate your fighting for justice for rape victims serving in the military. Keeping these rape cases in the chain-of-command is tantamount to officially-sanctioned rape. It has never worked and never will work, not with the mentality of the current "good-ole-boy" command. Keep fighting the good fight on this issue, please, and I feel that public pressure and exposure will make the difference.
Herschel, San Francisco

This is an outrage. Please continue your efforts to have these assaults handled properly, outside of the control of the military brass. I am a veteran of WWII, WAC, and luckily I know of no problems such as this during my service 1944-1945.
Anna, Placentia

I applaud your attempt to bring to an end the unjustice that surrounds females in the US Military. I do not think that females in the military should be given particular favors, but they should receive the respect due them as human beings. Little did I know that a remark made to me in the military in the late 70s may have led to some horrific sexual assault on me or perhaps on another woman. I mistook the sexist remark as a revolting and stupid threat and set it aside. I should have reported it, because it is remarks like that, made perhaps in jest, that lead to much more heinous crimes against women. That remark made so many years ago indicated that if I wanted an early honorable discharge I would have to get pregnant and the male speaker told me that he could arrange this. As I walked out of the room in disgust (and disbelief that I had heard the statement in uniform and on the job) the speaker turned to other males in the office as if to confirm his 'proposal'.
Jenny, Victorville
Thank you for the update on your efforts in changing the internal problems the Military just can't seem to overcome when it comes to sexual violence. You are fighting the right fight - and you are 100% correct in pursuing these changes, without them, there will be little impact within the Institution. I watched O'Donnell last night and listened to all of the segment on this subject - Levin surprised me to be honest, he fell into the good ole boys position far to easily on this one. I can understand where the argument against this change comes from, it's the same argument we've heard and hear all of the time. However, like you even said last night with Lawrence, change is difficult - and change does work when we move forward. DADT is probably one of the single dumbest waste of time issues we've spent time and money working through - in Military slow style, while it's great to look back now, it was a long hard road to get where we are, entirely to much time, effort and money on something which would have happened long ago, with the same ease, were it not for the 'falling into good ole boy positions' for no reason, than it's more comfortable. Keep working on it!
Rex, Palm Desert

As a victim of a very violent sexual assault myself, I applaud your effort to put real reform in place. The current system is beyond flawed; it is a violation the human right to be safe from sexual assault in the workplace as well as in every aspect of one's life. The United States cannot allow this shameful situation to persist.
Leslie, Oakland

I was incredulous to hear the bad news on the bill. Keep fighting for justice in this area.
Gary, Joshua Tree

As a woman with 4 daughters, 4 granddaughters, 2 nieces and numerous female cousins, your work on our behalf is most commendable. I am urging all I know to write their senators to continue to support this measure, start to support this measure or to expect activity to be removed from office on my part. There is no excuse or justification to allow the current chain of command to exist. Shame on them for participating in the sexual abuse of their soldiers.
Connie, Aptos

I am a veteran of DLI & NSA as part of USASA. What is going on now in the armed forces is out outrageous. Clearly they need an IG & Prosecutor outside the chain of command.
Vaso, Corte Madera

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Californians respond to my message on the Dramatic Increase in Military Sexual Assaults (05-07-2013) :

I so admire and appreciate your ongoing, determined stance to address this important issue in a serious and meaningful way. Please do not compromise or accommodate on this. Before they are members of the military, these are human beings wreaking pain, fear, and anguish on other human beings. They must be held accountable, so that the dignity of all who serve our country can be upheld. Thank you for your good work. May you get the support you need to see this properly addressed and changed.
Holly, Arcata

I heard on the news last night that of the 26,000 2012 assaults, only 1,100 were punished by the military. That is absolutely appalling and speaks to the sincerity with which the hierarchy responds to this crisis. Please do all that you can to legislate change in this rape culture.
Dianne Daley, Long Beach

Thank you for your and Sen. Gillibrand's planned introduction of legislation to curb the shocking increase of sexual assault in our military. There is no excuse for this kind of behavior, no excuse for covering it up, no excuse for tolerating it in any way. As a USMC veteran, I find it a dishonor to all our armed services. It impairs the effectiveness of our national defense, threatening our country, and gives propaganda aid to our nation’s enemies. It is especially disturbing to find this sort of behavior in the officer corps; and to see that reports of sexual assaults are routinely discouraged and covered up - even to the extent of legal convictions being overturned by the "chain of command". This should never be allowed - it is simply complicity, "aiding and abetting"! I earnestly hope that your efforts will help to swiftly and conclusively put an end to this heinous and shameful misconduct.
Rashid, Pinole

We never should have allowed women in combat.
Diana, Carmel By The Sea

Those who protect the country must in turn be protected by the people of the country they serve.
Rush, San Francisco

Your response to the Department of Defense's unconscionable report regarding sexual assaults in the military and even more disturbing was their response. But one of the reasons why I voted for you. Thank you for such adequate representation.
Angelina, Whittier

I am sorely distressed by the arrest of LTC Krisinski on sexual battery charges. His job was to prevent such assaults, not commit them. We are in trouble when the men of our armed forces do not view sexual assaults as violence but s mistakes. Hearing generals make excuses for this kind of behavior is disgusting. Please keep holding their feet to the fire.
Helene, Bonsall

Certainly the rise in sexual assault while in the military must be addressed. We need a safe and secure place for our soldiers at all times. I do not know what has to be done, but please take the time and make the effort to solve the problem.
Ellen, Claremont

Thank you Senator for that very important testimony. So very poignant, you were spot on.
Bruce, Sunnyvale

What did all of you in Washington that voted to change "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" expect to happen? Now you have created a monster. Undo what you did. Respectfully
Don, Grass Valley

Thank you for taking an active interest in this issue. As long as male soldiers maintain a view of women as "spoils of war," there is no protection for women on either side of a conflict, "comrad in arms" or "civilian enemy." I commend your introduction of a bill addressing the abominable "good ol' boy" protection in our military culture.
Mary, San Diego

I want to thank you for caring about this important issue. This sad state of affairs has gone on way too long. Hopefully now there will be real reform because of people like you.
Susan, Calexico

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Californians respond to my message on Ensuring Justice for Victims of Military Sexual Assault (04/09/2013):

Thank you for following up on the sexual violence going on in the military. It is about time the command leadership and personnel are held accountable for their illegal and immoral behavior. Please continue your efforts.
Lily, Rough And Ready

I applaud U.S. Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel's efforts to address the serious issue of sexual assault in the military. As a retired member of the Army Reserves, I know that the problem has existed unchecked for such a long time. I am also a Registered Nurse so I see first hand the devastating effects on victims of this violent crime. I support all efforts to STOP this type of crime.
Cheryl, Oakland

I am a former military member. I have to say this is something that has taken way too long to happen. There are way too many of us servicewomen who have suffered unduly thanks to not being believed or being told that the assault was somehow our fault or brought upon with the clothes that we were wearing or the places we were at. Many of us were attacked by our own fellow service members. And then add insult to injury when we are discharged from the military and apply for benefits they are denied by the VA due to be denied by the military or ignored by or plain out ignored by the higher ranking officers and supervisors of the military.
Kirsten, Rancho Cordova

Thank you so much for your work in this matter. It gives me hope, changing the world one little bit at a time. Whether we see our vision of a better world in our lifetimes is beside the point- we most likely will not. But every small step gets us going that direction.
Bruce, Redway

Thank you, Senator Boxer, for taking a strong stand on this important issue. Thank you too for keeping us informed of your good work on this, and many other issues that are vitally important to helping us move closer to being a society that is safe and just for all.
Melody, Sacramento

Our military men and women have enough to be concerned about without having to deal with sexual predators as co-workers. Those who have been assaulted deserve their day in court and the support of their commanding officers in seeking justice.
Carol, Carpinteria

Thank you for your recent email update on your work with U.S. Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel in pursuing justice for victims of military sexual assault. I support your efforts to control this travesty, and I appreciate all your efforts on behalf of Californians and all the citizens of the U.S. regardless of residency or occupation.
Laneta, Riverside

Thanks for championing the rights of service members who have been assaulted, sexually or not, by the people with whom they served. I do believe that this is much more common in the testosterone-filled environment of the military than anyone knows. I've counseled women who were devastated by this kind of activity and had no place to express their legitimate outrage in a meaningful way without being blamed or ridiculed. We are better than this. America is better than this.
Suzanne, San Jose

Thank you for keeping Defense Secretary Hagel on track with improvement of sexual assaults protection and prosecutions in our military. I'm sure he will get plenty of push back from the military used to having their own way. I'm also sure he is in favor of these changes. I urge you to support him in this endeavor and push him if he slows down.
James, Carlsbad

You said that Sec.Hegel has begun the long process of ending sexual violence in the military. Why "long"? It can be stopped NOW. Where there is a will, there is a way. Let us get the job done!
Arnold, Arcadia

Thank you for your efforts to assist our sisters in the military. Their contributions to our national security is no less important than any other individual (male or female) within the Military. Based on the stories I've read and seen, it is an abomination how the women in the service are treated as to this reprehensible conduct.
Jack, Moreno Valley

Thank you for pursuing this issue as a priority of yours-I have grandchildren, like most of the boomers, in the service to our country and why do they need to have fears of this happening to them. The History channel, i believe recently ran this topic re assaults of females in the AIR FORCE. So it is more difficult to get into the AIR FORCE and then they terrorize and victimize the top cream of the crop young men and women, what an evil way to "kill" the bodies and spirits of our youth. thanks again for your pursuit.
Sandra, Irvine

Thank you for your efforts to engage Secretary of Defense Hagel on this issue. We completely agree that base commanders or any other officer in the chain of command should not be able to overturn convictions for this kind of illegal and destructive behavior. Neither should they be able to stop any investigations into allegations made that such behavior has taken place.
Richard and Chihoko, Oakland

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Californians respond to my message on Stopping Sexual Assault in the Military (03/13/2013):

Thank you for standing up for the victims of sexual assault in the military. While a certain amount of autonomy for the commanders in the military court system is critical to their mission, without appropriate checks and balances, the system is ineffective and sometimes dangerous. As the leader of a women's center in the CSU, a victimology faculty member, and a veteran, I applaud you.
Jenny, Fresno

THANK YOU for your testimony before the Senate Committee responsible for overseeing this issue. We completely agree that military commanders must NOT be allowed to overturn convictions of perpetrators. Please continue to work actively with the Committee to ensure that this legislation passes quickly. Please continue to keep us informed of your efforts to do this.
Richard and Chihoko, Oakland

Your words resonated in my heart and I pray these hearings will bring to fruition all that you asked for, especially to stop the violence now. Let’s put an end to all the cover ups regarding sexual violence. Our society needs it.
Mary, Redondo Beach

Thank you for your incredible efforts on behalf of all your California constituents and military personnel in general.
Charles, Nevada City

Thank you Senator Boxer for all your hard work on behalf of victimized men and women in the military. It is so upsetting to hear their stories and learn how they were forced to endure censure and humiliation when they reported these attacks to their superiors. These brave people deserve justice.
Karen, Livermore

Thank you for standing up and speaking out about the sexual assault that is going on in the military. May this be the start of that changing.
Jennifer, Burbank

Thank you, Senator Boxer, for your passionate defense of our military members' right to be safe, protected against sexual violence, and to have rigorous prosecution against offenders.
Holly, Arcata

Thank you for speaking out about violence and sexual assaults in the military. You said it perfectly, this is not something to be handled "internally". It takes someone like you to bring this to the attention of others who only want to sweep it under the rug. Perhaps you'll break down the boys club very soon.
Jane, West Hollywood

Thank you for your support of real accountability for sexual predators in the military. The current prosecutorial paradigm must change. These cases should be adjudicated by non-command attorneys with law experience specific to this issue. Until the self serving, non-attorney chain of command staff are removed from the decision process, these cases will not be prosecuted.
Robert, Los Angeles

Very sad though we have to have a law to protect anyone from harm.
Margaret, San Diego

Thank you for demanding equal justice for all in the military. The case of the General overturning the conviction and punishment of the AF Captain convicted of the assualt is an abomination. And, it goes beyond the crime of sexual assualt for such a reversal of a conviction could occur for any crime in which the higher officer had a particular interest. Where, we should ask, is the justice in this type of system? Thanks for listening.
Pierre, Sacramento

I am glad that finally something is and hopefully will be done about this matter of the greatest importance. Thank you for your input.
Melvin, Sacramento

This has been swept under the rug for far toooooo long.
Betty, Moreno Valley

Thank you for your incredible efforts on behalf of all your California constituents and military personnel in general. I admire and respect your commitment to your role as our Senator.
Charles, Nevada City

Thank you for your strong stance on this shameful subject of friendly forces committing sexual assault crimes against our own men and women in the military. One of the local Vet Center Team Leaders informed me that more men than women are raped while serving in the military. No one serving our country should be a victim of such horrible assaults. I am a proud U.S. Marine Vietnam War (Danang 1969) veteran and life member of the V.F.W., D.A.V., and V.V.A.. Keep up the great advocacy work.
Mario, Chula Vista

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Californians respond to my message on Keeping Sex Offenders Out of Our Military (11/30/2012):

Thank God! Now if we can get proper reporting procedures in place so the women in our military are not punished for telling on their attacker by their commanding officers. I am a female retired from the military and this sort of thing goes on all the time. Thank you.
Morgan, Lemoore

Again thank you for initiating the amendment that will permanently ban anyone convicted of felony sexual assault from joining our military. To think this has not already been the case, is yet another reminder that we have very little "common sense". I truly appreciate all you have done and are doing on our behalf.
Julia, El Cerrito

I'm so happy to know you're out there defending and supporting those that are defending and supporting all of us! There is no place in our military (or anywhere) that should think it ok to include those that have committed such heinous acts. The numbers listed on your website of 2011's such incidents are saddening beyond belief. Thank you so much for your tireless work and commitment to our country.
Barbara, San Antonio

I wanted to express my continued gratitude to you for making every effort to introduce legislation that serves all people. I especially wanted to thank you for your amendment permanently banning any potential military service member who is a sexual assault felon. This is a long overdue and necessary step in protecting our service members, men and women. Thank you again for all your hard work.
Angela, Oakland

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Affordable Care Act

Californians respond to my message on Helping Seniors Get Quality, Affordable Health Care:

Thank you for issuing some positive, coherent information about the beneficial effects of the Affordable Health Care Act.  A reasoned voice in the cacophony of politics.
Peter, Long Beach

Thanks for your persistent, avid support for aiding senior health care, for which group I just officially became eligible, but have diligently followed for years. Just wanted you to know your efforts are definitely appreciated!
Diane, Los Angeles

I really did not get to the ripe old age of 76 without learning how to resolve my healthcare concerns. I appreciate the fact that many seniors who probably voted for you need the help of government officials like you to care for their basic medical needs. I can't believe that we have so many citizens in the state of California who either do not take responsibility for their health and well being or are uninformed as to how to secure adequate healthcare for themselves
What a sorry state you represent. God help us all!!!
Jerome, Danville

Although the Affordable Care Act is a start, it is not what the American people asked for. In numerous polls 3-4 years ago the people wanted a single provider "affordable health "care". the current health program is not health care, it is health insurance. The Insurance companies systematically raised insurance rates (as much as double digits) prior to the start of "Obama Care". This does not address the "Insurance Companies" unregulated rates of what is charges to consumers. It just kicks those obscene costs down the road to the tax payers. I understand that none of our politicians want to confront their campaign donors for obvious reasons. Why weren't we offered the same health "Care" that you have, which by most is considered "socialized medicine". A Health Care system similar to Canada's is what we want. We need to get away from the idea that "if we did not think of it than it cannot be viable" mentality.
Bradley, Santa Rosa

Billions of dollars are taken out of Medicare and the money is applied to the Affordable Care Act. Why would you be touting your involvement in taking the money where it is badly needed to the seniors who live on their social security only? Our Medicare money is now applied to Medi-cal recipients who may never have contributed to social security. Your part in this debacle will affect seniors health care. Our deductible will be bigger and our choices of medications will be limited. What a travesty that the well meaning politicians can't put the brakes on a program that will hurt more people than it will help.
Divina,  Compton

In response to your email message about seniors and the ACA, I felt compelled to express this contrary view. The ACA has hurt seniors far beyond the loss of our Medicare Advantage plans, and the associated provisions of vision care and other necessary services. Obamacare is responsible for the loss of many of our medical providers, as many of our physicians and hospitals have already started to decline to provide care to Medicare beneficiaries. In addition, the new rules of Obamacare have encouraged hospitals and other providers to take defensive measures to limit their potential financial losses associated with the new Medicare rules. All around California we are witnessing unprecedented numbers of seniors being induced into "hospice, end-of-life" type of services, so that hospitals can deny care to seniors who may require intermittent care because of chronic diseases. This will translate into mass euthanasia, and inexcusable suffering for our seniors.
Anne, Sonoma

The Affordable Care Act may be working for seniors (me) with the doughnut hole aspect, but it's a disaster for my kids and my neighbors. They are being dropped from their insurances and the new insurances are very expensive. The ones with the Medicaid have problems finding a doctor. So, I don't agree that it's a good thing.
Rita, Los Angeles

Thank you so much for publicizing how the Affordable Care Act is helping millions of seniors to get better health care and save money over all. The American people need to hear this message again and again!
William, Pacific Palisades

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Californians respond to my message on Responding to the GOP Attacks on Obamacare (11/14/2013):

Good job! That was a wonderful, hard hitting speech. I also have stories from my friends who now have health insurance, thanks to Covered CA. I can also say that without Medicare my own family would be bankrupt following my own life saving surgery.
Marlena, Eureka

Thank you Senator Boxer. I shared today's video on my facebook page. You speak my thoughts exactly. I having been checking out Covered California. And I WILL be getting my new plan on the exchange. I just haven't decided which one to go with, and I'm taking my time deciding. We all have lives and I want to choose the best option for me. And I am SICK of Republicans just trying to tear apart this plan... this plan that came from THEIR ideas so it could have bipartisan support. I wanted single payer. Most democrats I know did. But we went with THEIR idea. They have nothing to add, no helpful ideas, just trying to tear this apart for political points at the expense of real people who are suffering. I'm sick of the attacks and misinformation. It's disgraceful and unpatriotic. Thank you for your speech and your support of affordable health care for the people of this country.
Kendra, Sherman Oaks

Thank you for standing up for the ACA! I am shocked at how few Dems have stood up for this important program. It is so vital for our country to do something about health care and the ACA is a great start. I truly appreciate you standing up and hope that the democratic voice supporting the ACA gets louder and more clear!
Jana, Palmdale

I do support the ADA "Obamacare" law and look forward to it helping the "PEOPLE", I must point out to you the following:
1. The President misleading statement "If you like your Healthcare insurance, you can keep it", whether it was by lack of information, or something else, gave the GOP a freebee to beat up the White House. This is on the President. A thief cannot use as a defence that because you had the item in your house, it is your fault he stole it.
2. Why in the world did we contract a company from Canada to build the Healthcare website, when we have citizens in this country that are the leaders and experts on doing this. Remember, Google, Amazon, Ebay and many more massive web companies are based right here in California. They all have shopping sites that make the Healthcare site look not only bad, but very limited!
William, Lomita

Thank you for the email. I have not watched the video yet, but I wanted to share with you a troubling thought I had today: As I got up and heard the public radio news about the ACA debacle, I had a sudden feeling of schadenfreude. Serves them right, I thought, to my surprise and dismay. I'm a pretty liberal voter, and I support health care overhaul. The thing is, voters like me got "sold down the river" on the "Public Option." The Medicare, or Medicaid, expansion seems to be working just fine, thank you. Why can't I also enroll, just by contributing more from my paycheck, BY MY CHOICE? It seems that every time Democrats bend over backward to appease Big Business and conservatives, they get slapped in the face. I'm real fed up. No public option = you risk economic progressives being allied with Tea Party ACA opponents. What a mess.
James, Santa Rosa

I'm very glad you're speaking out against the continued attacks on the Affordable Care Act!
Thank you and continue to be an advocate for your constituents and for the people of the US!
Bonita, Monrovia

Thanks for your consistent support of Obamacare. We think it is important to keep this issue on the table and framed in a positive way. We are sure that years from now, this will all be a bad dream and decent health care will be an accepted and given part of our lives, at last. Meanwhile, these bumps are not much different than the objections and bumps faced by Social Security, Medicare and other important advances in seeing that everyone can tap into the advantages America is able to offer. Those have become accepted fixtures n our landscape and we expect ACA will become the same. Thanks for your good fight.
Cynthia, Santa Barbara

The speech you gave today was powerful and articulate. I agree with your sentiments regarding the Affordable Care Act. Stating the history of past road blocks to sensible health legislation was useful. Thank you so much. I always appreciate your presentations.
Maxine, Stockton

I just wanted to thank you for supporting the Affordable Care Act. The problems can be worked out and then the people will be happy with the insurance they will have chosen.
Patricia, Glendora

I really appreciate what you did. The opposition has set the stage for undermining this huge accomplishment. We need to reveal that the emperor has no clothes--people want health care, and they're signing up for it.
Janet, Berkeley

Thank YOU Senator Boxer for your ObamaCare address. Our Health Care Payment system is straight from Alice In Wonderland with the Insurance Cartel running the show. What we really need is to boot the Insurance Cartel off the table and have a single payer health care system.
Shirley, Lawndale

Yesterday I wrote to inform you that my Kaiser insurance (no change in coverage) will go up by $100 starting January, and my disappointment in how perhaps the ACA affected this price hike.
My statement should not be interpreted that I do not support the ACA. Therefore, I would like to add that though my enthusiasm about the ACA is dampened, I still support these first steps in erecting a more human health care system in this country. Though it is going further and further away from the original idea (single payer system), we cannot give in to the misinterpretations, disinformation and selfserving political play of republican law makers.
Hopefully you will keep standing behind the ACA.
Charlotte, Lemon Grove

Thank you for holding firm against the attempted overthrow of the Affordable Health Care Act. Further delays are unacceptable. The people need this reform, though not everyone knows how vital it is. Some are willfully ignorant. Some oppose it because they want to overthrow President Obama. Please continue to hold fast.
Jo, Temple City

I wanted to reach out to you to thank you for being a voice in the darkness. For shining a light for those of us who so desperately need medical care and the services Medicare and social security provide. I was a working mother with 2 jobs and have a husband in prison with a brain tumor who had half his brain removed. We both were born in the same town which is why the EPA & their work is also so very important so others don't end up like our families did. I first thought my symptoms were work and stress related. I didn't have good health coverage. At the age of 46 I lost all feeling from the neck down. I was told to go see a psych nothing wrong with me to quit acting like an hysterical chipmunk.. Finally UC Davis hospital diagnosed me with relapsing remitting multiple sclerosis. They said from testing I had probably had it since early childhood. Without the help of medicare I would have ended up in a wheelchair. I am unable to work now and social security helps me to get by. Others in our family ended up sick or born with serious birth defects. Thank you for caring enough to not only stand up but speak up!
Mary, Folsom

I did listen to your speech. Yes, I do agree with everything you said. I come from a society where we always had socialized medicine, and it does work. But we have also and can purchase a private insurance besides the government insurance. I do not understand that people who have jobs and have an income do not purchase at least some sort of insurance. I know some of those people. Something just had to be done to make these people realize this cannot go on. The very poor are taken care off anyway. The young seem to think, that they are immortal and don't need insurance.
Adele, San Francisco

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Californians respond to my message Sign Up Now for Affordable Health Care (9/30/2013)

I wanted to thank you for sending out this information regarding the new changes in Health Care for California... I spent the time to review all the options available to me. I will be contacting someone to help me clarify any financial help I may be able to receive. This posting was informative, concise and gave a pretty clear overview of the opportunities afforded by this healthcare plan. I know that there is a huge amount of unease about this plan.... This is only the starting gate of change.
Laure, Costa Mesa

Just want to express my appreciation for the great job you do, and thank you for this information.
I have not been able to afford any coverage for 20 years, and I am looking forward to paying into something I feel good about. (I am 57 years old and have some "pre-existing" health problems)
My only hope is that this works out for everyone and shuts the Republicans up for good!
Sharon, Los Angeles

Thank you for the information. I've waited years for this kind of program.
James, La Crescenta

I cannot thank you enough for this informational email with corresponding links that narrow down the options for us. My son just graduated from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo with a Bachelors Degree in Business, emphasis-Accounting. He got a job with a small firm in Paso Robles that does not provide health care benefits, just an hourly wage of $12 per hour. This email will help us sift through his choices much more easily.
Laurie, Santa Maria

I did listen to your speech. Yes, I do agree with everything you said. I come from a society where we always had socialized medicine, and it does work. But we have also and can purchase a private insurance besides the government insurance. I do not understand that people who have jobs and have an income do not purchase at least some sort of insurance. I know some of those people. Something just had to be done to make these people realize this cannot go on. The very poor are taken care off anyway. The young seem to think, that they are immortal and don't need insurance.
Adele, San Francisco

I just received one of your automated emails regarding the "Affordable" Health Care bill. I just want you to know that you have sold our country out to a socialist leader and I am thoroughly disgusted. I don't write a lot of letters, but this subject has me boiling. How dare you disregard the Constitution of the United States! And yes, I am aware of all the supposed "legalities" regarding this bill, but it still violates the Constitution.
Karen, Downey

My family will personally save over $500 a month with the new health care bill. Health insurance has consistently taken about 1/3 of our income since we started having children. I've been grumbling about the costs forever and am so excited to see that independent people and folks with lower incomes can finally get good care at a reasonable price. I hear on the radio opponents to the bill who seem not to have done any homework. Do they know yet what is being offered? Ignorance kills. Thank you for your hard work!
Marta, Jamestown

As one of your constituents and a supporter of the ACA, I would be ever so grateful if you would add to your message a note to encourage folks to contact their certified personal insurance broker who can give them the most comprehensive advice on their options. I feel it is short sighted to encourage them to only get information from one source. Many of us are working very hard to prepare to help our clients and prospects choose wisely including the Exchange products and the private commercial market. Personally I am working closely with local government groups to cross refer and educate the public. Please do not sell us short! Modify your message, or better yet send out an addendum. Further if I may be so bold as to suggest, it would be a politically expedient move as many of my colleagues are very conservative and think that the ACA is a personal attack on them. I would be delighted to be able to show them that you and your democratic colleagues are supportive of agents in the marketplace!
Margaret, Redding

I am self employed as a Marriage and Family Counselor. I am luckily insured through my husband. Though I haven't always been. One year, while on private insurance, I spent $26,000 on health care. That included my two sons that were in college and myself. My oldest had 2 kidney stone procedures and his appendix removed. That was while I was paying for both of them to go to college and take care of my father who had cancer. I don't make enough money, in a county that has the lowest reimbursement rates in the state based on population...though we are one of the most expensive counties to live in. Most of the self employed professionals I know are thrilled with the Affordable Health Care Act. I wish it had been in place earlier. Thank you for hanging in and fighting for us.
Marilyn, Atascadero

Tomorrow is what I consider NEW INDEPENDENCE DAY!
- INDEPENDENCE from health insurance company hostage takers
- INDEPENDENCE from exorbitant health care premiums
- INDEPENDENCE from the pre-existing condition restriction
- INDEPENDENCE from the lifetime benefits limit
- INDEPENDENCE from the child coverage restriction
- INDEPENDENCE from the no-health insurance dungeon
Rick, Sierra Madre

Thank you Senator for helping to bring the opportunity for all Americans to have access to basic healthcare serices. Please continue you efforts to improve upon the start that has been made going forward, and your dedication in fending off attempts to return us to a system where healthcare is a privilege only for those who can afford it.
Jeff, Laguna Beach

Thank you for your continued support of women across America and our reproductive rights. How dare Speaker Boehner and House Republicans pass a bill that allows employers to deny women access to comprehensive reproductive healthcare! Obamacare is the best thing to happen to women and children in this country. Please keep up the fight.
Marissa, Half Moon Bay

We need to take the Obamacare tax provision out of the current bill & it will get passed.
Obamacare tax provision needs to be fully reviewed as to the total cost compared to the benefit.
At this time in our economy out low income people can not afford an affordable health care program. Senate figure the cost of $ 280.00 for an individual making the new Cal. $ 10.00 an hour. At 160 hours a month that is a $ 1.50 hour for the affordable health care or 15% of their income. Please reconsider this and help the American people and get out of their daily life.
61% of Americas are opposed to this whether they are Democrat or Republican, 61% is a majority.
Lanny, Burbank

Under no circumstance must the President or the Senate quaver in their resolve. There must be no delay in funding or implementing the affordable care act. Once again the Democrats have an opportunity to highlight the divisions and shortsighted self interest of the Republicans and their willingness to damage the economy of the USA for personal gain. Democrats must stand strong or lose the support of independents throughout the nation.
James. San Diego

Please continue to fight the self-serving politicians who want to prevent millions of people from getting access to health coverage. The ACA may have problems, but it's better than the current system. I think it is shameful that those same people who are trying to block healthcare reform get an excellent medical plan at no cost to themselves.
Adrienne, West Hollywood

Thank you so much for sending the email with links and information regarding CA Healthcare Exchange. It is so very important that this information reaches as many Californians as possible. Today, the media reported that our state's exchange was receiving 10,000 hits per second! The ACA will only work if states like California set the example. I truly appreciate any efforts made by my representatives which help Californians understand and access healthcare insurance through the exchange.
Jo Ann, Oakland

To go on record that I SUPPORT the Affordable Health Care Act aka Obama Care. I am so sick of the Republicans saying the people don't want it. In fact, I believe they DO WANT IT. It needs work and refinement, but it's a good idea whose time has come at last.
Carole, Pacific Palisades

I feel a short pause in the implimentation of the ACA is in order. All reports indicate that there are many problems with this Bill. A six month or one year delay would help in getting these problem solved before moving forward.
Allen, West Point

Please be advised I fully support the Health Care changes put into effect by President Obama. In fact, I am now able to retire because my health care monthly expense will be about $230 instead of over $800.
Sandra, Clearlake

Thank you for your email touting the benefits of Obamacare. I'll sign up right after members of your staff and you do without tax payer subsidy. In other words when the elites get on board then I'll consider.
Ed, Lafayette

Please support the health care reform. It is the best that can be done with the forces of commerce and the 1% against it. It is an essential step in moving the US in the direction of universal health care - adopted by most countries…. We need a massive marketing campaign to promote the truth and negate the lies and obfuscation of the Koch brothers and their stooges.
Kevin, Petaluma

as a tax paying union member i find it unbeleavable that you would take choices away from the people. having a monopalized health care system is the same as having only one store to buy food or one car only to choose from at the dealer. the country simply cannot aford it either.
David, Lompoc

I am in full support of the Affordable Care Act, Obamacare. Unlike what we hear in the media, most Americans that I know are very much in favor of this bill. I have had health insurance coverage through my employers throughout my working life of over thirty two years. However, not everyone has been so fortunate. I hope future generations will not have to worry about it.
Vazrik, Glendale

I am responding to your email invitation for me to "sign up" for the Affordable Care Act. As a professor of Public Health, I find the ACA to be one of the worst examples of public policy I have ever seen. By my analysis (and based on the opinions of many other experts), the law will increase the costs associated with healthcare, while reducing consumer options. I encourage you to do everything possible to repeal this legislation before all of the damage is done.
Elio, Valencia

I am already receiving notices about the major increases from my drug insurance carrier and my PPO insurance. So, Ms. Boxer I do not believe that this creation of Obamacare is going to do anything positive for America. I am just proud that I didn't support it through my vote and what I was concerned about, is already beginning to come true. Too bad you still believe the lies.
Karen, Newport Beach

Thank you Senator Boxer for your support of our President and the ACA. My family needs the ACA to be fully implemented in order to purchase insurance through the state exchange. The ACA will have a positive impact on millions of American lives. Please continue your firm support of the ACA without compromising the benefits.
Susan, Pasadena

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Californians respond to my message on Protecting Kids from E-Cigarettes:

Thank you for your work in fighting against the attempt to entice the younger generation into a possible addictive habit of smoking. It was such a relief when the news got out about the ill effects of smoking tobacco, and we were able to have so many places become smoke free. My dad developed emphysema in later life due to cigarette smoking, and the doctor said that his development of pancreatic cancer was probably associated with the many years of smoking. Tobacco companies want to get back their business and these e-cigarettes are certainly presenting a slippery slope for the youth of this country. Please continue your efforts to prevent this from happening.
Judith, Palo Alto

Once again you are 'Over-Reaching' you position as Senator from California. By introducing a bill [LAW] that 'targets' the Advertising Industry you & those that are like minded are trying to pass your 'Beleifs - Thinking - Hang-Ups - off on US the American People as to What We Should Think - Feel - Do - Say - & We The People are sick & tired of you & others in Congress doing OUR Thinking - Saying - Doing For US
John & Shelly, Orange Cove

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Keystone XL Pipeline

Californians respond to my message on Extending the Keystone XL Comment Period (4/18/2014):

Your response to Keystone Pipeline project was well made, and I agree that more details and further investigation of dangers to environment and to people is VERY IMPORTANT.
I disagree with building this pipeline, but understand clearly the force of the business community who wants to build it. Stand strong!!
Marian, Santa Rosa

