Our country owes gratitude and respect to our veterans the entire year, which is why we didn’t contain our support for our veterans to a single day. This past week leading up to Veterans Day, the House honored our veterans by serving them with several important pieces of legislation.
McCarthy had this to say:
“As we approached Veterans Day, the best way the House could honor our veterans was by helping them and improving their lives. The House focused this week on improving veteran mental health care and suicide prevention. Whether it’s Congressman Jim Banks’s (IN-03) bill to use data analytics to improve the Veterans Crisis hotline or Congressman Mike Coffman’s (CO-06) legislation to provide better mental health care for veterans, we owe it to our veterans to give them the best. This is just our way of saying, ‘thank you for your service.’”
Below is a list of the bills the House considered this week:
- H.R. 918, Veteran Urgent Access to Mental Healthcare Act
- H.R. 1133, Veterans Transplant Coverage Act of 2017
- H.R. 1900, National Veterans Memorial and Museum Act
- H.R. 2123, Veterans E-Health and Telemedicine Support (VETS) Act
- H.R. 2601, Veterans Increased Choice for Transplanted Organs and Recovery (VICTOR) Act
- H.R. 4173, To direct the Secretary of Veterans Affairs to conduct a study on the Veterans Crisis Line
- H.R. 3657, To authorize the Secretary of Veterans Affairs to provide headstones and markers for the graves of spouses and children of veterans who are buried in tribal cemeteries
- H.R.. 3562, To authorize the Secretary of Veterans Affairs to furnish assistance for adaptations of residences of veterans in rehabilitation programs
We recently led a bipartisan congressional delegation to the U.S. Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico and the Florida Keys to survey the damage caused by Hurricanes Irma and Maria and to bear witness to the suffering of families and communities still without the basic necessities of power, water, fuel and access to health care. Only once we had arrived could we fathom the full scale of destruction wrought by the storms — and understand that smart rebuilding will require not only significant federal funding but also key changes in federal law to help protect these vulnerable areas from future damage.
Our bipartisan group was fortunate to be joined in St. Croix by U.S. Virgin Islands Del. Stacey Plaskett (D), who took us to a condemned school and a hospital that experienced severe damage and was limited in its ability to care for patients. As we drove from the school to the hospital, we passed home after home that had been completely destroyed and others with piles of clothes, furniture and other water-damaged belongings heaped in front. Virgin Islanders are doing everything they can to rebuild their lives, but they are counting on Congress to ensure that they have the resources necessary to do so.
In Puerto Rico, 3.4 million Americans continue to live in a state of frenzied recovery. We joined Puerto Rican Gov. Ricardo Rosselló and Resident Commissioner Jenniffer González-Colón (R) in Utuado, a municipality in the mountainous interior of the island. Ours was the first bipartisan, multi-member congressional delegation to visit the interior, and on the way we saw how lack of access to clean drinking water continues to be an issue. Cars lined the road where people had stopped to collect untreated stream water from a PVC pipe. As we walked through a barrio in Utuado, electrical lines hung low and debris was piled along nearly every road. Many residents spoke of how landslides devastated their property. They still had no access to electricity. Food and medicine were scarce, hope for a swift recovery even scarcer.
We had departed Washington as Democratic and Republican members on a mission to see for ourselves the devastation caused by the hurricanes. We returned as fellow Americans imbued with a shared sense that Congress must work together to do more to help the people we met — and uplifted by their extraordinary resilience in the face of hardship.
One way we can provide this help is by changing the law to allow the Federal Emergency Management Agency, Army Corps of Engineers and other federal agencies to rebuild damaged infrastructure — including buildings, roads, bridges and the power grid — not merely to the vulnerable state they were in before but to modern, 21st-century standards that can withstand future storms.
Amending the law will ensure that we can better prepare communities for future risk and use taxpayer dollars as wisely as possible. It makes little sense to require, as under current law, that buildings and infrastructure be rebuilt in the ways that made them so vulnerable to Hurricanes Irma and Maria. Instead, we ought to work across the aisle to give these communities the chance to come back stronger. Making those investments now will save taxpayer dollars in the long run. Both of us are committed to advancing this issue and working to bring our colleagues on board in this effort.
