Sam Graves

Sam Graves

MISSOURI's 6th DISTRICT

Graves applauds the historic passage of tax reform

2017/11/16

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today, U.S. Representative Sam Graves, (MO-6), issued the following statement after the House passed the Tax Cut and Jobs Act:

“The last time Americans experience major tax reform was in 1986, under President Reagan. Over the last few decades, our broken tax code has failed Americans. Today, with this passage, we are one step closer to delivering on our promise to bring more jobs, fairer taxes, and bigger paychecks to middle-class Americans” said Graves.

“I am encouraged by this tax legislation. At its core, we are ensuring that North Missourians keep more of their hard-earned money. I look forward to bringing much-needed relief to families across the country and building a stronger America.

Currently, only around 28% of people living in North Missouri choose to itemize their tax returns.  That means that around 70% take the standard deduction.  With this legislation, North Missourians would effectively double the amount of money they can write off on their taxes.  For those filing individually, the money one earns free from taxation would increase from $6,350 to $12,000 and for those filing jointly, one will see an increase from $12,700 to $24,000. Most Missouri households are expected to see an additional $2,421 in take-home pay.

CLICK HERE to read the full legislative text of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.

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Saving the Family Farm

2017/11/16

A famous quote says, “There’s nothing certain in life except death and taxes.”

It’s ironic and infuriating then that the government taxes your death. It’s known as the “Death Tax” or the “Estate Tax” or the “Inheritance Tax” and it applies to anything you might hope to pass on such as money, equipment, or land to your loved ones. No matter what you call it, a tax that kicks in when you die is absurd. It’s not the government’s money to begin with!

Farmers are hit especially hard by the death tax. After a lifetime of acquiring land and equipment to help provide food for the world, farmers are subjected to an additional tax on their estate when they die. The real effect of this double, and sometimes triple, taxation is felt by the late farmer’s family.

While many folks receive an inheritance in the form of a check or stocks and bonds, the family farmer passes on his life’s work and ensures that farming continues as a way of life in North Missouri and around the country.

It’s no wonder that our kids and grandkids aren’t choosing to farm when they grow up. It’s expensive enough to get a farming operation off the ground, much less keep it in the family after giving part of it to the government.

I believe your death shouldn’t be a taxable event. Farmers shouldn’t work all of their life, saving and paying taxes, just to have the government show up with another bill for them and their family when they die.

That’s why a crucial part of tax reform is getting rid of the death tax. We’ve been able to increase the amount exempted from the tax in the past but that’s not enough. The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act will provide immediate relief from the death tax by doubling the earnings exemption with a full elimination of the tax after six years.

As a sixth-generation family farmer and small businessman, I know firsthand the importance of tax reform. Meaningful tax reform must benefit rural Missourians and our plan does just that. We’ve waited more than 30 years; it’s time for a tax system that benefits everyone.

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Preserving Veterans' History

2017/11/08

Dear Friend,

On Saturday, November 11th, 2017, our country will celebrate Veterans Day. For those history buffs, this day was originally named Armistice Day, marking the anniversary of the end of World War I, which was on the 11th hour, of the 11th day, of the 11th month of 1918.

This special occasion provides all Americans with an opportunity to come together and pay tribute to the nearly 21.5 million veterans who have served in our nation’s Armed Forces.

It’s important that we take time to remember the veterans in our lives. We owe an immeasurable amount of gratitude to those heroes. Their everlasting courage and bravery has helped to ensure that America will always be the land of the free and the home of the brave.

From one history buff to another, I would like to share an opportunity with you to ensure that our veteran’s story becomes a part of America’s rich history. Several years ago, at the direction of Congress, the Library of Congress created the Veterans History Project. The project was established to collect, preserve and make accessible the firsthand remembrances of America’s veterans from WWI through the more recent conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan so that future generations may hear directly from veterans and better understand the realities of war. There are over 100,000 stories that have been collected and now will remain archived in the Library of Congress forever.

Anyone can view the Veterans History Project or find out more about contributing to the project by visiting www.loc.gov/vets/. I would encourage you to take some time and listen to the stories of the true patriots of our great country.

Let’s honor our veterans this year by making sure our nation’s history tells the story of the brave men and women who have selflessly served the United States of America.



Sincerely,

Sam Graves 

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Graves Issues Statement on the Tax Cut and Jobs Act

2017/11/02

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today, U.S. Representative Sam Graves, (MO-6), issued the following statement on tax reform legislation:

“The current tax code does not work for Americans. It is too complicated and Americans pay too much. Over the last decade, many hard-working Americans have struggled to find good-paying jobs, make ends meet, provide for their families and plan for their retirement. The bill released today includes a means to allow individuals and families to keep more of the money they earn,” said Graves.

