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tv   U.S. House of Representatives U.S. House of Representatives  CSPAN  March 6, 2018 3:59pm-6:00pm EST

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the speaker pro tempore: on this vote the yeas are 182. the nays are 228. the motion is not adopted. the question is on passage of the bill. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no.
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in the opinion of the chair, he ayes have it. the gentleman from texas is recognized. mr. hensarling: i ask for the yeas and nays. ms. waters: call for the yeas and nays. the speaker pro tempore: the yeas and nays are requested. those favoring a vote by the yeas and nays will rise. a sufficient number having arisen, the yeas and nays are ordered. members will record their votes by electronic device. this is a five-minute vote. [captioning made possible by the national captioning institute, inc., in cooperation with the united states house of representatives. any use of the closed-captioned coverage of the house proceedings for political or commercial purposes is expressly prohibited by the u.s. house of representatives.]
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the speaker pro tempore: on this vote the yeas are 264. the nays 143. the bill is passed. without objection, the motion to reconsider is laid on the table. the speaker pro tempore: the chair lays before the house a
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communication. the clerk: the honorable the speaker, house of representatives, sir, i, val demings, is submitting my resignation on the mmittee of oversight and overnment affairs. val demings, member of congress. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the resignation is accepted. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman rom new york seek recognition? >> mr. speaker, i offer a privileged resolution and ask for its immediate consideration by the chamber. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the resolution. the clerk: house resolution 763, resolved, that the following named members be and are hereby elected to the
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standing committee of the house of representatives -- one, committee on oversight and government reform, mr. gomez to rank immediately after mr. raskin, mr. welch, mr. cartwright, mr. desauliner, ms. plaskett and mr. sarbanes. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the motion to reconsider is laid on the table. >> mr. speaker, i yield back. thank you.
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the speaker pro tempore: the house will be in order. the chair will now entertain requests for one-minute speeches. for what purpose does the gentleman from florida seek recognition? without objection, the gentleman is recognized for one minute. >> mr. speaker. the speaker pro tempore: the house will be in order. he house will be in order. the gentleman may proceed. >> mr. speaker, when you drive through florida's heartland in highlands, county, you'll probably see signs that say congroves and you'll drive through citrus groves. miles has been an advocate of citrus leading to his management company for managing
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over 400 acres to over 5,500 acres at its peak. he served on the florida citrus commission for eight years and worked on the long range planning committee for several years after that. mr. rooney: his devotion to florida's citrus and agriculture was real and did everything he could to share his passion with others, especially with young people. each year the florida citrus hall of fame honors the most distinguished leaders who have made significant contributions to the florida citrus industry and there was no one more deserving of a spot on that hall of fame than mr. marvin kahm -- kahn. his passion for florida citrus is unparalleled. florida is a better place because of mr. kahn and it's been an honor to serve him in the house of representatives. thank you, mr. speaker. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the
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balance of his time. for what purpose does the gentleman from new jersey seek recognition? without objection, the gentleman s recognized for one minute. mr. payne: mr. speaker, colorectal cancer is the second leading cause of death for men and women combined. it is a silent killer because the disease often has no signs or symptoms. each year more than 50,000 americans die from colorectal cancer. even though it is mostly preventable and treatable if caught early. six years ago today, my father, the late congressman donald payne, died from colorectal cancer. colorectal cancer screening just wasn't something people of his generation did. mr. speaker, my father might have lived had he gotten tested
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for colorectal cancer. that's why each year i sponsor a resolution to recognize march as national colorectal cancer awareness month. a time to educate the public about the disease and the need for screening. by educating people, increasing research funding, and making medicare coverage better for seniors, we can save tens of thousands of lives each year. and i would rather not have to make this one-minute speech every year, to have my father still the member of congress from the 10th congressional district. and with that i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. are there further one-minute requests? for what purpose does the gentleman from minnesota seek recognition? mr. paulsen: unanimous consent to address the house for one minute, revise and extend my
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remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the gentleman is recognized for one minute. mr. paulsen: mr. speaker, i rise today to speak in support of the military save act. last year the department of defense reported there were an estimated 20,300 military members who indicated they experienced a sexual assault the year prior. many of these military sexual trauma survivors expressed concerns that services available within the v.a. health care system did not meet their post trauma needs -- posttrauma needs. this bill will now require the department of veterans affairs to establish a three-year pilot program to allow these survivers to seek treatment related to their injuries from the provider of their choice. then the v.a. will compare the care received from outside providers with the v.a. so they can find ways to pay better care for m.s.t. survivors. mr. speaker, anyone who is sexually assaulted should be able to receive the care that they need. and that stands true for the men and women protecting our nation. members of the military should be confident in the quality of care they receive from the v.a. and this new bill could become
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law, would help the v.a. to improve the services that they offer. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. are there any further requests for one-minute speeches? the chair lays before the house the following personal requests. the clerk: leaves of absence requested for mr. defazio of oregon for today. mr. poe of texas for after 4:00 prime minister today and for the balance of the week. and mr. stivers of ohio for oday and for tomorrow. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the requests are granted. under the speaker's announced the y of january 3, 2017,, gentleman from california, mr. gar -- under the speaker's announced policy of january 3, 2017, the gentleman from california, mr. garamendi, is recognized for 60 minutes as the designee of the minority leader.