Please remind the President of Secretary of State John Kerry's assessment that climate change is "the greatest challenge of our generation." Kerry equated carbon pollution caused climate change with terrorism and "weapons of mass destruction." The president, himself, has stressed the need for all industrialized nations to "do more to combat the carbon pollution that causes climate change." The XL pipeline is an environmental abomination. Scientists have underscored the fact that we cannot continue to dig up and burn all the coal and oil and gas that Corporate America has laid claim to. This would be suicidal on a planetary scale. As Bill McKibben has pointed out, we need to "Keep the Oil in the Soil."
Gar, San Francisco

We thank you for the information. We hope that the keystone pipeline will not be allowed in the continental United States. We feel that its impact will be potentially dangerous to the environment, and to the lives and nature which are near and far from its' location. We thank you for opposing the implementation or approval of same.
William, Glendale

Thank you for fighting for further study on this pipeline. We cannot afford to be careless (well, more careless than we have been!) with our environment. This pipeline crosses so much land and any problems would affect so many people, the extra time and effort for studies is worth it. Better to be safe than sorry about costly and hazardous mistakes.
Theresa, Padadena

Why should we destroy our environment to send dirty oil to other countries?
Stephen, Salinas

Why is [this] even an issue. It's not good for the US, we get nothing out of it, it's not good for the people of the US, it will change the land forever, it's only good for the greedy oil people. One name comes to mind. The Koch Brothers. The height of greed.
Richard, Novato

Thank you for updating me on the Pipeline. I hope that we don't allow its construction. The environment is so fragile. We need to protect the safety of our water supplies and our wildlife.
Donna, Poway

As one of my favorite members of congress, I have long admired your efforts on behalf of our physical environment. It is so sad to me that in this country money has become more important than life itself. I have to wonder what people like the Koch brothers are thinking when they advocate this pipeline. Are they just living for the moment? Is "Greed" indeed a disease? Don't they care about the world they are leaving to their grandchildren? How do their minds work? It must be awfully frustrating for you at times like these. But you are truly appreciated.
Bob, Santa Barbara

I am opposed to the Keystone Pipeline. That oil and gas will only hurt earth's climate. Please promote renewable energy entirely!
Mary Belle, Canoga Park

Thanks you for the email concerning the Keystone pipeline. I have to say, without any reservations, that I am firmly opposed to the pipeline. The pipeline will only provide temporary jobs during construction and will not benefit the United States in the long run. The oil is the worst for refining.
Jeffrey, Long Beach

i am morally opposed to the energy policy that keeps the nation dependent upon fossil fuels and dirty energy sources: nuclear, fracking, coal, petro, tar sands, etc. i cannot be any stronger in my belief that is wrong for the future - 50 to 100 - years of the USA. the legacy passes on this mess to a generation that will have a world on fire. the next time it is promised we will burn. i think we are moving beyond the tipping point. your vote and voice is a rare one and i look forward to your progressive instincts opposing the policy of " drill baby drill". we have been bamboozled, snookered, deceived and misled. i hope my passion is clear. i am well informed and do not believe nor does science support the corporate mantra of more dirty energy is in our interest.
Rick, Davis

approve keystone and put some people to work. extending unemployment doesn't add to the tax coffers or make employable people feel better about themselves. just makes more 'deadbeats' and slackers. I contribute to animal and environmental charities, but I think this should be approved.
Lynn, Sun City

Thank you for not giving up on stopping this horrible project! I appreciate your hard work and am behind you 100 percent!!!!
Jacqueline, Sacramento

This is crazy. The Keystone project would help us to be energy independent, would give jobs to a lot of people, and would help us to cut our ties with the arabs not to be dependent on their oil.
Charlotte, Escondido

Yes, it is good the period of time was extended to review this issue. However, the Keystone project should be eliminated. There are too many health hazards and possible dangerous accidents possible with this project. We the American people gain nothing because the oil is going overseas. This is a ludicrous situation only benefiting Big Oil!!!
Patricia, Carlsbad

I am one who would like to see the pipeline idea dropped. The tar sands oil is dirty. Let's make more of an effort on things like solar and wind energy.
Isabel, Ojai

I don't believe we need more studies when equipment failure splits and other unexpected events have done so much damage to Mother Earth already. Long term cases of groundwater contamination causing people to lose water throughout an entire community. Illnesses and diseases by unprecedented numbers since the contaminations that were hushed up. The effect on the land, rendering it useless, crops lost, wildlife dead. No, no more studies are needed to determine that undermining the earth’s crust and causing massive sinkholes are a reality. If everyone would open their eyes and quit sacrificing life itself for the mighty buck, it would be obvious to any thinking individual that fracking is bad for our nation and there really are better crops to subsidize our ever growing need for fuel. There are plants that can take over the demand for fossil fuels without raping the earth and killing all its inhabitants.
Martin, El Cajon

Thanks for standing up to big business on ecological issues. We need to think long term the quality of life we will be sustaining not short term mass profits for big business. This is precisely why we continue to vote for you and Dianne Feinstein back in office. You support the health, living conditions, and best interests of all Californians.
Lynn, Magalia

I believe that enough is already known. Add to that common sense - meaning there will most definitely be accidents and more pollution. I do not want this pipeline built. Our government can't hold the companies who run the current pipelines and oil rigs and tankers accountable as it is for their accidents and negligence. And this will be adding to climate change which is already out of control. No more. Fuel efficiency and alternative energy. Put your effort behind that.
Laureen, Redwood City

It is good news that the Administration is extending the comment period on the Keystone Pipeline. This method of extracting can have serious and damaging consequences, and I am concerned that while the time for public comments is extended that so is the time where the oil companies are in continued operation and in continued damage to our natural resources of water, soil, stability of the land, and the build-up of excavated debris that can be contaminated with "unknown" and "Unspecified" toxins with far-reaching health consequences. I do hope all operations can be stopped through the nation, and specifically on the Keystone project.
Sarah, North Hollywood

I hope this is not a hoax by the President to get by the mid terms asking for donations when he has already decided on the issue. His promise was to get us on alternative energy. I still don't hear much about a program that will get us there. I don't intend to donate until I here the decision he will make. The people don't want it except the rich oil companies and all the profit they will make. Government seems to be failing the people with moderate means. We never seem to get ahead on this journey through life while other connected get all they want from the system.
Richard, Pasadena

First let me compliment you on being one of a handful of courageous politicians. In your recent email to me you said: "I am also pleased that Secretary of State Kerry has agreed to take into account the public health impacts of the tar sands oil when he considers whether the pipeline is in the national interest, but we need a comprehensive study." Probably the foremost authority on climate change, and the one who first started saying "Hey! I think we may have a problem", 36 years ago, is James Hansen, formerly of NASA's Goddard Institute of Space Studies. Fast forward to a few years ago, Hansen stated that if the Canadian Tar Sands are developed, it's game-over for preventing, or even seriously mitigating, the most dire effects predicted for climate change. The recent UN IPCC report corroborates Hansen's concern when it says that climate change is progressing faster than the scientific community's worst predictive models.
So forgive me if Secretary Kerry's agreeing to take into account the health effects of tar sands oil sounds laughably fatuous when the IPCC report posits the end of human life in a century. It's hard to get my head around that. But the process that's been set in motion is not something we can 'tech' our way out of. If Kerry had any political male reproductive organs, and if he cares about the world he will be leaving to his grandchildren, he would throw the full weight of the State Dept behind stopping the Keystone. But I fear that it is already too late.
John, Buellton

This is the ultimate insult to all citizens, to pretend that it is necessary to debate more, just so that Mr. Obama or you, Senator Boxer, do not need to make the hard call to decide for or against Keystone XL. Are you for jobs and the economy, or are you for radical environmentalism?
Hart, Sierra Madre

Thanks so much for your work on this important issue. Climate change is the world's most pressing problem. Wars may destroy a nation, but global warming will destroy the world.
Patricia, Camarillo

I'm writing you concerning the XL pipe line and the damage it will do to the environment. This country need to concentrate on renewable energy, such as placing solar panels on the majority of houses in this country. I want to thank for your concern over the XL pipe line and its effect on the citizens and environment near the pipe line.
Gene, Pinon Hills

You know there must be a good reason not to allow it.... especially when the "environmentalists" and the "ranchers/farmers" agree that the project is a bad idea!
Gail, Carmel Valley

Please, Senator Boxer, oppose this latest ploy by the oil industry. The only one to win (big money) is the oil industry. Our environment needs you on our side!     
Bonnie, San Rafael

seeing as how the oil will be used on this earth regardless of when or if the Keystone pipeline is built I do not see what all of this studding will accomplish except to delay any decision until after November which does no one any good. Now oil is being shipped South by rail, pipeline sounds safer, more economical and safer for the environment than the rail system. At the very least, Canada will build a pipeline, probably to the Pacific, and just bypass the US. I see no reason for oil, which we need, produced by a friend on the North American Continent to be shipped somewhere else and have us import oil from across an ocean from people who don't like us. Lets build the pipeline and let China get oil from somewhere else.
Jim, Sonora

Better a delay in the proposed KXL Pipeline than approval, obviously, but outright rejection would be far better. If President Obama and Secretary of State Kerry approve the pipeline it will become known as the Obama-Kerry Tar Sands Pipeline forever and it will be time for a green party in the USA.
Charles, Healdsburg

Californians respond to my message on Assessing the Health Risks of Keystone XL (4/11/2014):

Please know that my family, concerned friends and I completely support you and Senator Whitehouse in urging Mr. Kerry and the State Dept to do a thorough review of the health impacts of tar sands and the Keystone XL pipeline extension, in addition to acknowledging its proven disastrous environmental impacts. We are happy to hear that the APHA and NACCHO are backing you as well. We hope that these organizations actively ensure that their memberships are fully informed on this urgent issue, about which there has been far too little coverage.
Thanking you for your leadership on this and so many other high-priority issues!
Terra, Sebastopol

Thank you Senator Boxer! This issue is so important, we really need to encourage the Obama Administration to do the right thing.
Kay, San Francisco

Thank you so very much for watching out for our environment. It's disheartening to see so many industrial and political figures continue to cause pollution. Can't they open their eyes to see this activity is removing the filters between us and the sun? The filters that, in the past, have protected us from harmful UV rays? Can't they foresee the day when people will need gas masks because of their unremitting plunder of our earth for oil and gas? Maybe they think that they, alone, are impervious to the pollution that fracking is causing. Maybe they believe they can buy a remote island where they won't suffer from pollution like the rest of us. Good luck to them.
Peggy, Grover Beach

I respectively disagree with your position on further delays in building the Keystone Pipeline. Enhancing our energy infrastructure and providing well-paying jobs should be a priority, and Keystone has already undergone five years of study and comprehensive environmental evaluation. I needn't tell you it has passed all these investigations. Let's bring jobs to America and work rapidly towards energy independence. Thank you for your service and commitment to all Americans.
Jeffrey, Laguna Beach

Wasn't there a recent failure of a pipe in Ohio carrying the same type of material. People reported being sickened by the fumes. The state has spent a very long time trying to clean up this mess. This pipeline will go through some of our countries pristeen wilderness areas on it's way to Texas. The pipe failure in Ohio is a harbinger of potential problems. This tar sand oil is some of the dirtiest oil on the planet and as you correctly point out it is a serious health risk to the people who live near this pipe. You have to ask yourself are the risks worth the jobs?
Jan, Los Angeles

PLEASE continue your efforts to defeat this potential catastrophe! I need not tell you of California's dire drought situation. After the winter experienced in the midwest & northern plains, I suspect that all of the reservoirs are filled to overflowing. Let's build that XL pipeline, create lots of jobs, transport water, not oil, to this country's bread basket. If we don't do something, the prophecy of your next Hershey's with almonds costing $150 may not be too unlikely. I know it's a real stretch, but is it completely unrealistic?
Vicki, Escondido

Thank you so much for requesting this study. It scares me to think that people are ready to move on ideas that are not fully researched. And, I think that this pipeline could cause much more harm than good.
Jill, West Hills

Thank you for your effort to discover the dangers to human health that will be presented by the Keystone XL Pipeline. I applaud your leadership on this issue. In your email message, you stated that there had been research into the pipeline's effects on climate change but not into its effects on human health. The pipeline's effects on climate change impact human health. I know that it must be difficult to relay this information to an audience of senators, the State Dept., and perhaps even to Pres. Obama when it seems that many individuals in that group are still not able to believe climate change is happening though it is happening all around them. When the pipe leaks or explodes, the tar sands oily sludge will destroy homes and also make whole neighborhoods if not whole towns uninhabitable. The fumes from the oily sludge will cause skin and lung problems. Small animals and birds will die in large numbers. In addition to the health of American citizens, there is also the issue of the quality of our lives. How much do we have to give up in order to service the interests of the Canadian oil corporations?  It is time to stop the charade. The pipeline is bad for human health and bad for the whole earth. Maybe the Congress and the State Dept. have found ways to breathe air the rest of us do not get.
Leslie, San Francisco

The time has come to make the oil and gas companies stop destroying our world. This project is absolutely the worst idea and should not be allowed. Fracturing in California has come at a huge price to our water, air and land. Please do not allow this project to go forward. For our children's children 7 generations to come. IF they are lucky and we make the right decisions now perhaps their will be a world for them to live in and raise their children in.
Gloria, San Francisco

While I appreciate that you may be stalling for time (hopefully to find a way to get rid of Keystone ), do you REALLY think we need yet another study or survey to tell us what common sense already dictates? This project is bad for people, bad for the environment, and only good for specific individuals who stand to make huge monetary gains from it. Get rid of it. Our government and its affiliate banker friends have suppressed free energy technology for more than a century. We don't need yet another project which pollutes our planet beyond repair. Get rid of Keystone now, yesterday.
D.G., Grass Valley

Thank you Senator Boxer for urging reasonable research into the Keystone XL pipeline safety. I want a safe & supportive world for my grandchildren.
Caroline, Vallejo

Thank you for asking for a comprehensive study of the human health risks of approving the Keystone XL. The environmental risks are becoming increasingly known and it's time the health risks were also considered. We're counting on you to do everything you can to keep our state, our country and our planet safe for all.
Dianne, Long Beach

You have not been paying attention to our CA gas prices. We desperately need this pipeline and all the other energy sources we have available all over the United States! We have the resources and people like you are preventing and postponing our being able to use them. The middle class needs help now! When was the last time you actually visited some place like our town and heard what your constituents want? Please wake up and listen to us.
Dorothy, Ramona

In my opinion the Keystone XL pipeline has been studied to death. More study is not necessary, this is nothing but a delaying tactic while the price of fuel continues to rise. Please give the poor a break and proceed with this vitally needed project.
John, Monterey Park

I don't think we need further study to know that the pipeline is a bad idea! But I am glad you are encouraging postponement: frankly the idea should just be killed! (1.) it's from another country to another country (I understand mostly to Asia--esp. China) (2.) It has already damaged drinking water and habitat where it has been constructed. (3) Some of the methods of Keystone to grab property for their project should be illegal… (4.) We need, as a planet, to get off of fossil fuels if earth is to survive in any habitable manner--so that is where the money should be spent! That would develop more jobs than the temporary ones Keystone talks about. The info is already out there: STOP KEYSTONE IN ITS TRACKS!
Mary Sue, Oakland

My wife and I applaud your stand on the pipeline issue. We need to consider the results of our actions. We do not want to make things worse in the name of progress.
Paul and Donna, Sonora

I am pleased that you are addressing the health concerns involving this pipeline. I often wonder how this project got by an environmental impact report. Or how Fracking is able to do do so considering the damage that has been done to ground water. Don't republicans drink. It's seems that their under the belief that their future generations will somehow not be affected by the actions they take today. If this great nation is to continue to thrive in good health, it will be due to the actions of reasonable, environmentally concerned leaders like yourself. You diligence is deeply appreciated and you will continue to have my support. GIVE THEM HELL.
John, Watsonville

I applaud the idea of a health study on the Keystone XL pipeline's impacts. There should also be a study on fracking impacts on health. I'm disappointed the voices of ordinary people seem to be drowned out by the big money interests. It is depressing to think that no one in Washington listens to people like me. I'm just glad that there are a few folks who care about the same things I do.
Donna, San Luis Obispo

Californians respond to my message on Exposing the Health Risks of Keystone XL (2/26/2014):

Thank you for your insight and leadership in opposing the pipeline. It would result in irremediable damages in event of a fracture and spill, or leakage caused by corrosion. Those promoting its construction see no further than the "bottom line" and refuse to learn from much prior experience. The claim of "jobs" might apply in the short run, but beyond the labor of construction it's a false come-on.
Frieda, Pasadena

What you are asking of the president is a prudent first step. But we all now know that the fracking cocktail is toxic, toxic to the water supply, toxic to living things and subtracts too much of the vital resource of water in a period of long drought. Therefore, Step 2 must insist the pipeline be stopped.
Coleman, San Rafael

Thank you very much for requesting Secretary Kerry conduct a thorough environmental analysis of the projected impacts of the Keystone XL Pipeline. We feel, however, that there is sufficient evidence already to convince anyone not in the pay of the oil industries that the Keystone XL Pipeline would be a very bad thing, and should not be allowed. You should not stop at questioning this disaster in the making -- you should be opposing it, as well as opposing fracking, which is a major threat to California's communities, wildlife, water and agriculture.
Thank you for your attention.
Bruce, Sacramento

Your prejudice against Keystone is obvious in your message about filthy oil sands. Regardless of your prejudice, building Keystone is best for the USA. Further study and review is just a continuance of the dealing tactics you have been using for YEARS. JUST BUILD IT!!
David, Lemon Grove

Thank you for your great courage and laudable honesty in sending your intelligent letter to Secretary Kerry asking for a more transparent environmental study, untainted by conflict of interest, which weighs the serious health and environmental hazards that accompany the extraction of oil from tar sands; the noxious toxins in water and air that is downstream and downwind from extraction sites and refineries; the folly of a pipeline route through prime farmland; the difficulty of clean up of tar-sands-oil spills, etc. For the sake of future generations, our nation must wean itself from fossil fuels and switch to renewable energy. President Obama and Secretary of State Kerry must have the courage of their stated convictions and deny the permit for the Keystone Pipeline in the interest of the environment and the citizens they serve.
Ann, La Jolla

No one ever mentions that the purported thousands of jobs the pipeline would create by digging trenches would be filled by laborers making minimum wage. Do you see union laborers digging. Thank you for preserving Teddy Roosevelt's dream of preserving the wilderness as the pride of America's parks.
Jo, Chatsworth

I read your statement from the press conference of February 26th this morning. I have a question regarding something that I feel has been overlooked by all of our government entities working on this issue. Why is no one looking at the potential risks to the Ogallala Aquifer? This water source extends through nearly all of Nebraska, parts of Colorado, Kansas, Wyoming, South Dakota, Oklahoma, and Texas. It is an important water source for farming in the region, and I can only imagine the impact should a spill occur over it. Yes, there is probably bedrock between the surface and the aquifer. I'm no geologist, but I believe that there are most likely faults in that bedrock that would allow contaminents to access that water. Yet, I see no mention of it anywhere. I ask this, because I grew up in a little farming community in Eastern Colorado. My dad relied on water from that aquifer for corn, cattle and our family. They are having one of the worst droughts there I can remember, as well as water issues regarding the Republican River Compact. What happens to my family and friends in that area, when, because it was completely overlooked, a spill makes the Ogallala Aquifer unsafe? I realize that this is not a California issue, but I would like to think that you not only concern yourself with the folks here, but with the folks those of us here in California care about. I thank you for your time and efforts on this issue. With hard work and persistance, I hold out hope that we, as a nation, will do the right thing for all of us.
Linda, Rancho Cucamonga

Thanks for speaking out on the issue of the Keystone XL pipeline. In my humble opinion a pipeline of this nature is what one would find in a third world country. A country where people are second class citizens and the environment is plundered for profit. All the While the government looks the other way. Is the USA going to become a third world nation? It could if the oil industry has its way.
E, San Anselmo

Thank you again for your honest words and hopefully there are others who also see the truth of the matter and don't allow this to become one more sell out. I continue to believe that there are
a few who respond to the truth, and will one day prevail, but it is very discouraging to witness time and again the corrupt greed. Thank you for who you are and what you continue to attempt in these almost impossible circumstances.
Jeane, Colfax

Thank you for your stance against the Keystone pipeline. I agree with you that threats to our water supply are increased by transporting and refining tar sands. It is also my impression that the water and chemicals used to loosen and extract tar sands is also a hazard. First, because of the amount of water required for the processes, and second for the chemicals that are added to the water in the extraction and refining processes. So for these reasons and more, I am glad you stand for a sane approach to protecting environmental and human health.
Diane, Los Angeles

I really appreciate your unambiguous comments about tar sands oil extraction. The pernicious effects of fracking are equally worthy of condemnation. In future statements I hope you will take note of the devestating effects that tar sands oil extraction has had on Canada's boreal forests. Those forest have come to look a very dirty moonscape with nothing left alive.
Joseph, Concord

Your opening statement was right on and I do appreciate it so much. I would like to recommend that some additional comments be made as to the financial end of this whole proposition. I think another segment of our population would vigorously oppose this pipeline if they were aware that none of the refined product form the pipeline is going to our domestic use. It is all going to be refined and exported to China. Plus, it is going to a free trade zone where TransCanada will pay no duty and no taxes. During the congressional hearing on this matter, in December 2011, then Rep. Markey asked the TransCanada representative, Alex Pourbaux, if he would be willing to sign off on a proposal that would have the refined product from the XL go for our domestic use. The TransCanada rep refused. A senior executive in TransCanada later stated that it was important for the XL to be completed so TransCanada could "diversify." I think it is important to note that China has invested several billion dollars in the Canadian tar sands so, of course, they want this pipeline to materialize so they can obtain cheaper diesel. I feel your committee could expose this additional side of this issue.
Don, Cardiff by the Sea

I appreciate the battle you're fighting, Senator Boxer. I've opposed the Keystone XL for environmental reasons, but your insights into the health impacts shed a brand new light on why the tar sands must be stopped, or slowed dramatically. Please keep up the fight!
Tim, Santa Monica

Thank you for exposing the health risks of the Keystone XL pipeline at your news conference. I loudly applaud and appreciate your action in writing Secretary Kerry to request a thorough study of the health risks prior to any decision to approve the pipeline. My strongest hope is that President Obama will stick to his promise to nix the pipeline on the basis on what it would do to climate change alone. Now that it has been shown to be bad for the environment and will speed up climate change, It should be a no-brainer. But, as we all know the pressure is great on the administration to approve the pipeline regardless of any harm that might be done. So I thank you, Senator Boxer, and the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee for staying on top of this, giving the administration the timely and ongoing support they need to push back fully against those outside pressures.
Mary, Newport Beach

I completely agree with you that building this pipeline and extracting oil from the tar sands would have a devastating effect on the environment. Thank you for standing against it and helping to save our planet for us, our children and grandchildren.
Claudio, Menlo Park

Our health and the environment are the most important issues in our lives, but not to the greedy power brokers that is the petroleum industry and the corporations that unfortunately are subsidised by our government feeding their appetite for money and power. Subsides have got to be stopped and the Keystone pipeline that would be a disaster waiting to happen to the health of millions of our fellow American citizens and their families. A spill would contaminate drinking water that they need to sustain their lives. We can not allow that to become a possibility. Keystone and also the process of fracking must both be stopped in favor of life.
Donald, Pomona

Thank you for standing up against this disastrous pipeline project. I too believe it is short sighted and would have a huge negative environmental impact. I am frustrated by the amount of power that huge oil corporations wield in this country. People like you, provide hope that people like me are being represented.
Susan, San Luis Obispo

Thank you for speaking out about the health dangers of fracking and the Keystone xl pipeline. We need more voices like yours.
Mary Ann, Berkeley

Thank you for taking a stand in the environmental and health impacts that the Keystone pipeline will have in our communities and on our planet. When will be stop destroying our planet that we have to all live on. When will our planet be first and big business be at the bottom of the list. The impacts will be for generations to come. Sometimes I feel so helpless and we need our representatives to fight these causes to make this world a better place. Somewhere along the line our priorities have gotten lost. 
Jane, Novato

Awesome opening statement regarding the Keystone Pipeline. It's comforting to know that people like you, in your position, are doing what you're doing. Thank you for working towards what's in our best interest.
Diane, Soquel

Please keep speaking out and do not be swayed by the loud, moneyed voices which are pushing for Keystone XL. Regular people with real lives are at stake here, and we so VERY much need your voice in Washington. Keystone advocates are either greedy or blind [or perhaps some combination of both]. Renewable energy MUST be the energy of the future, and our resources belong there, not with extractive technologies.
Claudia, Penryn

Thank you for holding the hearing on the keystone pipeline. Oil from the tar sands of Alberta is too dirty to transport through the pipeline. Extraction of that oil already harming the environment of Canada, poisoning water and land. Please help us expand renewable energy sources.
Barbara, Hercules

I am so grateful that you held this meeting. Keystone cannot go forward. Keystone is the worst idea for our planet, our climate, our health as citizens and our future. We need sustainable energy and we need it now. Keystone tar sands is the dirtiest and most pernicious source of oil! We are truly insane if we sanction a plan, which will kill us in the end. We can't keep pouring carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. Please keep exposing the dangers of this foolish path called the Keystone Pipeline. Big oil and big money should not be allowed to endanger our health with tar sands oil!!!!
Wendy, Citrus Heights

Thank you for putting the interest of our biosphere ahead of insane corporate profits. Corporations will come and go but we totally depend on a healthy biosphere. It goes, we go. No argument, no spread sheet, no amount of apologies or mea culpas will mitigate the damage. Game over!
Lew, Big Bear City

Thank you for working against the XL pipeline in order to prevent the health and environmental dangers that it will cause. I hope that Pres. Obama will attend to your message that it is not good for the environment, or our people but only profits big oil that will ship it to China or elsewhere leaving us with the clean up bill, the health damage and those costs as well. Thanks.
Dorothea, Albany

Thank you so much for doing the right thing! Next time you get a chance to speak with President Obama, please tell him we are all out here waiting for him to step up and make some radical changes in policy to protect our environment. No on KXL is a start. If he chooses to, his legacy could be that of the champion of the fight against global warming.
Kay, San Francisco

I want to urge you to do all in your power to prevent the construction of the Keystone XL Pipeline. There is no need for it - the US has plenty of other energy sources. If there is a spill, and there is bound to be one sooner or later, it will cause a monster environmental disaster
Harold, La Jolla

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Californians respond to my message on Keeping the Focus on Keystone XL (1/31/2014):

I am so glad that you are reviewing the ecological reports re Keystone XL. I believe this is a huge accident waiting to happen (actually not so much waiting). Corporations have shown themselves to be unconcerned re the health of citizens and communities. The mishaps cannot be simply swept under the rug. We need clean water and air much more than we need cheap oil and gas. "Expert" reviews cannot be trusted. Listen to the free scientific community of scholars.
I am very interested in continuing reports.
 Lynne, San Francisco

I just want to express how much I appreciate your efforts in ensuring the XL Keystone pipeline proposed project is indeed safe for our environment. I find it reckless to blindly take the outcome of a report without further investigation, to ensure the report's legitimacy and accuracy. No action should be taken before then. I may not come from one of the states involved with setting up the infrastructure of this proposed project, but we are all directly impacted by pollution in one way or another. If this proposed project is harmful to the environment, then we all owe it to our children and/or future grand children to ensure the project does not come to fruition.
Ronald, Lakewood

We do not want or need that pipeline to bring that filthy oil into and through our country. All Big Oil thinks about is their bottom line, they go not think or give a damn about the environment.
John, Ontario

While I realize you are not satisfied with your Administration's analysis of the environmental impacts of the pipeline, I believe that reducing our dependence on foreign, hostile energy sources is of far greater importance. Your biggest concerns are the unlikely health impacts on communities and the remotely possible carbon pollution that might come from tar sands oil.
I believe, and I think the majority of the country agrees with me, that if we are going to use dirty, filthy energy sources anyway, we would be better off getting them from a friendly neighbor on our own continent than shipping them from a volatile hostile region halfway around the world.
Charles, Bishop

Thank you for your opposition to this project. In addition to the good reasons you mention,
I'm sure we all realize what a National Security nightmare this pipeline would be: completely
indefendable against even the lowest tech. Terrorist attack....don't you think?
Bruce, Palmdale

With all the lies, hiding the facts, burying the the oil etc, it is amazing that anyone would believe their reports. So many things have gone unreported and yet they go on. Hope to goodness we can stop them before more damage is done. We're so close to having so many thing fill in the gaps in the energy field it would be a shame to have the pipe line go in and leak in any of the steams or rivers it will crossing or the farm land it will be crossing. Hope you are able to find many flaws in their report and prove it is a really bad idea to proceed with it.
Carol, Piedmont

Thank you for your encouraging response. My entire family is very concerned about the continued oil industries' pipeline leaks and spills that go undetected for days, the chemical spills and the ridicules methods used by these industries to "clean up" the devastating destructions they cause to humans, wildlife and the environment. We must have clean water and air. This beautiful country needs protecting.
Rita, Lake Almanor

This really isn't any longer an issue about harm to the climate but relations with Canada and those that benefit from the export of oil. Canada is having a problem with the idea of a pipeline acoss THEIR land AND has become fixated on the monies its government is deriving from the polluting industry it is subsidizing. And, obviously, the State Dept. wants to keep Canada in its back pocket for other foreign policy issues. Add to that the campaign contributions from those who would profit from this endeavor, and it's a perfect storm to have environmental concerns, once again, over-ridden in favor of monied interests. Makes one wonder whether the human species actually deserves to survive.
Bruce, Escondido

I am for the pipeline. I think it will increase jobs, reduce our need for foreign oil and be beneficial to our country. Environmentalists and liberals are taking our country away from the people. Apparently, the people are not of your concern. I'm not for dirty air or more pollution, but I feel that this can be addressed by the oil industry and with modern technology can be remedied.
Mary, Gazelle

Thanks so much for what you are doing about the Keystone pipe line. My son-in-law (married to my elder daughter) has a ranch in Wyoming, about 60 miles south of Gillette. The ranch was homesteaded by his father at the turn of the 19th century. They raise sheep and cattle. Ever since the coal industry came in there big time, the water wells on the ranch turned bad and my people there had to buy bottled water. Now the oil industry is planning to come into Wyoming and my son-in-law (one of the relatively few Democrats in a Republican state!) is working hard to prevent the influx of the Keystone oil. I do hope you all are successful in derailing that project. It will ruin the lives of those living there while it adds money to the pockets of those who don't need it!
Gloria, North Hills

I totally agree with you that the report does not address so many issues that come with extraction and refining. As a former Chevron Subcontractor in the Bakersfield area, I can vouch for complete wasting of the environment as a result of this process. That goes without accounting for "accidents". The entire idea is complete that antithesis of what I expected from President Obama's environmental platform.
Linda, Lake Hughes

The study done by the government agency has been completed and now further checks and balances will be gone through before the President can approve this. It seems to us that you are suspicious of the findings. We are not and feel this should be approved and allow the people living in these areas to make the final decision. They will be impacted as you voiced in your concerns but will also benefit from the jobs which are the cornerstone of this President's final term. I urge you to support the approval of this Pipeline.
Karen, Temecula

I am so pleased that you are still keeping an eye on the XL pipeline mess. Thanks so much.
You have focused in the past on several environmental issues that again need to be reemphasized to President Obama and John Kerry. However, I am now convinced that the residue left from the refining process of tar sands, called petcoke is one of the bigger issues and it hasn't got as much attention. There have been two articles that I've seen on the pet coke issue. Both have stated the problem with huge piles of petcoke in Chicago and Detroit. The latest one I saw reported that the tar sands oil refinery in Indiana was piling 600 ton of pet coke PER DAY inside the Chicago city limits in Southeast Chicago. The huge piles of petcoke in Detroit were causing nearby residents health problems so some of it is now being shipped to Ohio. The XL pipeline is projected to produce 15,000 tons of petcoke per day!!! If this stuff gets shipped to Mexico as a combustible fuel, the world's environment will suffer terribly. Finally, no one seems to be talking about the fact that none of the refined product from the XL pipeline is going to be our domestic consumption. TransCanada plans to export it as diesel fuel to China. It does NOT reduce our foreign oil consumption in any way. This is just a vehicle for TransCanada to improve its profit margin. Plus, since it is refined in Port Arthur, TransCanada pays no taxes or tariffs. This situation really causes me a lot of distress because it just isn't right. Thank you for your efforts to bring forth information of the XL pipeline. Your efforts are truly appreciated.
Don, Cardiff By The Sea

Thank you so much for your support of NO KXL!!!!!!!! have shared it on my FB page!!!!!!!!! and yes, it is dirty, filthy sludge possible going through ancient, unmaintained pipelines...not all of it is new! There is virtually NO way to clean it up and "they" will not listen!!!!! We have to stay strong on this issue and hope the President listens and HEARS us!!!!!
Betty, Long Beach

Thank you for your line by line! It comes to me, that perhaps a better pipe line to be built would be one that would bring water to California ... not only would it create jobs, it would save jobs, too!
Dmaris, Meadow Vista

I was heartened to receive an email from you saying that you would very carefully review the EIR on the Keystone XL Pipeline. Please do not allow the Pipeline Project to proceed. Even if the EIR were accurate, which it appears NOT to be, there will be spills, accidents, and toxic results of allowing the Pipeline to be built. Thank you for helping to protect the nation from this terrible, dirty, and wrongheaded tar sands project.
Cynthia, Berkeley

