Re-Introduction of the STAR Act in the 115th Congress
Congressman Michael T. McCaul is serving his sixth term in the United Sates Congress representing Texas’ 10th Congressional district, which stretches from Austin to Houston.
Rep. McCaul is the co-chair of the Congressional Childhood Cancer Caucus, which he founded in 2009 in an effort to better direct congressional resources and efforts to the cause of preventing pediatric cancer, the leading disease killer of our nation’s children. The Caucus strives to raise awareness about pediatric cancer, advocate in support of measures to prevent the pain, suffering and long-term effects of childhood cancers, and work toward the goal of eliminating cancer as a threat to all children.
The Caucus has focused its efforts on four priorities: pediatric cancer drug development, childhood cancer survivorship, psychosocial care for survivors and their families, and funding for state childhood cancer registries. Congressman McCaul is the author of numerous pieces of legislation that address these challenges.
In the 112th Congress (2012), Congressman McCaul successfully passed the McCaul-Butterfield Creating Hope Act, which provides market incentives to pharmaceutical companies to develop new drugs for children with rare pediatric diseases, such as childhood cancers and sickle cell. The bill expands the cost-neutral Food and Drug Administration priority review voucher (PRV) program, allowing pharmaceutical companies to expedite FDA review of more profitable drugs in return for developing treatments for rare pediatric diseases. Since 1980, the FDA has approved only one new drug for treatment of childhood cancer, compared to dozens for adults.
In addition, Congressman McCaul serves as Chairman of the House Committee on Homeland Security; as a senior member of the Foreign Affairs Committee and on the Science, Space and Technology Committee.
Prior to Congress, Michael McCaul served as Chief of Counter Terrorism and National Security in the U.S. Attorney’s office in Texas, and led the Joint Terrorism Task Force charged with detecting, deterring and preventing terrorist activity. He also served as Texas Deputy Attorney General under current U.S. Senator John Cornyn, and as a federal prosecutor in the Department of Justice’s Public Integrity Section in Washington, D.C.
A fourth generation Texan, Congressman McCaul earned a B.A. in Business and History from Trinity University and holds a J.D. from St. Mary’s University School of Law. He is also a graduate of the Senior Executive Fellows Program of the School of Government, Harvard University.
Congressman McCaul and his wife Linda live in Austin with their five children: Caroline, Jewell, and the triplets Lauren, Michael and Avery. Rep. McCaul returns home from Washington, D.C. almost every week to be with his family and constituents.
As co-chair of the Childhood Cancer Caucus, Congressman Chris Van Hollen has been a tireless advocate for the thousands of children, adolescents, and young adults diagnosed with pediatric cancer and their families. He co-authored the landmark Caroline Pryce Walker Conquer Childhood Cancer Act and played an integral role in its enactment into law in 2008. Congressman Van Hollen, whose district includes the National Institutes of Health (NIH), has been a leader in the charge for federal investment in biomedical research that will lead to new, improved treatments and hopefully a cure for childhood cancer.
Congressman Van Hollen was elected to Congress in 2002 in a high-profile election that received national attention. He quickly earned a reputation as an active, engaged, and effective member of Congress, rising to become one of the youngest members of the Democratic leadership in 2008. In addition to representing the Eighth District of Maryland and serving in House leadership, Congressman Van Hollen was elected by his colleagues in 2010 to serve as the top Democrat on the House Budget Committee.
Throughout his career, Congressman Van Hollen has been a champion of education, energy, the environment, health care, and civil rights. He is a leader on cleaning up the Chesapeake Bay, and fought successfully to obtain a historic boost in federal funds for the Bay as part of the Farm Bill and to secure provisions in the Recovery Act that provided loan guarantees for renewable energy projects. He also played an integral role in the effort to pass comprehensive health care reform and fought to ensure that young adults receive expanded access to health insurance. He has been a staunch advocate for critical government reforms. He led the fight to pass far-reaching lobbying disclosure reform and has been a key supporter of whistleblower protections. A former professional staff member on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Congressman Van Hollen has a strong background in national security policy. He lived and studied abroad in South Asia and has remained active in issues related to U.S. foreign policy in that region and around the world.
Before his election to the U.S. House of Representatives, Congressman Van Hollen served 4 years in the Maryland House of Delegates and 8 years in the Maryland Senate. His legislative record in Annapolis earned him the praise of The Washington Post, which called him “one of the most effective members of the Maryland legislature.” He is a graduate of Swarthmore College, the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University, and Georgetown University Law Center. He lives in Kensington, Maryland with his wife, Katherine, and their three children, Anna, Nicholas, and Alexander.