The House Takes Next Step in Open Process Towards Historic Tax Reform

Today, the United States House of Representatives passed historic tax reform that is pro-family and pro-growth. This is the first major tax reform in more than three decades, and an important step in our open process towards tax relief for hardworking men and women across this country.

After passage, House Republican Leadership, members of the Ways and Means Committee, and House Republicans representing diverse districts from every corner of America gathered to celebrate this milestone and highlight what tax reform means to the people back home.

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Here’s what you may have missed:

CLICK HERE to watch the full press conference

Rep. Carlos Curbelo (R-FL):

“What a country and what a day! Today we are one step closer to tax relief for every American family. We are one step closer to better jobs and more opportunities for every American. Today is a big day for so many in this country, especially for those who have been struggling to get by, who haven’t been able to get ahead. Who have read about the economic recovery for years, but have never experienced it. Today is a great day for them.”

Ways and Means Committee Chair Kevin Brady (R-TX):

“This is an incredibly exciting day for the American people and it would not be here for them were it not for incredible leadership from Speaker Ryan and our leadership team, our members in the House, and I especially want to thank the 24 members of the House Ways and Means Committee Republicans. Amazing job there.

“Think about it — for the first time in three decades, the House just voted to pass a sweeping tax reform bill. We just passed a bill that will bring relief, simplicity, and fairness to Americans of every corner of this country. And we just took a major step towards delivering more jobs, bigger paychecks, and a stronger economy to hardworking people and job creators on Main Street all throughout our communities.”

“…We all know this quote from Will Rogers: ‘The difference between death and taxes is that death doesn’t get worse every time Congress meets.’ It’s funny, but it really perfectly captures how most Americans have come to feel about our tax code over the past decades. Because with the tax code that we have today, most Americans have seen it get worse and worse and worse. They’ve seen it get more unfair and more complex. When Congress met today, Americans saw something different. They saw us all come together to make our tax system better for them and our nation.

Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI):

“I’ve got to say, this is nothing short of extraordinary. Let me just tell you, getting 218 members to agree on something as complicated as the . . . well, we needed 218. Okay, let me rephrase it:  Getting 227 members to agree on something as complicated . . . This country has not rewritten its tax code since 1986. The powers of the status quo in this town are so strong. Yet 227 men and women of this Congress broke through that today. That is powerful.

“Of course, I want to thank not just the members who made this possible today, I want to thank the president, I want to thank his administration, and I want to thank our partners in the Senate who are doing their work as well. From the very start, we said that failure is not an option, and the president and his team have worked so constructively every step of the way with us. He’s been a tremendous partner on this issue.

“And you know, I’ve just got to say how proud I am of this conference. Tax reform is so very hard. But we know that there are people who are really struggling in this country. We know that we are just coming through a decade of real economic anxiety. And we know that this is a nation that has so much more potential that has not yet been tapped. That’s what this day is about. That’s what getting this done is about.”

House GOP Chair Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA):

“This is an exciting day for the American economy. We stand here as representatives of families and small businesses and farmers all across this country have spoken, who have told us they want tax relief and they want an opportunity for a better life.

“Today we are proud to stand, we are excited to stand, and give them hope for a better tomorrow. We all have the chance to travel around the country, and I was recently down in North Carolina and I heard from a small businesswoman. She came up to me and said, ‘you know what? If you’re able to get tax reform onto the President’s desk, I’m going to tear out this wall, I’m going to double my business, and double the number of employees.” We heard those kind of stories repeated over and over and over.

“We want people to have larger paychecks. The small business owners who told us, ‘we’d like to be able to pay our employees more. We’d like to be able to increase their paychecks, but it’s the tax burden. It’s the health care costs.’ Today, we are standing for them. This is why we run for office.

“This legislation is pro-growth, it’s pro-family, because we want a plan that’s going to reward hard work, respect the dignity of work, and all everyone to keep more money in their pocket. We’re talking about $1,182 for that middle-income American family. So, our goal today — we had the President with us earlier — is to get this legislation through the Senate and on to the President’s desk as soon as possible.

Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA):

“For everyone that ever dreamed of being an entrepreneur, this is your opportunity. For everyone who ever dreamed of starting a family, of raising two kids, you know what this bill means? Your first $55,000 you earn, you will not pay one penny in income tax. Not one penny. For the dream to make sure America stays on top and the next century is ours, this will bring competition back to America…most importantly, [tax reform] means America is back.”

Rep. Kristi Noem (R-SD):

“It was almost 24 years ago that my dad was killed in an accident on our farm. At the time, I was 22 years old. In fact, I became a first-time mom a couple weeks after he passed away. So, not only was I dealing with becoming a new mother, taking over a family operation with my mother who was devastated, but then dealing with all the changes with that — when we got a bill in the mail from the IRS that said we owed Death Taxes. It made me mad. In fact, it’s one of the reasons I originally ran for office back in South Dakota for the state legislature. I felt like we needed more normal, everyday people making our laws in this country work for them instead of it being the other way around — our laws hurting them.

“I’m very proud to be here. I’m a member of the Ways and Means Committee that worked on this bill. We had over 12 formal hearings on tax reform policies. We had hundreds of hours of debate. And we focused on three different priorities when we put together this legislation before you: we wanted strong families; we wanted to focus on low- and middle-income individuals in America; and we wanted growth. We wanted growth in the number of jobs, the incomes, the wages for them, growth and opportunities for our kids and future generations. This bill represents that today.”

Majority Whip Steve Scalise (R-LA):

“This is an exciting day for hardworking families that have been so hungry for tax relief, so hungry to see our economy take off again, fed up with seeing a stagnant economy where wages are stuck. Like me, and so many other people, these hardworking families are sick and tired of our good jobs moving overseas because we had the highest tax rate in the industrialized world. All that changed today with the passage of this bill, the Tax Cuts & Jobs Act.

“I want to thank my colleagues, those standing behind me who didn’t put up 218 votes, which would have been okay…but instead the 227 colleagues who stood up today for hardworking families and said they want to cut taxes for families across the board.

“This is an exciting day for our economy, and I just want to thank President Trump. Every step of the way, President Trump was directly engaged, kept talking about how he wanted to push those tax cuts further and further down to the middle class to make sure that this was fair for everybody. It’s not just corporate tax cuts, which are critically important at bringing jobs back to America and getting our economy moving again and increasing wages, but he also wanted to make sure that that single mother who is out there working two or three jobs gets that same tax relief as well.

“Chairman Brady and his Committee did such an incredible job at working overtime to ensure that all of those objectives were met. It wasn’t just President Trump. I also want to thank our former colleague, Vice President Mike Pence, who was so helpful as well and reached out. This was an all hands on deck effort from the White House.”