Getting to Work

I'm heading back to Washington DC after what was a very full several days back home. Perhaps the highlight of the weekend was the ribbon cutting for the Bainbridge Island's first-mile of the Sound to Olympics Trail. I was excited to be there for a number of reasons. First and foremost, it provides a great path for folks to hike and bike in an amazing community. One of the reasons people in our region appreciate nature so much is because they have access to nature. As this trail gets expanded, … Continue Reading


Enough is Enough

I write this week knowing that I'm competing for your time with the Olympics, so I'll try to make this read faster than an American speedskater with a half-second advantage on a Dutch rival. In addition to feeling pretty old seeing all the young faces on Team USA and brushing up on my air triple axel techniques, I've been heartened to see Americans from every part of the country competing so hard in South Korea. It is so cool to see these folks who've spent their whole lives working to get to th… Continue Reading


Where we go from here...

I saw a news report the other day that said just 8 percent of the country has a great deal of confidence in Congress. I don't blame them! The federal government shutdown is the perfect example why. In this update, I want to explain how things got where they are, and give you some updates that may be helpful if you've been directly affected by this. The best path forward is a long-term, bipartisan spending plan. That's the way to protect the military and federal workers in our region from the p… Continue Reading


2018 Resolutions

Happy 2018! New Year's Day is one of my favorite holidays. First, it's my birthday (44 this time around)! Second, there's always a bunch of great college football bowl games on. But most importantly, it's great that once a year we take stock of our lives and make an effort to think about the positive changes we can make in the year ahead. I've definitely got a few resolutions I'm working on in my personal life (less unhealthy food, more taking the stairs instead of the elevator). But since I'm… Continue Reading


Checking in from Washington DC

I'm reaching out today with a heavy heart after the tragedy earlier this morning when Amtrak 501 derailed. I want to send my thoughts and prayers to everyone that has been affected by this, particularly those injured and the families of those we lost today. I was devastated when I heard the news. I'm thankful for the quick response by emergency services, and the cooperation and assistance from the military. People all over the region lined up to give blood today and there are reports that motori… Continue Reading


The Inside Scoop on What's Happening in Washington, DC This Week

My newsletter is a little different this week because a lot of folks back home are worried about the potential for a government shutdown. I wanted to give you an inside scoop about what's going on because this has big consequences for our region. The way we got here is pretty ridiculous. Here's the back story: Back in 2011, in order to incentivize Democrats and Republicans to come together around a compromise to address our nation's long-term debt, Republicans in Congress and President Obama a… Continue Reading


Pre-Thanksgiving Update

It's the end of November, which means the Kilmer family is already thinking about the large amount of turkey (and, my personal favorite, PIE) that will be consumed by the end of the week. Our plan for Thanksgiving is to take the kids to serve food at the Rescue Mission for a few hours and then have some family time. This year, I'm thankful for my family. I'm thankful for those who serve our country in the military. I'm thankful for the opportunity to represent each of you. And I'm thankful tha… Continue Reading


Pumpkins and House Plans

If you're like my family, you might just be coming out of your Halloween-induced candy coma. The Kilmer pumpkins this year even changed themes. As you can see, my kids' obsession with Hamilton has been cemented (even if it is in the form of a giant, rotting fruit). Personally, I'm relieved that Star Wars jack-o-lanterns are still part of our tradition. Halloween wasn't the only exciting event in the past two weeks. Read on for the news! Pushing for a Fairer Tax System Here's the good new… Continue Reading


Preventing Electoral Funny Business

In my work throughout our region I meet a lot of folks. I treasure the conversations we have, the ideas I hear, and the opportunity to occasionally tell some stories and jokes. There has been a lot of talk lately on the national level about what divides us. It seems like we can't go a day without a new controversy exploding on Twitter and heating up cable news. But when you meet people supporting local nonprofits at Shelton's Oyster Fest, or talk with folks at local employers like Kitsap Cred… Continue Reading


The Waiting is the Hardest Part

It's admittedly a bummer for me to see the legendary musicians that I grew up with passing away. Every few months, I feel like another iconic performer leaves us. Just last week we saw the passing of the legendary rocker Tom Petty. Frankly, Tom Petty's greatest hits could describe much of what we've seen out of Congress in recent years. "Stop Dragging My Heart Around?" Yup."Don't Do Me Like That?" For sure!"Free Fallin'?" Check. And I can assure you that I've repeatedly listened to "I Won't B… Continue Reading


