Tom McClintock

Tom McClintock

CALIFORNIA's 4th DISTRICT

Detwiler Fire

2017/07/26

Mr. Speaker:

I want to begin by saluting the more than 5,000 firefighters from 40 cooperating agencies that assembled under the coordination of CAlFIRE to battle the Detwiler fire that threatened Yosemite Valley and its gateway communities.

I spent Saturday at the command centers in Mariposa and Merced Counties and what I saw is what I have seen time and again at so many fires we are having these days in the Sierra: cool, calm professionalism, selflessness and devotion to duty.  

CalFIRE is an agency that works.  I want particularly to salute and thank Nancy Koerperich, CalFIRE’s Unit Fire Chief for Madera, Mariposa and Merced.  She and her operation literally saved several towns – including Mariposa and Coulterville – from annihilation last week.  

Sheriff Doug Binnewies of Mariposa County is rightly being hailed for his courage and leadership in directing the orderly evacuation of the town of Mariposa as the fire bore down upon it.  You can literally see how the fire burned right up to the town’s edge.  I can’t tell you how many homes I saw where firefighters stopped it within a few feet of the front doors.  

CalFire Battalion Chief Jeremy Rahn told me that the difference between saving and losing so many homes was defensible space.  CalFire has produced a superb phone app to assist homeowners in preparing their home so that if – God forbid -- the need arises, firefighters will be able to defend it.  It also provides fire alerts and anyone in the mountain communities should have it.   It’s free for downloading at your phone’s app store.    

I cannot say enough about the firefighters who have been working in triple digit heat in 24 hour shifts to battle the flames, or the air crews that dropped a staggering 500,000 gallons of fire retardant in a single day at the height of the conflagration.  Their effectiveness can be seen by red borders of fire retardant that separate the blackened ground of the fire on one side and the landscape they saved on the other.  

They not only saved these communities and hundreds of homes – they also stopped the fire within just a few miles of the Stanislaus National Forest – a forest that is dying because of federal environmental restrictions on forest management.  The firefighters warned that if the fire reached these vast stands of dead trees, the fire would have exploded with the force of an atomic bomb.

And that is the fine point of the matter.  I spoke with Mariposa County Supervisor Marshall Long and the firefighters at the Mariposa command center and the one thing they stressed time and again is that they need relief from the regulations that are making it almost impossible to create firebreaks, thin the forests and remove the excess fuels.

These policies, imposed 45 years ago through legislation like the National Environmental Policy Act and the Endangered Species Act, promised to improve the forest environment.  After 45 years of experience with these laws, I believe we are entitled to ask: how is the forest environment doing?   The answer is damning.  

These laws have made it all but impossible to keep our forests properly managed, and the result is severe overcrowding.  The Sierra Nevada support between 20 and 100 trees per acre, depending on the topography.  The average tree density is now 266 trees per acre.  This extreme overcrowding has stressed the trees to the point they can no longer resist drought, beetle infestation and disease.  This has caused a massive tree die-off, and we have entire national forests just waiting to explode with over 100 million dead trees.  

The heroic firefighters of the Detwiler fire have kept it out of these hazard zones – but the hazard zones are still there.  And consider this: we’re only at the very beginning of the fire season that combines fresh brush from last year’s rains with millions of dead trees that were too stressed from overcrowding to survive the drought.   And the firefighters I spoke with on Saturday bitterly complained they can’t even cut firebreaks to isolate these zones because of the same so-called environmental laws.

The House has pending before it the Resilient Federal Forests Act of 2017 that would allow us to restore good forest management – but we may already have run afoul of what Churchill called “History’s terrible, chilling words: TOO LATE.”

Mr. Speaker, I call for expeditious consideration of the Resilient Federal Forests Act and other legislation to save our forests, in the hope that firefighters can hold these fires at bay until we restore good management to our public lands.  

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Forest Fire Prevention

2017/07/20

Click for Forest Fire Prevention link

June 15, 2017 Speeches

Congressman McClintock is the chairman of the Subcommittee on Federal Lands.  The subcommittee held a legislative hearing on June 15, 2017.  Congressman McClintock delivered the following opening statement:

Chairman’s Opening Statement
Subcommittee on Federal Lands
House Natural Resources Committee
June 15, 2017

May 17, 2017 Speeches

Congressman McClintock is the chairman of the Subcommittee on Federal Lands.  The subcommittee held a hearing on May 17, 2017.  Congressman McClintock delivered the following opening statement:

Hearing on Wildfire Prevention
Federal Lands Subcommittee
House Natural Resources Committee

WRDA - A Critical Moment for Tahoe and the West

December 7, 2016 Speeches
WRDA Conference Report: Water for California; Fire Protection for Tahoe. The conference report on the Water Resources Development Act is the product of many, many hours of good-faith negotiations between the House and Senate and between Republicans and Democrats.
May 12, 2016 Speeches
And here’s a song we’ve heard before: despite the high fire risk, BLM is not performing adequate fire prevention activities, particularly mechanical treatments, in the area because it is managed as a WSA. In addition, the location of the WSA hampers firefighting tactics, leaving local firefighters with no maneuvering room to protect life and property in the event of catastrophic wildfire.
February 22, 2016 Press Release

The attached letter to the editor from Congressman McClintock has been submitted to the Sacramento Bee:

Matt Weiser grossly misrepresents both Republican federal lands policy and my leadership of the House subcommittee that oversees it.