You have the skills and ability to garner support from fellow Congress and Senate members to show them the truth of this pipeline and it's irreversible effects on our atmosphere. Help show them factual reports (not written by oil contractors for the State Dept) along with showing on paper the voters support and especially support from mothers groups about how the next generation will have to pay for this with their health.
Natalie, San Francisco

I want you to consider the fact that Canada has refused to build a pipeline in their country due to environmental concerns that out-way the potential benefits. First a pipeline to Vancouver was rejected. Then a pipeline to the Great Lakes was rejected. Canada and Alberta have refused to build a refinery due to the low quality of oil produced in the tar sands. We do not need this low quality oil either. The Houston area refineries that can refine bitumen already get all of this oil there oil from other sources - primarily Mexico. Why would we build a pipeline that Canada will not put in their own territory? Why would we build a pipeline for low quality crude we don't need? Will we take the risk of a pipeline to stop buying bitumen from Mexico just to favor Canada?
Arne, San Diego

I feel deeply grateful that you have issued the thoughtful, environmentally conscious statement I just received. Please know that I am in your corner 100% on the Keystone XL matter.
Please also know that I regard the health of the environment as an issue of primary importance, and as important as other issues are that now face us, environmental health is the one that will determine the future of our planet, and hence our survival. There is no more important issue than that.
Sarah, Burbank

As long as you have not only environmentalists on your staff to review but actual people who work the real issues of what is entailed to do an operation of this magnitude there may be a semblance of common sense for you to base your decision on. People who have never run a business but end up reviewing these documents without getting an understanding from those who do the work are prone to making terrible assessments that are not of the real world but the world of acadamia. Your terminology surely points the direction you think this should go without any review.
Lynn, Rancho Palos Verdes

Please keep up the fight against the Keystone XL pipeline. It is slated to go through the center of my family's homesteaded farm in Nebraska. We don't want it; the country can't risk such a filthy pipeline through our heartland, and America can't risk supporting the continued use of oil, much less the transport of the dirtiest fuel available.
Melodye, Fremont

Thank you for keeping on top of this battle. We are terribly concerned with the environmental dangers of this - both as to climate change and to possible water contamination and leaks, etc. We should be so much further along with sustainable energy production by now, and no longer tearing up the earth for dirty oil and coals. Keep up the fight.
Elizabeth, Ukiah

Thank you monitoring this important issue. This is the wrong project in the wrong place at the wrong time. Trans Canada is the worst of all companies to do this with their poor record of leaks, spills, incomplete clean-ups, and explosions. They are a menace to the environment. Stop Keystone XL.
David, Santa Monica

This Pipeline is a disaster waiting to happen. If this is so important to Canada let them build it across their country not ours.
Patricia, Los Angeles

I am glad you plan to remain vigilant in opposing the Keystone XL Pipeline. Producing a barrel of fuel form tar sands is more than 3X as greenhouse gas intensive as producing a barrel of conventional oil. The EIS is an oil industry-funded joke. History will hold us accountable.
Debbie, San Diego

I am not sutre why the hold up on the Keystone Pipeline. This project will help create jobs in this country, make us less dependent on foreign oil and help make us more secure. What I find is the liberals in this country and those voted into office are in the process of destroying this once great country. I, as a constituent and a citizen, demand that you move forward with approving this project. We should not be held hostage by the environmental terrorists that lobby those of you in the Senate. Please do your job or resign.
Robert, Huntington Beach

I was very glad when I read in your message today that you will keep a careful watch on the evidence regarding the possible environmental impact of all aspects of the XL pipeline from extraction to disposal of waste. As a scientist, I believe that there is ample evidence demonstrating the drastic increase in carbon pollution that would result from implementing the pipeline, and I would expect that the final EIS will note such evidence. Thank you for your diligence in protecting the health of our planet and the living organisms (including us humans) inhabiting it!
Ayesha, Oakland

Thank you for steadfast commitment to our environment and stopping the Keystone XL pipeline project. This is not the direction America needs to go towards. Having a environmental scientist son and emerging environmental water engineer son I get keen insight into the issues. Solutions are much harder to come by, but anything is possible. Every little bit we do collectively will create the critical mass to find answers. The big battles are for you and your colleagues to challenge with the good of all your intention.
Lynne, Fort Bragg

Pls add the pipeline failures and the resultant poisoning and devastion of communites and habitat. Even if they can somehow justify the actual mining concerns, the failures in transport via under engineered pipelines, aged and failing rail systems and unregulated highway transportation is not a justifieable risk. Thank you keeping the conversation on topic and not political. We need REAL dialogue and solutions, not politiking.
Angela, Riverside

I am against the Keystone Pipeline. It is a disaster in the making for so many reasons. The environmental impact is too great, the adverse effects on communities and health too great. I cannot see any silver lining in the construction of this pipeline for the American people.
Thank you for paying close attention to this pending project, it needs to be stopped.
Debbie, Sacramento

Thank you for continuing to oppose the Keystone XL Pipeline. My family and I have sent numerous letters to President Obama urging him not to allow the pipeline to be built, but we have never received any response. I hope you and the other members of Congress who are also opposed to the pipeline can convince the President to not allow the pipeline to be built.
Barbara, Santa Monica

It is my understanding, by completing the pipeline, it will not only cause more Climate hazards and dangers in polluting our Air, soil and water, this will also give the Oil companies the opportunity to sell the DIRTY OIL to other Countries by way of the Mexican Gulf which will make Canada Richer and the US poorer. Please stop the Keystone Pipeline for all the reasons stated. It is best to invest in Solar and Wind power. This will promote jobs for the US, these jobs will be permanent jobs that will not be out sourced.
Rosemary, Pinon Hills

Kudos on NOT being satisfied with this report! Shale is dirty, toxic and NOT needed for our use in the 21st Century. Keep up your diligent work on our behalf!!!!
Molly, San Diego

We are all watching closely. There is nothing to study, we don't want this climate killing and life killing Keystone XL Pipeline. What part of this message is not getting through to you Senator?
Lara, Orangevale

Please do everything in your power to convince President Obama to reject the Keystone XL Pipeline. It is an environmental disaster in the making, and not befitting his legacy as a president who has espoused his agenda to be one that meaningfully addresses climate change. Your assessment of this horrifying debacle will carry a lot of weight. Please do all you can to persuade the president that the State Department's impact report stating the pipeline will have negligible impact on the climate and environment is an outright lie.
Lari, Brownsville

I think all things should be considered equally, regarding the Keystone XL pipeline. The health impacts on communities and the dangerous carbon pollution will happen somewhere. Should it be our "biggest concern"?
Eric, Santa Rosa

We can find alternative energy sources...dirty fossil fuels are not the answer...
Joseph, Venice

PLEASE help us to STOP coal tar sands mining, and STOP the Keystone XL pipeline !
Gail, San Pedro

Thank you, Senator Boxer, for insisting on pertinent and thorough analysis of the Keystone pipeline. Dangers to communities don't seem to fall within the scope of State Department analysis of impact on climate. Thank you for knowing about valid environmental impact analysis.
Elizabeth, Cambria

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Californians respond to my message on Holding the Line Against Keystone XL (9/12/2013):

Thank you for your work and your speech and your vote against the pipeline. It is definitely one of the issues I feel most strongly about. Californians have got to say "Not in our state."  I appreciate your stand on this matter.
Lindsay, Petaluma

Thank you for your determination to help save our life support system (also known as planet Earth) from dangerous degradation.
Rachel, Oak View

Thank you so much for speaking out against the Keystone Pipeline. It's a horrible idea that must be stopped.
Jean, Sherman Oaks

Senator Boxer: you say you are protecting us by voting against the Keystone Pipeline. What you are doing is hurting America and our economy. The best you could do is keep the government out of the way. We need the oil and the jobs.
Robert, Huntington Beach

I understand that this pipeline is to be used to TRANSPORT oil to the southern cost for the use of OTHER countries. If this is true, this information should be advertised to the American people. Why should American landowners and more importantly our water supply be endangered to supply other countries.
Barbara, San Francisco

THANK YOU for speaking out against the Keystone Pipeline - this is such an important fight, as this pipeline would be an environmental disaster for the US especially, but for the whole world.
Sherry, Tahoe City

Thank you very much for your commitment to speak out against the ravages that the oil industry continues to try to perpetrate in our country.
Elizabeth, Ojai

Well Senator then explain why it makes sense to buy oil from the middle east or south America and from countries who are barely are friends and with the profits made from the sale of oil fund terrorist groups that have sworn to attack the United States. I do believe the potential trade off between alleged carbon exhaust and the real funding of terrorist who hate us might warrant your attention.
Mike, Fresno

I am gratified to hear that there are some representatives of the people who are willing to stand against the huge multi-national corporate giants that seem to have taken over landscape and country. Thank you for being so convicted and responsive to your constituency.
Nola, Big Sur

The greedy and thoughtless right seems almost unstoppable with this dreadful pipeline that is absolutely WRONG for America and would really destroy any chance we have of limiting or reducing greenhouse gasses, but you stand up against them time and again, and YOU are formidable! Thanks for being the voice we can always count on!
Jessica, Sherman Oaks

Why are you against ENERGY independence for the country you are suppose to be a citizen of, this UNITED STATES of AMERICA.
Wildon, Sonora

You are speaking for all of us living in the US today, and all of the unborn who will be living here in the future. People who listen to the Republican propaganda and want us to stop depending on "foreign oil" argue that the Pipeline will help with this. They don't seem to realize that Canada is a foreign country. Let the Canadians make a pipeline to the sea across their own country for moving this extremely dirty crude oil.
Virginia, Beaumont

Thank you for standing firm against the Keystone XL pipeline. Your efforts are greatly appreciated. The Keystone XL pipeline... from my perspective... is merely a disaster waiting for an opportunity. Please continue the opposition until victory is grasped.
Robert, Fillmore

Thank you for your efforts to stop the Keystone pipeline. I also believe it would be a huge mistake to build this pipeline.
Donald, Culver City

Thank you, thank you for standing up against the pipeline!!It's bad for the climate, it's bad for the environment, it's bad for jobs, and it does absolutely nothing for the price of gas here. I urge you to continue speaking up against it, discussing this with other Congresspeople and the President, telling them all why it's a very bad idea with dire consequences.
Sara, Arcata

You can speak out about the Keystone XL pipeline being bad for the environment all you want. Most oil companies are transporting the wonderful shale oil from North Dakota and the tar sands oil from Canada by rail to refineries all over the US. In fact most oil companies don't care whether Keystone is built or not...they have once again found a way to get around government meddling. All your doing is costing people much needed jobs and that's a shame. Rethink Keystone.
Bill, Long Beach

Thank you for being against the Keystone XL pipeline. From what I have read and watched documentaries regarding this issue, this is a huge destructive practice. People have to give up their homes, the poison to the water supply, the damage to the earth, the poison to the air. It is so destructive and not worth the minimal reward.
Janet, San Diego

Thank you for standing up against KXL. We need you in this fight for our environment and safety!
Dianne, Long Beach

Dear Senator thank you for caring about our Planet. We all live and breathe together that’s why I just don't get it why everyone doesn't feel the same. Please keep up your great work!!!!
Tina, Baldwin Park

thank you for standing firm against the keystone xl pipeline; it is a disaster waiting to happen, will not create many permanent jobs and will be used for export.
Kathleen, Claremont

Thank you for opposing the Keystone XL pipeline. This is something I am strongly against for the same reasons as you mentioned that it will harm our environment. Also, I am not convinced that it will bring good jobs to our citizens. That's just their way to try to get this approved at the expense of our health.
Teresa, Rowland Heights

I hope President Obama is listening.
Carol, Glendale

Under what conditions would you approve the Keystone Pipeline? I support transitioning to alternate non-carbon fuels over time, but understand that will take many years for the private sector to have confidence to invest in the new infrastructure that it would require. Is there a "win-win" scenario that would allow the pipeline to be constructed so we could rely less on the Middle East and boost our domestic employment in the meantime without exposing our environmental balance unreasonably?
Charles, Benicia

I just received your email concerning your opposition to the amendment being proposed in the Senate to the current energy bill which would have hastened the approval of the Keystone pipeline. Thank you for your support on this very important issue. I think that this pipeline would be a catastrophe both for the Canadian environment and the states in the U.S. where it would pass. This pipeline is a completely inappropriate place to put our energy spending.
Laviero, Daly City

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Unemployment Insurance Extension

Californians respond to my message on Helping the Unemployed:

My daughter was "laid off" from Bank of America after 6 years along with 750 others here in Lancaster in June 2013. She has been looking for a job preferably close to home as she is a single mother of a 9 year old son. She did not receive any unemployment benefits this month and I will have to deplete my savings to help her pay for food, rent and utilities. 5 months of benefits is all she has received. I feel sorry for the folks who don't have a relative to help them out. There will be lots of people sitting in the dark about to be evicted if the long term unemployment benefits are not extended.
Diedre, Lancaster

I have been unemployed for since June of last year. Yes i like so many others i know have been applying to so many different companies and positions that i never would have done before. Even ones i am not qualified for. I am at my wits end. I had just recieved my 1st 2 weeks of the 1st tir of extensions when Dec 28th hit. Oh my --- . I live with my best friend who is on disability and is on oxygen 24/7. Do you know what is likely to happen soon? I am scared out of my mind.
I can not sleep at night. Its all in my shoulders. There is no one to help us. Its just us. We have been best friends for almost 40 years. Lived together for 30 yrs. I promised her mom before she died that i would always take care of her. I got this far. 4 yrs ago i lost my mom to cancer.
Then we both lost our jobs of 12 and 15 yrs.  We dont know what to do and the clock is ticking fast. It such a bad uncontrolable feeling. No one deserves this. Help us please.
Jackie, Dublin

So so many decent people have been suffering throughout this recession; I continue to respect your fighting for us (working class and working poor people); but please please hurry with some solutions/job bills/communication about potential jobs/etc. Every month I see people losing their cars, apartments, and dignity. It's very painful right now in so so many communities. Seriously, keep fighting hard o.k.?
Mario, Los Angeles

When I lost my job in mid-2007, it was only the UI that enabled me --and far from lavishly, believe me. I went from $35 an hour, and occasional overtime, to 30% of my income. Rent, utilities, gas, and cell phone were first-pay priorities...note that food isn't listed! NOR ARE FANCY FINGERNAILS, VACATIONS, FANCY CARS LOBSTER, STEAK OR DRUGS! Every dollar received was spent the same week, if not the same day that it was received. It enabled me to keep living while I looked for work. Senator, your grinchy fellow legislators should live on 30% of their present income for 26 weeks, and after that, to live on ZERO INCOME. Even worse, to listen to hypocritical proverb-slathered convoluted justification and excuses for why feeding and helping the unemployed is BAD. Senator, why are sound economics being discarded for some perverted distortion of a Calvinist morality play? "Lucky" me, I now receive Social Security (since turning 65 a few years ago), plus a modest check from the .. for PTSD, tinnitus and a skin condition, all from my year in Vietnam...ironically, those 2 checks are not much more than the UI checks so I can keep pinching pennies but at least I CAN COUNT ON S.S. AND THE V.A. The unemployed deserve better than the mealy-mouthed, succumb pitifully to their-rabid-base B.S. being spewed by the ugly-minded rhetoric-vomiters. THANK YOU for all that you and your incredible colleagues in the California caucus.
Patrick, Oakland

As was so succinctly suggested by CNN news, namely Wolf Blitzer, the cost of the war per day in Afghanistan is estimated to be 2 billion. Its a simple equation, bring home the Troops three weeks or 21 days early which will result in a savings of approximately 42 billion taxpayer dollars. Congress needs only 6.5 billion to cover this extended coverage. Using this method, Congress would have an additional 35.5 billion in its coffers, perhaps to help the SNAP program. Perhaps Senator, you can bring this to the attention of Boehner, Cantor and McConnell, and also to the attention of the citizenry of this country and to the media.
William, Long Beach

I am sure congress has not gone a day or a week or maybe a month wondering where their next meal will be coming from. I know of many people who are no longer eligible to receive federal assistance or veterans who are not able to find work and are living in their cars, under freeways, or make shift habitats in alley ways. By extending the federal assistance will only create a band aid effect. How about working on brining jobs back to the USA, instead of sending it to other countries where items are full of lead and items are not as well made as it is here.
Frankie, Norwalk

I am a married gay man, age 74, with monthly retirement income less that $3000.00. My husband's Federal UI extension expired 11/2013. He has not been employed in his field found for several years. We are surviving on vapors. Although he had recent qualifying temporary employment, my husband will not qualify for new California UI benefits until late February 2014. Without Federal extensions, the new benefit will be exhausted in two months. I am not looking forward to living in our car-the space is really limited. Thanks for your advocacy to extend Federal unemployment benefits.
Robert, Los Angeles

I am 49 years old. I have worked consecutively all my life since I was 16 years. I have made roughly 55,000 a year in the 3 Advertising Sales jobs I have worked in the last 26 years. I have struggled making ends meet but have always managed to pay my bills. I have now been out of work since May 2013 do to a lay off at my last publishing company and have been trying desperately to find a job. I send out my respectable resume at least 5 times a week, but I have yet to find work. I am now faced with eviction at end of the month, my electricity being cut off before end of month since I have absolutely no money left. Until the Federal Unemployment Extension was cut I was getting by each month. I have know idea what to do or where to turn. I am afraid I am about to lose all I have. Please help fight for the extension with all your might.
Jon, Los Angeles

This is the 2nd year in a row where my choices have been limited to food or medicine. I can't afford my medicine. I'm on SS disability. As liberal as it is, I can't make it. Despite Obamacare I can't get a break. Can you do anything to help? Please. The country is getting worse and worse instead of the other way round. What can a person do? One needs medicine and food to be healthy. It's a 2 legged stool. Not too good.
Paul, San Francisco

I was out of work for a long time and recently got a job, so this is not about my situation anymore, but still wanted to express my thoughts on this subject. By not extending unemployment benefits, congress is sending not just 1.3 MILLION people, but that many people, AND their families (MILLIONS of spouses and children) into desperation, poverty, homelessness, and hopelessness. They are taking 25 Billion dollars directly out of the economy and destroying an additional 200,000 jobs on top of the ones that are already not there for these people. The repubs were big spenders when it came to wasting TRILLIONS of $$ on wars and tax cuts for the wealthy, (that were NEVER paid for), yet now can't get more heartless or clueless than they are about this issue. They hope to lower the unemployment rate by 1/2 of 1 percent by getting enough long term unemployed to give up looking for work and just accept their new poverty ? Wow. And yes, the dems were gutless for going along with this republican part of the compromise. Sen. Paul had the fact right; employment is harder to obtain after being unemployed for a longer time, but came to the wrong conclusion. That reason is WHY benefits SHOULD be extended for the long term unemployed. Thank you Sen. Boxer
James, Culver City

It appears that the majority of congressional members lack compassion for our community members who are unemployed through no fault of their own. This does not speak well for our country. Please continue to speak out in behalf of our brothers and sisters who are unemployed and are no longer receiving unemployment benefits.
Susan, Los Angeles

I am a 74 year old retired silver servant, but there have times in my life when I was with out a job or any income and homeless so I can identify with the thousand of people that are in that condition, at one point I made up my mind that I had to do what I had to do to survive and I did some thing that I am not proud of. so what I can see the government is going to make some good peoples bad peoples. think about it if your family didn't have food to eat or a home to live in can you say what you wouldn't or would do that your family could have the thing that I think every American should have I am praying that you all do not have to built more jails for good peoples.
Johnny, San Francisco

I have been out of work for nearly five years! The inability to find work is based on my lengthy unemployment time. The few interviews I've had always bring that up. As if I've been lounging around, sipping Mai Tai's! Truth is, I've pretty much exhausted every avenue to finding employment. My experience has been working in an office as a litigation secretary and as an administrative assistant. However, there doesn't appear to be much call for that kind of work these days. And nobody can tell me how this experience can be translated to other forms of employment. The agencies have not been helpful at all, saying, once again, that it's my unemployment that is turning them off. Meanwhile, I have long exhausted any and all forms of unemployment insurance. My money will soon run out. I've gone to the General Assistance, located in San Jose, but their information requirements are very intrusive, including financial information on relatives. I would like to see any emergency three months of unemployment benefits for ANYONE who has ever applied for unemployment benefits since 2008 and has yet to be employed. Those three months could be a real lifeline to those of us who are teettering on the edge of homelessness.
Janice, San Jose

I was a manager a solar company that went bankrupt about 2+ years ago, and have been unemployed ever since then. I have been forced into retirement and can barely survive. I still look for work and I am even willing to take a drastic cut in pay. The USA does a reasonably good job helping other Countries, but does a really poor job when it comes to helping our unemployed workforce.
Ron, San Jose

It's been over a month since long term extensions have ended. Unfortunately I will run out of money soon but there is a light at the end of the tunnel - my tax refund! But beyond that I will have no source of income and the bills will continue to come. Please urge those in Congress to imagine if they were laid off, 51 years old, and unable to locate any work. I know its hard to believe but my life was running along smoothly until my Pearl Harbor on May 2, 2013. I have been laid off twice before but found work within months but this time it's been especially hard. I presumed I would find work as before but I can't even get an interview. Let's hope these benefits will be extended. I hear there is progress on a 3 month extension. Anything will help.
Javier, Culver City

I'm writing this as one of the millions affected by the cessation of unemployment benefits. I was laid off from my job last February after being with the company 14 years. It was a mall company and so I was not given any severance or pension. I am 60 years old and have worked for the last 42 years. I have tried to get employment but I've found that no one really wants to hire a 60 year old. Being 60 means I have a 5 year gap to collect Social Security. It is important to me to have the benefits extended because I have almost eaten through my savings. I am not sure what the future holds. My only hope at the moment is to start my own business. I am making strides to do that and am excited to get started. If it doesn't work out, however, I'm scared to death at what my future may be. I'm not a loser or slacker as so many commenters on websites say, but a responsible, hard-working American who has fallen on hard times through no fault of my own. I am trying to make my life work in a situation I never dreamed I would be in. Please help your colleagues to see the profound need to extend benefits. For me, it may be the interim safety net that will allow me breathing room to get on my feet again. Thank you.
Colleen, La Crescenta

I am 33 single mother of a teenage boy and my income was the only income we had to live on including unemployment checks. I am writing you to please continue to help get an extension on unemployment. After working over ten years clerical in the medical field I was let go and was on unemployment. I have been constantly searching for jobs and rejection after rejection I have not given up. It is scary to hear that my claim will be up after 26 weeks of unemployment. I do not know how I will make ends meet if they do not extend unemployment. I know I am not alone on this subject and millions are as scared as I am. I have never been on welfare or any assistance even being a teenage mother.

Kristen, Chatsworth

Please keep pushing for the unemployment extension. I am one of those who were cut off in December. I'm 61, have 3 college degrees and am a Vietnam-era veteran. I am not a number or a lazy or stupid individual as some Republicans would like you to believe. Those checks are our only lifeline. With several lay-offs in the last twelve years, the crash, and the worst economy of my life, I have sadly had to run through my life savings and 401Ks. It has been heart-breaking to experience. I had to borrow money for rent and bills from relatives just to get through January.  I have worked since I was 15 and fear I may be homeless soon if I don't get those federal unemployment checks. I eat one meal a day now and I'm starting to feel quite desperate. Please convince all your colleagues that this is something we all paid into and desperately need now and not in a month or two. We are not receiving welfare checks, but checks we worked for and earned. I know you have always stood up for your constituents and those in times of need. I pray you are successful along with your fellow senators and represenatives.
Jay, Albany

Thank you so much for fighting to extend federal unemployment benefits. I am a 49 year old woman who is struggling to find employment. I was laid off on June 18, 2013. I had been with my former employer, Southern California Edison, for 9.5 years. It has been a very difficult time for me, both emotionally and financially. At times I feel like such a failure because I'm doing what job search experts recommend and I'm still unemployed. I'm especially hurt with those members in congress who say that people in my circumstance are lazy and need incentive to work. They are so wrong. I have plenty of incentives. I have my car payment, my insurance payment, my natural gas bill, my electrical bill, my grocery expenses, my gasoline expenses, my mortgage payment, my mortgage insurance payment because I'm a first time home buyer, and my personal expenses such as clothing, shoes, and toiletries, and I also have my job search expenses. As you can see I have lots of incentive to work. I want to be a normal person again and talk with friends and family about my day at work and what I achieved for my company or the recognition I received from my boss. I am not a lazy woman; I want and need to be a normal woman with a fair chance at finding a job. I want my government to be patient with me and show some compassion. Instead, I get members of congress calling me names and making feel ashamed for losing my job through no fault of my own, and making me feel desperate because I don't know how I will be paying my bills. Please don't give up on me Ms. Boxer. I ask you to continue to fight as I can still provide value to this great country of ours. I believe I'm worthy of a little compassion and not name calling.
Sylvia, Pasadena

I would be more interexted in seeing some concern about the economy and the national debt than extending unemployment benifits. Lets face it, the longer you have eligibility for unemployment checks, the longer you will be unemployed! How about making it easier for businesses to create jobs. What a concept!!!!! I am sure this WILL NOT be posted on your website. Thanks, from a very disappointed DEM.
Harrie, Half Moon Bay

I am an independent voter and voice my opinion that we the American people have an obligation to assist the people who have lost their jobs due to this recession. There are many families who are just getting by pay check to pay check. I found out last week in Santa Clarita there is an apartment that has a weekly and daily payment schedule. Sounds a bit like Charles Dickens and if the tenants do not pay they are without a place to live. Buck McKeon should be delighted to hear this news.  In November 2011 my wife along with 800 other directors, managers, engineers and others were let go from St Jude Medical in Sylmar CA. This lay off was called a reduction in force (RIF). This huge lay off removed nearly 200 million dollars from the Southern California economy. I first noticed this by going to our dry cleaner a month later and she said it is tough but they were getting by. That was just one business. Our family is fortunate but for every family that is ok there are four to five families that are not fortunate.
Bob, Santa Clarita

I wanted to respond to the senator's extremely well presented speech on the topic of extending unemployment insurance benefits. She really drew a picture of what this is all about. It is only three hundred dollars on average and when you have little children in the desert of 29 Palms in January not using heat. That money goes directly back into the economy. It is such a no brainer. At least six republicans sided with her of which she complimented. I am glad she briefly mentioned the Koch Brothers and also revealed that a certain 500 families have enough wealth as that of half the population (150 million people.) Senator Boxer thanks for standing up for the economically middle and now growing lower class.
Richard, Sherman Oaks

I am writing this in response to your speech on the Senate floor regarding the extension of unemoyment benefits. My husband and I are amongst those that you were speaking for and I thank you. I am unemployed but I do not receive any benefits. I have been unemployed for 3 years. All the places I go tell me I'm over qualified and hire the perky younger applicant. My husband has cancer in his eye and no one wants their customers looking at someone with a messed up eye when they can hire someone younger and cuter. Now, in January, we have 0 dollars coming in. I try to scrape together ways to earn a little money as a musician and selling things that I make, but January is a very slow month for such things and I am so scared. What will happen to us now? Please continue your fight for us. Our lives depend on it.
Rose, Pleasant Hill

Thanks for your comments on the Senate floor today. I am jobless, and my benefits ended on 12/28/2013. I paid a LOT into the unemployment _insurance_ system over my many years working, and so I'm just looking to get some of that _insurance_ payment back in the form of benefits. I'm not asking for a handout... I'm asking for the _insurance_ benefits I paid for to help me through joblessness.
Kenneth, Concord

As with over 80% of your constituents, I am so very frustrated with congress and your absolute lack of civility & honesty with each other & the country. Make no mistake about it, my message is directed at Republicans and DEMOCRATS. You each point the fingers at each other and it seems the Democrats are doing this the most. PLEASE stop your (I mean you) partisan bickering, posturing, and childishness . . . and start doing our business . . . you work for us! At the top of the agenda for me is jobs, jobs, jobs. As someone who was recently unemployed, I blame the California Democrats and congress for the terrible business environment you & your brethren have created. Please stop putting barriers up for businesses . . . and start doing our business . . . you work for us! I challenge you to post my message on your website. I tired of seeing only messages that say how wonderful congress and you are doing. You (and your bipartisan brethren) are actually doing a terrible job and it's embarrassing!
Doug, Fremont

Please have the Congress reinstate unemployment for 1.3 million who lost theirs in 12/13. Also I am one of over 10,000 to 20,000 unemployed because about Aug or Sep of 2011 unemployment was cut to less then 99 weeks in the state of Calif. I am retired but I am also unemployed since Oct. 2010. Because of my age of 69 I am not able to get a job, because they think I am to old. I needed the unemployment checks to help me and my husband get thinks done. We are living on our Soc Sec and my small pensions, but it is very hard. I can not get cal fresh, or help with my husband, I am his care giver. I want to work part time, but as I have mentioned no one wants to hirer me or any one else who is over 50, I am 69 and my husband is 72.
Janet, Lancaster

I've been without a job for more than 4 years. During this time, I've tried to learn other courses as well as taking care of my mother for 7 months after her husband of 34 years died. I've exhausted all of my savings and am now applying for food assistance. I've eliminated all unnecessary expenses but cannot live on Social Security alone. Even though I'm a senior, I've applied for many jobs, even part-time. Now, after 23 years, I'm at the point of having to sell my home. I don't know what else to do. If there was a way for me to earn an extra $1,000 a month, I'd jump at it. If you can help unemployed people like me survive before facing defeat, it would greatly relieve facing devastation.
Regina, Walnut Creek

By not factoring in offsets to Unemployment Benefits Extensions we as a nation are getting further and further into debt. That is something that hurts all Americans not just the currently unemployed. Not to mention those who are taking advantage of American tax payers by receiving extension after extension in benefits for many years now with no plan to help them re enter the workforce.
Daniel, North Hills

I am so glad that we have you advocating for us. I am a 67 year old woman who has been lied to, taken advantage of, and patronized by employers, then surprisingly let go after providing them with excellent service. I have no husband, no pension, the prior 2 year bout of unemployment depleted any reserves plus placed me deeply in credit debt due to 6 months of no income but Social Security,which barely covered my rent. This is not how I planned spending my golden years. I finally obtained a job at the new casino here in Sonoma County… The casino was slow and they had over-hired. So on December 27th I went in to work and was informed that I no longer had a job and that it wasn't personal. certainly has affected me personally, financially and emotionally.  I hope that your wonderful advocacy will have the desired effect on those who can help us.
Clare, Santa Rosa

Simply extending the unemployment benefits is a bad idea. I believe the amount paid should be reduced when extended. Also, job retraining should be mandatory for those wanting to receive extended benefits. Recipients should also be required to apply to a certain number of job openings provided by the local employment development office and required to take any job offered to them or lose the right to receive continued benefits. It is time to push some of these people to actually go to work. I have known too many of them that say this or that job are beneath them because of the job they "use to have". This is plain ego, or just laziness since they have already been paid so long for not working. I have also heard some of them say if they take certain jobs they would actually end up with less take home than staying on unemployment. Perhaps giving partial benefits to someone who has only found part time employment would at least get them started on the working path again.
Wayne, San Jose

Every day I am on the firing line helping to address and financially assist the needs of the low income, and unemployed, as a case worker for Sunnyvale Community Services. Our unemployed were devastated when we lost 25 employees of EDD in Sunnyvale in July 2012 when there was a new greater need. The cost of living has gone up higher, rent is increasing, and the rate of homelessness is increasing. At present, the future does not look bright when the Dept. of Social Services has cut back on one to one service and the clients are not getting their food stamps on time. There is no such thing as the average unemployed worker. Last month we helped a man with his water bill because he was able to prove he was hired, but would not get his first month check of $4000 in time to avoid a shut off. I am a tax payer and am willing to continue paying taxes as long as the safety net for the most vulnerable is intact.
Maria, Sunnyvale

I was laid off in April 2013, and spent many months looking for a job that that would pay near what I was making. I have over the months gotten more "your too qualified", "we have filled the position", or "where your qualifications match what we are looking for, you salary requirements" are not within the scope of this position. I felt and still feel that I was forced to take a job that pays less then half of what I was making. I continue to look for work even now, and am still facing the same rejections that I have been receiving since April 2013. Not that this is going to make it any better or me-as really that is not going to happen, and I know that.
There are those that are working hard EVERY day to find a job that are in the position I am....we are not living off the system that we have supported for many years.
Erin, Long Beach

Yes, very impassioned. Perhaps, though, it would do those you purport to help a great deal more good if you were to spend less time trying to extend "benefits" and spend more time trying to get government off the backs of the private sector so those very people actually had jobs. Your administration's regulation and redistributive punishment of success are why these people remain unemployed in the first place. Government's job is to ensure a level playing field, not to call the plays. Government has proven,unequivocally,during the last five years that it's interference in the private sector leads to confusion, distrust and slow growth. Ps: It would be nice to see an opposing view posted.
John, Fort Bragg

I am now 67 years old. I lost my job at the age of 62 in 2008. I went through my 99 weeks of unemployment through 2010, to the age of 64. I was estranged from my husband and finally divorced him so I could claim retirement on the record of a previous spouse. That helped me survive until I finally turned 66 and could claim my own full social security. I don't know what I would have done without that unemployment, as I never got so much as an interview during those worst times, and I had no one to help me at all. Who knows the circumstances of the ones now who need extended benefits, but it can't be good. I thank you very much for your conscientious effort to help them.
Juanita, Santa Rosa