Furthermore, we are determined to ensure there is strong bipartisan support for the next supplemental emergency funding package so that affected areas such as those we visited have the resources they need.
As part of our visit to Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands and the Florida Keys, we distributed aid to struggling families. Perhaps, though, the most important resource we brought with us was the reassurance to all those affected by these storms that their fellow Americans on the mainland have not forgotten them — and that we will not leave them vulnerable to the next storm.
Kevin McCarthy, a Republican from California, is majority leader of the U.S. House of Representatives. Steny H. Hoyer, a Democrat from Maryland, is House minority whip.Read More
Congressman Kevin McCarthy (CA-23) appeared on CBS’s Face the Nation to discuss the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act—major legislation that will produce a fairer tax code, grow the economy, and benefit all hardworking Americans.
Excerpts of the interview are below, or watch online here.
On how this plan will help individuals and families:
“For decades the hardworking Americans have been ignored or forgotten from Washington, but not anymore. This Tax Cut and Jobs Act bill is going to be the start to changing that…. It lets every American keep more of what they earned. If you’re single, the first $12,000 is tax-free. If you’re a couple, the first $24,000 is tax-free. That means the average family is going to have almost $1,200 more in their pocket. And the first $55,000 a family of four earns will not be taxed at all.”
On how this plan is already making America competitive again:
“This is going to make America competitive again. Broadcom came back based upon our tax bill. This is a company who’d left America because the taxes came too high. They announced, because of the tax bill, they are moving back to America. That’s $20 billion in revenue a year, but you know what’s even more important? They will put $3 billion every year into R&D and $6 billion into manufacturing. That’s jobs—good paying jobs for America.”
On how the importance of economic growth:
“There’s a philosophical difference in Washington. Democrats want to charge more and spend more. Republicans want you to keep more of your money and spend less. One thing that Republicans have shown since they took a majority, when it comes to discretionary spending, we’ve actually cut spending…. Always in America, we’ve averaged more than 3% [gdp] growth, but we’ve had some of the lowest growth in the last eight years. If you look back to Bill Clinton, his worst growth year is higher than the largest of Barack Obama’s. Growing the economy is the key to getting us back working and helping us to be able to balance the budget.”
Congressman Kevin McCarthy (CA-23) released the following statement on House passage of H.R. 3922, the Community Health and Medical Professionals Improve Our Nation (CHAMPION) Act, which includes an extension of the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP):
“Millions of kids rely on the Children’s Health Insurance Program—millions of children who might not otherwise receive health care. Our vote today extends funding for this program for five more years, and extends for another two years vitally important public health programs, like the Teaching Health Center Graduate Medical Education Program and Community Health Centers. On top of that, every cent in this bill is paid for with common sense reforms, such as ensuring taxpayers don’t foot medical bills for lottery winners and stopping people from gaming health insurance grace periods at the expense of taxpayers.
“Nothing in this bill should be controversial, which is why it was disappointing to see 171 Democrats–almost every single Democrat member—vote against it. Nevertheless, House Republicans will not be deterred from responsibly funding children’s health care.”
America’s economy is changing rapidly. As we grow, with gig workers, start-ups, and striving unicorns working alongside and challenging traditional businesses, we need a dynamic tax code that promotes the competition, risk-taking and innovation that is the foundation of the 21st-century economy.
Republicans in the House of Representatives believe — and the economic models agree — that the reform plan we are working on with Donald Trump will streamline the tax code and grow our economy. Lowering the corporate rate to 20 per cent could even add $4,000 or more to the average American’s paycheck each year through faster economic growth, according to the White House Council of Economic Advisers.
While these macro effects are good news, we should not miss how much the plan will improve innovation and entrepreneurship — key drivers of economic growth. There are two parts of this reform that will put Americans and their ideas on top in the 21st-century economy: permanent credits toward investments in research and development; and making it easier for rank-and-file employees to own a piece of the company where they work.