Our committee seeks to restore responsible stewardship of our national forests and protect the public’s right to enjoy the public’s lands.  

January 27, 2016 Speeches

February 22, 2016

The attached letter to the editor from Congressman McClintock has been submitted to the Sacramento Bee:

Matt Weiser grossly misrepresents both Republican federal lands policy and my leadership of the House subcommittee that oversees it.

Our committee seeks to restore responsible stewardship of our national forests and protect the public’s right to enjoy the public’s lands.  

October 8, 2015 Press Release

Rep. Tom McClintock’s (R-CA) and Rep. Mark Amodei’s (R-NV) H.R. 3382, the “Lake Tahoe Restoration Act of 2015” passed the House Natural Resources Committee today.  The legislation focuses resources on fire prevention and additional measures to protect the lake from the introduction of invasive species. 
 

August 24, 2015 Speeches
Tahoe rests on the northern boundary of California’s Fourth Congressional District. Meanwhile, right now – as we speak – a catastrophic wildfire is raging in the King’s Canyon region on the southern boundary of this very same district. That fire has already consumed 78 square miles of national forests and at latest report is only 17 percent contained.
July 30, 2015 Press Release

Congressman Tom McClintock (R-CA) and Congressman Mark Amodei (R-NV) introduced legislation yesterday to address catastrophic wildfire and invasive species threats to Lake Tahoe and the Tahoe Basin.  The Federal Lands Subcommittee chaired by McClintock had already considered the preliminary draft of H.R. 3382, “Lake Tahoe Restoration Act of 2015,” on July 14th, putting it on a fast track for House passage.

July 9, 2015 Press Release

Congressman McClintock is a co-author of H.R. 2647 (Westerman), the Resilient Federal Forests Act. The legislation was approved by the House on July 9, 2015.  The bill next goes to the Senate. Congressman McClintock delivered the following House floor debate remarks in support of the measure:

Resilient Federal Forests Act
July 9, 2015

    Excess timber comes out of the forest one way or the other.  It is either carried out or it is burned out. 

    When we carried it out, we had healthy forests and a thriving economy.

May 14, 2015 Speeches

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, the House Natural Resources Subcommittee on Federal Lands held an oversight hearing on the impact of litigation on forest management, the U.S. Forest Service’s response to the growing challenge of litigation and related impacts upon forest health. 

Supervisor Randy Hanvelt of Tuolumne County provided testimony at the hearing.  Supervisor Hanvelt’s district includes large sections of the Stanislaus National Forest, an area severely impacted by the 2013 Rim Fire.

April 23, 2015 Speeches
Over the past thirty years, we have seen an 80 percent reduction in timber harvested from our national forests, and in the same period a concomitant increase in acreage destroyed by fire. This phenomenon far predates the Western drought and was best summed up by a forester long ago who observed, “All that excess timber comes out of the forests one way or the other. It is either CARRIED OUT or it is BURNED OUT. But it comes OUT.”
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Response to Amendment 5 Anti-Poverty Programs - Budget for Fiscal Year 2018 - House Budget Committee

2017/07/20

Congressman McClintock is a member of the House Budget Committee.  The Budget Committee held a hearing on July 19, 2017 on the Budget for Fiscal Year 2018.  The Congressman delivered the following remarks at the hearing:

Budget for Fiscal Year 2018
House Budget Committee
Response to Amendment 5
Anti-Poverty Programs

Since 1964, we have tried to end poverty the Democrats’ way.  According to the Heritage Foundation, we have spent $22 trillion fighting the war on poverty as a result.  Adjusted for inflation, this is three times more than all the military wars we have ever fought – combined.  Put another way, that is $176,000 taken from the lifetime earnings of every family in America over those 50 years.  

We have created 92 different federal programs in this effort.  

After more than fifty years of experience with these programs, I believe we are entitled to ask, “How is the war on poverty coming?”
 
In 1966, the poverty rate stood at 14.7 percent.  Today, it is 13.5 percent. $22 trillion dollars and 50 years later, poverty has barely budged.

Republicans have warned for years of the poverty trap: that the practical effect of these programs is to trap generations in poverty by robbing them of the incentive to succeed and denying them the dignity – the indescribable feeling of self-worth – that comes with a paycheck.

As the old adage says, “Give a man a fish and he will eat for a day.  Teach a man how to fish and he will eat for a lifetime.”

This budget is predicated on this simple principle. If you are able-bodied and with no dependents, in return for your welfare benefits, we ask that you look for a job or train for a job, and if a job is offered, we expect you to take it.  According to Forbes, when Maine applied this condition, 90 percent of this population found work and within a year their income rose 114 percent.  Let me repeat that: the incomes of these welfare recipients rose 114 percent in their first year once the work requirement took effect.   Alabama had similar results this year when 13 counties implement work requirements for SNAP.  

The reforms in this budget are specifically designed to change the incentives to get people back into the work force so that they, too, can see their incomes soar along with their self-respect and dignity.

They also assure that we can focus more resources on those who can't fend for themselves.

Not only do the Democrats propose keeping people trapped in poverty with their programs, but they also propose to harm the economy, robbing people of the opportunity to succeed.

Taxing the top one percent might make a good bumper sticker, but it hurts the very people they say they’re trying to help.  The vast majority of American businesses are individuals filing under Subchapter S – and most of that income is taxed in the top bracket.

