By Kevin Brady
In Congress my most important constitutional duty is the defense of our country and the Americans who live within it.
The world is a dangerous place these days. This is no time to allow our military or intelligence to be hollowed out. In the next few weeks Congress will consider measures to ensure our military and intelligence warriors have what it takes to keep our families and communities safe.
More Americans are being radicalized by shrewd terror groups like ISIS than our Federal Bureau of Investigations wants to admit. And the FBI numbers are already pretty scary.
The FBI has ongoing terror investigations in 49 states where suspects may have ties to the Islamic State. Beyond the terror attack in Boston, federal officials have apprehended suspects plotting terror attacks in Kansas, New York, Illinois and Washington, D.C.
FBI Director James Comey says hundreds, maybe thousands, are being recruited on heavily encrypted websites. Congressman Michael McCaul, a fellow Texan who chairs the House Homeland Security Committee, puts it bluntly: "Terrorism has gone viral."
Islamic State terrorists claim to be ready to attack in over a dozen states. They also claim to have dozens of "trained soldiers" pre-positioned and awaiting orders to carry out more terror.
Whether this information is true or just blustering, America needs to be properly prepared to identify and stop terrorist actions on our soil before they occur. We will need to achieve this with full military and intelligence capabilities and full protection of our constitutional rights. That's no easy task.
The U.S. Senate voted 98-to-one to approve a bi-partisan bill requiring President Obama to submit any nuclear deal with Iran to Congress for review. The Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act now moves to the U.S. House for a vote this week.
The bill sets times for Congress to vote on any proposed Iran deal. And during that period the President must keep the current sanctions against Iran in place. Senators of both parties are clearly as skeptical as I am about the potential deal Secretary of State Kerry has been crafting with the terrorist state of Iran.
In my view, any agreement that doesn't end Iran's nuclear program is a bad deal for America and for the security of the Middle East. America can't give Iran any kind of blessing for Iran's nuclear aspirations.
In addition to considering Iran, military and intelligence matters, the U.S. House will vote on my legislation to restore America's leadership in innovation. My bill modernizing and making permanent the Research & Development tax credit will encourage R & D investment in America rather than overseas. It will create jobs, break-through technologies and economic growth here in the U.S.
America is rapidly falling behind our global competitors in research -- especially China which could surpass us by the end of the decade. Unless we act to encourage more U.S. research, our economy will suffer while middle class families and talented college graduates will see jobs and opportunity lost to foreign countries.