The R&D tax credit originated during the Reagan tax reform renaissance. To increase private investment in research, this credit allows a company to redirect money from federal taxes to fund up to 20 per cent of its R&D spending. This research is at the core of taking ideas — big and small — and turning them into innovative products. Whether it helps cure diseases or advance technology, incentivising private research through a permanent R&D tax credit will cement the US as the innovation superpower.
Even as established companies make new discoveries, our tax code should never impede new companies from rising to the top and improving our lives. New, private companies have potential to make advances that benefit their business and society as a whole. Top talent is essential as these companies take a transformative idea from a prototype to a product. Working at, and also owning a part of, a promising start-up offers employees a greater stake in a project they truly believe in. But today, the tax code puts start-ups at a disadvantage when attracting top talent by limiting employee ownership.
Employees of private companies, especially in the technology sector, are frequently offered stock options in lieu of immediate pay. When the stock vests, or when employees choose to exercise the options, they are often met with an immediate tax bill on the gains, even if they cannot yet sell some of their stock to cover the costs. A median-income employee is unlikely to be able to afford the taxes on stock gains from a growing company, so they walk away from being equity owners for fear of the taxman.
This hurts more than job-seeking engineers and human resource officers. Less attractive private work options concentrate labour at established businesses and away from upstarts challenging the status quo, all while depriving employees of a chance to own a piece of the company they work for.
As part of the tax-reform plan, House Republicans are advocating a simple solution. We will defer the tax on private stock gains until employees can actually realise those gains by selling the stock, or at least give them a reasonable amount of time to pay the tax bill.
This will allow companies to hire and retain the best employees possible by giving them the opportunity to be owners as well. In the end, that means more innovation, more competition, more start-ups and more jobs.
We stay on top when Americans invent and build the services and products of the present and the future. Creating a dynamic tax code by ensuring a permanent R&D tax credit and placing start-ups on a competitive footing when attracting the best employees puts the US in the best position to innovate and lead in the 21st century.Read More
House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, the highest-ranking California Republican in Congress, on Wednesday challenged the state governor's warning about the proposed elimination of the state and local tax deduction in a GOP tax-reform proposal.
The same day California's state gas tax increase of 12 cents per gallon kicked in, McCarthy called on California Gov. Jerry Brown (D.) to channel his recent concern about the GOP tax reform plan into lowering state tax levels as well.
"If Gov. Brown is worried about the tax burden, let's make cutting [taxes] a federal and state project," McCarthy said in a video his office released Wednesday. "We're lowering rates at the federal level. So if Gov. Brown works to lower rates in California, I will stand right beside him to get that done."
Brown last week sent letters to the Republican members of the California Congressional delegation, calling on them to oppose any type of proposal that would eliminate the state and local tax deduction, also known as SALT. California—a populous, high-tax state—would be among the locales hit hardest by the SALT elimination in the proposed GOP tax reform.
However, McCarthy emphasized that the GOP proposal offsets the SALT elimination by doubling the standard deduction, which he said, "means the first $24,000 per couple is tax free, actually lowering rates for most Californians."
"This bill is a win for everyone, especially the people of California," McCarthy said in the video. "So when I hear Gov. Brown worried about the tax rates going up after we reform the state and local tax deduction, I take his concern to heart."
Republicans have argued that the SALT deduction would not be necessary if California's taxes were not among the highest in the nation.
The potential elimination of SALT and the gas tax increases enacted by the Democrat-dominated California legislature suggest taxes will be an issue in 2018 congressional races, where Democrats are targeting at least seven GOP seats. Democrats are unlikely to retake the majority in the House of Representatives from Republicans without forging a path through California.
Brown's office did not respond to McCarthy's challenge. His office instead referred the letter he sent California Congressional Republicans last week.
In that letter, Brown argued that "getting rid of an individual’s ability to deduct his or her California taxes is a horrible idea, but it is made far worse when you preserve—at the same time—the right of corporations to take those same deductions."