Businesses don’t pay business taxes.  The only three ways a business tax can be paid is by us as consumers through higher prices, by us as employees through lower wages and by us as investors through lower earnings on our retirement savings.  And as Arthur Laffer has often warned -- and my home state of California is discovering -- there is nothing more portable in this world than money and rich people.  High taxes have already sent hundreds of billions of dollars of capital off shore.

Let me repeat this for my Democratic colleagues.  The only way a business tax can be paid is by consumers through higher prices, by employees through lower wages and by investors through lower earnings -- mainly on retirement plans.

Our tax plan produces more affordable products for consumers, higher wages and more jobs for employees and higher returns for your retirement fund.  There was a time when Democrats supported these policies -- that's what John F. Kennedy accomplished through tax cuts in the early 1960's, reminding us that a rising tide lifts all ships.

Because of these failed policies of the last 50 years, our nation is more than $20 trillion in debt.  The only way we are going to escape a fiscal and economic collapse is to restore the growth rates we had after Reagan cut the top tax rate from 70 percent to 28 percent. The economy grew at twice the rate it is now and tax revenues skyrocketed from $599 billion to $991 billion.  Put more simply, Reagan cut tax rates by more than half and tax revenues nearly doubled.  

History teaches us that lesson very clearly.  In the last sixty years, the top income tax rate has been as high as 91 percent and as low as 28 percent, but income tax revenues have stayed remarkably steady at between 13 and 20 percent of GDP.  

Indeed, some of the lowest income tax revenues came when the top tax rate was at its highest.  Some of the highest revenues came when the top rate was quite low.  But although the tax rate within this envelope has remarkably little effect on revenues, it has a huge impact on economic growth.

The success of our anti-poverty programs is not how much we spend on them, but on how many people are lifted out of it.  The Democratic anti-poverty programs have spent $22 trillion fighting poverty and the poverty rate has barely moved.  It seems the more we invest in our mistakes the less willing we are to admit them.    

I think it is time we connected the dots between poverty and Democratic policies.  Has it escaped anyone’s attention that the cities with the most entrenched Democratic machines – the cities where Democrats have had their way for generations – are the very same cities where poverty and unemployment are off the charts and where kids are trapped in failing schools with no way out.  

This is the unbroken legacy of the Democrats’ policies, and you see it vividly in any government they have controlled unopposed for more than ten years.  I don’t think there is a single exception to this rule.

This budget charts a new course, using policies that have proven time and again to dramatically improve the lives of those who have been victimized by the Democrats’ poverty trap.   The policies called forth by this budget have time and again produced economic growth and prosperity for our country.  It is time we had a rebirth of freedom; time for another morning to dawn in America, time to make America great again.

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Budget for Fiscal Year 2018 - House Budget Committee

2017/07/20

Congressman McClintock is a member of the House Budget Committee.  The Budget Committee held a hearing on July 19, 2017 on the Budget for Fiscal Year 2018.  The Congressman delivered the following opening statement:

Budget for Fiscal Year 2018
House Budget Committee
July 19, 2017

Madam Chairman:

On our current trajectory, the CBO warns that just four fiscal years from now – in 2022 – our annual deficits will surpass a trillion dollars.  That’s where economists warn we run the risk of damage or even loss of our access to credit – a sovereign debt crisis.  Venezuela is having that now – and even within our own territory, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico.  Pension systems implode, basic services falter and the economy collapses.  We will begin running that risk in four years.

Two years after that – in 2024 – the CBO tells us that the annual interest cost on our debt will reach $654 billion.  That’s more than we currently spend on defense.  

You cannot provide for the common defense or promote the general welfare if you cannot pay for it.

We are at the upper limits of the tax revenues that our economy can generate.  When tax rates rise above this natural limit, tax avoidance activity increases, capital moves offshore, the economy falters and revenues fall.

We have no choice but to change the spending trajectory and we are running out of time.

This budget barely restrains spending growth over the next decade by using reconciliation for its intended purpose.

Every year we delay, the danger gets closer and our options become more difficult.

I hope everyone will think about this carefully as we begin our work today.

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BRAC Amendment to the NDAA

2017/07/13

Congressman McClintock offered an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) to remove the prohibition on Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) reviews.

The Congressman delievered the following remarks in support of the amendment:   

BRAC AMENDMENT TO NDAA
 
Mr. Chairman:
 
Our current defense spending is about where it was at the peak of the Reagan defense buildup after adjusting for inflation.  It is about the same as the next eight most powerful military forces on the planet COMBINED – and six of those eight are already our allies.  The President has proposed adding $54 billion to this.  That’s the equivalent of adding more than the entire military establishment of Great Britain.
 
Yet we are told – and I do not doubt – that much of our military force is ill equipped and unready for combat.  If that is the case, it is not a fiscal problem; it is a management problem.  We seem to care HOW MUCH money is being spent, but not HOW it is being spent.  That is a catastrophic failure of Congressional oversight.  

In recent years, the Pentagon has warned that its infrastructure is 22 percent bigger than necessary.   It has asked Congress for another round of Base Realignment and Closure reviews.  
 
Just last month, Secretary Mattis urged resumption of BRAC.  He believes it will save $2 billion a year – 20 billion over ten years.  That’s enough money to buy 120 F/A-18 Super Hornets or 300 more AH-64 Apache helicopters or four Virginia-Class submarines – if only Congress would get out of the way and allow unneeded bases to close.  
 