Keep up the good work fighting for "ordinary" people to be able even just to survive in these trying times. I, myself, am now unemployed. I was laid-off on December 27, 2013. The company I worked for was actually reluctant to do this, but it was down to the "bottom line" - money. I was a valuable member of their workforce and needed in my position, but I was the last in, so I was the first out. Without unemployment benefits, I would quickly become in debt, as I don't get compensation for losing my job, unlike management of large companies, who can even commit fraud and still get severance pay. Republicans simply say - get another job! When there are so many other unemployed people out there applying for the same position, the chances become very low to succeed, but the republicans seem to think that making it harder for a person to be on unemployment makes it an incentive to work, but as jobs are not available, the only result is people becoming homeless. Shame on the republicans for their indifference to the ordinary person’s plight.
Tony, Santa Rosa

I was laid off from Cisco Systems in San Jose, California October 2011, since then I have been searching for steady work with a decent wage I can actually live on. In the 26 months since being laid off, I have searched and searched, and applied and applied. All that effort has landed me 3 short-term temp positions of which I worked a total of 12 weeks!!! That is it!!! I am sinking and one of those affected, my unemployment benefits extention expired 12/28/13. I am desperate for employment and have been selling personal things here and there just trying to survive. I am to the point that I am scraping just to get by and do not have very much money left.  Do not know if I have enough funds for my house payment and all other household obligations for February. That is how low I am on money. This is very scary as I am a hard worker and have always worked, and never been in this type of position before.
Juanita, San Jose

You are always voting to increase our taxes and provide more for those "in need" Isn't it about time we asked why they are in need? Did they get an education? Did they go to work when they had a job? Have they brought children into the world that they could not afford? Why don't you start a "Personal Responsibility" movement? Enough is enough!
Kayleen, Monterey

I for one lost my job in April 2013 after working 12 years for the same company. I worked all my life while raising two children. This was the first time I applied for unemployment benefits. I am 77 years old and 4 days after losing my job I was diagnosed with pulmonary fibrosis which is an incurable disease. I have very little savings and without extension of those unemployment benefits I do not know how I will survive. I beg you and your colleagues to do your utmost to extend those benefits.
Gisele, Glendale

Did you not see the ADB jobs numbers today (the day you lobby in Congress for these "Emergency Benefits")? Let me fill you in since you must not have seen them. 238,000 jobs added last month. The emergency is over. Americans are getting back to work. It is now time for Congress to stop providing handouts and start providing incentives for employers to hire even more people. We need to quit enabling people to sit at home and cash the check and go out there and earn one. We Americans are tired of seeing the number of people living on the dole rising. Please help us stop the bleeding, rather than increasing it.
Craig, Healdsburg

Their needs to some incentive for these people to get a job that pays something even in new sector of business . Their are jobs out there going waiting for someone to either move to the job or take a 2nd choice position . As it is people can lay back on their unemployment till the tax payers say enough.
Ronal, Pittsburg

You talk about unemployment benefits expiring Dec. 28 as if they were some "emergency" benefits that hadn't been around very long and are now going away when people can least afford it. The truth is that the "emergency" unemployment benefits extension was first passed way back in 2008! They have been extended annually since then and it is time for them to stop. We are paying people not to work so they natuarally DON'T WORK! Yes there are a few people who genuinely can't find a job, but 6 months of benefits are plenty and then the benefits should stop. If you haven't found SOME job, even a low skill, low wage, job in 6 months, then you just don't really want to work.
 Howard, Hacienda Heights

After 99 weeks of unemployment payments, your proposal to again extend them shows a total disregard for fiscal realities. After five years the current Administration has failed to articulate and implement Government policies that would reduce the burden of government taxes and regulations upon the business community and thus create jobs. Adding more billions of taxpayers money make be another "feel good:" move by the Senate majority, but it is a failed philosophy as was Lyndon Johnson's "War on Poverty." We are appalled these simple facts are not understood, apparently, by you and many other members of Congress. Your Party continues to attempt to solve all economic problems by throwing more taxpayer money at the problem and never solving it. We do believe the American electorate of all Parties is beginning to awaken to this.
Vicki and Bill, Hillsborough

I just received an email about extending the federal emergency funds for unemployment and that is what we need. I am from the Imperial Valley in California and opportunities here are minimum. I have a bachelor's degree and master's and things are not looking great for me, I have been unemployed for almost two years and been in several interviews but with no luck. Anyway, just wanted to let you know that Americans need these extra funds.
Luis, Heber

My son is married with three children and has been jobless, for the most part, for five (5) years. When he was entitled to file for benefits he did not, and when he really needed the funds it was too late and he could not. Nevertheless my husband and I are OPPOSED to a continuing Federal bailout. The economy is rebounding, albeit very slowly. There are some who will not be returning to either their previous jobs or at their previous levels. But we have seen all too often in the past that well intentioned aid becomes enabling. The temporarily unemployed become the permanent unemployed, particularly if income is available without effort. It brings along with it low self esteem, lack of ambition and a general malaise. Both of our families come from Holocaust survivors who came with nothing. They struggled, worked hard AND saved diligently. They didn't have the benefit of advanced education, but the understanding of forced starvation and deprivation, something they NEVER wanted to experience again. It's not charitable to continue this road to unbridled dependency.
Carlin, Tarzana

Great countries take care of their people!! Food, housing, education and good medical care first, not weapons and expensive wars!
Rita, South Pasadena

I would like to think that Mrs. Boxer is really worried about her constituents. But it is obvious that she is only thinking about how to buy votes by giving stuff away. Liberals are the least likely to donate their money for the people. If the current administration keeps touting the success of the stimulus and how the economy has improved, it is illogical to now try to pass an emergency bill extending the unemployment benefits. You can't have it both ways and the public is very aware of this. Unemployment benefits now last almost two years. Really two years. . be serious get the unemployed jobs as promised by the current administration and quit thinking of only your career. Now let's see if you will post this on your website
Rodney, Eureka

I so agree with you that our unemployed and unfortunate need assistance. I always hope that my tax dollars don't just go to the royalty in D.C. but also goes to the people who really need it.
Karen, Lake Hughes

I appreciate your passion, and through the years, have agreed with you on many issues. But I believe it is time to cut the cord on the unemployed. I work very hard, as do my brother, sister, and wife. All in California. We are upside-down financially. In a utopian society, we could help as long as necessary. I wish it weren't true, but I don't think CA can afford to keep borrowing against what we don't have.
Charles, San Francisco

I appreciate your efforts to revive the now ended Federal extension benefits for unemployment insurance. As I am currently unemployed, this is of great interest. However, my confidence in Congress' ability to reach agreement leading to reinstatement of benefits is very low.
The entire political process is highly abused and not representative of wants and needs of the constituents served. Like many things, politics has become commercialized and is more about connections, money, and power than serving the will of the people who elected politicians as originally intended by the forefathers. I hope you and your fellow politicians prove me wrong.
Andrew, San Jose, CA

I do not agree with further extensions of unemployment benefits. While there are certainly many dependent Americans who would like to continue to receive this government assistance, it is time to allow market forces to work. I personally know several individuals who will refuse to take reasonable employment while they can remain on unemployment. Furthermore, this short term handout will only need to be extended again in 3 months. It's time for it to end.
Michael, Millbrae

I am all for extending benefits, but I would like to see some requirements for re-training, work projects put into place. To many people have found loop holes thru the system or been able to constantly live of the benefits. With the infrastructure of the US in dis-repair and needing significant fixes and upgrades it seems like this would be a great way to utilize lots of the out of work citizens to improve the country, learn new skill, net work with others and be proud what they are getting in assistance.
James, San Jose

I am one of the 220,000+ unemployed and I know a large amount of individuals that are in the same category. I don't think everyone understands the hardship of surviving day to day without our benefits. Many have lost their homes/apts and the inability to pay for your basic needs is stressful and depressing. If people deeply care, it doesn't take a lot of thought to know that help is needed IMMEDIATELY!!!! The old saying to know someone is to walk in their shoes is very true. Please inspire those who have all of the comforts and luxuries to do the right thing right NOW.
Georgette, San Jose

I am glad to hear about you trying to get the unemployment extensions reinstated. I am one of the misplaced workers that it has affected. I have worked all of my life since I was 16. I am 50 now and losing my last job (Hostess Brands) was and still is devastating especially when our second biggest union went on strike causing the company to liquidate and forcing us all out of a job. I am a single mother and nearly at my wits end, not knowing what the future holds. Through the years, I have established an excellent credit history and now I feel like my whole world is in jeopardy of crumbling right before my eyes.
Frances, Sacramento

My name is Ashley, and unfortunately for the past 9 months or so I have only been working part time temporary positions. I have not been able to find a full time position in the field that I received an education for. I am a recipient of a Bachelors degree in Communication and Marketing, as well as, a Paralegal Studies Associate degree. I have been working in the legal field for the past three years and still have not been able to find a permanent full time position as a Paralegal or any other legal administrative/clerical title. Even though I do continue to apply and interview for several positions, I am still unemployed. The money that I do make from the part time temporary positions that I do get is not enough to make my bills, rent, or food. The money that I do receive from my unemployment benefits does help me a lot. I live with my mother and pay very little in rent, so I do not know how others are even able to make it on the benefit amounts. My benefit amount is $313 a week. Which is not enough to put gas in my car to go look for a job, buy food, and pay bills; so something usually gets put on the side for later payment. My hopes are that there will be more jobs available to me as soon as possible. I can not speak for others that are getting unemployment, but I do know that for me I want to work. I do not want to be on unemployment, but I have to be in order to survive. I do hope that this sheds some light on the subject.
Ashley, Altadena

Thank you for standing up for the unemployed. Thank you for standing up for those families who are struggling and fearful for the future of their families. I am the director for the food bank at my church and so I get to meet a lot of these families from my community. I get to hear their stories. I get to hear their desperation and their fear. It will be a relief to those who are unemployed to hear that there is someone in government fighting for them.
Guadalupe, La Puente

I think you hit the nail on the head in your brief letter, when you state that there are so many people out there who simply 'don't know' what will become of them. I am 60 years old and have prided myself in being a hard worker throughout my life. I have been unemployed before, a number of times, but always for brief periods. I have now been unemployed for over 12 months and emotionally and mentally, it's been one of the longest years of my life. My wife and I waited at home for six years while my daughter went overseas in the military, doing tours in Iraq and Afghanistan. Those were stressful times, because we feared for her safety. But we knew many things about what she was doing and we knew that she had many others around her providing support. For the last 12 months my wife and I have had to endure the uncertainty of the marketplace. When will someone return our calls? When will a position open up that isn't so specific, that it excludes almost every able bodied person out here. These doubts about the environment create internal doubts about our future, certainly about my ability to secure a job, doing what I've done well, for the last 40 years. The world changes, I understand this. As it evolves we need to evolve with it or we end up being left behind. It feels like our country is not evolving as we once did. It's not two steps ahead of the world in general - as I believe we were for such a long time - now at best, we're merely in step with everyone, trying to keep up. This isn't working. I get that there's a global market and that everyone out there has a right to flourish. At the same time though, we need to be driven, not just by profits but by the well-being of those Americans that have given so much over such a long period of time. They deserve a piece of the future.  The disparity in earnings and wealth is indicative of a change in our culture, in what America stands for. It's not anti-American to wince when we see the Forbes' 1000 and see the Middle Class melting away, not unlike the polar ice caps, which many still insist, are unchanging.  Unemployment benefits need to be continued, this goes without saying. We also need businesses to focus on America and Americans and not merely on stock value. It's possible, eminently possible, to do both.
Joe, La Crescenta

Thank YOU for speaking up for the unemployed who have lost benefits. My nephew, and his family who live in Alameda, and has who has triplets, lost his job last June and has been very actively seeking new work every. His wife has gone back to school because she lost her job in the mortgage/housing crisis in 2008. She has been unemployed since then. They are desperate, barely scraping by and doing ALL they can to feed and keep a roof over their family's heads. I KNOW they are not milking the system. Brain paid into unemployment at his current company for more than 20 years before he was laid off due to the printing company not being profitable. He has CFO experience for all those years and is unable to find a good job to support his family. How do we get the Leader of the House of Rep. to understand how they are hurting hurting people who are trying so hard, but not extending benefits, when this has been done historically for decades in the past? I believe these good people are near the end of their ropes. All my efforts with Darryl Issa, our House Representative, fall on totally deaf ears. He is one of the worst in all of this.
Diane, Oceanside

I put this link on my Facebook page. Senator, Boxer I applaud your effort to restore unemployment insurance payments to Americans who have lost their jobs. If we can give subsidies to oil and huge tax breaks to "people" called "corporations," we can pay American workers what they have earned. Perhaps if the corporations return to American workers the jobs handed to Chinese workers we would not only have better-made products, we wouldn't need to be draining the UIB fund.
Camille, Monrovia

Please keep up the fight to assist the unemployed. I am so sick of people like Rand Paul who suggest that the unemployed are not working because they are "paid to not work," or that they are lazy, shiftless, and need to be given a "shove" to get them working, when they did not quit their jobs but were laid off. I get disgusted with people who blame the misfortunate for our country's problems.
Jennifer, San Jose,

I fully support your stand on extending jobless benefits. I also support increasing the minimum wage to not only keep up with inflation, but surpass it. As a registered Republican, I know my views here run counter to most other Republicans. I don't care. The people who need the most financial assistance had no part in causing the economic circumstances that placed them in that position. We're headed for a Hunger Games world unless we change our priorities quickly and significantly. The unseen Powers That Be should be placed on notice. Their Orwellian agenda is doomed because we're not having it.
Pete, Sunnyvale

I believe we need to help Americans in the time of need but when is this administration going to really do something about jobs in this country. Almost 5 years and we are still in bad shape regarding Americans that want to work. Please don't tell me that things are getting better! If that were true we wouldn't have so many Americans needing help.
Max, El Centro

Thank you for your increased awareness in and efforts to decrease unemployment in California.
I am in a peculiar situation, where I feel I am over-educated and yet under-exposed to practical experience, which prevents me from procuring a job. I thought I was doing the right thing: I graduated from high school with honors, attended a four-year liberal arts college, interned and/or studied during every single summer break, attended and graduated law school with a J.D., and passed the CA Bar. Despite all of this, I am unemployed. I have been incessantly applying, but I fall within the narrow gap of being overqualified for legal assistant positions but unqualified for associate attorney positions because firms and companies all require at least 2 years experience. There are no entry-level attorney positions. How am I supposed to gain this proposed 2+ years of experience? How will I pay off loans and basic living expenses? I worked hard to "do the right thing" and followed the correct academic course throughout my entire life, and now it has not led to any tangible results.
Christina, Santa Clara

Thank you for your speech urging the extension of unemployment benefits. You seem to understand the plight of people and show a great deal of concern. I received my last payment at the end of December. I graduated from college with a double Bachelor's degree. I went to college not only to better myself and my family but also wanted to contribute positively to society. I was devastated when I was laid off last May; my husband and I made our first mortgage payment on our first home and then my job was gone. Trust me, I would rather be working and am trying constantly. It is a difficult time and your support is a tremendous encouragement. Thank you for caring for understanding and fighting for all of us.
Natalie, Covina

Thank you for your speech before Congress. My husband has been unemployed for 5 years after his company laid him off and then filed bankruptcy in 2009. We have two children in college and their bright futures (in this country) are seriously at risk. I have a friend who has been unemployed after a lay off two years ago and just lost her benefits on December 28. She has applied for countless jobs and not yet been gainfully employed. I am very concerned about the population of unemployed in my age group (over 50) that are applying for the same jobs as the population just graduating college. The over 50 population are having to take jobs where their income cannot support their lives and their young adult children who are trying to get a college degree. My children and the over 50's (my husband and my friends) will be competing for the same jobs. Thank you for understanding and speaking urgently to Congress about this issue. My family and many of my friends were once considered middle class, homeowners with bright futures. Now, with the length of this recession, many have lost their homes and are now living just a bit above poverty level due to high unemployment and increasing costs (ie: medical, college, taxes and other essentials). Most of us have not been able to save any money and therefore live in very precarious situations.  Thank you for listening to the struggle of the shrinking middle class. It is truly time for Congress to stop fighting with each other and unite in effort for the people of the U.S.
Sharon, Woodland Hills

I am not unemployed, but I find it disheartening to witness our Government neglect those who are, while pushing a political agenda. Please do what you can to correct priorities. Employment and our economy are first priority. Political agendas and social programs are to be second in priority.
William, San Diego

I'm a 56 year old unemployed lady that is horrified about this situation, you expressed it so true to the fact. I hope we can get some support and extensions. I have been searching for work submitting my resume on line and registering with several staffing companies and so far nothing has transpired. I have over 20 years of administrative skills and have a lot to offer a company and hope and pray that something will work out but until then I'm one of the 222,000 Californian's hurting.
Josie, Temple City

Thank you for fighting for an extension of unemployment benefits. My husband and I are both retired, but we are practically supporting a couple friends who lost their unemployment. We have watched them apply for jobs and many times make it to an interview, only to not be infuriates me to watch Mr.Speaker stand there and insinuate they don't even try to get a job
I wish he could be put in their position. Knowing you're up there fighting for them helps keep them going THANK YOU
Bonnie, Castro Valley

My husband was unemployed for over a year. Thankfully, he finally found a job but I know that there are many out there still looking and I can't even imagine how we would have survived without unemployment checks. It is terrifying to have no idea how you will feed your family or keep a roof over your head. I pray that enough members of congress will care about the American people and do the right thing.
Dorothy, Eureka

Thank You very much for your caring and concern for the people in your district who have hit upon difficult times, because of factors beyond their control. The value of a Government is based upon how it cares for it's citizens, not just the wealthily, but all it's citizens.  I lost my job because of a disability and have been unable to find another position partially because of this disability. I also now provide care to my mother who will be 90 years of age this next month and who suffers from Alzheimer's and the ravages of old age. She receives just over $1250 per month in social security benefits. Of which $803 is a share of cost to be paid each month so she can receive In Home Support Services. That leaves us with little, if any extra cash. My unemployment benefits, though not a huge amount, was providing a small safety net for us. Since the extensions were ended we have hit rock bottom and every program we try to qualify for we are denied because our household income before share of costs and expences exceeds the poverty level by $198. We are caught in the place between the rock and the hard place.
We are not asking for a hand out, but a hand up. I'm asking for your continued fight against the GOP and the NRC platform. All Americans deserve a fair and equal piece of the american dream. Please continue you fight against those who keep denying extending benefits to the unemployed Americans who are in situations that don't allow them to find employment. We need your continued help. Thank you
Mark, San Bruno

Thank you, Senator Boxer for helping in trying to get unemployment benefits extended.
Though a moderate Republican and not a big fan of yours, I have been unemployed for a very long time. It happens to be that my 15+ years in High-Tech is irrelevant since I've been out of work for so long. Companies are hiring folks who are younger than me and who are currently employed. I am very lucky to have a husband who is working, so we are getting by, but do feel very sorry for those who cannot afford to pay the bills. We were both unemployed in 2011-2012. It is still bad out there no matter what people say.
Best Regards,
Alora, San Jose

Thank you for your support of extending the unemployment benefits. I know several people who have been out of work over 6 months. They are doing everything right – looking for work but have still been unable to find a job that pays enough to work and pay childcare. These are people with college educations who live in a middle class area of Placer County. They live in fear they will not be able to pay rent & keep a roof over their heads. I don't think many Senators realize how difficult it is to find a job even in this "recovery". These are not people who want to be out of work or expect the government to take care of them. It is so disheartening to see all the people who have been through this recession whose lives will never be the same and the middle class struggling so much. Thanks for your support, please keep it up. Our democracy hinges on an economically balanced society and most of us are willing to work and be contributing citizens.
Gloria, Lincoln

I have experience using the extension and it helped greatly… I am still looking for a position that will pay close to what I was making, but I am not optimistic. As a registered Republican I can say that I have supported you for many years. Keep up the good fight.
Robert, San Jose

I'm thankful to hear that you spoke on the unemployed. I received my last check December 2 so I was able to pay my rent for December January has come and I have not been able to pay my rent nor do I have the means of paying my bills I hope you guys hurry and decide what you're going to do because my family is in need. I am a single mother of 6; 5 of which I am still responsible for. I get $600 a month in child support and $142 and food stamps, my rent is $850 plus gas and light. I run out of food in mid December and now in January I received my benefits on the fourth I went to the market I bought some ground beef two packs of chicken some porkchops 2 gallons of milk, cereal, bread, canned vegetables pasta and two cans of spaghetti sauce when I checked out it was $135 so I spent the full amount of my benefits for the month on one day. And I'm pretty sure there's a lot of Californians living the way I'm living and it's sad so please help us. I was an office manager for a Worker's Compensation medical clinic due to the law changes with Worker's Comp. and the insurance not paying our doctors we had to close our doors. I found another job but seven months later I was Let go for no reason other then it was more feasible for them to employ two employees with my salary, that was understandable but now I was left without a job even after taking of substantial pay cut. it's been a year I've been constantly on Caljobs and other means of job searches but have not been able to find employment. I haven't paid my rent for January as I said before I haven't paid my car or my other bills so we really need help and I'm sure I'm not the only one please help us
Laura, San Fernando

While I appreciate what you are doing for the unemployed, my extended unemployment benefits ran out nearly a year ago. I have been a Media Systems Engineer for over 30 years. The company I worked for closed their doors due to the economic crash back in 2010. The industry I work in has also taken a nose dive since then as well. I have four adult children and two of them are still living with me as they are special needs. (1 Autistic and 1 Asperger's Syndrome.) If not for my other kids helping out with what little they can and an occasional odd job I would be homeless at this point. My question is, once your unemployment benefits run out are you no longer counted as one of the unemployed? How can the government accurately count the unemployed if you drop off the list of the unemployed once you benefits expire. I know a great deal of individuals in my same situation. By my count of those I know personally to be unemployed a good sixty percent of them no longer have unemployment benefits. I would say the number of unemployed Californians is a great deal higher than is reported by the EDD as they only count those that are still receiving benefits. I would say if the EDD sent out questionnaires to all those that ran out of benefits over the last two or three years they would find out a majority of them are still unemployed. Hopefully something can be done about that as well.
Kevin, Canyon Country

Thanks for your speech yesterday for unemployment extension. As a college educated woman who has worked for 30+ years and raised 3 kids I wanted to hear someone tell the floor we are not all trying to beat the system. Or get a free ride. I lost my job 6 months ago (10 yrs with company - 6 yrs previous this same company who was my client before they recruited me). Suddenly after 16 yrs I was unemployable at a Fortune 100 company. I have applied for many jobs in my field (marketing/advertising with 30+ yrs) i the last 6 months. Other then 1 phone interview, I get the "Thanks - we received your resume" note (about 33% ). Unfortuneatley - more frequently no response. I hope this measure is approved. I just want a chance to be a part of the working group for America. I'm looking for the basics for getting a hand up -- not a hand out.
Sibyl, Livermore

I am one of the unemployed and my unemployment benefits have helped me stay afloat. I thank you for caring about the millions of unemployed. What is crucial is training and providing jobs, especially for older workers who cannot live on Social Security. There has to be a way to utilize the experience and know-how of all our citizens. Yes, the economy is thriving, but it is driven by those who are either savvy in the technology sector or those in finance and real estate. More training and more job creation are crucial. The unemployment benefits help, but real help is opening the door for more jobs. Thank you,
JoAnna, San Francisco

Thank you so much for advocating for the people whom are so dependant on the unemployment insurance monies. As a student who graduated after 7 hard years investing an American higher Education to live the American dream was very shocked upon gradution to find how the world outside the school room had changed so drastically with the shortage of good paying jobs jobs that shrank over night... A very tough job market to gain full-time employemt. I have made every effort by moving three states in order to have F/T employment. Note, as an immigrant with high work ethics and standards I had never asked for U/E benifits in 21 years and so truely vouch for those currentlty needing them. As a studen, I worked three jobs and attended f/t education, and sorry to say, I had worked for a cooperation who wages were so poor that when I got fired there was no U/E benifits because I recieved the state minumum wage of $8.00 an hour. After the fact and a kind judge who awarded my first quarter U/E benifits. Sadley to say after the fact, I learned one has to earn $9.39 an hour in order to meet the requrements. After much homelesness, experiencing inmates who worked in these awful places what to do I took what ever job I could to pull myself out of this bad situation I had never ever thought as an immigrant i would have to endure and ontop of the experince the Cooperation Goodwill Ind do not treat their disabled employees very well or fairly nor are they interested in us becasue their greed for monies.
My request to that you ensure those who work the low end jobs get a livable wage in the East Bay area, to ensure that one has a saftey net, that is the basics, a roof over your head and a little monies to buy the bare essentials. Note, Some of us do not have families not do we have anyone to assist us in a time of dire need and the streets of Oakland is not a place for any woman to live due to the nature of the city. thank you for taking the time to read my request. God bless you and keep advocating for the people whom depend on you in your community and state.
Catherine, Berkeley

I am an unemployed 59 yr women. I was a outside sales rep for a custom sign manufacturing company with over 20 years of experience in the Sacramento area of California. Manufacturing in California has become expensive, trying to compete with companies out of state and with China made it impossible for the company I worked for to be competitive. Therefore, cutting back it sales staff. I have been trying to find a job for almost 2 years. Although, I have been getting unemployment I really want a job! I don't understand why the government has not implemented a program where they match people on unemployment previous skills to job openings with the State, and Federal government agencies, as well as the private sector, try to get them interviews so they are hired first and off unemployment. Prior to Obamacare being introduced I saw that the Federal Government was looking to hire a large number of "Insurance Navigators" when I ask one of the resource affiliates at "EASTBAY works" they had no idea what I was talking about and told me to go the Federal Government website. I have applied for hundreds of jobs online and I only have had one interview request. I just want to go back to work!
Yvonne, Danville

I doubt you will post my response on Sen. Boxer's website, but here goes...... A JOB is FAR Superior to extended unemployment benefits. What specific things are being done to bring back Jobs? Living wages are required and no more invitations for freely outsourcing or worse yet throwing away opportunities for keeping jobs in the states. Please DO NOT allow a Fast Track of the TransPacificPartnership to the executive branch. Please do not support that trade  agreement. NAFTA has been a bad deal for middle and lower class citizens of the US. Unemployment extensions are not the solution and can not be given indefinitely. The situation of why there are insufficient jobs is far more complex and has many more reasons than the convenient ones often used… I hope your office is involved in the study of impacts NAFTA has had on the middle class and more importantly the lower classes of Americans. Those who could afford to buy cheap stuff have benefited by getting to buy more cheap stuff. Those who can barely put a roof over their heads or feed their kids have suffered. Until you have linked NAFTA to where these jobs have gone and where the California State re-employment opportunities will come from, simply granting more unemployment extensions is a betrayal of the responsibility of your office to protect the future of all Americans.
Elen, Fremont

I've been unemployed 9 months, have applied to dozens of jobs in that time, gotten a few interviews, but have yet to get a job out of it. I'm only surviving due to my boyfriend letting me live with him and my parents paying for my food. My savings are getting eaten up by my student loans and I will have to default on them in a few months if no one is going to hire me. How about creating more jobs so people can actually get hired? I need a job here! Giving the unemployed money is kind and all, but don't give them (us, if I were getting any) too much, as people don't grow out of a dependent lifestyle, or maybe you should, so they'll get comfy and stop applying for jobs, creating less competition for me, and then I might land a job. I just need a job.
Katherine, South San Francisco

I wish you had not signed onto this bill. Statistics show that the longer you extend benefits, the longer people stay on them. You are helping perpetuate government dependency. We should be enjoying a robust economy by now, but people are being restrained by the very government that is trying to help.
Patrick, Val Verde

In 2-3 weeks my unemployment will be stopped. I am in my early 60s and I don't know how I am going to survive without any income. Please Ms. Senator represent me as a person whose voice is not taken into consideration.
Tagouhi, Pasadena

Please be effective in establishing jobless benefits again for the long term unemployed. I personally thought it was completely wrong when they were stopped. I was most angered by a government that will give our country's money to the wealthy bankers and investors - i.e. bailing out banks and then allowing the banks to pay huge bonuses to senior staff (when those folks were major contributors to the cause of the financial meltdown). Yet, we can't help out the working victims of this greed who have lost their jobs. It was incredible the injustice of it! It makes me embarrassed to be an American. Please fix this.
Elisabeth, Capitola

I am writing to request that you continue to find a solution with the republicans on unemployment benefits. My benefits will expire in 4 weeks and I have been on 4 interviews, but none have chosen me. I am getting very depressed and anxious, especially as we have a new child. I WANT to work, but the only jobs out there are for 10 an hour and its impossible to live on that here in California. If you need to make a deal please do. I am uncertain of my future without an extension.
David, San Diego

Firstly, let me just say that when I am deeply concerned about any situation, I remember that you are my senator. And then I laugh, and say "Boxer's got it." I'm very fortunate to live in a state where most of my neighbors in California feel the same way politically. Thank you for keeping up the fight for long term unemployment. Aside from the fact that it's the right thing to do for human beings, the politicians that think there is any way cutting off unemployment works out well for anyone are so adrift of any manner of rational thought that I actually pity them. I am a college educated, hard working person that has faced an enormous amount of hardship in the past 8 years. I will struggle and I will continue to, and I am grateful to live in this amazing nation where I can, and will, triumph. Somehow. Cutting off the lifeline of 1.3 MILLION people is absolutely insane… If the funds get cut off to these 1.3 million people, a lot of things will happen, and I'm certain that you have far more qualified experts informing you of this. But it will choke this economy just when it might be coming back. And that is a scenario that I don't think anyone is prepared for.
Chesney, Long Beach

Thank you for your speech. I literally cannot pay next month's mortgage without my unemployment compensation. I am, undoubtedly one of thousands in that predicament and there goes the housing market, my credit and the vicious cycle starts again. In any public assistance program there are going to be those who take advantage, just like the corporations dodging taxes........but most people are honest hard working people looking for a job. I don't understand how the Republicans keep holding any bill that you want passed ransom for some other spending cut. I hope it goes through. But thanks for fighting for us.
Janet, Los Angeles

Thank you for your support and voice. You have no idea how happy I was to learn of your support. We the baby boomers have been hit the hardest during this great recession time. Many of my friends and colleagues have been unemployed for two to three years. We are educated and talented, we have served our employers and our country well. For the first time, since 1967, I am unemployed. If granted... this extension will give me hope and assurance that my country still cares about me. For many years my tax dollars went abroad, to help others. Now I need help. God Bless you. God Bless America!
Margaret, La Puente

Sending YOU many thanks for the great job you are doing in speaking up about the importance of extending unemployment benefits at this crucial time in our country. There is NO reason for anybody in the United States of America to go without the essentials of life! Keeping families together, with those essentials, will only benefit the entire country.
Janice, Santa Rosa

I appreciate your stance and positive support encouraging your fellow Congresspeople to vote for and support extending the jobless benefits for those 1.2 million Americans, such as myself, that are unemployed. I am recently unemployed (since mid-October 2013), and am fortunate that my California's UI doesn't expire until October 2014; I have high hopes that I will become employed well before then. Job-shopping is not as easy as it may have once been, especially since younger, recent college graduates have a better chance at IT/IA jobs than older persons with experience. Some of that is due to corporations hiring younger persons at lower wages. As an American Veteran (21 years, retired 2003), I applaud that many companies are excited to hire Veterans, but I have found during my 3-month job search, that most companies strongly endorse, consider and practice interviewing a Veteran but not hiring. I feel in part, this may be because of the capitalist nature of corporate America which is fully supported by other parties within our Legislative branch of government. Jobless people are not lazy and if I had to, I would not be able to live on my $450 (before taxes) weekly UI allowance. I own a home, pay my mortgage and all the other bills, including monthly health insurance, that my fellow jobless Americans have to pay. For anyone, any person in the Congress to suggest that jobless people are lazy and are willing to live off the government dole, goes to show how out-of-touch our Congresspersons really are with the reality of this country's fiscal crisis. Again, I whole-heartedly applaud you for supporting an extension of the jobless benefits for our fellow unemployed Americans. Keep on truckin'. We need more Congresspersons like you to keep this country on solid ground.
Cynthea, Richmond

I just want to say thank you. I lost my job last year after 27 years of service. This is the first time since I was 16 that I am not working. I am 51. My first time collecting unemployment. I received a WIA grant, and just started my school retraining course in December(15 weeks of school). I did not know there was any Federal grants for retraining available until I went to a mandatory meeting at my local EDD office 6 months later. As soon as the money was available, I applied. Because of the Goverment shut down everything was delayed. My unemployment ended in December. I was sent a letter from EDD stating that because I had not filed for retraining within 17 weeks of my original unemployment claim, I was not eligible for an extension. I just wanted to tell you this. Because I believe if more people were aware that there is money available for them to get retrained in a different field they would not wait to take advantage of it! It just seems wrong to be in a Federally funded retraining program, but not have any help economically while I am enrolled in the program. Don't get me wrong I am excited to be in school, and thankful for the help. I would not of been able to pay for school on my own. Thank you for not forgetting that there are still people struggling in your home state of California.
Elvia, Santa Cruz

Thank you for being sensible and standing up for our fellow citizens who need a helping hand.
I had a tenant who lost his job after 20 years with AAA insurance company. Everyone said I should evict him. I said what will happen to him. I worked with him through his troubled time until he gained employment. He was a good paying tenant up until he lost his job and with me for five years. The thing to remember is that his unemployment benefits helped me too! He was able to pay his rent. Thank you for fighting for us.
Linda, Danville