"Can you tell me how much your neighbors and fellow citizens will have to pay because of this proposal? Budget analysts say that it will cost them many thousands of dollars," he argued.
Brown and New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo also held a conference call with the media in both of their states in which they warned of the disproportionate impact the SALT elimination would have on the most populous states in the country.
Republicans counter that wealthy taxpayers benefit the most from the SALT deduction and the provision doubling the individual deduction would provide more tax relief for middle- and lower-income earners.
Both sides are digging in on the issue, looking for a rhetorical advantage that can help sway voters. House Republicans passed a budget late last week that paves the way for the GOP tax proposal to sail through the Senate without Democratic support. Most New York and New Jersey Republicans voted against the budget, citing concerns about the SALT deduction. GOP leaders are now seeking a compromise to sway enough Republicans from populous states whose residents would be impacted the most.
Republicans are fighting California's gas tax hike through ballot initiatives aimed at repealing it, as well as a recall campaigns against key Democrats who voted for it. The gas tax increase went into effect Wednesday and supporters say it is needed to fix the state's roads and bridges.
Last week, the Western Growers Association targeted two Democratic lawmakers who voted for the tax increase in radio ads, pointing out that farmers will have to pay more to transport their crops and Californians already pay some of the highest gas taxes in the country.Read More
Washington, D.C. – Congressman Kevin McCarthy (CA-23) released the following statement on the President’s decision to declare the opioid crisis a national health emergency:
“The opioid crisis is a slow poison in our country, and every day the casualty list grows in lives lost, in families broken, and in hopes abandoned. The heroin epidemic of the 1970s led to 1.5 overdose deaths per 100,000 people. In the crack cocaine epidemic, it was two per 100,000. The opioid epidemic kills 10.4 per 100,000. Over 30,000 people died from opioid overdoses—both from prescription pain relievers and heroin—in 2015 alone. As a nation, we cannot passively accept such a considerable loss of life.
“President Trump’s declaration of a public health emergency shows the bold national leadership our country needs to fight this epidemic. Resources must be redirected to respond to this crisis and bureaucracy cannot get in the way. This action builds upon the President’s implementation of Comprehensive Addiction Recovery Act, which Congress passed last year to improve prevention, treatment, recovery, overdose reversal, and our law enforcement efforts. The House continued our fight just yesterday when the House Energy and Commerce Committee held a full committee hearing on further solutions to address this crisis. We have a long road ahead as a nation, but today’s declaration is an important step towards overcoming this suffering.”
Washington, D.C. – House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (CA-23) released the following statement on House passage of H. Con. Res. 71, the FY18 Budget Resolution:
“It’s been said before, but it’s worth repeating: Passing a budget is the first step to tax reform. Today, we moved closer to enacting reform that will encourage American companies to bring American jobs back to American towns, allow people to spend minutes, not days doing their taxes, and help increase wages by $4,000 for the average family because of faster economic growth. We’re moving forward at a fast pace because America has so much to gain when we get this done.”
Washington, D.C. – Congressman Kevin McCarthy (CA-23) released the following statement on House passage of H.R. 2266, the Additional Supplemental Appropriations for Disaster Relief Requirements Act:
“Our nation has been shaken by a series of disasters—hurricanes, floods, and fires. People have lost their lives. Others have lost their homes, their businesses, and all of their possessions. In times like these, there is no question–the American people and their government are here to help. This emergency funding will help Puerto Rico, Texas, and Florida in their continued recovery. We’ve also set aside funding for the victims of the wildfires raging throughout California. These fires have moved so quickly that some have even had to flee on foot in the middle of the night. They lost everything in a matter of minutes. Overcoming these disasters will take time, but I am certain of one thing: When Americans get knocked down, we always get back up stronger than before.”
Washington, D.C. – House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (CA-23) spoke today about those within his district that have been affected by the shooting and announced he will travel with President Trump to Las Vegas tomorrow.
Remarks are below or watch online here.