The Pentagon has authority to close or consolidate bases on foreign soil, but in the NDAA, Congress blocks its authority to close or consolidate unnecessary bases on our own soil.
 
My amendment removes the NDAA’s prohibition on this needed process and allows BRAC to move forward, as the President has requested.
 
The Statement of Administration policy is clear: (quote) “While the bill contains many promising reforms, it fails to authorize a new Base Realignment and Closure round, which would result in substantial recurring savings and allow DOD to align infrastructure with force reduction.”
 
I have heard three objections.  
 
First, we’re told that upfront costs of consolidation can be high.  But the results are now in: the first four BRAC rounds are now saving $7 billion a year.  
 
Second, we’re told local economies depend on these bases.  But experience tells us that communities rapidly recover by freeing these assets for more productive use.  
 
Third, we’re told to wait until we’ve finished expanding our forces.  But the excess capacity estimate already assumes force expansion and a new round of BRAC will only wring out a small portion of the overcapacity.  
 
When we squander billions of defense dollars keeping obsolete military bases open to satisfy congressional constituencies, we directly rob our military forces of the resources we are reminded they need.  
 
There’s an old saying that you can’t fill a broken bucket by pouring more water in it.  At some point, you have to fix the bucket.  That’s our responsibility.  We need to take it more seriously.

 

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Remarks in Support of The Grow Act (H.R. 23)

2017/07/12

Remarks in support of H.R. 23, the GROW Act, by Congressman David Valadao:
 
Mr. Speaker:
 
In California, five years of historic drought caused billions of dollars of damage to our economy, destroyed tens of thousands of jobs and brought many communities within just months of literally running out of water – all because we couldn’t store water from the wet years to assure plenty in the drought years.
 
Then, back to back with this historic drought, we have just had one of the wettest winters on record.  Massive torrents of water have threatened entire communities on its way to be wasted in the Pacific Ocean – all because of the very same problem: we have few reservoirs to store this superabundance of water for the next drought.
 
Even before the drought, massive water diversions required by a growing tangle of laws and regulations had created devastating economic hardship in California’s fertile Central Valley.  Those same policies forced us to release what precious little water we had remaining behind our dams to adjust river temperatures for fish.  
 
For three Congresses, the House has acted to fix this folly.  Today, H.R. 23, or GROW Act, by Congressman David Valadao, addresses the policy, regulatory and administrative failures that have mismanaged our water supplies across the west.  The GROW act includes both short term and long term provisions aimed at restoring water reliability and certainty to cities and farms.  It includes seven titles that expand water storage, improve infrastructure, protect water rights and create more abundant and reliable water resources to benefit both communities and the environment.  The GROW Act gives federal agencies the tools they need to help safeguard communities from the hardship of future droughts.
 
It codifies the historic Bay-Delta Accord that provided an equitable balance between human and environmental needs and guaranteed the reliability and predictability of our water supplies.

It strengthens Northern California area-of-origin water rights and prevents the federal government from demanding that people give up their water rights in order to operate on federal land.
 
It streamlines the endlessly time consuming and cost-prohibitive environmental permitting that is blocking new reservoir construction -- by coordinating federal agencies and requiring transparency of the science behind its decisions.
 
It requires completion of studies for five new reservoirs that have dragged on for decades.
 
In the past, we’ve heard three objections from opponents.
 
The first is that it will decimate Salmon fisheries.  On the contrary, it saves those fisheries, where the environmental policies of the past forty years have utterly failed to protect them.  The GROW act targets the non-native predators that are responsible for 90 percent of salmon losses as the smolts make their way to the ocean.  It encourages the use of fish hatcheries to assure that salmon populations will increase dramatically in future years.  
 
The second objection is that it will pre-empt state water rights laws.  Read section 302 of the bill: “The Secretary of the Interior is directed, in operation of the Central Valley Project, to adhere to California’s water rights laws governing water rights priorities...” It goes on to say that diversions “shall not be undertaken in a manner that alters the water rights priorities established by California law.”  
 
It does include provisions to codify the Bay Delta Accord and modify the disastrous San Joaquin River Settlement.  But this does not set a precedent for other states.  California is unique among the states in the fact it operates with a coordinate operating agreement that combines the federal Central Valley Project and the California State Water Project and runs them as a unified system.  This was done at California’s request and with its consent.
  
The third objection is that it rewards powerful agricultural interests at the expense of consumers.  This is nonsense.  An average consumer uses roughly 100 gallons a day to wash the dishes, water the lawn, and everything else we do in our daily lives.  But when you purchase a cheeseburger, you have just consumed 750 gallons of water – because that’s what it takes to grow the ingredients in that cheeseburger.  Buy a pair of jeans – you’ve just used 1,800 gallons of water.  The fact is, all of this water benefits consumers and the tens of thousands of farm workers and others who provide for their families from this water.
 
Droughts are nature’s fault.  Water shortages are our fault.  They are a choice we made a generation ago when we chose to neglect our infrastructure and mismanage our water resources.  It has led to increasingly severe water shortages, spiraling utility and grocery bills, and economic stagnation.  The GROW Act choses a brighter future of abundance and prosperity that can begin with our vote today.
 
