Governor Hutchinson’s Weekly Address | My Year as President of the National Governors Association: Asa Hutchinson, Governor of Arkansas

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Governor Hutchinson’s Weekly Address | My year as president of the National Governors Association

Governor Hutchinson’s weekly radio address is available in MP3 format and can be downloaded HERE.

LITTLE STONE – Two weeks ago I passed the gavel to my successor as President of the National Governors Association, and today I’d like to talk about my year at the helm of the NGA and the opportunity to work with other governors on some of our nation’s biggest projects. challenges.

I accepted the gavel virtually in my office on Capitol Hill a year ago during the NGA’s summer annual meeting.

This year we met in Maine, so I personally passed the gavel to the new president, New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy.

My tenure as president provided an opportunity to showcase Arkansas and our IT initiative, which I have declared my president’s priority. On my last day as president, a record 50 state and territory governors had signed the Computer Education Pact.

By signing, the governors pledged to establish plans to expand computing in schools and to fund expansion so that we can create new pathways to success after high school.

At the NGA’s summer meeting, Patrick Gelsinger, CEO of Intel, spoke about the value of our initiative. Mr. Gelsinger noted that modern life is becoming increasingly digital and that everything digital runs on semiconductors. Semiconductor manufacturing takes talent and money, so we need to provide top-notch education to our young people.

He also discussed the federal CHIPS law, which stands for Creating Helpful Incentives to Produce Semiconductors for America. The CHIPS Act would provide approximately $50 billion in subsidies to support computer chip manufacturing in the United States. Congress passed the bill, whose goal is to reduce the United States’ reliance on foreign-made chips. The CHIPS Act enjoyed bipartisan support from governors.

On my first day as President in July 2021, I reminded my fellow governors that states are laboratories of democracy. I challenged them to innovate, figure out what works best, and share what they learned.

I suggested that we should lead with civil discourse, respect others in our debates, and transcend party differences to work together. These words were as relevant today as they were a year ago.

As I reflect on my tenure as NGA President, I am grateful and amazed at the opportunities I have had to serve. I grew up on a farm. My father was a farmer and neither of my parents graduated from college. But they gave my siblings and me opportunities they never had. Thanks to their sacrifice, I had incredible opportunities in life.

In the public arena, I served as a United States Attorney under Ronald Reagan and in the United States Congress. In the Bush administration, I served as Administrator of the Drug Enforcement Administration and Undersecretary of Homeland Security. I have prosecuted neo-Nazis and criminal organizations. I helped guide the nation after 9/11. I went back to Arkansas and then eight years later ran for governor and won.

I shared with the governors that I tried to follow my parents’ example and live by their faith and work ethic. I hope that as governors we will inspire our young people to participate in our democracy and understand the importance of public service.

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