Thank you for reaching out, and also for standing up to secure extensions for unemployment by the Federal Government. My question to you is...why did you not do this in November or December? OR Why did so few if any not stand up to help the Americans you represent.  I am embarrassed by the unwillingness of the current Senate and Congress to work as hard as the people they represent to get issues passed, vote on bills, and reach across the aisle beyond party lines to build, or in our current predicament re-build America. Now, like many I speak with each day, I am considering changing my political affiliation to Independent, and vote for the person who seems to have a genuine interest in America, and not on their political career. Unfortunately, I was one of those people caught up in the recession. I was in high tech for over 20 years, and when the recession began I got stuck in one of the "spreadsheet layoffs" (take everyone over 50 and use the At Will employment law to start with them because they make the most.) I have been under and unemployed eve since. Once making $165,000 a year I was forced to try and get by on unemployment of $475 a week. Trust me, all it does is delay the inevitable. We lost our home, credit, retirement savings and even now are still having a hard time keeping even in California making about $65,000 with a family of 3. BUT without that unemployment extension I once got, we would have lost it all much sooner. Perhaps that is better, a quick death instead of a slow one.
So, I just wanted you to know I appreciate all you have done in the past, and my hope is you can persuade your fellow Senators and friends in Congress to just get to work. That is all we ask, and I believe as American Taxpayers, what we deserve.
Mike, Canoga Park

Thank you for pushing the issue we need the unemployment benefits extended. I worked for AT&T for 29 years and I was forced to retire. They closed the office I was working in. I was surprise to find out that after 29 years of working I was only entitled to the last two years of employment for unemployment benefits. Since 2010 I have gone back to school for IT Security and received my A+, Network+ and Security+ certification from CompTia. I haven’t found any stable long term work. Most of the jobs I’m seeking are looking for more certifications and 2 to 5 years experience; which I don?t have. The jobs I’ve gotten are contract work lasting from 1 day to 1 month. I been living off my credit cards and they are nearly max out. I know my story is just like a million others I just wanted to share with you what my family and I’m are faced with.
Burma, Pasadena

As a former unemployed citizen of California I understand the needs of those in similar positions. During my years of running a business I am also familiar with certain excessive red tape that I had to negotiate to keep people in my employee before I finally had to close down my business. In addition to aiding those in dire need there must be a greater emphasis on government (federal, state and local) not putting undue burdens in the way of businesses creating jobs.
Please continue to work for the unemployed as well as those who do the employment.
Kevin, Lancaster

Thank you for standing up for Americans who are of the long term unemployed. I was unemployed for 9 months in 2013 and while I am working, it as a temp employee. I'm so thankful but had to take a position far from home and at less pay...but I'm employed.
Please keep fighting against the Republicants and those who do not empathize with our plight. Also, while I get balancing the budget I don't see how this should be held hostage to that strategy.
Robert, Palmdale

Thank you for realizing that not all of the unemployed are just sitting back and waiting for their unemployment checks. A few days ago I applied for a secretarial position and I was told that there were 200 applicants. I have been out of work since July and look diligently every day for hours on line and in the newspapers. Congress should not try to balance the budget on the backs of the unemployed like me. Shameful.
Marie, Glendale

Thank you for your e-mail, dated January 7th, which describes the Senate speech you made to extend federal jobless benefits. Your e-mail does a good job of summing up the paralyzing fear California's unemployed are now feeling, myself included. This is just the latest in a long line of fears I've experienced since I first lost my job due to circumstances I was unable to control. The loss of jobless benefits, with very little warning, just adds an additional insult to my injuries! Additionally, this new loss has also contributed to my losing further hope of getting back on my feet in the New Year. Thank you for speaking on behalf of the unemployed and their families, as it seems very wrong for some lawmakers in Washington D.C. to want to use suffering individuals as "bargaining chips" in a game for showcasing political clout. The unemployed ARE REAL PEOPLE, and, as such, we have human feelings including: fear, isolation, and even shame (to be at this place life). To know that there are individuals and leaders who care to speak on our behalf, at a difficult time of our lives, does, indeed, make a difference. Thank you for your efforts.
Erika, Woodland Hills

Thank you for speaking on behalf of rose of us in desperate need. Having been unemployed for a year and a half I am one who is at my wits end. I have lost my place of residence and am now relying on family for assistance. The unemployment program as a whole is terribly in need of reconstruction. A system built to help, is and has, failed so very many of us. Anything you can do to help those of us in need would be greatly appreciated.
Deneen, Long Beach

I am a 54 year old single woman, making 1/2 of what I was earning 10 years ago, when the company I had worked for for 23 years went out of business. Rather than relying on unemployment benefits and passing over job opportunities that I was "overqualified" for, I was willing to take on two minimum wage jobs to support myself. There are jobs out there, if people are willing to do them, instead of looking down their noses at them as being jobs that are beneath them. I feel that if any group deserves assistance, it is those who are WORKING low paying jobs, NOT those who are waiting for their "dream job" to drop in their laps.
Laurie, Monrovia

Let's do the right thing and kept a income in our unemployed person life. Some of these people are the lifeline for their family. This income help takes care of children and elderly families by providing food, keeping the utlities on, transportion to look for employment and keeps the crime rate down. Do we just let them suffer silently after they help built our country and cities!!!!
Other, Gardena

Bless you, Senator Boxer, for fighting for everyone. There are more jobless people out there than the numbers reflect. And, there are many more of us who gratefully took jobs with much smaller salaries to survive. There is a new working poor in America. But working poor is a jobless person's dream. My heart aches for those who suffer coping with the agonizing stress and fear of keeping a roof over their heads. Thank you, Senator Boxer for fighting for the REAL people and the REAL issues. Grateful for your leadership.
Terri, Burbank

Thank you for expending the energy to help those in need with extended federal benefits. I feel for the people you used as examples in your speech as I too have had extremely hard times in the last five years. Being self employed for twenty years my statistic is never seen but I want you to know that I spent ALL of my life's savings trying to keep afloat since 2008 and I still almost lost my home, had to declare bankruptcy and even though it only took me a year to find employment I am still earning a fraction of my former wages which makes it unbelievably difficult to pull yourself out of the hole. I know people get frustrated with those who can't seem to find employment in six months or less but I don't believe they would fare any better faced with the same circumstances. And for these opposing legislators who will never have to face the idea of giving up your medical insurance or your home, never be without a pension or never have to face foreclosure, to tell the poor lady who is trying to keep her two young children warm, after serving her country no less that she doesn't deserve a lousy $300 or $400 hundred dollars a week is absolutely shameful. Lord knows if we eliminated just one of their salaries and pensions and perks it would fund dozens if not hundreds of needy families. Its just shameful. Thank you for doing your part. Now let's get something done, not just talked about it.
Jolie, Pacifica

I totally agree that we needed to extend the unemployment benefits. However, it is my belief that the entire Senate has missed the point. I am still seeing jobs leave the U.S. especially manufacturing jobs and this concerns me. If we had more jobs we would not need to extend unemployment benefits. What about these companies who are closing down their plants and either outsourcing their labor or opening plants in other countries. These companies are selling us out. They should have to pay a tarrif or a tax on the items when they come back into the U.S. and this money should go to help with unemployment and retraining. Just yesterday I was in Modesto and a man was removing equipment from a business. I asked him what he was doing. He said I am from the UK and I am moving this business to the UK. I don't even know the name of the business it probably only employed 5 people; but it is all adding up. I see more people on the streets asking for money than ever before. We have to do more and we need to find ways to do more without increasing the budget. Just think of the votes you would get if you followed up on the unemployment benefit increase with this. No one can argue it. Well I am sure somebody in the Senate would but this is a fight that I feel would benefit you greatly.
Gerald, Crockett

Thank you, Senator Boxer, for speaking out in support of continued unemployment benefits.
Please continue to fight for those benefits. It is the least we can do for those of us who are struggling so hard just to survive. I say this as a self-employed person who does not have access to such benefits even then my income disappears. But I know those benefits are critical to so many people.
Eve, Tujunga

I support and applaud your efforts to get unemployment benefits extended for millions of Americans. After my unemployment benefits ran out in January of 2013, it took an additional nine months of applying, interviewing, and proving my skills to prospective employers for me to land a job. With my own resources tapped out, I had to go to my retired parents and my younger brother to borrow money to keep from losing my home and everything in it. Another 3-6 months of benefits wouldn't have completely prevented that, but it surely would have lessened the burden they've had to help me shoulder.
Kevin, Palmdale

No way, unemployment is meant to be temporary, not a new welfare program. There are many people who simply take unemployment and work for cash. More Nanny state. Why not create jobs? No you would rather make Central Valley a desert. As we who earn money leave the stater, CA will become the welfare state thanks to you and your colleagues, the golden state is turning to tin before my eyes, and I was born and reprised here. I dare you to post
Kenneth, Brentwood

Suggestion to Democrats fighting for the extension of unemployment benefits. The mainline GOP now wants the extended benefits to be paid for by cutting spending elsewhere. Why don't you DEMOCRATS ask the GOP about the unpaid Iraq War and the unpaid Bush RX program - the HYPROCRITS. Just keep pounding them on these two unpaid spending issues. Unemployment benefit extension is pocket change compared to Iraq and RX.
The extreme right GOP like Senator Rand Paul wants to force the unemployed to work by denying them the benefits; assuming them to be lazy and not wanting to work.
Rogelio, Montobello

I want to thank you for your efforts to extend the unemployment benefits. There are many people, who like my husband in his mid 50's has had a very difficult time finding work. He was laid off from Chase bank after 15 years in Dec 2008. Since then he has had two jobs and neither have stuck. It's not that most people are lazy. It's that there aren't many jobs available. When you're our age it's also very challenging. Thank you again....
Susan, Van Nuys

It is for me a great pleasure hear that there is someone that keeps in mind the people forgotten because, from experience, when you do not have a job and have no money, it seems that you don't count. Please keep fighting for the unemployed. Thanks.
Carlos, Pico Rivera

Do you realize that a great number of "unemployed" have not had benefits in years? I have not had any type of government or state assistance since December of 2010! If it were not for family I'd be on the streets. Do I get counted as unemployed? No of course I don't since I no longer qualify for an unemployment check. Do you see a huge problem here? I do. There are hundreds of people in the same "boat" as me, yet nothing is done to help us. I've job searched on-line and in person (on foot) since I don't drive, and for 6 years have only gotten 8 interviews. We need more jobs (non-computer) here as well as monetary support!
Olivia, Pleasant Hill

Dear Senator, my friend sent me your passionate words regarding the extension of unemployment benefits. I agree that under the circumstances of the current jobless recovery the benefits should be extended. However, I would love to see you and your fellow Democrats do something to make the United States more competitive so business have incentive to hire instead of focusing on expanding the welfare state and dependency on the government. How about tort reform, tax reform and regulatory reform? Let's focus on the job creators for a change and help them expand their business instead of burdening them with new regulations. How about working with business in a public private partnership to create jobs. US corporations have trillions of dollars parked overseas. Let them bring it home tax free if they agree to hire or build plants or assist with job training. Government isn't always the answer - think outside the box to create jobs - that's what we pay you for.
Joel, Northridge

I am grateful to you for joining your constituents in an effort to extend unemployment benefits to the longer term unemployed. Many are older workers, recent graduates and blue-collar workers all of whom depend on this lifeline. California still has a long way to go to full economic recovery. Thousands of Californians have exhausted all unemployment benefits while many families are "underemployed" barely making ends meet.
Christine, San Mateo

If you are going to continue to spend billions of dollars of taxpayer money on long-term unemployment benefits, then AT LEAST ask something in return. Why not ask those people to perform some hours of community service, before they can qualify? The long-term unemployed have time for this - they would be working if they could (so they have that time), and nobody who has been unemployed for six months is spending 40 hours a week looking for work. They have time. As a compassionate conservative, I would be much more likely to support something like this -- that way I know that the really lazy people who just aren't motivated to work, are more likely to drop off the roles -- or at least perform some service in exchange for their monthly check. And I do want to help those who really need it. It's just that in my personal experience, many of the folks I have encountered who are on unemployment are absolutely not interested in working until they have to. And it absolutely infuriates me that the government is using my tax dollars to support them.
Randy. Long Beach

Rather than continuing to pay people to not work, how about adding real jobs to the economy. And if not real jobs, how about supplementing the high cost of government employees, with part-time employment of those in need of jobs... street cleaning, answering phones, filling pot holes, patrolling the streets. Cities are begging for more patrol officers, while their trained officers are filling out paperwork. Make the unemployed earn their keep. Unemployment benefits=increased taxes. Not good. Unemployment benefits should not be a long-term option. We need real jobs. Work with both sides to find real solutions
You asked, you get an answer from a constituent.
Paul, Oakland

Thank you for addressing a very dire problem. Five years ago I was unemployed for twenty months after being laid off. I truly know the feeling of trying to find work with zero prospects. I was extremely grateful for the unemployment checks I received. I makes me angry when I hear the nonsense about people not wanting to work; and therefore we should cut their benefits to cure their "laziness"! I know there are people out there hanging on by their fingernails or worse; and it just seems cruel and extremely hypocritical for their benefits to be cut by some members of Congress who have no qualms about receiving federal money for some very questionable reasons; such as through the Farm Bill. Thank you for informing me of your speech. I fully agree with you.
Michael, Santa Cruz

I'm tired of supporting people who are too lazy to get out and find work. I'm not talking about those who are phisically disabled but the ones that wont do work that they feel is beneith there qualifications. I have served in the military reserve for 23 years while holding down a fulltime civilian job and getting a college education at the same time. After retiring from that job and the military I was able to find another job that payed less than I was earning before. There are jobs out there if you look for them.
Gerald, Diamond Bar

Most Americans don't want more unemployment benefits and the debt they are piling up, what we want are more jobs.
Mark, San Jose

Thank you Senator Boxer for standing up for the long term unemployed. I am not personally in that situation, but I believe it is important to continue helping the people who are.
Mark, Los Angeles

many, many Kudos to you for fighting for these people. Thanks
Brenda, Los Angeles

Do not extend unemployment benefits. Most people I know who have received this benefit abuse it by "taking a break" or saying it's "my turn" to get something. They are waiting for the perfect job to come to them, rather than getting any job or jobs to support themselves. Too many are feeling entitled in this great country which will be our demise. Our Federal budget CANNOT handle additional expenditures. As a matter of fact, STOP spending altogether now please.
Feel free to save taxpayer money by not responding to this email. I would just appreciate that you listen.
Susan, Walnut Creek

Thank you for supporting this cause! I feel that unless you have been one of the ones who lost a job or lost a home or have young adult children back living with you, or all the above, you cannot relate to the need for this help. Not after the past 6 years of demise of our economy, both nationally and locally. I personally have never 'NOT' gotten a job since I was 18. I am now 64. I personally, always upheld excellent credit references (769 was my score). Before I lost my home in June 2009. There was no work in this town for a typist for 2+ years! (And I type 95+ words a minute) I am also licensed as a Realtor since 2006. I have numerous admin skills but nothing could save me after depleting my savings to hold onto our home for my daughter and I. No pension left. No stocks left. Nothing. I Started from scratch at 60 years old when I was 'beyond lucky' to get a job as a TC in a very small local company here because a friend referred me. I would work 2 jobs thereafter 60 hours a week in Real Estate. I made it through, just keeping my chin above water month to month. What's the issue here? Population so large vs. so little jobs? Plus where are all the 'entry level jobs' ? the 'clerical jobs'? some labor jobs ? all gone! Tech is here and if you are not TECH savvy, or live in Silicon Valley, then forget it I suppose. Basic jobs are gone or there are 200+ apply for 1 position still. (?)  If you have a college degree that doesn't guarantee job. If you have a H.S. Diploma and some college, you still can't get a basic job anywhere here. Not everyone has super brain skills or trained skills to just step into a job
out there to survive and begin to make it on their own. Or if they are an adult and have a family, a home still in place, then they lose their jobs, they too are sitting ducks to being unemployed for at least a year or 2! Nothing has changed that much since the crash July 2007.  I have made it through and I still struggle to get by month to month. But I LOVE what I do as a 100% Commissioned Realtor. I am not rockin n rolling by any means. I just got on Medi-CAL 1st time ever because I didn't net enough income to qualify for a Covered Ca metal plan apparently. But I will make it and I'm lucky I only need 10 months of assistance till I'm on Medicaid I suppose.
My concern is watching my soon to be 28 year old daughter, who has lived with me through all this, unable to find her path still or secure a better job. It's just her and I. She was in Retail on her feet all day for 6 years at CVS, she had to let go of her job due to illness, and back pains. She had finished 3 years at our JC completing classes leading to a certificate in Hospitality. However, subsequently, that now is not going to happen. Her next plan is to secure a 'simple desk job'. Why can't she get one? She can type, data entry, file, run errands, think, show up every day, is responsible, clean cut knows her way around a computer, but it just "ISN'T LIKE IT WAS" when I was her age, younger or older. I knew I could get always get a job and I always did till the crash. There is a problem still in our country! It's been since August for my daughter unemployed, and nothing has come her way since. She works 5 to 7 websites daily and they all say "do NOT come in person" NO Solicitation! So much for that idea. I worry about our youth making it in this world and growing with a company. Most companies I hear are going to let off Full Time employees because they don't want to now pay for their medical insurance and so Part-Time openings may come. But where does that leave our country's "WANTING WORKERS"? Less income to no income, and no unemployment benefits to depend on once it runs out, if they get on it for 6 months time. My daughter just got on un-employment after 3 months waiting, and an appeal. But when another 3 months goes by, then what if no work has come? It's frightening for me to watch her as her mother. Our mothers (our generation) never really had to worry about US making it in the world. With or without degrees. We never moved back home. We didn't make tons of money but enough to pay rent, buy cars, take a trip, buy our own clothes, go to parties and buy our own drinks, take a class, go skiing, figure out LIFE on our own through good times and some bad. You name it. Young adults today are being robbed of 'independence' and 'a quality of life' - and also the ability to be on their own and grow on their own - separate of their parents (homes). Everyone needs help - but we are not out of the woods by far yet across the board!! Thank you for continuing benefits to those in need.
Kathy, Santa Rosa

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Californians respond to my message on Giving Hope to HIV Patients in Need of Transplants:

Thank you to the President, you and your colleagues for getting this bill passed through. I had felt as though we had been forgotten with all of the current events going on. I am myself HIV positive ESRD patient and on an active waiting list through UCLA. I will continue to pray that research will start soon and transplants as well.
Robert, Los Angeles

Hopefully this will become the law of the land. It is long overdue. A friend died of kidney failure while being treated for HIV. His life might have been saved had he received a kidney. Thank you for your efforts.
Patton, William, Pomona

I just want to thank you for co-writing the HOPE Act. As an HIV+ person, this means a lot!
Chris, San Francisco

I am a 59 year old, male with lupus and AIDS. Until this year I couldn't even get Long Term Care coverage. I thank you from the bottom of my heart for what you're doing.
Vincent, Long Beach

Thank you so much for writing the HOPE Act and getting it passed into law. I had not realized an outdated law on the subject still existed. I appreciate everything you do on behalf of our state and country.
Glenn, North Hollywood

Heartfelt thanks to you, Senator Boxer, and your Republican colleague, Senator Tom Coburn of Oklahoma, for your wise and caring legislation on HIV transplants. It will bring hope to many, just to know the possibility exists.
Janeane and Ian Moody, Sausalito

I am from Oklahoma and now live in California. I don't agree with Senator Coburn on many issues but on this one I do. I also wanted to express my joy that the two of you signed this HOPE bill. Thanks for all you do and know I am so glad to be your constituent. Tell that "Okie" guy thank you as well.
Jack, San Mateo

The action you have taken is dear to our hearts. More than 40 years ago, I lost my favourite cousin Jack to AIDS. He had been disowned by his father, so I did not know until too late. Only 5 years ago, we lost my husband's brother - a long time AIDS survivor, Bob finally found pain, illness and isolation too hard to bear. My daughter, an ordained UCC pastor, is in a happy same sex marriage. She and her wife are parents of two adorable and brilliant little boys. Many of their friends in the LGBT community have become very dear to us also. In loving memory of Jack and Bob, and in the hope that none of these younger LGBT loved ones will ever need to suffer, we thank you and the president for your action today.
Kate, Poway

Thank you for writing the HOPE ACT and getting it passed into law. This kind of forward thinking legislation is very much needed to bring the benefits of scientific research to those in need.
Bruce, Los Angeles

Thank you Senator Boxer for all your hard work and keeping a voice for HIV positive survivors. The HOPE act will certainly help many people. Please work hard to continue to end the stigma against HIV positive men, women, and children. This disease does not discriminate, people do.
Carlos, Tustin

Thank you for your message about the HOPE Act and congratulations on having it signed into law. A similar and related issue is the ongoing and equally outdated prohibition by the FDA of blood donation by gay men. An excellent article on the status of this ban can be found at HuffPo:   I urge you to take up this issue with the same zeal and enthusiasm with which you ended the organ donation research ban.
Andrew, East Palo Alto

Thank you Senator for your hard work and dedication for people living with HIV. This is a big deal and I am so proud to have people like you fighting for this cause.
Jon, Sacramento

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Californians respond to my message on Giving Hope to Those Living with HIV/AIDS  (6/18/2013):

I was filled with joy and felt goose bumps knowing that you were able in a bi-partisan way to get such a needed act such as the Hope act passed. We as americans need to lead by example and show the world that this great nation respects the dignity and character of each of its citizens. This life saving act will go VERY far to help those in the HIV positive community to live longer lives and in many cases continue to contribute to our society.
Jose, La Mesa

Not sure I understand HIV Positive Donor (rather than HIV Negative Donor) to HIV positive patient but if it saves lives, why would anyone stop it? I do feel the research should be done. Keep up the good work.
Rebecca, Hesperia

A huge thank you for your caring and your action.
Fred, Hacienda Heights

Thank you for your efforts in writing this act and insuring its passage.
Lorna, Thousand Palms

Thanks so much for your work on this and letting me know about it. I really appreciate all you are doing to represent me in the Senate.
Claudia, Los Altos

Thanks for your efforts on behalf of HIV patients needing transplants. And thank you for working with a Republican, proof that it is possible to reach across the aisle in pursuit of doing the right thing. When is the House start acting like reasonable representatives who want to set aside politics enough to do the right thing?
Maureen, San Francisco

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Californians respond to my message on HOPE for HIV-Positive Patients (2/14/2013):

Thank you very much for you efforts to ensure all Americans are treated fairly regarding medical treatment. I am shocked that those with HIV could not get organ donors to save their lives. I can't imagine anyone in our county would have to suffer such devastating discrimination. Keep up the good work.
MarySue, San Diego

Thank you for introducing this important legislation. You are an inspiration.
Harrison, Costa Mesa

Thank you for once again leading the way on helping HIV positive Americans.
William and Michael, San Francisco

Bless your heart for trying to make a difference with organ donation from HIV+ individuals. While I believe that is a step in the right direction, I believe it's not the only, nor most important step. A more prudent and desired direction is functional elimination of HIV within individuals that are infected with HIV. Elimination of HIV from within infected individuals would result in significant reductions in health care costs, productivity and the Country's bottom line. Stanford Medical University has shown promising research in creating genetically-modified T-cells that resist HIV. Funding and guidance for such research is what's needed. Thanks for everything you do!
Michael, San Francisco

Both in my profession and in my private life, I have known persons who might well have benefited from organ donation from others who were HIV positive.
Marion, Oakland

Thank you so much for introducing the HOPE Act (HIV Organ Policy Equity Act). My partner James and I are both HIV+. In the worst-case scenario, he would be in need of a liver transplant. Although this has not been a necessity to date, and hopefully is not going to need to occur in the future, I believe that having the possibility available does indeed inspire hope. It did for him when I told him of your news today. In addition to the organ equity act, I am of the strong belief that HIV+ people ought to be able to donate blood for other HIV+ people, provided that they have a high T-Cell count (above 500), and that their viral load is undetectible. This would add to the ever diminishing demand for blood in surgeries in which HIV+ patients need to take blood from the HIV- supply. In addition, prior to testing positive, I donated blood regularly as a part of my civic responsibility. Since testing positive, I am not able to participate, and that lack of service has had a negative impact on my sense of being a part of. HIV+ men and women are normal, productive, employed, and contributing members to society. Inclusion with precautions to protect the HIV- population from exposure to HIV+ blood sources can be easily obtained. Just as the blood type is indicated on the bag, so too can the presence of HIV, the viral load and T Cell count be noted on the bag. Just some ideas. Thanks again.
Gregory, Long Beach

I agree Strongly that HIV donors should be able to Transplant Organs Since I have had One for Years and it has saved my Life from being tied to a dialysis Machine ... I Know How it feels to Live and three Hours or more the times a week and always being stuck with needles and your family afraid to come in and see you being drained of Blood that goes to a machine and cleaned and then returned to you I was lucky to only have Dialysis for Only One year and a half and Lucky to have a match Living alone from my family they love me yes but do not understand how it hurts to be rejected from the family that you loved then be alone when you need them the most and have to do all this alone...Pleas know that now I have a life now a new life and I enjoy every Moment of it and I Know it will end I would like to know that when my new Kidney fails that there is hope of still Living free... God Bless you and please give us all some hope and please do not turn us away we have had enough hurt already with what we have to go through every day But at the end of the day we are just Human Being with feeling just like you
Woodrow, Berkeley

How much will HOPE federal research cost? What are the unintended financial consequences for this benevolent project? As a tax donor, my priority is the national debt. Getting out from under its burden benefits us all, without preference. It's a case of triage. In military triage it's understood you can't save all. It's a painful decision. I hope you see my point. Please, specifically explain your priorities. Should we not meet our obligation to the nation before special needs groups? Respectfully submitted,
 Laura, Santa Barbara

Bless you Senator Boxer, nice to see science triumph over fear! I am HIV positive, before my diagnosis I was always listed as an organ donor. In my case, I have maintained an undetectable viral lode since 2003, and my T-Cell are always over 1100, my organs would help save many lives, and to be honest, even the experts agree that folks like me may not even be contagious. Another point you should address, gay men and women are turned away at blood drives simply because they are gay. A friend of mine (O+ universal donor), in a 20 year monogamous relationship, was turned away because he was gay, while several frat boys were accepted - they couldn't even name their last partner, but they were straight. Blood is blood. Anyways I wanted to thank you for all your hard work! Sincerely,
Tim, Carlsbad

Your support of the HOPE Act is a prime example of why you will ALWAYS get my vote. Thank you for understanding that we are all in this together and for always acting like a fellow human being. Cheers,
Patrick, Rohnert Park

Thank you! Another terrific reason why I'm so glad you're MY Senator.
Ginny, San Jose

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Filibuster Reform

Californians respond to my message on Breaking through Republican Obstructionism:

Hooray! I heartily support the action you and your colleagues took to finally limit the anti-democratic and absurd use of the filibuster. I for one would look kindly on the complete eradication of the filibuster from Senate rules. I do not approve of any procedure that limits debate, especially one that wastes valuable time.
Carl, San Diego

Thank you and your colleagues for reforming the filibuster rules in the Senate. Republicans have shown that their only goals for our great country is to stop anything "Obama" and we're sick of it. Let's get to work and make government functional again.
Jeff, Windsor

I am in total agreement with you on this subject. The Republican strategy of not allowing any of Obama's programs or appointments to pass is a disservice to the 'American People' that they regularly say that they represent. I believe independents, like myself, see this. The Republicans have proposed no constructive programs of their own. You would have to accept blame if your program did not work as it was supposed to. Easier to pick on someone else's programs and criticize.
Bill, San Diego

It's about time President Obama take a stand that arcs WAY over the heads of these ego-besotted souls, who deserve no more respect than what they show others who wish to get on with governing. Bat them away like flies I say; their behavior invites nothing better. Then, with our humanity and intelligence leading, let's get on with facilitating what, I believe, history will deem one of the most inspired and effective administrations our country has witnessed to date. Obama is simply the best.
Julia, Tehachapi

Thank you for doing all you can to top their childish antics! They are not doing any good by playing such silly games and in the end they are hurting the country. Hopefully even their own party will get disgusted with them as well. Keep up the good work.
Sandra , Garden Grove

Great job on the rules change for the filibuster!
Jeff, San Francisco

I am writing to you today to voice my extreme disappointment in your voting to invoke the "nuclear option" and change the Senate rules to require a simple majority vote to approve judicial appointments. That rule existed so that the two parties are forced to work together to approve appointments. Democrats cried foul when the Republicans considered doing this very thing years ago but now that you are in the majority you decide that it okay? And likening this to "shutting down the government" is disingenuous. It isn't shutting down anything. The Republicans are simply representing their constituency just the same as you. What you have done will result in making the partisanship even worse. Now the majority party can simply run roughshod over the minority without even TRYING to gain 60% or 67% of the votes. What will happen when the Democrats are in the minority? You are a senior Senator, you have been there a long time as a member of the minority and the majority. I expected better from you.
Christopher, Stevenson Ranch

I congratulate you and Senator Reid and fellow Democrats upon the recent change to senate management of the filibuster. The filibuster privilege has been misused by the minority in a manner which seems, not simply obstructive, but, frankly, seditious in their apparent intent to impede the deliberative and dutiful work of the senate in advising and voting upon judicial nominations and executive appointments.
Alan, Carmel

Thank you for standing up to republican obstructionism and pushing for action that helps real people. I would love to hear someone ask the republicans to give up their healthcare and that of their family, when they advocate for young people not to sign up for the ACA, or when Rep. Governors decide not to expand Medicare; despite having millions of their residents without access to care. Please keep fighting for Pres.Obama's agenda: jobs, healthcare, higher minimum wage, climate chane and immigration reform. Forward!
Venise, Fresno

Just received your email and I say, "Excellent!" We need to stop a minority from obstructing the government. And the Republicans are a minority, whether they like it or not. Thanks for standing up to them!
Kathy, Novato

Thank you Senator Boxer for eliminating Republican filibustering of a majority of Judicial nominations! Now it is time to give an up or down vote to all of President Obama's Judicial nominees. Additionally, it is time to push Senator Reid to bring up at least 3 Judicial nominees a week, when feasible, in order to fill the approximately 90+ vacancies to the Federal Judiciary!
Bruce, Stockton

I wanted to thank you and other members of Congress that have decided to meet the “Rule or Ruin” (Rep) party head on and take the necessary steps to move forward. I can not believe the falsehoods coming from some of these legislators, and, I can not believe people are still listening. I am sure you are aware that they believe and practice a ritual that you can create a “truth” if you can say it enough times, and say it to enough people. Please keep up the good work.
Ken, Escondido

Your effort to stop republicans is just one step to silencing a minority for future generations, being that republicans democrats or any other party. You are damaging the fabric of our government and stepping away from our constitution.
Connor, San Diego

I agree with your decision to end filibuster for now. Republicans are acting recklessly and interfering with the Democratic process. Hope we don't regret it, but worth it to get judges appointed. Appoint all >90 judge openings, please!
Lydia, San Diego

Despite Republican threats, I support the change that they themselves made necessary in order to conduct the Senate's business on behalf of our nation. The harsh obstruction of Congress' role and refusal to reasonably negotiate across the aisle and with our President can only be viewed as radical deconstruction of our way of governance with a fair helping of racism. We can do much better than this... and will thanks to your and your Congressional cohorts' efforts to move the advise and consent process forward, along with all other critical matters.
Christopher, Belmont

I only wish this could have been done sooner. There was an unspoken agreement that the need for bipartisan cooperation on major bills was important and that this way of more scholarly debate was good for the country. When the unspoken agreement is treated as if it did not exist, then both parties must treat it as broken. The Republicans broke and the Dems tried to maintain it - onesidedly. The consensus that the filibuster was to be used for the good of reflection was gone. So the filibuster had to go as well.
Kathy, Newhall

I'm SO glad that the Senate changed the filibuster rules! What took so long?
Tatiana, Albany

For months, maybe years, I longed to see you in the thick of battle against Republicans in Congress but I only saw fighting them in connection with issues which, no matter they deserved to be fought, how important they were to certain groups of US residents, did not, in terms of shrillness and front-and-centre publicity in every news media, arouse great emotional intensity among what I believe was a large majority of us. But now, finally, you've thrown your hat in the ring on the side of those who have suffered much at the hands of unscrupulous filibusterers and are fighting for recognition of the rights of the great majority of your countrymen against those who would have us believe that regulating the power of unlimited money resistance is hopeless and un-american. Bear in mind that corporations and individuals became rich only by extracting the riches from the rest of us and that without the rest of us they would be and are nothing. Because they cannot regulate their greed, we must regulate it for them. Because they have amassed so much, they must now share their wealth with those who have made them so rich. A democracy that does not recognise that obligation is no democracy at all. Your leadership is now a freshet of reinvigorating air, leading me to hope that, perhaps some day, America will truly be the land of the free.
Yvon, Sebastopol

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Philippines Typhoon

Californians respond to my message on Helping the Survivors of Typhoon Haiyan:

THANK YOU so much for this message. As I see my fellow Filipinos in pain and suffering, though tears fill my eyes as I read the numerous articles of tragedy and despair, a glimmer of hope and a smile cracks when kindness and solidarity are shared.
Joy, Anaheim