CONCLUDING REMARKS
 
Abundance or shortage.  That is the question.  I thank Mr. Valadao for his work on this issue and for putting that choice so clearly to the House today.
  
We can choose to continue down the nihilistic road we’re on.  That means increasingly severe government-induced shortages, higher and higher water and grocery prices, and a permanently declining quality of life for our children, who will be required to stretch and ration every drop of water in their bleak and parched homes.  
 
With this bill, we choose a different future.  Abundance.
 
We choose a future in which water flows again to the fertile fields of the Central Valley, providing full employment to families and affordable groceries from America’s agricultural cornucopia.  It is a future in which families need not watch their gardens shrivel and die and towns and cities need not fear mandatory water rationing and uncertain and unpredictable supplies.  It is a future in which long-established water rights are safe and secure from the whims of politicians and bureaucrats.
 
We chose a future in which thriving populations of young salmon can swim to the sea unmolested by the non-native predators that now kill 90 percent of them before they can reach the ocean; a future in which new fish hatcheries assure the release of millions of additional salmon to supply a revived and rapidly expanding commercial fishing industry.  
 
We chose a future in which great new reservoirs can store vast amounts of water in wet years to assure abundance in dry ones; a future in which families can enjoy the prosperity that abundant water and hydro-electricity and affordable groceries provide, and the quality of life that comes from that prosperity.    
 
Abundance or shortage: that is the question.  We choose abundance.
 
 
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Healthcare

2017/07/07

Click for Healthcare Issues

June 7, 2017 Columns
Lower premiums, increased choices and improved care: these were the promises made to America by those who imposed Obamacare. Exactly the opposite has happened. Last year, premiums increased an average of 25 percent and this year we’re warned they’ll increase 40 percent. Last year, only one provider remained in a third of American counties. This year, entire regions have no providers at all. In 2015, American life expectancies actually declined.

 

HR 1628 – American Health Care Act: YES

May 4, 2017 Vote Notes on Legislation

HR 1628 – American Health Care Act: YES.  Obamacare is collapsing.  Last year’s average premium increase of 25 percent is expected to balloon by another 40 percent this year.  Last year there was only one provider in a third of American counties; this year entire regions will be without ANY providers.


Ben Franklin’s Wisdom

April 5, 2017 Speeches
Congress is fundamentally a deliberative institution. Deliberations take time and they’re often messy – in fact, the bigger the issue, the messier the deliberations. The designers of our Constitution wanted a great, big, ugly debate whenever a decision was being made. They wanted the subject to be held up to every conceivable light and for every voice in the country to be heard.


Repeal and Replace

March 21, 2017 Speeches
Any discussion of the American Health Care Act needs first to consider where we will be without it. Obamacare is collapsing. More people are paying the steep tax penalty or claiming hardship exemptions than are choosing to buy Obamacare policies. In a third of the counties across America, there is only one provider to choose and soon we will see counties where there are no providers at all.

 

McClintock, MacArthur, McSally & Aderholt Welcome Changes to AHCA, Announce Support for the Bill

March 21, 2017 Press Release
WASHINGTON—Today, U.S. Representatives Tom McClintock (CA-04), Thomas MacArthur (NJ-03), Martha McSally (AZ-02), and Robert Aderholt (AL-04) announced their support of changes to the American Health Care Act of 2017 intended to result in major cost reductions to low-income middle-aged Americans.

 

WHY I VOTED NO ON THE OBAMACARE BUDGET

January 13, 2017 Vote Notes on Legislation
Instead of a straight-forward measure to repeal Obamacare completely and to replace it with free market reforms that Republicans have long advocated, Congress has instead chosen a too-clever-by-half manipulation of the rules that I believe will make repealing Obamacare harder and slower, while further disrupting an already faltering health care market. Worse, by misusing the budget and reconciliation process, Congress has squandered its most important tools to bring spending under control before we bankrupt our country.
November 30, 2016 Vote Notes on Legislation

H.R. 6 – 21st Century Cures ACT: YES.  This bill expedites FDA approvals for new medical drugs and devices and authorizes spending on major research into cancer and Alzheimer’s.  I voted against the original bill because it established multiple new mandatory spending programs outside of Congress’ annual appropriations review and depended primarily on budget gimmicks to pay for them.  This version replaces the mandatory spending aspects of the bill with discretionary spending that Congress must review and approve ever year, and greatly reduces the pay-for gimmicks.

September 16, 2016 Columns

Zika Funding

A recent letter writer asks my position on Zika funding and why Congress has not acted.

With my support, the House voted in June to appropriate $1.1 billion to combat Zika – the result of a bi-partisan conference agreement.  There was no debate on the measure, because it was taken up on the day House Democrats staged their sit-in, physically blocking access to the microphones and shouting down any who tried to speak from the well.  Nevertheless, the bill passed on a vote of 239-171, with most Democrats opposing.

June 14, 2016 Current Issues

Dear Neighbor:

I am hearing from many constituents who have received notices that their healthcare premiums are skyrocketing, or their plans are being dropped either by their employers or their insurers, or that they are having hours cut back, salaries reduced or positions eliminated at work as employers try to cope with these increased costs.

I need to know how this law is affecting you.  I invite you to share your experience with me so that I can get a clearer picture of how this program is unfolding and so that I can share your experiences with my colleagues.  