“Everyone felt that loss…three of my constituents lost their lives [yesterday]. There are others in the hospital. Bailey Schweitzer was a 20-year-old girl who just attended Centennial High School. She’s a big country music fan. Her family owns the Bakersfield Speedway. She was there with her mother and friends. She was one of the best friends to my district director's daughter…Jack Beaton, is a father of two and he was celebrating his 23rd wedding anniversary with his wife. When the shots rang out, he jumped in front of his wife and he gave the ultimate sacrifice for the one he loved. Victor Link is 55 years old and was born in Shafter. His family still lives there.
“Inside the hospital is an off-duty Bakersfield police officer. Officer Aaron Mundhenke had hip surgery yesterday and they say he will make a good recovery. I have another young lady that is in the ICU.…I will travel with the president tomorrow to Las Vegas. I know in these horrific crimes, these individuals, when they try to divide our nation, it's really a time that we have to heal. It's really a time to find what divides us to put aside. I know what these families are going to go through, and we need to be there for them. We need to find that we are stronger, and we cannot allow this terror to win.”Read More
2421 Rayburn HOB
Washington, DC 20515
Congressman Kevin McCarthy represents the 23rd District of California, which spans Kern, Tulare, and Los Angeles counties. First elected in 2006, Kevin is a native of Bakersfield and a fourth-generation Kern County resident. He is committed to policies that give small businesses and entrepreneurs the confidence they need to hire, expand, invest and innovate. After the 2010 midterm elections, Kevin was elected by his colleagues to serve as Majority Whip of the United States House of Representatives.
Kevin started his own small business before the age of 21. He built Kevin O’s Deli from the ground up, even enlisting his father’s help in building the deli’s counter in their garage. He worked hard, hired employees and enjoyed success in his community. That’s also where he first encountered government overregulation. The countless frivolous and redundant rules, as well as the taxes small businesses like his were burdened with, spurred Kevin’s interest in public service. When Kevin sold his business, he used the profits to put himself through college and graduate school. He received both his undergraduate degree and his Masters in Business Administration from California State University, Bakersfield.
During college, Kevin accepted an internship with then-Congressman Bill Thomas, and soon became a member of Congressman Thomas’s staff. Kevin won his first election in 2000 as Trustee to the Kern Community College District. In 2002, McCarthy was elected to represent the 32nd Assembly District in the California State Assembly. As a freshman legislator, he was selected unanimously by his Republican colleagues to serve as the Assembly Republican Leader, becoming the first freshman legislator and the first legislator from Kern County to assume the top Republican post in the California State Assembly. Kevin worked with his colleagues in the Assembly and Senate and with the Governor to reduce California’s budget deficit, overhaul the state worker’s compensation system and enhance California’s business climate to create more opportunities for California workers and businesses until he ran for Congress in 2006.
Kevin brings his personal experience as a small business owner and as an effective leader in the statehouse to Washington D.C. In his role as Majority Whip, Kevin leads the effort in Congress to advance common sense policies that will put America back on the path to prosperity. Since gaining control of the House in November 2010, Kevin and his Republican colleagues have blocked the largest tax increase in American history, cut out-of-control government spending by historic levels and passed numerous pieces of legislation that will help create jobs in America. These bills reduce the burden on small businesses, increase our nation’s energy security by promoting domestic energy production, knock down barriers for small business owners to access capital and help increase certainty for the private sector.
Kevin will continue to fight to get Washington’s fiscal house in order while promoting policies that empower the private sector to invest and create jobs.
When Kevin is not in Washington fighting for the constituents of California’s 23rd District and for the future of America, he is home in Bakersfield with his wife Judy and two children Connor and Meghan.
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The House and Senate have agreed to a unified tax plan, and we’ll deliver it to the President’s desk just in time f… https://t.co/3NUsK1XokU
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The House will vote on this bill on Tuesday, and after that our country will stand on stronger footing so we can co… https://t.co/St65y2of8M
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The House will vote on the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act next week. https://t.co/Fc0PlySsre