We all want to help the people of the Philippines. I urge you to do two things beyond helping to get aid there as quickly as possible: 1.Get the US to take a stronger stand on climate change. Pacific Ocean temperatures are much warmer than normal which means stronger storms with more rainfall. Combined with higher sea levels, we have a recipe for disasters to continue to occur. 2.Demand to know the text of the TPP now and oppose fast track. We need to rein in the power of multi-national corporations whose greed keeps them from caring about our environment, our health, and human rights.
Leah, Santa Rosa

Thank you for your letter. Amidst the damage and death of this latest typhoon, it is important to focus on the bigger picture of which this latest disaster is only a part: Whether we are talking about Hurricane Sandy, the latest typhoon, or Katrina, we are witnessing the catastrophic effects of global climate change. Therefore, the way to respond to such disasters is not just to send food, medicines, and water to the victims, but to take concrete steps to reduce our carbon emissions. We need your political leadership to bring effective mass transit systems to the LA and San Francisco areas, both of which now have inadequate and uncoordinated components (e.g., buses, trains, trolleys). Otherwise, people will continue to be stuck in their cars, and we will be sowing the seeds of the typhoons and hurricanes (and droughts) of the future.
Jeffrey, San Mateo

If and when I donate money for relief of any disaster, you may rest 100% assured that these funds will go nowhere near Congress or the State Department or indeed any part of the U.S. government. We don't trust you enough for that anymore. We basically don't trust you with ANYTHING. The fact that Democrats are marginally more human than Republicans is NOT a resounding endorsement.
Elaine, Lucerne Valley

Thank you, Madam Senator, for your concern about everyone affected by the Haiyam/Yolanda typhoon in the Philippines. Your response to this disaster truly warms my heart.
I have already given my donation to CBS/Red Cross, and I took my turn at the phone bank conducted in San Francisco by CBS yesterday. As opportunities to help come to my attention, I will continue to try to help. Again, many thanks, and best regards as you proceed with your duties and responsibilities in the U.S. Senate.
Aurora, Oakland

We send our sympathy, but we are tired of always being on the giving end. We should start sending relief only to countries that send to us in times of a disaster here.
Darrel and Caro, Ferndale

Thank you for your message, Senator Boxer, regarding Typhoon Haiyan. As soon as I heard the news I sent a donation to Doctors Without Borders. Your message will remind others that this is the time to give, if there ever was one. Thank you for your excellent representation of the citizens of California, the Nation. and the World. I only hope that the U.S. will be able to do something, significant, to roll back Global Warming. The people of the Philippine Islands are in extreme danger of losing their homeland.
Patrice, Santa Barbara

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Veterans Day

Californians respond to my message on Honoring America's Veterans:

Although we don't always agree, I will always be grateful for your contined support for Veterans and their familys.
John, Nuevo

I have 2 sons that are veterans and a husband that is a 2 Purple Heart veteran of WWII, not to mention his Distinguished Unit Badge, Philippine Liberation Ribbon and Bronze Star among other awards. It is this men and women we need to HONOR. Thank you for taking time out of your busy day to recognize these TRUE American heroes. There are not many left.
Joanne, Palm Springs

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Californians respond to my message on Protecting LGBT Americans from Discrimination in the Workplace:

I just want to thank you for your support of the Employment Non-Discrimination Act. I fully support you on this and am appalled that any American can be fired for being gay or lesbian. I appreciate all your hard work on this issue.
Mark, Mill Valley

I am grateful that you are encouraging equality for LGTBQ employees in the workplace. I have known many people who were qualified, experienced, and of great integrity fired once their orientation was discovered.  As a lesbian and a high school teacher, I often times fear that if I end up in a school that has no understanding of who gay people are and house fear and ignorance within their determinations, I would be at a loss. I am fortunate to currently work in a setting that recognized our humanity and content of character. There tends to be an underlying assumption that is a fallacy-that gay people are not ethical and of great integrity, when in fact, individuals like myself take great pride in our service to the community and our conscientiousness. You are helping to demythologize this fallacy of thinking.
Anna, Arcata

Thank you so much for your honest, eloquent speech today on the E.N.D.A. Most Americans have no idea how virulent this type of discrimination is. As you so simply stated: you treat people as you want to be treated. What a simple concept this is. We are all a part of the fabric of America ~ always have been, always will be. A lot of us in this day and age, just fill safer in coming out even though it can and does still bites us in the end and we are let go for some of the most inaccurate reasons ever told. Hopefully with this bill, we can put a stop to it for good.
I so appreciate your time in getting your peers to realize it is wrong for ANY American to be discriminated against.
Sherry, Ventura

I can't agree with you on this one. Employers should have the right to hire or not hire whomever they wish. They need to hire the best person to fit in with their business. Some businesses would not hire a senior citizen or a very young person because they would not fit with their business model ... not because they are old or young. Some business might want a high energy person others would prefer a more relaxed individual. Some Employer Discrimination is right and proper. We don't need to make laws to the contrary. It is just not right to take away the rights of business owners to hire who they choose.
Kathryn, Simi Valley

Thank you for your support of ENDA. As someone who provides support for gender variant people, this legislation is so important. I deeply appreciate your strong stand against workplace discrimination.
Vivian, Santa Cruz

We deeply appreciate your support of the bill to end employment discrimination for LGBT citizens. Being in California, we do not see this happening to family, friends, and colleagues. But reading horrendous stories from other states is heartbreaking. Thank you.
Margaret, Walnut Creek

Please fight the religious exemptions being added to ENDA. They're just an excuse for people to exclude themselves from following the law!
Whitney, Bakersfield

Thank you for your notice and allowing this feed-back. I am opposed to further legislation to govern social behavior - certainly for the time being. Let individuals in society work they own way through the complexities of diversity. Stop imposing it on people.
Chadd, Berkeley

Thank you for being such a supporter for equal treatment of all families. My family is very happy we have someone like you in the Senate. Keep up the good work!
Katherine, Monterey

Thank you for supporting ENDA! I am very proud to have you as my Senator.
David, Carlsbad

Thanks for standing up for EVERYONE. We are a better, stronger, more integrated state when there is equality. Thanks for fighting for those who are frequently an easy target of hate, bigotry and ignorance.
Lizzie, Costa Mesa

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EPA Carbon Pollution Standards

Californians respond to my message on Reducing Carbon Pollution from Power Plants:

Thank you, Senator, for once again being out in front on reducing greenhouse gas emissions and protecting both publc health and environmental resources.
Gina, Hacienda Heights

Thank you Barbara for supporting the EPA's sensible first steps toward reducing future CO2 pollution. Now the bar is set for American ingenuity to find a solution to carbon sequestration so our coal resources can be used ideally with no pollution but this is a great first step. This only applies to future, un-built coal power plants. Keep up the pressure to find alternatives to the ongoing damage caused by burning fossil fuels.
Richard, San Diego

Please do what ever it takes to control Carbon Pollution as a citizen of U.S. and Long Beach i have your back and will do what ever i have to to help make this happen.
Sandra, Long Beach

It is imperative that all resources be brought to bear regarding this issue. You have only this one planet to exist on.
John, Elk Grove

Please consider a balance between carbon pollution and our high gas prices. It sure cut into senior traveling.
Ype & Judie, San Diego

I am so glad that the first step of many steps is being taken in the fight against harmful air pollution. I am the daughter and wife of asthmatics. As a child I remember the times that my father had to go to the hospital because he couldn't breathe. My father also worked with MUNI to clean up caustic chemicals and worked towards getting the bio-diesel program in place because of his inability to breathe and the heartbreak that was caused to him when he watched his friends get sick and some die because of the caustic chemicals that were being used at the time. My father also received 3 awards from the mayors office for environmental clean-up here in San Francisco. So, I guess the point I'm trying to make is thanks for looking out for the safety and health of the people that support you as well as those that don't.
Phoebe, San Francisco

Thank you for your efforts and dedication on behalf of the environment. This has a huge priority of mine since as a child I watched the destruction of the air in the San Gabriel Valley when orange groves were replaced by freeways. As young as I was, smog broke my heart.
Now the oceans are being destroyed by rising temperatures, mercury, and radiation from Fukushima. Please continue to work to reverse these horrors. I support you fully. Our grandchildren depend on us.
Katharine, Santa Cruz

Thank you for supporting the new legislation to set standards for carbon emissions for power plants. Your keen awareness of climate change impacts and the correlation to carbon pollution is admired and respected. Our children's futures depend on wise and urgent decisions we make now. Your leadership in this arena is of utmost importance.
Rob, Danville

The reason this measure, forcing pollution standards on power plants is supported by me, is due to my long life of observing corporations and others scream "we can't do that" and then go on to do exactly that and improve the system at the same time. Jet engines could not be quieted, cars could not be safer and get better mileage while producing adequate power, homes could not be built more efficiently ... and on and on to nearly infinity. The truth is, that only when pushed, do corporations knuckle down, do the research and discover new ways to accomplish old goals ... Capitalism is the best way to run a country, so long as proper oversight and adequate controls are in place. Do not listen to the screaming "push back" of those who say "we can't ... ", just keep pushing for better solutions. They exist or we will finally heed the need to find alternative energy sources.
David, Rough And Ready

Amen, Sen. Boxer!!! As a Conservative, a "registered" Republican, I have voted for you each time you've run for office...and it's because you -- unlike the right wing idiots -- understand that if we don't clean our air and water, there will be no "future generations." Go, get 'em....
Walt, Roseville

I was very pleased with Obama's steps to limit coal plant emissions. I feel strongly that we cannot continue to put off action any longer. Climate change is here now! I also happened to read about Oakland's Port and how they are working to reduce toxic emissions as well, and having some success. They have a long ways to go, but progress is being made as measured by the particulates in the air. I think we have the science, and technoligical know-how to work seriously on this problem. We just need the political will. California seems to be taking this seriously, but the rest of the country does too.
Carolyn, Belmont

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Californians respond to Senator Boxer on EPA’s New Public Health Standards on Toxic Soot Air Pollution (12/21/2012):

Thank you and the EPA for raising the soot standards across the United States. I see from the map that only 7 counties in the entire U.S. do not meet the new standards and they are all in southern California and Central California right where I live. This is exactly what we need. \\Fine particle pollution can penetrate deep into the lungs and has been linked to a wide range of serious health effects, including premature death, heart attacks, and strokes, as well as acute bronchitis and aggravated asthma among children// This is EXACTLY what I see here from the high number of people suffering from heart problems and COPD.
Gary, Lake Isabella

Its great to know that we are doing a better job at working to maintain better air quality for everybody that is important. On some days here in Los Angeles it is hard to breathe and it really helps to know that the EPA is maintaining better standards to help with this.
Kyle, Santa Monica

The new soot standards are bad and will cost us billions without really cleaning up the air. Please vote against any legislation on these new proposed standards.
Karl, Glendora

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Human Rights in Russia

Californians respond to my message on Russia’s Attack on LGBT Human Rights:

Thank you for your email regarding civil rights in Russia. I am a strong believer that the United States must speak out to encourage countries to protect basic human rights, in which I include sexual orientation. Over 70 countries in the world do not recognize these rights, and need to hear this message. Please continue to send it.
Justus, San Francisco

Wow! We are very impressed that you wrote that letter to Putin about repealing laws and policies that impact LGBT people negatively! Well done! And thank you for speaking up. You are the best! We knew that and you have proven it once again.
Mark and Terri, San Diego

Thank you once again for being such an untiring advocate for human rights and for the oppressed. I was heartened by your wonderfully articulate letter to President Putin about the ceasing repression of LGBTQ people and their voices in Russia.
Kevin, Laguna Beach

Of course I agree with your letter. However, we no longer have the moral right to hold other countries accountable for their violations of human rights when our record is so dismal. We torture, kill, have secret prisons, Gitmo, and we no longer respect the privacy rights of our citizens. With Manning getting 35 years for disclosing our countries criminal acts and Snowden hiding in Russia for the same, you need to focus on our own shameful record.
Wayne, Santa Monica

I think very highly of you and that you're basically well informed and your heart is in the right place. However, I believe you have been misinformed about what Russia's law, restricting LBGT rights, really says. The law, from what I understand, restricts LBGT adults from forcing their views on children. That's what is being distorted in our media.
Thank you for your time,
Gilles, Santa Barbara

I was glad to see you write something opposed to Russia's anti-LGBT law, policy, and culture, but your response is not enough. Please mmediately introduce a bill requiring the United States to pull out of the Sochi Games. The new Russian law is similar to the Nuremberg Laws. We know what those laws led to. In fact, already, Russians carry out anti-LGBT pogroms and other atrocities almost weekly.
Mike, Santa Monica

As the daughter of a Hungarian holocaust survivor and the mother of a gay son, thank you for your letter to the Russian President. Growing up I often heard stories about how the war on jews began in the very early days before WWII and what is happening in Russia today mirrors those events. If we as a society cannot learn from the past we are not only destined to repeat them but should be ashamed that we have not progressed farther.
Jacqueline, Mountain Center

I just read your message that you sent to Russia about their treatment of gay people, and I want to thank you for writing that letter. It makes an impact, and I think that what you wrote was perfect!
Ed, Oakland

Thank you for taking the initiative to set Russian President Putin straight, no pun, on how his treatment of non-straight persons is just plain wrong. We should go further and pull out of the Olympics, and request that all domestic advertisers do the same. Thanks for taking a stand, thanks from a straight husband and wife with a lesbian daughter who has found her happiness and has become a full mensch.
Philip, Laguna Hills

Thank you, Senator Boxer, for urging Vladimir Putin not to legislate against LGBT people. It makes no sense unless he is ingratiating himself with a very conservative segment of the Russian population to bolster his sagging popularity.
Donata, San Francisco

I am very concerned about freedoms in Russia. I am much more pertinently concerned about freedoms at home in the United States, where democracy seems to be eroding rapidly. I hope what I am hearing in the media is incorrect. I hope we are not spying on each other and institutionalizing "security" over liberty and suspending habeas corpus and gutting the Bill of Rights and things like that. The documents about the founding of our country, the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution, are almost entirely about preventing tyranny in our nation. Please do your utmost to protect our freedoms. Please lead us in not yielding to fear and in owning the power that we have as citizens to keep our country free. After that, we can talk about freedom in Russia.
Alan, Berkeley

I am a strong environmentalist and liberal, but I disagree with your direction on this. America needs to not impose our current joy in supporting LGBT desires on other nations. I don't see you making the same push for gay rights in Muslim nations because it just doesn't fit their culture and religious heritage. I'm strongly against this. I request your reconsideration of this stance.
Nathan, Santa Barbara

I had surgery in Bangkok last November. Naturally I am very interested in LGBT rights and I appreciate your support and service to the nation. Some nations have further to go than others, but our own could do much more. It is fact that the majority of people support our rights and it is increasing rapidly. I am very well accepted in our 55+ community so my age group too is "evolving" rapidly. I am much happier now and I wish I could have transitioned when I was younger. It is a biological condition caused by variations of hormonal conditions in the womb prior to birth so surgery should be included in medical coverage. Again, thank you for your continued support of positive change for our society.
Billie Rene, Apple Valley

I am not gay, but I feel that gays and lesbians deserve all the rights of any other people.
Stephanie, Santa Barbara

Thank you for writing to President Putin in support of equality for all, and respect for human diversity.
Jennifer, Fort Bragg

How would you like it if the Russians start sticking their nose into our life stile and views.
There is enough to be done to improve the life of Americans, instead of being a busy body and sticking your nose in to something that the Russians despise. It is their country, their point of view, and their business, not yours/ours.
Joe, Riverside

Maybe we should be pointing out to the IOC that that Russia should not be able to use international stage to promote fascism as the Olympic committee let happen in 1934 in Berlin. after last nights proclamation about banning all protests at the Olympic site, is just an reminder that things are going to be nasty next winter in Sochi. the IOC will not be able to ensure the safety of its athletes and visitors and should serious look at moving them to another venue. I am tired of hearing that the reason for not moving it is about "money" commitments when human dignity and safety are at risk.
Edward, San Francisco

I think you have more important things to do than worry about what Russia is doing in their own country. Trying to impose your own morals on another country is silly.
Chris, Santa Barbara

Thank you for writing a letter to Russian President Putin regarding Russia's laws that are anti LGBT rights. You have always been very supportive of LGBT equality and I continue to appreciate all you have done regarding it.
Lorna, Thousand Palms

Thank you for Always Standing up for what is right. I expect nothing less from you and want you to know how much you are appreciated.
Julie, Laguna Niguel

Thank you for taking a stand for the LGTBQ community in Russia and all who might be participating in the upcoming Olympics. It makes me proud and glad that you are the senator from my state.
Leah, San Jose

Your letter to President Putin is commendable. It is my hope that the athletes representing the United States, and perhaps athletes from other nations, will somehow incorporate the rainbow flag in the opening ceremonies, either as a patch on or a design in their uniforms or as a second flag, below the national flag leading the delegation. As an African American I am hopeful that these Winter Olympics will do for Putin what the Olympics [of 1936] did for the German leader of that time - demonstrate, for much of the world, the vacuity of his thinking.
Kenneth, Oakland

I just wanted to send a quick note to say thank you once again for working to promote human rights not just in our country but around the world. Your continued leadership in pushing for equal rights and justice for the LGBT community is greatly appreicated. I thank God that you are my Senator.
Elizabeth, San Diego

I support your letter to Putin calling for human rights for all people, including LGBT. This is a frightening development in a country which has a history of oppressive dictatorships.
Roberta, Alameda

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Rental Car Safety

Californians respond to my message on Protecting Our Families from Unsafe Rental Cars:

I applaud your effort and thank you. Consumer protection is of prime importance to me and my family. No job creation can allay the detriment of corporate greed of which we seem to need constant vigilance.
Mira, San Diego

I want to Thank you and everyone who voted to pass this important bill, safety of rental car customers...this is a no-brainer! Too think that enterprise ignored the recall; is beyond comprehension and good Common sense. It would not take money to fix it!!!
Mark, Stockton

Thanks Senator for spearheading this new law.  So sad to hear of such a heart breaking loss of those two sisters. All due to either poor management or greed in business practices.
Dennis, Yucaipa

Car rental companies should comply with recall notices. The public trust car companies to provide safe vehicles for people and families. Renting or selling "recalled cars" is similar to putting people into a time bomb.
Linda, Cerritos

For safety of everyone, recalls of unsafe autos should be compulsory.
May, El Cerrito

We have more important issues that need to be addressed in our state:  Stopping government intrusion (ie NSA domestic spying, domestic drones, wasted border funds, lack of modern public transportation, and increased federal intrusion on legalized marijuana in California - these other "safety in rental cars" type issues should not be a priority while the other more important issues are swept under the carpet. For example what use is a safe rental car when the roads are in unsafe and deplorable condition - hundreds of freeway street lights are out making the off ramps unsafe etc. Let's get a grip!
Gregg, La Jolla

Thank you for getting this bill passed through the Senate. It's a shame that two young girls in their prime had to lose their lives so unnecessarily. It was such simple thing that could have been fixed at no expense to Enterprise.
Sandra, Camarillo

Thank you, Senator Boxer! This is a truly excellent bill, and I am hoping that it will succeed in its entirety.
Mike, Pleasant Hill

I received your email of 7/30 about a proposed law protecting us from unsafe rental cars. I am sorry to hear about the tragedy that prompted the bill, but seriously, is this bill one of your top priorities as our senator, that you make it the headline of your newsletter? I can think of a dozen issues that are FAR more important and affect MANY more of your constituents than this bill, and I would much rather receive emails from you telling us what you're doing about these issues. I respectfully urge you to focus your efforts on the much more urgent matters before our country.
Mark, San Ramon

A very wise and necessary piece of legislation!  Unfortunately someone had to die, but future deaths may be prevented.
Samuel, Westminster

It's nice to see that congress is doing something about rental car safety. Really? Is this the only type of law that Congress can pass these days? Aren't there more important things to worry about such as dealing with issues of global climate change, poverty, Wallstreet fraud, the economy, Jobs? Generally, I approve of the job you are doing as my Senator, but I am sick and tired of a "do nothing" Congress that seems only capable of passing a minor law involving rental car safety. I find it offensive and depressing that this is all the good news you can find to share with your constituents.
Chris, North Hollywood

Thank you so much for staying on top of this!!!
Geraldine, San Diego

With all the problems this country has, can't you find something important to work on. How about Immigration, the Economy, Unemployment, trouble in the Far East. Etc.  And all you have to worry about is Rental Cars
Leslie, Burbank

Thank you for pushing this common sense bill.
Michael, Malibu

Thank you for your email. I was not aware that car rentals were on the top of the list of citizen concerns. For some funny reason, I was thinking that the Americans who are losing 20% of their pay due to the sequester might be important, esp. since NO ONE in Congress gave up pay, or perhaps the illegal deals of the Wall Street groups, where no one went to jail, or maybe that illegals get free benefits that citizens can't have, or maybe health care, that is eating up our pay checks... and the list goes on.  The wrong list goes on... if car rental is far more important to you than the other items, I would beg you to return home and walk the streets and talk with people. It is likely no one will bring up car rentals.  I do appreciate all you have done over the years, but the priority list of how to care for the people of this country, is changing in a way that does not seem to serve more than a few.
Lynn, Diamond Springs

Thank you so much for passing this law about rental cars.
Elizabeth, Oakland

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Californians respond to my message on Protecting Consumers from Unsafe Rental Cars (05/09/2013):

My granddaughter & 2 of her friends were injured in a rental car. My granddaughter was severely injured. The accident happened in March of 2012 & she is still being treated for injuries incurred in the accident. This has to stop.
June, Santa Maria

Thank you for all of your hard work and for keeping in contact with your constituents so that we know what work you're doing in Washington, D.C. My heart goes out to the Houck family for the loss of their beautiful girls, but you've honored their memory by trying to prevent tragedies like this from happening again and other families from suffering such a senseless loss. Thank you for introducing legislation on our behalf.
Robin, San Francisco

I have just read about the rental car safety legislation you are helping with, and I wanted to Thank You from my heart for all the hard work that You do (and many more that you have done).
Pavel, Costa Mesa

No one or no family, should have to live such a horrible event in their lives. To lose a child or a parent is hard enough. But, to lose them in such horrible conditions, just because some company wants to make a buck. No Rental Company, No New Car Dealers or Used Car Dealer should get away with this . If the Rental Car Company had any knowledge of this and they continue to rent these cars, may God have Mercy upon their Souls.
Julie, Vista

Thank you Senator Boxer for proposing a bill to protect consumers from car rental agencies that fail to maintain their rental cars. My husband and I often rent cars to go on long trips to spare our car wear and tear. Once again thank you.
Leonor, Los Angeles

I hope you will consider more than just rental cars under safety recall. I rented a car at the San Francisco airport and headed north. We were halfway across the Golden Gate when I see other drivers waving at me. My friend rolled down her window to hear shouting. The tire on the back passenger side had completely shredded. I don't mean went flat, or broke. I mean literally nothing but a few threads of tire was left. Thanks to cooperation from drivers around me, I was able to get into the slow lane and pull off at the first turn I came to after getting across the bridge. The rental company refused to do anything to help us. It took hours using complete stranger's phone, before we finally managed to get someone to agree to come out. The next morning. This was Avis, in case you were wondering. I didn't sue because I didn't need the headache and we did survive with no injuries. But I will never drive an Avis rental again! And likely I'll refuse to be a passenger in one unless I have no choice. There needs to be basic requirements that safety checks be done each and every time a car is returned.
Joan, San Diego

Thank you, Senator Boxer, for working so hard to close the deplorable loophole that has allowed rental car companies to continue to rent out car models under recall. The heartbreaking loss of the 2 innocent, trusting young sisters who, while driving safely, were killed due to mechanical malfunctions in a car of a model under recall they had rented was a tragedy for their families and should never have happened. Their promise is lost to us forever but because of your work, other trusting renters stand a better chance of arriving home safely.
Patricia, Santa Cruz

I just want to thank you for ensuring safety of rental cars. I had not heard of this terrible accident. Thank you for staying informed and actively supporting your constituents.
Lizann Keyes, Santa Cruz

I support your efforts towards enacting legislation regarding rental car recalls.
Susan, Hawthorne

It seems like you could find better things to occupy the Senate's time than this.
Gary, Dinuba

Thank you for sponsoring this important act. Taking positions like this is one of the things that make you a legislator California and the rest of our country can count on.
Holly, Arcata

This is exactly the kind of legislation needed to protect us from the laisez faire business policies so often supported by the Republicans, which all too frequently result in injury and death in the marketplace, workplace, and the environment.
Steve, Long Beach

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Californians respond to my message on Improving Rental Car Safety (09/27/2012):

I truly appreciate your efforts and success on behalf of consumers who rent automobiles from car rental agencies. I feel especially happy about this because of my annual trips to Tennessee, where I rent a car from Enterprise. Knowing that autos subject to recall will no longer be available for rental or purchase is a source of great comfort to me, as I have, in the past, wound up with a Toyota Corolla, only to have lingering questions about the vehicle's safety.
Linda, Fremont

I just wanted to take a minute to say thanks to you for working so hard on behalf of "US" the 47% and for all your efforts on keeping the car rental companies honest.
Ronnie, Duarte

Thank you so much for working on this safety issue for all of us. Your success with the car rental community is much appreciated!
Mary, Rancho Palos Verdes

Thank you, Senator Boxer, for sponsoring this safety feature; I hadn't realized that rental cars were not already checked for company recalls before being rented to the public.
Josephine, San Diego

Our nation is facing numerous difficulties, not the least is the Federal Reserve printing dollars like they are toilet paper (and pretty soon that is exactly what they will be worth, nothing). So you are proud of a new government regulation. Why? Is this a proper function of the Federal Government? Why would this not be addressed sufficiently within the Universal Commercial Code or currently existing laws?
James, Fullerton

Rental Rules
That's a good idea! I never would of thought of it. Safety is the role of government.
Michael, Montclair

Congratulations for getting this common sense legislation passed. It's unbelieveable that companies can ignore recall notices for life threatening defects. Once again corporate profit wins over consumer safety.
Richard, La Mesa

It's nice to know that you are "on the job". Thanks for taking care of this for us. I'm amazed that you knew that this was even a problem!
Paul, Big Bear Lake

Seems so obvious. Guess Enterprise was a little too enterprising with free enterprise.
Timothy, Sacramento

Thank you for helping to make our world safer.
Barbara, Cambria

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BART Labor Negotiations

Californians respond to my message on Averting Another BART Strike:

I applaud your efforts, in reaching an agreement concerning the BART strike. Having been involved in the electrical union for Amtrak Oakland Mechanical Facility, I know first hand the tendencies of some labor disputes. Not to lend preference, to the company because of the salaries involved with BART workers. I tend to relate to the union ideology of better living condition for union workers. Because, union members do enrich the communities in which they belong.
Sergei, Union City

I appreciate the letter that you and Senator Feinstein have written. But I urge you to work with all necessary government personnel from Washington, Sacramento and elsewhere from preventing this from ever happening again. I have live here since 1991 and it seems to happen repeatedly. I grew up in the Boston area where my parents still live and the subway (MBTA) is not nearly so expensive and it goes much farther. Same with the NYC system. Surely there is a way to end the original agreement that BART is required to earn the highest wages in the country. I have a PhD/MA from Berkeley, a BA from Princeton and a Fulbright and I will never earn the average wage of a BART worker. I count myself as a Democrat and sympathetic toward the concerns of the poor/working class. But this is RIDICULOUS. For much of the past years at the University of CA, I didn't earn a raise because of budgets, plus of course I paid a significant part of my healthcare insurance. Are BART workers not aware of the precarious economic situation that the Bay Area and state is in? Unions were originally created to help those that were being truly mistreated. With the BART Workers Union, we are hostages of its power.
Patricia, Albany

Public Transportation should never be held hostage by workers strike. Public transporation needs to be protected by state or federal law. I don't know that my personal opinion regarding the strike is all that important - people are suffering, the economy is suffering and the prices for BART keep going up. They are making A LOT of money and it appears that those of us who use their services are the least important factor in all of this, and who, in my opinion, are violated and severly impacted, by their mismanagement. BART needs to be investigated and overhauled - including their Unions. It would be great if public transportation was placed under government management. At least, we - the people who use and need this service - would not be the hostage.
Denise, Concord

Thank you for taking an interest in the BART Strike. I received an alert this weekend that the BART negotiations had stalemated. Smooth BART operations are critically important to the Bay Area in so many ways. I believe that even though Police, Fire and Nurses are represented by unions they are not allowed to strike in a way that paralyzes their operations and jeopardizes their communities which is exactly what BART strikes do.  I strongly urge you to intervene and force a rule that disallows a total shutdown of BART due to striking workers.
Tiffany, Oakland

Thank you for trying to avert the BART strike. It is very unfortunate that we face a total chaos in few days if the parties cannot reach the agreement. I follow the developments and at this point I am convinced that the BART should be declared an "essential service" and any dispute should be subject to a binding arbitration.  
Max, Walnut Creek

We have missed the communications being sent in the labor issues associated with Bart and all other government employees that are not limited to police and Fire personal. The message is that during the robust economy the government leaders had extra money to give themselves and their fellow workers; today, we the public not pay the inflated salaries and benefits. It is take back time or a leveling off meaning loose a big chunk of disposable income, bigger boats, bigger home, bigger car, bigger vacations, etc. I worked for the local telephone company, they did not get the bucket of cash. The government controlled or limited their bucket of cash. So you know how, so, do it.
Frank, Clayton

I am not a BART employee, related to one, or Union employee or rep. I am currently unemployed but was for 11 years a union represented worker.  I personally feel it is a mistake for Governor Brown to have intervened in this strike. His time to intervene would have been at the first strike. The Union and workers went out on strike, but came back to the negotiating table IN GOOD FAITH. You must know the issues: the employees have been without raises for 4 years, have made concessions during the same time frames, and during the same times BART stewardship has hired management with outrageous pay, provided unheard of benefits (the ability to bank vacation throughout an entire career and take the time at the highest salary, all while being on the payroll and EARNING MORE vacation).
Governor Brown needs to remove himself from the proceedings. The sides have had a much longer than 7 day cooling down period when BART workers came back to negotiations. Management needs to make cuts to MANAGEMENT pay and incentives, and possibly even raise by 5 cents the longer rides. $1 or $2 a month will not over tax the wallets of the riders.
I am fully cognizant that BART employees are decently paid already. As they should be. I am of the mindset that if stores, BART, car dealers or restaurants can set prices, so can Unions - prices of a skilled, well trained labor force. If BART believes they cannot afford the rate, then just like everyone else when prices go up - the belt gets tighter in other areas. My suggestion is to renegotiate the contracts of their upper management as a starting point.
Marc, San Leandro

A balance is necessary. Certainly a wage adjustment including health care expense should be matched to COLA (aka inflation) at about 3% net. The 20% current request from unions is unreasonable. Eventually BART will modernize like Vancouver, BC, Canada and no drivers or kiosk attendants will be necessary.  If this can not be resolved and we have a multi-month shut down then it is time to modernize and eliminate the workers. Sorry, but this is the reality and technology only kicks in when there is clear economic necessitates. The unions in this case are unaware of this danger with too much greed.
Tim, Oakland

Your letter, urging both parties to "settle," dodges the question. Should workers continue to take wage and benefit cuts as part of the "new economic reality?" If so, I guess BART management and the anti-labor hack they hired to negotiate the contract are on the cutting edge of history.
I envision a different future, where working people stand up for each other and themselves, and insist on fair wages to at a minimum keep up with inflation, good benefits, secure retirement and safe working conditions.  Being neutral, in this moment in time, does not cut it. Income inequality is growing in the United States and that does not bode well for our democracy. The question for you, Senator Boxer, is not whether or not a BART strike would be inconvenient. That's a given. I'm on the side of the workers, who, when the increased costs of the proposed benefits are factored in, are being offered a wage cut after four years of a wage freeze. I'm on the side of the workers who want issues of safety on the job addressed. Which side are you on?
Deborah, Richmond

It is difficult to speak honestly about a subject that seriously affects the economic health of the Bay Area to someone who represents us but clearly has no impact on decisions. That an entity could paralyze the entire Bay Area, seriously disrupt lives and cost too much money to quantify, is unbelievable.  Do something, please. California becomes more and more of a laughing stock. And, we deserve it. To be held hostage by "train" operators is just too ridiculous.
Sandra, Danville

You are right, Barbara, but you don't go far enough. These unions should not be allowed to strike! I have written to my California legislators asking them to change this horrible law.
I would appreciate if you could use your considerable influence to stop these annoying strikes which cost $73 million every day in lost productivity and are hazardous to the public, who must congest the roads even more.  Ronald Reagan fired all the air traffic controllers and we could start with a clean slate. I'd like you to front this matter and see that 2,400 greedy union members cannot legally extort over-compensation from a trapped public.
Jim, Hayward

I think the BART workers are being unrealistic. Most private sector workers contribute much more to their pensions and medical, so should BART workers. The amounts currently being contributed have not kept up with the insane rising medical costs. Pension spiking is another big problem. This must stop or the system will go broke. I know many Californians that have lost jobs or businesses that would love to work for BART. I am one of them. After a robbery of my business for which I was not insured (could not afford it with the hit from the recession) I am now finding it hard to make a living in a business I have had for 35 years. Getting a job that pays $15 an hour with help on my insurance premiums would be a blessing.  I can sit in a station "box" and happily answer riders questions or I can wash the cars (much better than is being done now). I can enter data, pick up trash, etc. I cannot fix mechanical or electrical problems but I bet there are plenty of people that can or those workers can get the raise they demand.
Dolores, Pleasant Hill