December 3, 2013 Speeches
A great tragedy is now unfolding across America as we prepare for the New Year. Millions of Americans are losing their health plans; millions more are facing staggering price increases; millions more are having hours cut or seeing their salaries pared back at work because of Obamacare. Sadly, this is just the beginning. In coming days, millions of employer-provided plans face cancellation, multiplying this disaster many fold.
November 19, 2013 Speeches
We are now seven weeks into the implementation of Obamacare. We know in the first four weeks, 106,000 Americans placed health plans in their shopping baskets, though it is not clear how many of them actually purchased plans. Meanwhile, it is now estimated that some FIVE AND A HALF MILLION Americans have lost the health insurance that they had, that they liked, and that they were promised they could keep. The inconvenient truth is that this law has dramatically INCREASED the ranks of the uninsured. Yesterday came word that college students are seeing their low-cost student plans cancelled - with replacement costs as much as 1,800 percent higher under Obamacare.
November 15, 2013 Speeches
Yesterday, we heard yet another empty promise from the President: that by fiat he can delay provisions of law under Obamacare that have already cost a staggering FIVE MILLION Americans their health insurance. Notice that he didn't say the law has changed. He simply said that he will ignore the law, and he invites health insurers to do the same. This is a constitutional abomination.
November 15, 2013 Press Release
HR 3350 - Keep Your Health Plan Act of 2013: YES. It is important not to over-promise on this measure. It will not get back the five million health insurance policies that have already been cancelled due to Obamacare.
October 29, 2013 Speeches
It has become obvious over the past few weeks that we are now watching nothing less than the collapse of the American health care system. Millions of Americans are losing their health plans and are being set adrift into a dysfunctional system where they cannot find comparable affordable policies.
October 9, 2013 Speeches
This October crisis is punctuated by three developments that are becoming increasingly obvious and disturbing. The first is the refusal of the Senate and the President to resolve their differences with the House through negotiation and compromise on the one bill that would fund this government and end this shutdown.
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The Economy

2017/07/05

Click for Fiscal and Economic Issues

April 27, 2017 Speeches
The last four elections have defined one of the most dramatic political realignments in our country’s history.  In those elections, we’ve seen a net shift of 64 U.S. House seats, 12 U.S. Senate seats, 10 governors, 919 state legislative seats and the presidency shift from Democrats to Republicans.  This happened in large part on three overarching mandates: revive the economy; secure our borders and repair our healthcare system.  If President Trump can accomplish these three objectives, his administration and this congress will be remembered as one of the most successful and beneficial in our nation’s history.

January 11, 2017 Speeches
In the last eight years, our nation’s debt has doubled. That means the Obama administration has borrowed as much money in eight years as our government borrowed in the 220 years between the first day of the George Washington administration until the last day of the George W. Bush administration.
December 8, 2016 Vote Notes on Legislation

Continuing Resolution to Fund the Government: Yes.  Hopefully, this is the last continuing resolution that we will see.  Like those before it, it spends too much, abandons Congress’ fundamental responsibility to superintend the nation’s finances, and circumvents the normal budget process.  But it also gets us out of the debt, doubt and despair of the Obama administration into the prosperity, hope and promise of the Trump era.

December 1, 2016 Speeches
President-elect Trump has many difficult fiscal tasks ahead – one of which is to promote long-overdue infrastructure construction at a time when the national debt exceeds our entire economy and interest costs alone are eating us alive. Some have said that a rebounding economy resulting from tax reform will pay for it. That may be, but it’s not guaranteed; it cannot be accurately forecast; and we’ll need any new revenues to beef up our defenses and reduce our deficit – two other critical objectives of the new administration.
September 28, 2016 Vote Notes on Legislation

Senate Amendment to HR 5325 – Fiscal Year 2017 Continuing Resolution: YES.  This bill avoids a government shutdown on October 1st by extending current spending authority through December 9th.  This is the WORST way to fund the government, because it fails to exercise congressional oversight through the budget and appropriations bills.  Unfortunately, sincere but poorly reasoned opposition from the “Freedom Caucus” blocked adoption of the budget this year and doomed legislative efforts to exercise that oversight.

September 8, 2016 Speeches
When we talk of PILT funding, we should never lose sight of the fact that it is a very, very poor substitute for revenues generated locally by healthy economic activity. Our ultimate objective should be not to institutionalize PILT funding, but to restore a healthy balance between federal land ownership and productive private ownership of the lands within each county in the nation.
September 7, 2016 Speeches
I want to thank Congressman Gohmert for organizing this discussion of federal lands policy, and to highlight the Federal Footprint Map at Naturalresources.house.gov/federalfootprint. Or just google Federal Footprint. When you do, you’ll have a complete picture of how much land the federal government owns and how much of your state and your community is affected. And it may surprise you.
June 16, 2016 Press Release

Washington, D.C.- For the second year in a row, the House of Representatives today overwhelmingly passed a bipartisan amendment offered by Rep. Jared Huffman (D-CA) and Rep. Tom McClintock (R-CA) to strike a congressional earmark from the 2017 Defense Appropriations Bill that would spend millions of dollars to ship Pennsylvania coal over 3,000 miles to American military bases in Germany. 