“America’s tax code should be working for you, not against, and you should count on paying fewer taxes from the start. This bill will give most north Missourians a tax cut allowing us to strengthen and grow the middle class and build a stronger America.”

“I am encouraged by this tax legislation, and I look forward to bringing much-needed relief to families across north Missouri.”

Background

 

  • CLICK HERE to read the full legislative text of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.
  • CLICK HERE to read the section-by-section summary of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.
  • CLICK HERE to read the policy highlights in the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.
  • CLICK HERE to read examples of how the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act will help Americans of all walks of life.

 

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A Tax Code that Works for Missourians

2017/11/01

Dear Friend,

World famous scientist Albert Einstein once said after attempting to fill out his tax returns - "This is too difficult for a mathematician. It takes a philosopher." 

Indeed, we live under a tax code that is simply too complicated. Figuring out what we owe shouldn’t be so hard that we have to write another check just to fill out the form correctly. 

October 22, 1986, was the last time a major reform to the American tax code was signed into law. That was over 30 years ago.

If you work hard for a day’s pay, you’ve probably felt like the system was stacked against you. While special interest groups pay their high priced lawyers to find the latest loopholes, everyday Americans just hope they get a refund to cover the cost of tax preparation. Over the last decade, too many hard-working Americans have struggled to find good-paying jobs, make ends meet, provide for their families and plan for their retirement. It’s past time to help the middle class get the upper hand!

Strengthening and growing the middle class is how we build a stronger America. With that focus in mind, we are introducing a bill that will lower the tax burden for families and small businesses. No one should have to sift through medical bills and receipts to save a few bucks on their tax returns. America’s tax code should be working for you, not against, and you should count on paying fewer taxes from the start. 

Middle-class Americans shouldn’t just be hoping for a bigger tax refund at the end of the year, they should be guaranteed to pay less. That is why lowering tax rates is so important. My goal from the start was to put more money in your pocket and we accomplish this by lowering tax rates and simplifying things. With a simplified tax code, you should be able to fill out your taxes on a document the size of a postcard, saving you time and money. 

While most North Missourians will get a pay raise, our small businesses stand to benefit from tax reform as well. Meaningful tax reform will allow them to expand and create more better-paying jobs right here at home. 

More jobs, fairer taxes, bigger paychecks. That’s how a 21st Century tax code works for you. 

We’ve talked about it long enough; now it’s time to make it happen.



Sincerely,

Sam Graves 

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Graves Takes Action on Iran

2017/10/26

WASHINGTON, D.C. – This week, U.S. Representative Sam Graves, (MO-6), member of the Armed Services Committee, voted on a series of bills to further hold the Iranian regime accountable for their reckless behavior. Earlier this month, President Trump announced a new strategy to impose harder-hitting sanctions to counter Iran’s aggression and their relationships with terrorist organizations.

“These sanctions are a major step in the right direction towards a safer and more secure America,” said Graves. “Iran has antagonized the world by testing ballistic missiles, selling international arms, and supporting state-sponsored terrorism. These steps are the tougher approach we need to counter Iranian threats.”

Representative Graves is committed to working with the President to strengthen our national security and military to ensure violent actors never threaten the United States of America.

Background

H.R. 1698, the Iran Ballistic Missiles and International Sanctions Enforcement Act

  • Mandates the President to impose sanctions on foreign persons and entities involved with Iran’s ballistic missile program and those who provide or receive conventional weapons from Iran

H.R. 3342, Sanctioning Hizballah’s Illicit Use of Civilians as Defenseless Shields Act

  • Mandates that the President identify and impose sanctions on foreign persons or entities affiliated with Hizballah who are responsible for violations of human rights due to their use of civilians as human shields, or have provided, tried to provide, or facilitated the provision of material support to that terrorist group

H.R. 3329, Hizballah International Financing Prevention Amendments Act of 2017

  • Requires the President to impose sanctions on foreign persons who provide significant support to Hizballah’s fundraising and recruitment efforts
  •  Further imposes sanctions on agencies of foreign governments that provide financial support and arms, including stiffer sanctions for designated state-sponsors of terrorism; and calls for sanctions on financial intuitions that serve Lebanese officials affiliated with Hizballah

H.Res. 359, Urging the European Union to designate Hizballah in its entirety as a terrorist organization and increase pressure on it and its members

 

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Opioid Crisis: Tearing Our Communities and Families Apart

2017/10/25

Over the years, different illegal drugs have been abused as they become more accessible and cheaper to purchase. Now, heroin, laced with synthetic opioids, has quickly become the latest epidemic to devastate our communities. 