While on the surface it appears that BART unions are being excessive, they are barely making enough to buy a home in the bay area. I think they should pay into their own pensions, with matching funds coming from the state. All across the nation, first responders, teachers and service personnel are being laid off. Unions must stand their ground for their families. These are the people who help maintain the safety of a 400,000/day commute. These are DOT certified, highly trained workers that should be appreciated and supported. I don't know if the surveys are correct or not but it is said that over $80,000.00 is required to keep a family's head above water in SF alone.
Cleophus, Richmond

There is little incentive for either side to settle this labor dispute. BART comes out ahead because of a strike -- still collects all of its revenues from state and local taxes, and federal aid.
How about legislation that simply says that no transit agency that has a strike shall receive any federal monies during any work stoppage and aid will not resume for 180 days after the end of the strike. That motivates BART.  We also need to motivate the unions involved to be reasonable in their demands. Again no federal funds for a transit agency if new union contracts necessitate management raising fares 10 percent or more to pay salaries and other benefits, again for 180 days after the contract start.  The situation is an outrage.
Earl, Walnut Creek

The bart people have become very greedy and abusive and are just keeping the riding public which pays them with our taxpayers money hostages in these situations. The cooling down period will just end with a 2 month moratorium and then what. Our only voices are you, Dianne Feinstein and our congressman Eric Swalwell.
Victorino, Hayward

Please DO NOT give into there demands. This is pure greed and nothing more. If we do that ALL tax payers will lose even worse the people who ride Bart will pay twice, once when the ride because the ticket price will go up and second when they pay there taxes. If anything we need to pass laws or do what ever it takes to make sure that Unions that provide vital service to the state cannot go on strike like all Police and Fire services.
Richard, Union City

I stand with BART workers.  BART workers have been making concessions since 1979, and continue to make concessions and put offers on the table.  Meanwhile, the BART board seems to be spending more time talking to the papers about how strapped BART is the greed of BART workers, than they are trying to reach an agreement with them. Plus, they spend $400,000 on a "mediator" who happens to be a private transportation contractor, with contracts with BART to provide private bus service, and who is connected with the breaking of public worker union contracts in Wisconsin and Arizona (just a partial list).  If BART is really interested in its workers, why has it hired a union-buster to negotiate with them?  I repeat: I stand with BART workers. And you should, too, Senator.
Martha, San Francisco

BART was originally designed to operate without an engineer at the controls. Station agents confine themselves to a glass cube answering questions while surrounded by automated ticket machines.  Many new college grads would love to have an job offer at anywhere near the salary of a BART employee whose job requires a high school diploma and we would all love to provide our families with medical coverage for $92 a month.  We all understand, especially in California, the relationship between unions, their organizing ability, their campaign contributions and elections results. Even given that, can?t some elected official do something to bring these folks back to reality? When do you say enough is enough and do something to support the 84% of the public that do not belong to these organizations? Perhaps it?s time to end the ability of public service folks to strike and hold the public hostage. Unlike private industry, we the public have no way to respond and the only folks who can are the recipients of the money flow from these same folks.
John, Pleasanton

Thanks for getting involved in settling the BART strike. Public employee unions in critical jobs like transit workers, fire, police, etc. should not be able to strike. They have too much leverage because they can cause incredible inconvenience for so many people. Inevitably, management caves in to stop the pain. Whatever you can do to end the possibility of public union strikes would be appreciated.
Sheridan, Walnut Creek

Enough is enough, the BART board should hold tight on what they are offering and if it is not acceptable to the union then replace all union workers with non union workers. The unions claim they have not received a wage increase in the past three years. Well the cost of health care has increased over 20% in that time period at no additional cost to the workers. They are also some of the highest paid transit workers in the country.  If they want more salary take away there retirement plan,(most privet sector jobs do not have a retirement plan other than a 401K that the employer contributes 3% too if you are lucky.) Charge them more for there medical. How far will you, Senator Finestine,and congressman Miller allow this state to creep closer to the status of the city of Detroit
Allan, Concord

What would it take to pass a state law preventing the BART workers union from striking, like in the transit agencies in major cities in the northeast?  Every four years BART riders must hold their breath and hope for no strike as bargaining usually runs to the last minute. BART has expanded further out of the San Francisco hub allowing commuters an option to driving and families ability to access affordable housing. Ridership suffers as BART workers use the strike threat as leverage in their bargaining and cooling off periods only extend the threat. Freeways are backed up during commutes as 400,000 attempt to get where they're going and the bay area economy suffers with losses in the millions.  The working poor who don't drive and have low wage jobs far away lose their income if not their jobs. BART may use ridership as leverage but 400,000 will vote at the next election!
M, Oakley

i wanted to let my frustration out. this people need to act like professional and not like teenagers that if i don't get what i want i will make a big deal. this issue is not only their employees but most important your customers. is all about the customer and the house which is the employees need to settle their situation at home which means their work. i give my suggestion if they dont resolve this issue get a madiator involve and have this madiator resolve this issue for them from now on. they are not capable to resolve it we dont want to go throu the same situation ever again.
Dina, Bay Point

I strongly feel Bart workers will strike! A (60) day cooling-off period is needed; followed by the POTUS firing all striking Bart employees and ordering retired Bart workers and management to keep Bart running. Begin training NEW Bart employees ASAP and rid Bart of the greedy, non-paying into their pension employees and all those striking on the basis of greed. I've been riding Bart since 1989 and will not ride until this silly strike is no longer looming over the loyal riding public. Bart unions have destroyed any relationship many of us in the Bay Area had at one time. Fire them all like they were "air traffic controllers" the let's move on...
Earl, Oakland

I moved to the East Bay from San Francisco after 40 years living there. I knew BART would keep me connected to friends and family. I visit S.F. at least once a week on BART and always visit stores and restaurants in the City on those trips. If BART is not running a whole lot of $$ will go down the drain - does S.F. deserve that? BART employees get too many benefits compared to private sector where we fund our own benefits for medical and retirement. What kind of management is that?
Linda, Concord

I have been a union member in the private sector for 40 years and went on strike several times but I don't think strikes should be allowed in public transit. Police and firefighters are not allowed.
Lloyd, Hayward

I would urge you to adopt the position of the Oakland Tribune's editorial today urging Gov. Brown to propose a statute to ban public employee union strikes and require mandatory arbitration.
Jeff, Oakland

Transit agencies should not be allowed to Strike.  It creates public safety issues that are acceptable. People with life threatening illnesses or injuries could die because of the additional traffic caused by this strike.  I would support a bill to forbid BART employees from striking. Like the Police and Fire services, I believe a major transit system, like BART, is an essential service and the lack of this service DOES endanger public safety.  BART pay rates and benefits are ridicules. They already have it good compared to many of the other individuals employed in California. There is no one in the public sector making that kind of money and benefits. Do a competitive study. You will see that raises the unions and employees are asking for do not make any sense. Unlike Police and Fire, they do not risk their lives on a daily basis. There are many skilled people on the street out of work that are willing to work at a more reasonable pay rate.
We are a family of 3 and live in Concord. At the current prices, it does not make financial sense to BART into the city anymore at $5 per person each way. The average Family has more kids than we do. BART needs a reform so it can provide a public service at reasonable rates, or it will price itself out of the transportation business.  
Steven, Contra Costa

I have watched the news closely, even though I am not a frequent rider of BART. It would be fair to say there is deep mistrust between the union and the management. News always air how the union workers are paid the highest in the industry, but hardly how the management packages are, and that should be a sticking point of the union wanted more: they know the management treats themselves nicely, but wanted to restrict the union workers' package. So I think it would be fair to put the management's package on the table and discuss it. That would be the true transparent.  Because the union workers have already have the best package in the industry, there should be law to prohibit them to strike. BART fare is already very high with board line service, why should the riders be hijacked with the threat of no service every few years? Everyone chip in there retirement and health insurance, why shouldn't they?
Lisa, Fremont  

How is it that a strike in a service that affects so many others in the Bay Area is allowed?  Clearly, this should be settled by binding arbitration, not a strike. Please, do your best to change the current situation.
Bob, Lafayette

It is about time these threats from government employees are ended. Most government jobs are monopolistic in nature and with collusion of our elected officials, sweetheart contracts are enjoyed by our employees. President Roosevelt had it right when he opposed unions of government workers and President Reagan was right when he fired the air traffic controllers.
We need legislation to outlaw these strikes against the citizens or at least encourage the training of replacements. Are there any legislators out there representing the taxpayer?  
Don, El Cerrito

I grew up in Northeastern Ohio a big supporter of Unions. Most worked for Tire Companies - Union Workers. Amongst Firestone, Goodyear, Goodrich, Siberling - most of my relatives and friends worked for one of them on the factory floor. My mother-in-law retired from Goodyear after 43 years. I remember the last contract negotiation they had with Goodyear. The rank and file wanted to agree to Goodyear's contract but the Labor Leaders pushed for higher wages/benefits. All the workers thought they were well-paid and loved the Tire Companies. They pushed and eventually, one by one the Tire Companies moved their factories out of Ohio. Those great paying union jobs are long gone. Unions have helped create the middle class - our 40 hour work week, workers compensation, minimum wages & benefits. They do good things. But they also need to know when they are getting greedy. And BART Unions are an example of GREED. Workers are at the top of the pay scale with benefits I don't even have. I've been with the same company for 29 years and I don't have a pension program - which is why I'm still working. I can't remember the last time I've even seen a BART worker at a Station. Frankly I think AC Transit Bus drivers have a much tougher time negotiating traffic and they make considerably less than BART drivers - who essentially drive a conveyor belt and we never see them! ENOUGH - they need to pay into their pensions, they need to contribute more to their health care. And I'm sure the workers at our company would love to have an increase - most haven't seen a wage increase for 7 years. BART STRIKES should be OUTLAWED. BART workers should be grateful they even have a pension - unlike most workers. They should not be able to hold the public hostage to their wage/benefits demands. What we need at the table is a "TAX PAYER" representative. That might eliminate the greed of BART unions. If they're not careful - they may eliminate unions. I've seen it done before when unions become greedy.
Becky, Pleasanton

I am glad to see your message regarding the BART contract negotiations. I am distressed not only because the disruption that a BART strikes causes to Bay Area lives in general, but if the BART strike happens once school opens, it can keep students out of school. As a school director, this is of great concern to me. Also, BART employees do not have to deal with nearly the challenges that AC transit drivers must deal with daily (passenger issues and traffic).
I am also concerned about the worker demands. Although I believe that people should be able to make a living wage, the compensation BART workers are seeking does not line up with other salaries in the Bay Area. For example, a beginning teacher with 5 years of college makes under $40,000 a year, and pays 8% into their retirement. In OUSD, benefits are paid for the employee. The teachers took a 5% cut several years ago and their salary schedule has been frozen since 2009. BART workers with only a high school diploma or GED are making almost twice what the beginning teachers make, getting full family benefits for $89 a month, and make no payment into the retirement. What is not fair is that the BART Union continues to hold the residents of the Bay Area hostage, while making well above the average salary for jobs with their education or training requirements. It is time to take a hard line and let the BART Union know that they can not continue to come to the public to get raises and benefits way beyond the inflation factor and beyond their job requirements. Please help stand up for the people....the raises in BART fares place severe hardships on the public while BART employees live comfortably above the average.
Valerie, Oakland

Thanks for getting involved in the BART dispute. You wrote a great letter with one minor exception. You stated "According to the Bay Area Council Economic Institute, the four-day BART service disruption in July cost the Bay Area at least $73 million in lost productivity".
The $73 million figure is per day.  Keep up the excellent work.
Allan, San Bruno

I whole heartily agree. We cannot endure another catastrophe like we experienced a month ago.
Deborah, Pleasanton

I don't think Bart should be allowed to strike. the Bay Area relies on them for daily life, and they have a responsibility. They should be considered a public utility and subject to oversight.
Linda, San Francisco

More important than income disruption caused by a BART strike would be further compromise of workers' ability to unite & create collective bargaining. It's being said that breaking the BART union would send a powerful message to workers throughout the US. Let's make certain that doesn't happen. Please, use your power to support working people, those union workers who deserve to be protected by our laws.
Patricia, Berkeley

The BART employees are adequatley compensated. They need to contribute to their retirement and additional amounts to their medical. The least everyone I know....thinks they are greedy. We would vote to fire them all if we could.
Pat, Pleasant Hill

I believe the BART workers are a symbol of Govt overpayment of unions and in the case of this critical service to the Bay Area, there should be mandatory arbitration with no strikes permitted.
Lawrence, Walnut Creek

I think the Unions are greedy and unwilling to compromise. The offer from BART is very generous and should be accepted by all the unions. If they do not see this fact clearly, they should be disbanded. They have no idea what life is like for tax payers like me and my wife who must pay for our own healthcare, and retirement and who have receive only a 1% raise OVER THE ENTIRE LAST 8 YEARS!
Steve, Berkeley

It is my impression that BART is another example of union extortion. BART employees enjoy great pay and fantastic benefits.  How about we put out for hiring replacement staff and see how many applicants we get. Overpaid and under delivering.  Sad as the bay area could greatly benefit from improved and broader mass transit.
Leslie, Burlingame

I appreciate the intentions of your letter. As a voter in CA I have voted for you your entire carrier. I believe in your earnestness, but here are my thoughts.  BART has been jerking its workers around at the negotiations table for months and politicians writing letters isn't going to change that. The only way to make BART bargain in good faith, is to make them open up their books so the public sees how much money they really have. And to get rid of union busting anti-negotiator Tom Hock!  As a 5th generation Californian and fervent voter, I believe we cannot afford to let this happen.
Julia, El Cerrito

I think the line you drew in the sand is less than adequate! The public sector should not be allowed, by law, to strike. You make laws all the time that make me want hold my nose so, now, make a law that would serve the entire public. Over paid public unions should not be able to strike ... it's not in the public's best interest. AND, if they decide to strike anyway, then they can be legally terminated and replaced with people that would be willing to work for that wage. That goes for the BART administrators, too.
Dianne, Concord

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GI Bill Protection Act

Californians respond to my message on Protecting Veterans from Deceptive Marketing:

As one of your long-time boosters, I just wanted you to know how much one 6 year veteran of WWII appreciates your efforts in this matter.
Artjur, Palm Desert

Thank you Senator Boxer for your work to help prevent veterans from being misled by for-profit educational institutions. My family has benefitted from the GI Bill as both my father and brother used it to attain careers after their service in the Navy. Today, too many veterans are talked into programs at for-profit schools that result in high costs with no career to show for it.
Linda, Oceanside

I want to thank you for helping push the rightful "GI Bill" through. Now it will keep the unscrupulous and questionable websites that try to snagged our veterans, while taking their money under the table, so to speak. Financial aid is money needed to buy books and pay other expenses like paying rent for example. Senator Boxer, you do more for our veterans than any of your colleagues put together in my opinion.
Juan, Long Beach

Thank you Senator Boxer for introducing the GI Bill Protection Act of 2013 and for protecting our veteran the way they protect us. I sincerely appreciate your voice for them.
Genna, Oceanside

As a veteran, I applaud your effort working on the G.I Bill
Joe, Riverside

Thank you, and your Democratic colleagues, for this important safeguard. I very much hope your bill is passed into law. I am disappointed that not a single Republican Senator would co-sponsor this appropriate action to end predatory practices by for-profit colleges and universities. We continue to salute the ACTIONS you take to improve our lives. Sincerely,
Duncan and Betty, McKinleyville

Just to let you know, I was on the GI Bill in the 60's. It enabled me to get a BS from Cal State Northridge and I worked for the Department of the Army for 30 years as a Recreation Director, Sports Director and Athletic Director at several military installations in Germany and here at home. The GI Bill is one of the best things that ever happened to me (besides marrying my wife.)
Bartley, Riverside

I appreciate all you are doing for our Vets. We have so many years to try to make up for those who returned and received nothing or very little help for their time in earlier wars. I am glad you are stepping up to continue to support our Vets and see that they receive reimbursement for their time. Great Job!
Jeannie, Tehachapi

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Reproductive Rights

Californians respond to my message on A Direct Assault on Women’s Health:

Keep up the good work! Women must have choice when it comes to birth control and abortions.
Helen, Redlands

Thank you for your work in supporting a woman's right to choose. Our bodies, and our minds belong to us. A woman's choice should be her own.
Bernadette, Paso Robles

I have three ladies in my family and I have always been and will always be concerned with their health. The issue with abortion is not about women's health. It is about choice. For you to say that the concern over abortion at twenty weeks is about women's health is an insult to women and to men that care about the women in their lives. When will you be concerned about the unborn? At five months in the womb that baby can feel pain. If it was health you were concerned about you would champion the health of the woman and the baby.
Brad, Whittier

Brava! Thank you for opposing the 20-week abortion ban bill passed by House Republicans. It is indeed an attack on women and their right to make important decisions regarding the welfare of their families. We need to prevent the intrusion of government into our private lives: it's what America is about.
Diana, Perris

It's hard to understand how the House Republicans can presume they are empowered to take the entire country back to the bad old days of women hemorrhaging to death in emergency rooms after botched amateur abortions. Thanks for continuing to resist this amnesia.
Mary Lou, Richmond

Yes, please stand up for our rights we have fought and died for. Our decisions about our bodies should not be subject to popular vote. Thank you!
Joan, San Francisco

As the far right efforts to invade women's bodies and illegally interfere with the patient/doctor relationship, we need a loud voice to deny this effort. The world looks to the U.S. for direction and your efforts send a message to all. Thanks,
Bob, Turlock

Thank you for standing firm for women's rights. I am so glad you are in the Senate to fight for all our daughters and granddaughters.
Kent, Oxnard

I just received your message and I agree with you that what they are proposing is very dangerous and a threat to Roe vs Wade. Even though I do not believe in abortion under most circumstances, for myself, I have no right to prevent other from wanting or needing same. I do not want us to go back to 50's and 60's and illegal abortion clinics etc.
Mary, Los Angeles

Speak up load and clear. Counting on you to be an effective champion to protect women's health, reproductive rights and choice.
Herb and Dorie, Alameda

Thank you for standing up for women's reproductive health and freedom.
Claudia, Los Altos

Thank you for standing with Planned Parenthood in favor of women's reproductive rights. I am embarrassed by ultra-conservative members of both our Federal and various state legislatures who cannot grasp the fact that denying women--particularly in rural areas or in poorer locations--access to basic health counseling does long-term damage to our nation!
Duncan and Betty, McKinleyville

I don't agree with your stand on the House Republican bill and ask you to please reconsider. Scientific research and technology has advanced considerably in the 40 years since Roe v Wade was decided. I am stunned by research on fetal development and especially the research on fetal pain. Yes, we women have certain reproductive rights, but so do the "fetuses" that are being aborted. Please, please reconsider your position.
Regina, Los Altos

I am so grateful that you are standing up in the Senate on behalf of a woman's right to choose what health procedures are appropriate for her under all circumstances. The age of infantilizing women, of male dominating authority overriding their own decisions, has come to an end. We need strong, accomplished, free women like yourself to speak up for us. I am so proud that you are my Senator, and so relieved that I do not live in a backward state like Texas or North Carolina. Thanks for all you have done and will continue to do for women's rights.
Linda, La Crescenta

It is horrifying that still today our personal issues are constantly being subjected to attempted control by others. We appreciate your efforts to forestall this. The Texas women's care clinics situation is frightening as well. Hope you and your like-thinking senators are vocal about this when appropriate.
Eleanor, Oceanside

Thank you so much for standing up for women's rights and health and for giving us a voice in a very troubling matter. I thank you so very much for all that you said in your response to the 20-week abortion ban. It is so true, women having abortions after 20-weeks are doing so under some very unfortunate circumstances. Thank you again for being our voice. I honestly don't understand what the Republicans are doing right now. I mean, I do...but it's so troubling and so wrong and I just can't thank you enough for protecting our rights.
Kristen, San Francisco

For supporting women, children families and doctors by upholding Roe v Wade. Thank you, thank you!!!
Clarie, San Jose

As a woman I am deeply offended and saddened by the lack of respect for life that I see growing in the United States. In my nearly 50 years of life I have witnessed many different forms of control against women. What I do not see and do not hear is conversation about manners, self respect, dignity, self worth, personal value, self control, etc. It actually looks like we encourage women to not care about getting pregnant.
Donna, San Diego

Thank you for responding to the republican party attempt at voting for a ban of abortion at 20 weeks. I truly appreciate your continued support of women's health and I hope you and others who follow your lead will defeat this unending attempt to limit women's right to choose.
Jean, Oakland

It is a shame that Texas has decided to destroy women's rights to abortion within the time limits of the very reasonable Roe vs Wade Court Decision. It is without doubt the greatest assault on the rights of women thoughout Texas. I believe that if brought to Federal Courts, the new Texas Law will be thrown out as a violation of women's rights.
I completely agree with your position, Senator.
Sam, San Bernardino

So what about the female aborted babies who would have grown up to be women? Don't they deserve protection? How are they less important? What if THEY could vote?
Becky, Goleta

Thank you, so much, Senator Boxer, for standing up for women's rights. I deeply appreciate it.
Jackie, Carpinteria

I support the House Bill to the 20 week limit on abortions. Baby's aborted after this time are viable and can survive. Please keep in mind my choice when you vote. I will keep in mind your choices when I vote.
Kathryn, Simi Valley

Thank you for standing up for a woman's right to choose. Stay strong and keep fighting for us in the Senate. I am a 56-year-old woman, and it sickens me to know that "old white men" think they can take this extremely important and personal decision away from women. Thank you, Senator Boxer, for fighting for women's rights!
Tina, Irvine

I'm sorry to say, Senator Boxer, that as a lifelong Democrat I am usually committed to my party's issues but this time I must part ways with you and my Party and side with the Republican opposition on the abortion issue because they are right for once and we Democrats are clearly wrong.
Rose, Whittier

Please continue being on the side of women's health. You have been doing good so far. I am afraid if the house and/or senate continues pushing through bills that threaten the lives of women, there will be back street abortions again, women's lives will be in danger. The anti women nut cases, who happen to be wealthy know without a doubt that they can send members of their families to countries that have health plans like we used to have and that they perform safe abortions.
Alexandra, Thousand Oaks

Thank you for continuing to fight on behalf of women and our rights to do what we wish with our bodies.
Michelle, Rowland Heights

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Californians respond to my message on An Extreme Attack on Women’s Health (06/19/2013):

I am a Catholic Christian and US Citizen. I do not think that abortion is a good idea. However, I also do not think that laws attempting to govern what is going on inside a woman's body are a good idea. I appreciate and support your witness and action as my representative in the US Senate.
Michael, Palm Springs

Thank you SO much for your excellent presentation, re the interference by congress in the lives of women and caring doctors! I always appreciate your views, and this was especially well spoken.
Maxine, Stockton

It is not the place of elected officials to dictate health care. I appreciate that you consistently defend a woman's right to choose and her right to depend upon medical professionals (and not politicians) for care.
Karen, Palos Verdes Estates

Giving care to women has always been part of my life as a nurse midwife. Although I may not agree with some women's choices, I still believe that they have the right to choose what is best for them at whatever stage of life they are in. Please continue to support women's right to choose what they and their healthcare providers feel is in their best interest.
Laura, Whittier

I completely disagree with the House passed bill disallowing abortion beyond the 20th week. I expect the Senate to defeat the bill. And I expect, if passed for President Obama to veto the bill. I believe the Federal Courts would disallow the Law if passed and signed. What nonsense! The House needs to deal, not with Food Stamps or abortion. Deal with reality! Thank you for allowing me to give my opinion.
Sam, San Bernardino

I am very unhappy with the Republicans in Congress OR Democrats, legislating restrictions about my personal health care decisions - any health care decision, whether it is end of life decisions or reproductive decisions, (birth control or abortion for what ever reason), menopause decisions, etc. I am insulted by the idea that because I am a woman (my children call me 'Wonder Woman') I cannot make these decisions for myself and that someone should make them for me. I am a well educated person, not senile or in need of a conservator, and am fully capable of making my own health care decisions without legislation. It is simple: if you do not want an abortion, do not have one. If you do not want to use birth control methods,don't. If you want to be on life support at your own cost, feel free. Why legislate? And why would anyone want to tell me what are the best health care decisions for me?
Margaret, San Francisco

I am against abortion. Especially late term abortions. I am a Registered Nurse and for you to believe that a fetus is not able to feel pain or does not have a soul is unproven. I refuse to support the killing of the most innocent, most vulnerable human life. Someone has to speak for them. Someone has to protect them.
Marje, Burbank

I watched your speech regarding the latest, restrictive 20 week abortion bill and want to thank you for your hard work in defending women and their families. It appears that "the war on women" may be never-ending with the type of Republicans now in office but I will not give up hope knowing you are there continuing to fight on everyone's behalf.
Patricia, San Marcos

This is an absolute outrage and shouldn't even be a legislative issue. If men could reproduce, this wouldn't even be a conversation.
Deb, San Francisco

The sad part of the right is they just never put themselves in anyone's else shoes. I am one of those women that had to realize that i might have to terminate my late term pregnancy to save my own husband only agreed to try if i promised to choose my life. too many right people act like it is easy choice...and i support choice though i now know i myself could not do it. But i will fight for rights of women to have that right...i had women in the generation above mine tell me what it like when it was dirty the places where, how most women got sick or even died. It was sad they had to go through such ordeal....hard enough in clean sterile office. So thank you for fighting all these years for our rights!
Loree, Mount Shasta

It is important for us to preserve women's health and decisions that belong to health providers and their patients.
Faith, Richmond

We no longer live in the dark ages when a woman had to risk her life in back alleys, searching for a way to end an unwanted pregnancy. However that could certainly be the case if the Republicans have their way. Please do everything in your power to maintain a Womans Right to choose. Unwanted pregnancies can lead to many more serious problems if a woman has no ability to safely end a pregnancy.
Linda, Oakland

Thank you for your speech today in defense of a woman's right to choose. You have my full support for your advocacy of women's rights.
Diana, Perris

As before keep up the good work. It is comforting to know that the bad parts of the news can be at least partially balanced by your efforts.
Robert, La Puente

WE are so grateful to you on behalf of all women for supporting women and their health needs. We are very proud of your efforts and know we can count on you to speak up against any attacks against women.
Valerie, Pasadena

Republicans' continuing attacks against women - and hence American families - suggest they are fearful of the power that women, as a united force, can wield. Let's show them how powerful we can be.
Ruth, Walnut Creek

I do not understand why some want to take this country backwards, and why the obstructionist in the tea party want to destroy our government or at least keep it from functioning - but thank you for keeping up the fight.
Jana, Valencia

I am ashamed that you would even consider anything after 20 weeks not murder. Do you think if a woman is pregnant and murdered that the criminal should be charged with one or two deaths? Is taking a life from the womb not equal to putting a person to death, which you oppose for criminals.
Sarah, San Jose

Nobody has the right to decide for me. How can a congress take the decision for me? There is no way!
Guadalupe, Azusa

I am so glad that the House voted in favor of this measure to acknowledge that children 20 weeks in utero feel pain, according to objective scientific research.
Hannah, Pleasant Hill

Thank you for addressing this attack against all women's rights ! This bill that the Republican House passed is so backwards in how I would think that educated people regardless of party would vote. So I wonder if this bill would have ever been written if men were able to get pregnant?
Laura, Redwood City

THANK YOU! for taking a stand against those who seek to limit women's access to vital health care, which in my opinion, includes easy access to birth control and abortion.
Edith, Los Angeles

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Californians respond to my message on the 40th Anniversary of Roe v. Wade (01/22/2013):

Please continue to work for maintaining women's rights. On the 40th anniversary of Roe v. Wade we cannot sit idle while extremist people are pushing their agenda of pecking away at my and my daughters' rights. Please don't give up on the progress we have made. Keep up the fight!
Amanda, San Diego

As a Republican woman, I commend you on working to continue women's rights to health and contraception. I am very opposed to restricting women's access to abortion and their right to choose.
Caroline, Malibu

I am 62 years young & remember what it was like during the 60's & 70's for women. It feels as though the Republicans and right-to-lifers are trying to push us back into the Dark Ages. I voted for you and authorize you to keep fighting for women to be able to rule "Our Bodies, OurSelves".
Gay, San Jose

Please keep up your good work preserving a woman's health rights especially defending the Roe vs Wade decision from erosion. These fundamental rights impact so many woman, at all socio-economic levels, not to mention the men in these women's lives.
Beth, Palos Verdes Estates

Thank you for your steadfast support of Roe vs. Wade and other women's issues. I depend on your vote. You would think after 40 years.... It must get tiring to fight the same battles over and over again. But, apparently it is necessary.
Saundra, San Dimas

What about all the 55 million babies' lives ended by abortion and women who died or were irreparably damaged by safe legal abortions?
Anne Marie, Oakland

A woman's right to choice is important to me and I appreciate your support and hard work in keeping Roe vs Wade intact. This is not an easy decision for women, even couples to make, but the choice must remain an option for women in California and throughout the nation. Keep up the good work.
Janet, Alameda

I heartily applaud you for hanging in there and fighting while draconian legislative measures increasingly hack away at women's rights to take charge of our own bodies. This is not just about abortions. It is about access to valid health information and care and contraception. State legislators bully their way into women's clinics ordering care workers to deliver frightening and thoroughly unscientific messages to intimidate the patient and enforce expensive, unnecessary medical procedures. The dwindling number of clinics makes access impossible for desperate and poor women. I am 71 years old and shocked that in 2013 women are still considered a bothersome underclass instead of grown-ups who earn wages, love, and are capable of making our own decisions. These appallingly uneducated, mean-spirited legislators have blood on their hands. We can only hope our younger generation will vote them out of office.
Susan, San Rafael

I just read your praise of Roe vs. Wade. You forgot to mention the 50 million young humans who have been killed for financial and convenience reasons since it was passed.
Lee, Susan, Walnut Creek

roe/wade was a major victory for women freeing us from the tyranny of our bodies for the first time, legally! we must not lose this hard won protection, under any circumstances!!
Donna, West Sacramento

That explains why Congress can't meet deadlines. They concern themselves with unnecessary items instead of taking care of real problems. After reading your last email I wondered if it was 2013 or 1913.
Gisela, San Fafael

Thank you for your loud, clear voice on the importance of Roe vs Wade. Please continue to push for the expansion of womens healthcare and to push back with the extremists that would take away womens rights to make their reproductive healthcare decisions.
Frederic, San Francisco

I appreciate and support your stand regarding our rights as women to make choices for ourselves. Repealing Roe vs. Wade would put women at risk of death and disease at the hands of unlicensed doctors and swindlers in unhealthy conditions. It is my strong belief that abortion should not be a government issue but a personal one. We as women should have the right to take charge of our bodies and our lives.
Karen, Studio City

Dr. Gregory Polito placed a paid statement in our local paper, The Whittier Daily News, today, on the 40th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, entitled "A Concerned Citizen's Thoughts on the 40th Anniversary of Roe v. Wade, 01-22-2013". I would respectfully ask that, in the interest of looking at the issue of abortion from both sides, you read the entire article… My prayer is that you will reconsider your position on abortion. It is wrong in God's sight, and it is wrong if we call ourselves caring human beings. Thank you for all you do for us in the other areas of your service in the Senate. You have a difficult, complex job there. Your hard work is appreciated. God bless you!
Linda, Whittier

Please help keep Roe vs Wade strong. All women should have a choice over their own bodies!
Margaret, Long Beach

There will be abortions done regardless of the law. The purpose of Roe vs. Wade was to save womens lives. One statistic I learned by an MD … was that before RvW, abortion deaths were the leading cause of womens dying.
Marvellee, Long Beach

Thank you so much for being in the forefront of Women's rights! Our generation fought so hard to acquire these rights, only to see them constantly under attack by right wing extremists. The irony is that these groups are usually PRO-GUN and PRO-WAR!!!
Clea, Canoga Park

I fully support keeping Roe v. Wade legal and reject any restrictions the Republicans try to put forth. As pointed out in a recent New York Times article, women have searched for ways to terminate pregnancies for thousands of years. Until the passage of Roe v. Wade those procedures often times ended up with the woman dying. It is vital that the U.S. continue to provide safe medical procedures to women. Women have a right to choose what course their life will take. No woman wants to have an abortion, but sometimes it is the only alternative. Please fight to keep Roe v. Wade legal.
Deirdre, Tiburon

Thank you for your articulate tribute; it has been such an important part of women's rights and must remain strong.
Pat, Saint Helena

Wholeheartedly agree with your position on Roe v. Wade! Keep government out of the bedroom, bathroom and doctors offices!
John, Seal Beach

It saddens me to think that you are my "representative" in the Senate because you certainly do not represent my views. How sad to see how happy you are to condone the murder of the unborn. And make no mistake Ms. Boxer, these are babies. How you can be so proud of something so disgusting amazes. I'm also sick and tired of hearing about this war on women. If anyone is waging war on women, it is you.
Alice, Burbank

As the former President of the California Abortion Rights League, I want to thank you for your January 22nd email. Thank you for your loyal and articulate stand on women's reproductive freedom. We need you now more than ever.
Joannie, Los Angeles

It makes me sad to read the attacks on women's health that we worked so hard to get covered. My daughter's generation has no idea what my generation went through to fight inequality in pay, our bodies, our jobs, the glass ceiling etc. Even though it has not completely become equal with men, it is closer than ever before.
Joyce, Simi Valley