June 16, 2016 Press Release
This amendment forbids scarce defense dollars from being spent to fund two executive orders and several other provisions of law that require the military to squander billions of dollars on so-called “Green Energy.”
June 16, 2016 Press Release
I do not support the war on coal waged by this administration and my friends on the left. I DO support the war on waste, and I support this amendment based on that fiscal imperative.
June 9, 2016 Speeches
The House is expected to take up the “PROMESA” bill today, with serious implications to every taxpayer in the country.
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California Water Crisis

2017/07/03

Click for California Water Crisis link

July 12, 2017 Speeches
In California, five years of historic drought caused billions of dollars of damage to our economy, destroyed tens of thousands of jobs and brought many communities within just months of literally running out of water – all because we couldn’t store water from the wet years to assure plenty in the drought years.
 
June 22, 2017 Speeches
Legislation authored by Congressman McClintock, H.R. 1654, passed the House on June 22, 2017.  The legislation next goes to the Senate.
 

H.R.1654 - Water Supply Permitting Coordination Act

April 26, 2017 Speeches
Droughts are nature’s fault. Water shortages are OUR fault. Water shortages are a choice we made a generation ago when we stopped building new reservoirs to meet the needs of a growing population. We will not solve our water shortages until we build new reservoirs. And we cannot build new reservoirs until we overhaul the radical environmental laws that have made their construction endlessly time consuming and ultimately cost prohibitive.


WRDA - A Critical Moment for Tahoe and the West

December 7, 2016 Speeches
WRDA Conference Report: Water for California; Fire Protection for Tahoe. The conference report on the Water Resources Development Act is the product of many, many hours of good-faith negotiations between the House and Senate and between Republicans and Democrats.
December 1, 2016 Speeches
President-elect Trump has many difficult fiscal tasks ahead – one of which is to promote long-overdue infrastructure construction at a time when the national debt exceeds our entire economy and interest costs alone are eating us alive. Some have said that a rebounding economy resulting from tax reform will pay for it. That may be, but it’s not guaranteed; it cannot be accurately forecast; and we’ll need any new revenues to beef up our defenses and reduce our deficit – two other critical objectives of the new administration.
September 28, 2016 Vote Notes on Legislation

H.R. 5303 - Water Resources Development Act:  YES.  On the plus side, out of a total of $10.5 billion for projects across the nation, this bill authorizes $1.6 billion for flood control projects in the Sacramento Delta.  (Of course, this would have been unnecessary if the Auburn Dam had been completed, but at the moment that’s, um, water under the bridge).  It also includes a provision I have long sought to allow the use of fish hatcheries to meet ESA requirements, which has the potential to save billions of dollars and billions of gallons of water.

August 27, 2015 Speeches
It’s ironic that we are celebrating progress on a facility to rapidly release water out of Folsom Lake while we are in the fourth year of an historic drought and the lake is nearly empty. This spillway project is a reminder that the previous generation built these great dams not only to protect us against water shortages in dry years, but also to protect us against floods in wet ones. This combination of water storage and flood protection is what makes it possible to sustain a thriving and prosperous human population throughout this region.
July 16, 2015 Speeches

Congressman McClintock is a co-author of H.R. 2898 (Valadao) the Western Water and American Food Security Act.  The legislation was approved by the House on July 16th, 2015.  The bill next goes to the Senate.  Congressman McClintock delivered the following remarks in support of H.R. 2898 during House floor debate, and he also spoke in opposition to an amendment offered by Rep. Grijalva.

H.R. 2898 – California Water Bill
July 16, 2015

Mr. Speaker:

July 16, 2015 Speeches

Congressman McClintock is a co-author of H.R. 2898 (Valadao) the Western Water and American Food Security Act.  The legislation was approved by the House on July 16th, 2015.  The bill next goes to the Senate.  During House floor debate the Congressman spoke in opposition to an amendment offered to the bill by Rep. Grijalva. The amendment was not adopted. The Congressman's House floor debate remarks in support of H.R.

July 8, 2015 Press Release

Congressman McClintock is a co-author of H.R. 2898 (Valadao), the Western Water and American Food Security Act of 2015.  The legislation was approved by the House Natural Resources Committee on July 9th, 2015.  The bill next goes to the House floor.  Congressman McClintock delivered the following remarks in the House Natural Resources Committee in support of the measure:

Opening Statement
HR 2898 – California Water Bill
July 8, 2015


Mr. Chairman:

May 1, 2015 Press Release

Washington, D.C. – The House of Representatives today adopted an amendment by Congressman Tom McClintock to forbid federal agencies from buying up scarce water during California’s catastrophic drought in order to release it into rivers to meet environmental requirements.  The amendment was subsequently adopted today as part of the Fiscal Year 2016 Energy and Water Appropriations Act. The amendment was adopted on a vote of 226 – 9, and final passage of the Appropriations Act on a vote of 230 –7.

April 22, 2015 Speeches
California is now in its fourth year of the worst drought on record. Hydrologists estimate it is the worst drought in 1,200 years.
March 26, 2015 Press Release
During times of extreme and exceptional drought conditions the bill will suspend water releases by Federal and State agencies to adjust river water temperatures.
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Kate’s Law

2017/06/29

Congressman McClintock delivered the following remarks in support of H.R. 3004:
 
Kate’s Law 
June 29, 2017
 
Mr. Speaker:
 
Kate’s Law, the bill this rule brings to the floor, is very personal to the people in my district because of two other names.  
 
On October 24, 2014, Sacramento County Sheriff’s Deputy Danny Oliver and Placer County Detective Michael Davis were brutally gunned down in one of the most cold-blooded rampages in the history of either county.
 