Daily news reports document countless heart-wrenching stories of fatal overdoses nationwide. This growing epidemic is infiltrating our homes, schools, and workplaces. Additionally, many of whom have died from an overdose aren’t frequent users, but rather first time users who made a terrible decision. 

Heroin overdose deaths have dramatically increased due to a drug called Fentanyl. The opioid is 50 times more powerful than heroin and 100 times more powerful than morphine. Heroin dealers are now using Fentanyl to make this lethal concoction stronger and are selling a synthetic version which has led to over 20,000 deaths in the United States in 2016 alone.

Many of our North Missouri communities have taken action, both through enforcement and education, but also by having anti-overdose medication available to save lives. More needs to be done!

President Trump has said the opioid crisis is a national emergency and action must be taken on the national level.

Congress has taken note. 

We know that most of the illicit fentanyl that makes its way to the U.S. comes from Mexico and China.

That is why, this week, I voted for H.R. 2142, the INTERDICT Act, which will give the U.S. Customs and Border Protection Agency (CBP) upgraded tools for chemical screening devices to detect drugs such as Fentanyl. Equipping CBP with these devices will help ensure that they are able to stop these deadly drugs from entering our country before it kills more of our families, friends and neighbors. 

The opioid crisis affects each and every one of us as it continues to grow at a rapid rate. Solving this epidemic won’t be quick or easy, but all of us can play a part.

This Saturday, I encourage each of you to participate in National Take Back Day. This nationwide effort will also be happening across Northern Missouri. It’s a chance for you to be a part of the solution and keep unused prescription drugs from getting into the wrong hands. If you have unused prescription drugs, take them to a drop off location near you to be disposed of. To find a drop off location near you, please visit the Drug Enforcement Administration’s website for more information.

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Bringing Relief to Obamacare Victims

2017/10/18

Obamacare is broken.

It wasn’t long after the law was passed that we began hearing those very words.

And it’s true. Many Missourians lost the insurance plans that they were promised they could keep, premium prices doubled, and doctors are harder to find. Barack Obama promised his namesake law would boost the economy, but across the country, millions of Americans as well as small businesses reported ObamaCare harmed their ability to afford access to care for their families and employees.

More than 1500 counties, including most in North Missouri, will only have one health insurance option in 2018 and that option will likely cost more than it did this year. As predicted, when the law was passed paying the penalty for not having insurance is cheaper than actually having it. Most of those households choosing to pay the penalty make less than $50,000. They have to choose between daily essentials or paying high premiums and high-deductibles for insurance they can’t even use. Health insurance coverage is meaningless if you cannot afford to use it or if you don't have access to quality care.

That’s why I am happy to see President Trump sign an Executive Order last week which starts the process of dismantling the burdensome regulations imposed on everyday Americans and small business owners by Obamacare. This takes the first step in providing millions of Americans with Obamacare relief they desperately need.

The President’s action will help make more health insurance options available to North Missourians. Anyone who is in between jobs or only serviced by one insurer could potentially get more access to short-term insurance.

Small businesses would also get the opportunity to join with other small businesses, even those across state lines, to provide more affordable health insurance to their employees. Selling health insurance across state lines is something I have pushed for from the start and I’m glad to see that the idea is moving forward. Our small businesses are the backbone of this country. They should be able to provide health insurance to their employees at an affordable cost. This executive order will give them the opportunity to do that.

These welcomed changes are a positive step in the right direction, but there is still more work to be done. I look forward to working with my fellow colleagues in the House to continue our push to keep our seven-year promise to repeal and replace Obamacare. Failure is not an option.

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Graves named to National Defense Authorization Act Conference Committee

2017/10/12

WASHINGTON, D.C. – House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) announced today that he has selected Representative Sam Graves (R-MO) to serve on the National Defense Authorization Act Conference Committee that is tasked with working out differences between the House and Senate versions of National Defense legislation. 

Graves released the following statement:

“Providing the resources for a strong military is a critical responsibility of the federal government and it’s always been a top priority of mine in Congress.  I’m happy to continue the good work we have done in the House that strengthens our military and ensures our troops get the treatment, equipment, and pay they deserve,” Graves said.