This anniversary recalls the millions of babies who have been and continue to be murdered because of RoeVs Wade. I realize many people choose to hide their eyes to this truth, but it's real, and I plan to ALWAYS tell that truth. You do NOT represent me.
Cynthia, Sylmar

Thanks Barbara..keep fighting the crazies.
Susan, Lakewood

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Defense Contractor Pay

Californians respond to my message on Private Contractors Raking in Your Taxpayer Dollars:

Thanks for addressing this misuse of public funds. It's outrageous how greedy companies gorge at the public trough while most everyone else has to work their butts off, just to make ends meet. Appreciate your sensitivity on this point.
Susie, San Francisco

Thank you Senator Boxer-- for seeking out and altering abuses to our Federal Programs!!!!
Ken, Hemet

Thanks - it's about time! While you're at it, watchdog the huge pork projects that are imposed on the Pentagon budget by Senators/Congressmen funneling money into their states/districts, often without the Pentagon's backing. The most recent boondoggle is the F-35. Sequester the Pentagon budget big time! Use the funds for infrastructure/mass transit/jobs training instead. Our country will be better off for it!
Winifred, Sacramento

U.S. citizens have long needed better protection against such wastefulness and greed in the military-industrial complex.
Christine, San Rafael

Thank you for your message regarding private contractors raking in our tax dollars. It was obvious to me that when the Iraq war began, it was to make huge profits for private contractors and mercenaries. I have always opposed these wars that are waged solely for this purpose, under the false premise of spreading Democracy. This is also why the Republicans want to privitize everything. They are clearly representing big business corporations. Most Americans really know this.
Mark, Petaluma

Thank you, Senator Boxer for watching out for the American taxpayers!
Barbara & John, Hermosa Beach

Why do you need an "excessive pay" bill for contractors? Don't you guys properly review contracts before they are let? Isn't there already oversight and review procedures in place that if DONE PROPERLY would take care of these things? Just do the job in the first place.
Carl, San Diego

My only concern is the number of lobbyist from these organizations that regularly contribute to campaign re-election funds which totally clouds the judgement of those allocating these funds. In my opinion, Washington is so corrupt and full of selfish, self-serving politicians that all they see are the dollar bills coming into their coffers and not the wise use of taxpayer funds. Perhaps your bill will help in that effort - somehow I cynically don't think that will happen. But I applaud you for your efforts.
Leigh, West Hollywood

I applaud your bill to rein in the government paid contractors salaries. We have too much plutolatry in our country today. We need to look at the government contracting jobs and value them in balance with what is being paid by companies in the same field but not government contractors!
Penelope, Grass Valley

In an age of massive excess, we need some common sense controls on payments for services.
Peter, Altadena

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Homeless Veterans

Californians respond to my message on Combating Veteran Homelessness:

Kudos to you for this proposal! It is so very sad that our government is quick to send troops to war but turns its head when they return months or years later with health, mental, job, finance, family and other issues after dedicating their lives to the "cause." Your bill is an excellent step to dealing with a piece of the problem. I applaud it – and especially the way that you have set up controls and oversight on the funds. Good job once again!
Kath, Diablo

I am one of those Homeless Veterans, but fortunately that is about to end thanks to some of the non-profits, and the Dept. of Veterans Affairs. I am one that qualified for HUD/VASH and am about to move into permanent housing thanks to that program. On another note we just had a visit from Congressman Ami Bera last week as he toured the transitional housing program that I am currently at (SVRC) in Sacramento.
John, Rancho Cordova

Your legislation is backwards. Let’s provide guarantees of homes for veterans too damaged by our adventures overseas to fend for themselves and provide a checkbox so that we tax payers can donate to the salaries of legislators based on our opinion and experience of your value!
Alan, Mill Valley

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Californians respond to my message on Helping to End Veteran Homelessness (01/23/2013):

As a long-time supporter of Swords to Ploughshares here in San Francisco, I was pleased to receive your email about the legislation you introduced that will further support our HOMELESS!,
Pam, San Francisco

KUDOS for your effort to help the homeless veterans. As a retired Navy, Viet Nam era veteran, it breaks my heart to see so many guys my own age, and some older and some much younger, that are homeless for any number of reasons. I also believe the benefits we were promised when we were drafted or enlisted, should never, ever be cut or taken away. I watched as my own father, a WWII MIA/POW, suffer with some of the physical impairments as a result of his service, and later realized he also had mental issues as well. Fortunately, he was able to cope with his problems until late in his life, and had to sell his house, the house I was born in, in order to get the care he needed. He was one of the fortunate ones, compared to so many others. I do thank you for your efforts, and for your service to our country.
Michael, Moreno Valley

That's a great idea about putting a space on our income tax to support our veterans' programs to reduce homelessness. My dad was a vet from WWII so this is very important to our family. I hope your legislation passes.
Dolores, Palm Desert

Thank god someone is thinking about them. They thought about us when they were serving this country so why should we forget about them.
Laura, Moreno Valley

Your concern about veterans homelessness is commendable and appropriate. However, a check off box to make voluntary donations is an insult and an outrage!!!! We need a surtax on income that is mandatory. Low income people may not be able to spare much but a ten percent tax on all income over $100,000 per year to fund veteran housing and healthcare would be totally appropriate. Our veterans should not be dependent on charity! Tax payers owe them the care they need including medical and psyhcological! It is not a charitable act to care for our veterans. It is a duty and an obligation! Make congressional pay dependent on a check off contribution. Make veteran care a mandatory obligation!
Al, Mill Valley

I want to thank you for your efforts in honoring our Vietnam Veterans I myself being a Vietnam Veteran that returned home to a ungrateful nation, I am now scarred with PTSD and the horrible memories of that terrible War. I think you are a wonderful person for what you are doing for our country and our Veterans.
Tom, Mira Loma

While I applaud your desire to help our veterans. I am sure you know that through churches and other non government organizations there are many ways one can help without giving money to the government. It is painfully obvious that the government does not know how to allocate dollars without wasting most of them. You might not admit that publicly but you know it is true. That fact has nothing to do with political parties it is the nature of the beast. I don't see why we need the government to spend yet more money to more public employees to do something that the community can do far more effectively.
Steve, Yucaipa

Does the donation become deductible? Who decides where the money goes? It seems like a nice thought, but excess tax legislation. Currently legitimate organizations that help homeless veterans receive donations that are tax deductible. My veteran brother has been homeless, and I appreciate the services that he received.
Robert, Murrieta

Great move! I will instruct my accountant to check this box and contribute from our funds on this year’s tax return. Thank you. I'm a vet and although not homeless I understand some of their problems.
John, Goleta

Thank you for all that you do to help fight for our homeless veterans. For years I lived two blocks from the VA hospital in San Francisco. Every day I talked to homeless vets. I heard about their struggles, I heard how many were denied housing because of addiction issues. I talked to men who were in the trenches, who saw terrible things, who won medals. I heard their poetry and their songs. Every day I got angrier and angrier that these men were on the streets. More so because, once on the streets, they become throw away people. I hear "not my problem" and "get a job." Thank you Barbara Boxer for consistently shining a light on this issue. No one should have to live in deep poverty and illness. And for us to be shouting "Support our Troops!" while so many vets live this way is just appalling to me. Thank you.
Marsh, San Francisco

I think it is awesome that you are supporting veterans now to try to stop them from being homeless. I am married to a Vietnam vet who still remembers being spit upon by his fellow Americans when he returned after two tours in Vietnam. While having his ischemic heart disease accepted as a presumption of agent orange he has to receive that small extra amount of money cause we are married… My husband is not alone in his belief that the remaining Vietnam vets will be dead before they are adequately compensated.
Sherry, Moreno Valley

Finally something I can back a Democrate in a cause. We donate what little we can to the paralized Vets, but had no idea how to help others. our troops go through hell and get so little help and support. I am a registered Republican but will support you 100% on this. by the way we are not vets and no one in my immediate family is a vet.. Thank you
Jean, Tehachapi

I agree we need to extend more help to our veterans who are homeless. We need to start with Mental Health first. They did their best to help our nation. The war in the middle east will never end. We need to bring our men and women home and provide jobs for them. We need to help them in every way possible.
Linda, Sun City

Why just Veerans? What about children? Veterans already have a life where if they are homeless they cannot assimilate into society and have other issues. Children are our future and we need to focus on that.
Michael, Temecula

With prices going up, and buying power going down every day, where do you expect to find taxpayers who would choose to donate more money to the government so they can do the job they should have been doing all along with the trillions they are collectinbg and mismanaging? Seriously, this veteran would first like to see more fiscal responsibility with the trilliions you have been entrusted with. You may want to consider such things as a balanced budget amendment for one... Since I have a choice, I know of a number of charities that I believe will do a more responsible job with my money. And several of them help veterans too. Respectfully,
George, Yucaipa

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Veterans’ Mental Health Care

Californians respond to my message on Improving Mental Health Care for At-Risk Veterans:

Although we disagree on most issues, I want to thank you for your efforts in getting Vets the mental health care that they need. Thanks again for your help on this issue. Mental Health is the key to curbing gun violence and suicide among Vets.
Edward, San Jose

I have been aware of this issue for many years and am glad it has your attention because we need to deal with this issue in a humane manner. As a result, we need to assist our vets to learn any skills needed to become an independent person and this ought to be our goal. Thanks.
Chuck, Sun City

thank you barbara for thinking of our veterans. first we start the wars and then we abandon the vets. we must help them. i served (was drafted) in the fifties-- 2 years active service, 2 years active reserves and 2 inactive reserves. luckily there was no war. i am now 79 and am fed up with all the nonsense of our country not meeting its obligations. when will this stop?
John, Studio City

Thank you for doing more than giving lip service on behalf of the young people who protect our way of life, our sense of security, and our Country; they risk their lives, their futures and their family's well-being to do so. You are right. They deserve the best of care...before, during, and after they serve--medical as well as mental health. Our communities need to take care of its heroes, and I applaud you for taking a stand and taking action in following this through.
Joan, Carmichael

On behalf of myself and all disabled veterans thank you for your kind words and support to us. The ill, the weak, and most of the time the ones fallen into the red tape. Honorable Senator Boxer, I'm grateful to you for all the hard work that you do.
Sabino, Lincoln

Yup, It's hard to believe that in a CIVILIZED society there are those who could care less about our Veterans, elderly, & disabled. Eric Cantor, Paul Ryan and their followers need to experience the other side of the street before they turn this country even more to the dark side. I am glad the people like you are willing to fight them. Remember JFK's quote about a Liberal... paraphrased: 'if caring about my fellow man makes me a liberal, I'm proud of it'.
Paul, Jamul

I appreciate the work you and Senator Murray (WA) do regarding veterans affairs. You are addressing the needs of veterans of every war/conflict. As a veteran and a pastor relating to vets, I thank you!
Steven, Folsom

Thank you for your letter to the Veteran's Administration requesting more and thorough follow-up on servicemen who need mental health evaluation. But I'd like to add that every veteran should get the best medical care our country has to offer and not have to wade through the paperwork with which they now have to deal before getting it! They put their lives on the line for us, how can we offer them anything less. I know personally how difficult it is for a veteran to get fast and the latest medical care, some wait years and have to prove in a ridiculous manner that they are in need of the care they request. While waiting, their family has to suffer as well. They should be able to get the care they need and want at appropriate hospitals close to where they live and not have to travel great distances to veteran's doctors and hospitals. I hope in a short period of time we can accomplish this without all the bureaucracy getting in the way!! Thank you for your kind attention.
Dorene, Santa Ynez

I would like to hear that the defense budget would decrease and instead use that money to help the veterans with mental illness, adjust back to their communities and family.
Martha, Chula Vista

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Armenian Genocide

Californians respond to my message on Remembering the Armenian Genocide:

Thank you for your support for the recognition of the Armenian Genocide. I am a proud first generation American whose mother, at the age of 7, saw her father and brother shot and fled with her mother and sisters. It was difficult for me to listen as she related all they went through. She proudly became a citizen of the United States and always told us to be good Americans but to also be proud of our heritage. Thank you,
Diane, Fresno

Thank you for acknowledging this day for Armenians. And thank you for not fearing to use the term "genocide". We have no other word in English that comes as close to describing the horror perpetrated against the Armenian people; the innocent women, children, and elderly who were sent to their deaths. It was a genocide. And we must call it what it is. Thank you. I am not Armenian; I am an American. And I feel that we must as American's, rise to acknowledge the crimes of the past and insure that they are never repeated. Again I say, Thank you.
Melissa, Riverside

My family and I thank you for being on the right side of history and honoring the victims of the Armenian Genocide. I'm hopeful that in time, the U.S. will stand on the right side of history by fully acknowledging the Armenian Genocide.
Julie, Duarte

I wanted to take the time to thank you for your help and kind thoughts as to the Armenian Genocide. Please continue to push the House to pass this resolution to finally have America recognize this despite threats on relationships from Turkey.
Simon, Costa Mesa

I would like to thank you for standing up today for Armenians everywhere in recognizing the Armenian Genocide. I am a descendant of Genocide survivors. Both of my grandparents lost family members either shot, hung, or starved in front of their very eyes. Thank you for reminding the world that the United States has yet to take the bold step, and do what is right, by recognizing this first genocide of the Twentieth Century.
Terrea, Walnut

As an Armenian-American, I am so thankful to you for supporting the official recognition of Armenian Genocide by U.S. Administration. It is so sad to see our past and present Presidents have been taken hostage by Turkish government because of Turkey's strategical and geographical "importance". We Armenians hope that someday America will have a President who will put the humanity before the politics and stand up for Armenian cause. I wish you and your family long,happy and successful life.
Vram, San Pedro

Thank you for acknowledging the Armenian Genocide by its rightful name---a genocide. I lost all of my relatives but 2 in that genocide, and they didn't all just disappear one day. Nor were these simple village people soldiers. Thank you for keeping this issue in the limelight. Let's keep the pressure on so that perhaps justice may someday prevail.
Pamela, San Anselmo

Thank you so much for your articulate and heartfelt plea to the administration on behalf of the Armenian community, asking for true recognition of the Armenian Genocide by the Ottoman Empire. Sadly, year after year our disappointment and frustration continues as truth and justice is overshadowed by political and strategic power and our President cannot dare speak the true words at the risk of offending the powerful Turks. After all, what do Armenians have to offer in the political power plays, when all that's left if a once great country are pieces torn away and turned into Turkey? What do they have to gain by siding with the Armenians and the side of righteousness? They have honor and integrity to gain...but this is not that important to some, and the US administration has shown that. Thank you again for believing in this cause. I love this country and cannot imagine living anywhere else. My parents moved here from Armenia when I was a child and proud to be a US citizen. Sadly this is the time of year when that pride diminishes a bit. Thank you again on behalf of my parents (who are in their 80's and lost many loved ones on the genocide) any my own family.
Annie, Arcadia

If you really wanted the Armenian Genocide to be recognized by the US nation, why would you only mention it on April 24th? Wouldn't you mention it constantly? Please don't pretend. If you really care, please make it a higher priority. Don't bring it up right as April 24 is coming up or when elections are starting up. We've heard the same promises for years but action still remains to be taken (unless you call this email once a year action). Glad we have a tool for open feedback. If this doesn't reach you, I know where the problems start from. Thanks!
Jonathan, Pasadena

I read your statement and I appreciate your official acknowledgement regarding this matter. As a race, human beings, and descendents from those that were massacred, your words will go a long way with your constituents. Well spoken Senator!
Sevan, Tujunga

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Genetically Engineered Foods

Californians respond to my message on Labeling Genetically Engineered Foods:

Thank you for representing the Californians such as myself who are avid about food freedom. We should have the right to choose to purchase GMOs just like many other countries around the world.
Marianne, Sacramento

As a physician, I'm a huge advocate of full disclosure--hopefully with passage of this bill the public will be empowered to make informed decisions!
Elizabeth, Orange

Thank you for taking a stand against GMO's, my family appreciates your dedication to our health.
Meredith, Riverside

Thank you Senator Boxer for sponsoring this bill to require labeling of genetically modified foods for consumers. We really need this bill to pass.
Carol, Laguna Beach

Thank you Senator Boxer for leading and trailblazing the way for Americans to know where their food comes from, how it is processed and to promote transparency in keeping our food clean and edible! This is a milestone. Thank you on behalf of the consumer.
Cissy, Whittier

I support your effort to demand full disclosure of GMO foods. As a father of four it is vital that I be aware of what I am feeding my children. Also, I have heard that Monsanto has pushed for and received some type of immunity from law suits related to their genetically modified products and the ill effects that they could bring about. Is that true? How is this even possible?
Ben, Glendale

I am thrilled to hear that you have introduced the Genetically Engineered food right to know legislation. I am sitting here with a big smile on my face and a thumbs-up to you. Families should know what they are buying, eating and feeding their children.
Gloria, Chico

I am a longtime supporter of your office, but I must say I am very disappointed with your sponsorship of the bill requiring the labeling of genetically engineered foods. Historically, mandatory labeling of foods in the U.S. has been reserved for those situations in which a clear, specific health risks exists (e.g., food allergens). In cases where the consumer wishes to base their choice on other criteria (e.g., organic or kosher), the labeling standards and certification system are established on a voluntary basis. The genetic engineering of food crops does not in and of itself create any specific health risk, and therefore the labeling of GE foods should fall into the latter, voluntary category. In instances where specific risks exist (e.g., introduction of genes that result in an allergic reaction), then labeling is entirely appropriate, but otherwise no labeling should be mandated. You and I agree on many, many other areas of policy, but this is one area where we clearly diverge.
Louis, San Carlos

I am very concerned about the foods I feed my family, it is difficult in today's world to be sure if you are making the right choices or not. Experts don't agree and it is confusing for the rest of us to sort out what is best. My daughter has recently developed a sensitivity to gluten, so we are always looking for gluten free choices. It seems the explosion of gluten sensitivity was caused by genetically altering wheat for better production. I don't wish to stop farmers from making a living, but I also don't want my children and grandchildren to get sick from these new types of foods. I want a choice, and if the food is not labeled I have no choice.
Debra, Covina

Thank you. I voted against California doing this just as 1 state. I did not see it working and perhaps causing food cost to soar as other states would not be allowed to sell here. We do not grow corn here. What would the price of an ear of corn be? So, I see it to be more productive to get it into the states as a whole. Thank you.
Wendy, Los Angeles

I was very involved in the Yes on 37 campaign and was so very discouraged by all of the flat out lies that came from the corporate food industry. So many of us worked so hard to get it passed - oh, well, the fight will continue! Thank you!!!
Sue, Santa Barbara

As a consumer that is very concerned about the food I am feeding myself and my family and I feel very strongly that I have a right to know if there are GMOs in the product. I hope this will expand to restaurants as well.
Kim, Simi Valley

You're sponsoring a bill to lable GEF's but what we USA consumers need is for GEF's to be banned legislatively from being grown or sold in this country. AS HAS BEEN DONE IN the European Union. Labeling is not a solution; it is a bandaid. Please form a phalanx of power to protect us from the blind eye deaf ears regarding our safety vav this issue.
Kate, Mountain View

I want to thank you standing up against Big Ag and their lobby and supporting the GMO Labeling legislation. We citizens (the human ones, not necessarily the corporate ones) have a right and even an obligation to know and understand what is in the food we feed our families. I am repeatedly shocked, disheartened, and disgusted at the lengths our big corporate "citizens" will go to ensure their own well-being at the expense of all the people and the very system that fostered their existence. Thank you again, and stay strong!
Erika, Vineburg

With all due respect, we would like for the government to stop regulating and legislating our lives in every possible way they can. We are perfectly able to go shopping for non-GMO foods on our own. We simply don't buy products that are not labeled "non-GMO".
George and Terry, Rolling Hills Estates

Thank you!! for introducing legislation requiring gmo foods to be labeled. Ideally they should be banned. But since political will won't act on the precautionary principle, labeling is the next best option. Glad to know it has bipartisan support. Please move it through quickly to passage before Monsanto lobbies everyone into voting against it.
Sara, Arcata

We deserve complete, total, 100% transparency in food labeling laws. All food manufacturers should be legally required to label ALL INGREDIENTS on ALL FOODS. Antibiotics, insecticides, herbicides, toxic chemicals have NO place in our food, and we have the right to good, safe food; something we aren't legally allowed, right now, due to the laws that the large agricultural companies have gotten passed without the consent or knowledge of America's citizens. If it is in the food, the law should mandate that it be listed in the ingredients. Everything! Period! We have the right to know what we are eating!
Melissa, Walnut Creek

I want to personally thank you for helping putting the Right-To-Know act on the Senate Floor. It's my dream come true! I have been volunteering with the California Right to Know for the past 2 1/2 years. This bill is so important for the health of everyone. We certainly have a right to know what we are purchasing and feeding our families. I applaud you for being a part of this campaign.
Donna, North Hollywood

Thank you for your work on behalf of Americans' right to know about genetically-engineered foods. I wish you success in this effort.
Nora, Santa Monica

Thank you for introducing the Genetically Engineered Food Right-to-Know Act legislation. I volunteered on the Yes on Prop 37 campaign and felt hopeless when it was defeated. I'm looking forward to supporting your legislation and I'm very proud that you are one of the U.S. Senators representing the people, not the corporations.
Jennifer, Irvine

I am so thrilled that someone representing me, is on my side. Thank you for caring.
Karen, Sacramento

Thank you Senator Boxer for co-sponsoring the Genetically Engineered Food Right-to-Know Act. I appreciate your support for clearly labeling genetically modified foods so that consumers can make informed choices about what they eat.
Paul, San Diego

I am so happy to hear that you have sponsored the Right To Know Bill! I was shocked and devastated when the forces behind GMO agriculture were able to overcome the momentum we had built for Prop 37 so I am thrilled to see California take the lead in Nationwide Labelling Reform. These companies have to label the products they sell everywhere else in the world; Why not here? Thank You
Vincent, Tracy

Thank you VERY MUCH for co-sponsoring the bill to label GMO foods. It didn't pass in California because of money from big agra. Hopefully it will become the law of the land.
Steve, Milpitas

Thank you for introducing the bill to label GMO-containing foods! I would like to see even more improved labeling, such as not allowing catch-all terms like "natural flavors." What does that mean?
Kathy, Bishop

I want to strongly express that I am against this law as it will be very difficult to differentiate how to apply the law. It is not realistic to think that this law will help decide about health issues with food.
Robert, Berkeley

Thank you for letting me know about your "right to know" bill that you are advocating. It is of the utmost importance that each of us choose our food based on full disclosure. Let the mothers of our country decide what they wish to feed their children, based on this disclosure. Thank you for your hard work and determination to allow us to do this in the future. I pray your bill will pass!
Diane, Paso Robles

Thank you for being apart of new legislation to increase consumer knowledge on genetically modified food labeling. I feel very strongly about this issue as a nurse, and Masters in Nutrition & Functional Medicine student. This is the right step in helping to being healthcare costs down by decreasing the number of people suffering from chronic illness.
Shanna, San Diego

Thank you for working on the issue of GE food labeling. I can only hope that any legislation passed by the Senate and allowed by House obstructionists to make it to the President's desk contains strong clear mandates that lawyers for corporations such as Monsanto will not be able to evade.
Christine, Los Angeles

As a businesswoman, wife and mother, I am so very grateful that you have brought this critical health issue to the forefront. Please let me know what I can do to help? I really feel that we consumers have the right to know. I am not anti-science in any way but I am very anti-GMO and I don't want corporations patenting foods and the suing farmers for stealing their seed when the pollen blows into neighboring fields. There is so much that is wrong for our health, our planet and our economy with introducing virtually untested Genetically Modified Organisms.
Leslie, Cotati

I was so pleased to get your email today and learn that you are introducing the Genetically Engineered Food Right-to-Know Act. Thank you for your leadership on this very important issue. I fully support you in this effort. Good luck as you meet resistance. If this bill is passed, it will be worth the effort, I'm sure.
Karla, Orick

Thank you for your work to require labeling of genetically modified or engineered foods at the national level. This is what is needed.
Melissa, Oakland

I am so pleased to see that you support the fact that we as consumers deserve to know what we are eating and am very happy you are initiating the Genetically Engineered Food Right-to-Know Act. I for one choose to not purchase any foods that are genetically modified, which can be very difficult. I strive very hard to feed my family foods made from scratch along with freshly grown fruits and vegetables and it is very important to me to not eat GMO foods. Thank you, thank you, thank you.
Laura, Napa

THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR SPONSORING THIS BILL!!!!! I have Crohn's and Colitis, and GMO's really do a job on my gastrointestinal system, kicking my immune system into high gear! I want to remind you that the GMO genes are carried in the pollen by wind, insects, and birds, for miles (average 50 miles, more in the high winds of Hawai'i, where Monsanto has turned ALL CORN grown in the state into GMO'd corn due to these factors. I know, one step at a time..., but at some point, Monsanto should be held responsible for ruining the crops of others with their insecticide-making genes.
Nancy, Eureka

My immune system started to be impacted when genetically modified foods began to be introduced. Who would have thought eating "healthy" would be a bad thing! My allergies have increased, too; but, if I eat organic heirloom, I can still enjoy most produce! Between that and the impact on the butterfly (and I think the bee) population, I think there is common sense evidence that GMO's are to be avoided. The trick is how to avoid without labeling.
Connie, Sierra Madre

Sorry but I totally disagree with your support for this foolish proposed bill. It's a fact that passage of this bill will raise the food costs for all of us here in America and thru the world and hurt the poorest the most. It accomplishes what? The FDA has established there's no difference between GE and Non GE foods-so why put the extra burden on food makers and growers to go thru this costly extra label nonsense. This will also hurt growers from supplying the needed food for we billions and again the food poor nations being hurt the most.
Karl, Glendora

I have always so appreciated having you for my Senator, and you have now come through on an issue of unique and incredible importance. Most people, I guess, do not understand the consequences of this, nor the fact that, really, there is no going back. This is hard to believe; but we have you there fighting for sanity in this crazed, greed ridden world.
Jan, Fairfax

THANK YOU for taking a stand and sponsoring this incredibly important bill. Once it is passed, I am sure the health of countless U.S. citizens will start to improve.
Amy, Portola Valley

It is extremely important to myself and my family that we have the right to make the decision not to eat GMO foods and right know there is no way to know what we are consuming.
Diane, Redondo Beach

Information is all that we need to make honest choices. Thank you for representing us, the consumer!
Ann, Chula Vista

I am proud of you for standing up for your people in relation to this very important topic. Nice work!
Tullin, Truckee

I feel strongly that it is our right to know what we are eating. And, with that information, we will be able to make healthier dietary choices for ourselves.
Linda, La Mesa

Thank you for sponsoring this legislation. As consumers we should know what we are eating and have the choice to choose what kinds of foods we do eat.
Joyce, Willits

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Californians respond to my message on Stopping Seafood Fraud (10/15/2012):
Thank you so much for caring, to send a strong message to the FDA officials regarding safe labeling of sea-foods! As a mom, I am so happy to know you care to help empower me in my informed choices, regarding what I feed to my family! Best,
Dawn, Sausalito

Thank you for writing the FDA on this matter. As a commercial crab fisherman and seafood consumer, this matters to me. Thank you all for all you do. Sincerely,
Steve, Mckinleyville

Thank you so much for fighting for accurate labeling of seafood. As a major seafood eater, I want to be sure that when I'm eating monkfish, it's not fugu!! I appreciate your hard work on behalf of your constituents. Keep it up!
Kevin, Sunnyvale

Thank you very much, Senator Boxer, for writing to the FDA to request they address the issue of seafood fraud. We should not have to worry that seafood that we buy at restaurants or stores may be endangered species.
Sue, Palo Alto

I just wanted to say thank you for all the amazing work you do and for standing up to the FDA on the issue of seafood fraud. I've been extremely frustrated with lobbyists writing the rules and watching corporations worry more about profit than for the health of our society. I hope you continue to push for change from the FDA on this and many other issues.
Andrea, San Francisco

Thank you for bringing attention to seafood fraud. I have recently learned how much of it is going on, and hope something will be done soon to lessen the fraud. The cost of seafood is high enough to guarantee a good product. I am a senior on a fixed income who is supposed to eat more seafood, which I can barely afford. To find out that I am not getting what I am paying for is very upsetting. Please keep on this one! Thank you.
Barbara, Pleasant Hill

Consumers need to know what our dollars are contributing to. We have the right to decide whether to purchase truthfully labeled wild caught or farmed seafood as well.
Chris, Temple City

Thank you for your advocacy of correct labeling of seafood. As our resources become less available, it's more and more important that we know with precision what we have for future generations. Mislabeling seafood to escape regulation is not the kind of behavior that is conducive to preserving resources for future generations. I appreciate your support of this issue, and hope it will help with more vigorous enforcement.
Janet, Sacramento

Your message about requiring the FDA to step up their efforts to combat mislabeling of seafood made my day! Over the past months I have participated in several petition and letter campaigns to the FDA about this issue. For all I know, I may even have signed a petition to my elected representatives. If you were a recipient, I apologize for preaching to the choir. I hope that at last the FDA will realize that Oceana and its supporters are not "eco terrorists" but people concerned about the serious health problems that can arise from the consumption of mislabeled seafood.
Ileana, Riverside

Thank you so very much for your excellent, well-researched and thorough letter to the FDA. As your constituent I am very happy with your work on this issue which projects the need for a plausible accountability (that is, accountability which is not only needed, but possible) with health and safety at a most primal level: our food source. This is where it is reasonable and important to demand accountability. I hope to learn the answers you are given and with your help I intend to follow this issue as any citizen should be who is concerned that the people are not callously deceived. I have shared your letter on my Facebook page with the following comments: This news is shocking but not surprising. And clearly there are important questions that need to be answered. This is one of the most across-the-board useful and pertinent things I know of Barbara Boxer having done. Please read her letters and make "fish fraud" the dirty word it deserves to be. It puts a whole new spin on "there's something rotten in Denmark" when people are not even eating what they should be able to believe they're eating. Read it and be alarmed: the percentages are amazingly bad: 55% of fish in Los Angeles are mislabeled: 100% of Florida White Tuna are a different fish, that causes digestive problems!
Christopher, San Mateo

I want to thank you for reaching out to the FDA in an attempt to reduce the alarming amount of fraudulently labeled seafood. Not only does it pose a serious health risk for pregnant women and those with food sensitivities, it poses a serious risk to the health of our oceans. I am an extreme ocean conservationist, as I see it being the life line of a healthy environment. The seas are in peril, and overfishing is compounding the issues facing those trying desperately to reverse the status. Mislabeled seafood means to me a huge loophole for catching/selling endangered, and overfished species and profiting off of them at market. Thank you for supporting the health of Californians and the Oceans we all depend on for a healthy existence.
Sarah, Arcata

Bravo, Senator Boxer, for requesting that the FDA look into this. Our food labeling in this nation is so oftentimes dishonest, which is so unfair and sometimes harmful to consumers. We all have a right to know precisely what we are purchasing with our dollars and ingesting into our bodies--whether it be fish or any other food. Thank you for tackling this issue. Please keep up this effort.
Melanieq, Mission Viejo

I want to thank you for fighting for label transparency and for the safety of our food supply. It feels good to know that there are representatives in government still fighting for what the people want and deserve. You have my Support!
Colleen, Pacific Grove

I am totally in support of your efforts to combat seafood fraud. Keep up the good work Senator Boxer.
Brian, San Francisco

I got your email about the legislation against seafood fraud. Thank you very much for supporting this cause. I'm vegetarian myself, but I'm also Jewish and we have to be careful about what seafood we eat if we keep kosher. It's very important to us. I also share the safety concerns that people may be getting excess mercury if they're not getting the fish they think they are..
Millie, El Cajon

Thank you for bringing this issue to the FDA. I had no idea that 86% of the sea food in the US was imported! Our family appreciates your work on behalf of all citizens.
Silka, San Diego

There is so much talk of what government should and should not do. It seems that you have my priorities at heart again. Simply, thank you.
Sarah, Nevada City

I am very pleased you have taken this to the FDA. It is an important issue that needs to be address. The number of misslabelling is out of control, so I am happy I have always voted for you to watch out for the peoples interests not just big money.
Adella, Penn Valley

Thank you for contacting me on this issue. Since I live in a seaport city where seafood is a local commodity I appreciate your efforts on behalf of this industry. It's important that seafood buyers know exactly what they are getting in case of allergies and the FDA should not even have to be told through legislation to label correctly - it should be a regular part of their job. But since they seem to require a legislative reminder to do their job properly I'm happy to hear that you are among those providing that nudge. Sincerely,
Karen, Van Nuys

I completely support your position on this. I have read a lot about the conditions of the world's coral reefs, whose symbiotic relationship with fishes, is well known. I have read on the impact of farmed seafoods and finally, I understand the issues, worldwide, with the labeling of fish. Let's set a precedent and be a leader. Thank you.
Linda, San Diego

Thank you for taking action against fraudulent mislabeling of fish for consumption. I read labels on food and expect to receive truthful information as to what the contents are. We need to be able to feel not only safe in what we are consuming, we also need to feel we are being provided with truthful information. Your efforts are appreciated.
Candace, Moreno Valley

Thank you for writing to the FDA on this topic. It is a very important topic. I know several people with severe fish allergies, some of them are children, and for some of them exposure to fish can be life threatening. For some, even contact of the hands with a fish substance can cause severe rashes and splitting of the skin of the hands. Food labeling is only valuable if it is true and complete. Actually, I think this topic should be carried further, because there are many food substances that contain fish oils that are not even labeled as cont