Deputy Oliver approached a car in a parking lot to ask if he could help a couple who appeared to be lost.  He was shot dead.  
 
A bystander who was too slow in turning over his car keys became the next victim.  Miraculously, he survived a gunshot to the head – but vividly remembers the smile on the gunman’s face as he pulled the trigger.  
 
The next victim was Detective Michael Davis.  His father, a Riverside County Sheriff’s Deputy had lost his life in the line of duty on the very same day 26 years earlier.  
 
These crimes should never have happened.  Their assailant had repeatedly entered this country illegally.  While here, he had been apprehended for committing other crimes and repeatedly deported, only to easily re-cross the border without being challenged.
 
I have heard it said that there’s no evidence that illegal immigrants commit crimes at rates any higher than the general population.
 
That’s because crime statistics don’t aggregate by legal status anymore.  Some states like California no longer even report the legal status of inmates.  They can tell us by race, gender, age, background and jurisdiction who stole a car last year; but they won’t tell us how many illegal immigrants did.  
 
But by painstakingly piecing together all the available fragmented data in 2015, Fox News concluded that illegal immigrants are three times more likely to be convicted of murder than the legal population.  
 
According to this report, illegals account for 3.5 percent of the population, but are convicted of 13.6 percent of all crimes, including 12 percent of all murders, 20 percent of all kidnappings, and 16 percent of drug trafficking.  Citing the GAO, Fox reported that 55,000 illegal immigrants were in federal prison and 296,000 in state and local jails in 2011.  
 
And the real tragedy is that there should be zero crimes committed by illegal immigrants because there should be zero illegal immigrants in this country.
 
For sixteen years, two Presidents – one Republican and one Democrat --ignored their constitutional responsibility to take care that the laws are faithfully executed.  Finally, we have a president who takes that responsibility seriously.
 
This rule brings a bill to the floor that increases penalties for those who return to our country AFTER they’ve been deported.  The other to be debated today adds long overdue sanctions to local jurisdictions that refuse to protect their own citizens and I rise in strong support of that bill as well.
 
Too late for officers Davis and Oliver; too late for Kate Steinle; too late for thousands of other Americans killed by illegal immigrants – but perhaps just in time for your neighbor, your family member, or even yourself. 
 
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Contact Information

434 Cannon HOB
Washington, DC 20515
Phone 202-225-2511
Fax 202-225-5444
mcclintock.house.gov

Congressman Tom McClintock was elected in November 2008 to represent the 4th Congressional District in the United States Congress.

During 22 years in the California State Legislature, and as a candidate for governor in California’s historic recall election, Tom McClintock has become one of the most recognizable political leaders in California.

First elected to the California Assembly at the age of 26, McClintock quickly distinguished himself as an expert in parliamentary procedure and fiscal policy. He served in the Assembly from 1982 to 1992 and again from 1996 to 2000. During these years, he authored California’s current lethal injection death penalty law, spearheaded the campaign to rebate $1.1 billion in tax over-collections to the people of California, and became the driving force in the legislature to abolish the car tax. He has proposed hundreds of specific reforms to streamline state government and reduce state spending.

In 2000, McClintock was elected to the California State Senate, where he developed innovative budget solutions such as the Bureaucracy Reduction and Closure Commission and performance-based budgeting, and advocated for restoring California’s public works.

From 1992-1994, McClintock served as Director of the Center for the California Taxpayer, a project of the National Tax Limitation Foundation. In 1995, he was named Director of Economic and Regulatory Affairs for the Claremont Institute’s Golden State Center for Policy Studies, a position he held until his return to the Assembly in 1996. In that capacity, he wrote and lectured extensively on state fiscal policy, privatization, bureaucratic reform and governmental streamlining.

McClintock’s commentaries on California public policy have appeared in every major newspaper in California and he is a frequent guest on radio and television broadcasts across the nation. Numerous taxpayer associations have honored him for his leadership on state budget issues.

McClintock has twice received the Republican nomination for the office of State Controller, narrowly missing election in 2002 by the closest margin in California history – 23/100ths of one percent of the votes cast.

McClintock is the Chairman of the Water and Power Subcommittee of the House Natural Resources Committee, and is a member of the Budget Committee and the Natural Resources Committee.   He is also a member of the Subcommittee on National Parks, Forests, and Public Lands.

Tom McClintock and his wife, Lori, have two children, Justin and Shannah.


Serving With

Doug LaMalfa

CALIFORNIA's 1st DISTRICT

Paul Cook

CALIFORNIA's 8th DISTRICT

Jeff Denham

CALIFORNIA's 10th DISTRICT

David Valadao

CALIFORNIA's 21st DISTRICT

Devin Nunes

CALIFORNIA's 22nd DISTRICT

Kevin McCarthy

CALIFORNIA's 23rd DISTRICT

Steve Knight

CALIFORNIA's 25th DISTRICT

Ed Royce

CALIFORNIA's 39th DISTRICT

Ken Calvert

CALIFORNIA's 42nd DISTRICT

Mimi Walters

CALIFORNIA's 45th DISTRICT

Dana Rohrabacher

CALIFORNIA's 48th DISTRICT

Darrell Issa

CALIFORNIA's 49th DISTRICT

Duncan Hunter

CALIFORNIA's 50th DISTRICT

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