“Additionally, I’ll be in a unique position to see that my request to secure further modernization of the Air National Guard’s C-130H fleet stays in the final bill.  The C-130H is such an important aircraft to our military, and serves as a force multiplier to active duty, reserve and guard units across the world. It is often on the front lines of combat, protecting the lives of hundreds of thousands of Americans, and it also serves vital global humanitarian purposes as seen most recently in the 139th Airlift Wing’s response to the hurricanes that ripped through Texas, Florida and Puerto Rico.”

The Conference Committee is expected to convene until a final conference report is produced and voted on in each chamber, then signed into law by the President.

Background:

Congressman Graves serves as a member of the Armed Services Committee which covers all operations within the Department of Defense including those at the 139th Airlift Wing.  On July 14th, the House passed H.R. 2810, the National Defense Authorization Act of 2018, by a vote of 344-81.

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The War on Coal is Over

2017/10/11

In 2008, then Presidential candidate Obama declared war on coal, stating that his regulations would "bankrupt the coal industry." As President, he did exactly as promised.  

Excessive, burdensome regulations came pouring out of the Environmental Protection Agency and when it came to coal-fired power plants, the final blow was called the "Clean Power Plan."

The "Clean Power Plan" was implemented by President Obama in 2015 requiring coal-fired power plants to drastically reduce carbon dioxide emissions. The benchmarks were so drastic that it would have shut many coal burning power plants down, drastically increasing rates, and hampering our economy for years to come.

While some coastal elites felt it was noble to enact more stringent regulations on power generators, the reality was that the "Clean Power Plan" placed the crushing weight of regulation squarely on the backs of those who use electricity - you and I.

Because of this, I and many of my colleagues in Congress came together to pass a bill disapproving of the "Clean Power Plan." Not surprisingly, President Obama vetoed it.

Thankfully, implementation of the Clean Power Plan was halted by the Supreme Court in 2016 and has been on hold since that time.

Earlier this year, EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt paid a visit to Missouri's Thomas Hill Energy Center, a low sulfur coal-fired power plant that is responsible for providing energy for many of our electric co-ops in North Missouri. That particular plant has already been doing its part to reduce emissions. While there, Pruitt declared on behalf of the Trump Administration that "the war on coal is over!"

Yesterday, after significant review, Administrator Pruitt made good on that promise by announcing that President Trump's EPA is proposing to repeal the "Clean Power Plan" rule.

This is yet another step in undoing the harm done during the last Administration and ensuring we have a thriving economy moving forward.

As a farmer, and representative of a largely agricultural district, I understand that we must be good stewards of the land. However, we cannot stand for politicians who overstep their authority by regulating industries vital to rural Missouri out of existence. 

Sincerely,
 
Sam Graves                                    

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Contact Information

1415 Longworth HOB
Washington, DC 20515
Phone 202-225-7041
Fax 202-225-8221
graves.house.gov/

Congressman Sam Graves is a life long resident of Missouri’s Sixth Congressional District.  As a small businessman and a sixth-generation, full-time family farmer, Sam spent his life working to make Missouri a better place to live, work, and raise a family.

In Congress, Sam serves as the Chairman of the Small Business Committee. Small businesses create 7 out of every 10 jobs in this country. It is important that our policies encourage innovators and entrepreneurs to follow their dreams and create jobs. Sam also serves on the Transportation Committee where he continues to fight for Missouri roads, rivers, bridges, rail lines and airports.

Congressman Graves was born in Tarkio, Missouri on November 7, 1963.  He graduated from Tarkio High School in 1982 and attended college at the University of Missouri-Columbia, where he received his degree in Agronomy from the School of Agriculture.

In 1992, Sam won his first race for State Representative.  In 1994, Sam was elected as State Senator for the 12th Senatorial District and was subsequently re-elected in 1998.  Sam’s leadership has not only been recognized by his constituents, but from organizations like the Missouri Chamber of Commerce, the Small Business Development Corporation, and the Missouri State Medical Association.

As a father, farmer, businessman, and former State legislator, Sam knows first hand the values, hopes, and beliefs of the hard-working families of the Sixth District, and will continue to work tirelessly for them in theUnited States House of Representatives.  As your Congressman, Sam will continue to fight for Missouri families.


Serving With

Ann Wagner

MISSOURI's 2nd DISTRICT

Blaine Luetkemeyer

MISSOURI's 3rd DISTRICT

Vicky Hartzler

MISSOURI's 4th DISTRICT

Billy Long

MISSOURI's 7th DISTRICT

Jason Smith

MISSOURI's 8th DISTRICT

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