About that Friend Request

As readers of my newsletter, many of you have probably visited my Facebook page too (and if you haven't, what's stopping you?!?!) It's a great way to share where I've been in our region and what I'm working on as your representative in Washington D.C. I say this not as a shameless plug for my page (but really, you should visit) but to note that increasingly, folks are getting a majority of their news and information from social media. Social media networks like Facebook are now a public square … Continue Reading


Getting Back on Our Feet

In America, we all have disagreements. That's part of life. We can argue about what version of Pearl Jam's Better Man is the absolute best (I'll take the guitar and organ version on the Vitalogy Extended Edition any day). We can argue over fantasy football or over which team has the second-best fan base in the NFL (because obviously the Seahawks are first). And yes, in the public arena, we can have passionate debates about the best way to do things like reform our tax system. But even when w… Continue Reading


Fall Deadlines

Like a lot of families, the Kilmers are gearing up for back to school. It was a full summer for my daughters, Sophie and Tess, with trips to Hurricane Ridge, Neah Bay (this weekend - for Makah Days!), and a few summer camps. The highlight, for me, was watching their performance last weekend at the completion of their Theater Camp at the Admiral Theater in Bremerton. I was proud to watch Sophie fly across the stage (not literally) as Peter Pan and Tess embrace the role of Maleficent. It speaks v… Continue Reading


I've Been Everywhere, Man!

I'm beginning to understand what Johnny Cash was singing about when he said, "I've been everywhere, man." Over the past couple of weeks, I feel like I've visited most of the nooks and crannies of our region. Yesterday, I completed my summer town hall tour. I held one in each of the six counties that I represent (thanks to all who showed up in Chimacum, Tacoma, Port Angeles, Poulsbo, Belfair, and Aberdeen). Plus, I did a Seniors Town Hall on Bainbridge Island and took questions at both the Pouls… Continue Reading


Come Together

Raise your hand if you are able to jump in a canoe, push off from Seattle, travel 200 miles over waterways, and finally pull up to the Campbell River in Canada (Full disclosure: I am not raising my hand right now). With August starting tomorrow I wanted to highlight a remarkable group of Native Americans in our state that are doing just that by participating in the annual Canoe Journey. On August 5th about 100 canoes will land on the Campbell River Spit after paddling through ancient marine hi… Continue Reading


Working Hard to Grow Jobs

This past weekend was a busy one for me. From the Quileute Tribal Festival out in LaPush to Kitsap Pride in Bremerton, from the Summer Arts Festival in Gig Harbor to the Geoduck Festival in Allyn, I covered a lot of territory and had a lot of amazing conversations. In a lot of those discussions, I was struck by the fact that, folks didn't just talk about what they were against. People spoke to me about their hopes. They talked about what they're for. It's safe to say that I've got my fair shar… Continue Reading


Pancakes on Fourth of July

Not only are we fully in the summer season, tomorrow is also the Fourth of July! This Independence Day, I'll be starting my day with two pancake breakfasts (because you can never have enough pancakes), and then I'll be participating in three parades. I'm looking forward to seeing you out and about as we celebrate our country. Keep your eyes out and say hello if you see me. Remember - I work for you! It's been a busy couple of weeks so let's get on with the rest! Protecting our nation's secu… Continue Reading


An Example for Congress

Last week, a lot of Americans woke up to a breaking news alert that has become all too familiar: a mass shooting in a public place. This time, it was a baseball diamond near Washington D.C. and some of my Republican colleagues were attacked. These members, staffers, and others were up early for a practice ahead of the Congressional baseball game which is held each year to support charities. Sadly, instead of chasing fly balls, they had to scramble to get away from a man with a gun. We pray that… Continue Reading


A Need for Leadership

When I was kid growing up in Port Angeles, I played on a pee-wee soccer team called the Maroon Monsters. We were a decent team though, as kids, we could often be more interested in bugs in the grass than in kicking the ball. I remember our coach occasionally shouting from the sideline, "Get in the game, guys!" He reminded us that staying with it doesn't just mean you'll have a better chance to score. It also teaches you a thing or two about leadership and working together toward a common goal… Continue Reading


Walk and Chew Gum

What a glorious weekend! The last eight months have affirmed the old saying that here in our state we don't tan - we rust! In fairness, it's only really rained twice since October -- once for six months straight, and then again for two months. But beyond the weather, this weekend saw some amazing celebrations of community. I visited Port Townsend for the Rhododendron Festival Parade and participated in the Armed Forces Day festivities in Bremerton. It was terrific to see so many people, enjoyin… Continue Reading

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