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mr. garamendi: thank you, mr. speaker. i see my colleagues from the great south are here and they should be listening very carefully as we discuss infrastructure. and i might like to draw the attention of the house to this, if i might. fellow that we know, at the f.d.r. memorial. the test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much , keep in mind the tax bill that passed here and was signed by the president in january. the test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abuns dance -- abundance of those who have much, it is rather whether we provide enough for those who
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have too little. words to legislate by. wouldn't you say? so my colleagues, please keep this in mind. don't leave right in the middle of a good discussion. but if we're to pay attention to what is important here, keep in mind those who have little. it turns out that the great tax probably best described by the president. shortly after he signed the bill, he went down to his mar-a-lago club and told his friends who had gathered there, all of whom were the great beneficiaries of that tax cut, and he said, i have made you so much more wealthy. and indeed, that's exactly what the tax cut did. it made the wealthy in america even more wealthy.
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to the tune of several hundred billion dollars. the american corporations saw heir tax rate fall from 35% to 20%. and the top, top income earners in america saw their tax rate go down by 2.5%. it was marvelous, if you have a great deal of money, because %-plus of the trillion and a half, billion dollars, that's $1,500,000,000,000, perhaps more, of the benefits went to the top 1%. american corporations and the superwealthy. is there such a thing as trickle-down economics? is there really the probability that the superwealthy are going to buy more cars, build new
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homes, palaces in america with all of the new money that they received? the answer is probably not in america. but probably on some island somewhere where they can use the new tax breaks for foreign investment that are in this tax bill. oh, they were going to close the loopholes for corporations and individuals that wanted to go offshore. no. didn't happen. did not happen. instead new offshore tax advantages are created for american corporations. inversions, eliminate -- inversions eliminated. no. corporate inversions are not eliminated. they are in fact continued. and increased. how did this come to pass? probably came to pass because there was not one hearing. not one substantive hearing in the ways and means committee and in the senate finance committee on the most important tax bill
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that's passed out of congress in the last 25 years. so now we live with this. now we live with the situation where the treasury department announced a couple of weeks ago that the tax revenues for the 2018 fiscal year, that is now, are down by a couple hundred billion dollars. so, what's going to happen? well, when the tax bill is moving along, all of the deficit hawks, and there used to be, i don't know, a couple hundred of republicanhere on my colleagues' side, they left town in december. not one word about the new $1,500,000,000,000 addition to the deficit. but, like most migratory birds, they're going to come back when
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the weather warms up in washington and they're going to go after the deficit with a vengeance and i'll bet they're not going to propose that we go back and clean up the tax mess that was created. my guess is what they're going to do is go after programs. and i think we know what programs they are. because the speaker of this esteemed house has very clearly laid out in previous budgets that he wrote when he was head of the budget committee, going to go after social security, . dicare, medicaid the programs of the social safety net. phone call i had just a few moments ago from a constituent in my district. saying, you've got to understand that more and more of your constituents are getting elderly and they're getting alzheimer's and they need care. and their husband or their wife
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needs respite care. what about the programs for that? and i had to answer, it doesn't look good. because we know what the speaker said he wanted when he was chairman of the budget committee, and unless he's had an epiphany, he's likely to want it again. in fact, i believe he's already said they're looking at cutting medicare, medicaid. so what does that mean for the working men and women who are taking care of their patient -- parents? it means there are tough times out ahead. it means that the proposed discussion about the reduction medicaid is $1,400,000,000,000 over the next decade. it means that for medicare, $500 billion cut for medicare. so, if you're a senior, you should worry.
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if you're among the working men and women of america whose father or mother is now a senior, you should worry. the most expensive illness now and in the future is alzheimer's. so what of alzheimer's research? well, it's going to get reduced. oh, and that corporate tax cut for fisa, you remember how happy they were to have the extra $12 billion? they're going to spend it on alzheimer's research. no. they're not. -- research? no. they're not. they stopped their alzheimer's research. instead, guess what they're going to do with the money that they were investing in alzheimer's research. they're going to use it, together with their tax cut money, to buy back their stock. which has the marvelous result of increasing the value of their stock, because there are fewer shares out there.
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rilliant for the managers. for the corporate officers. because their pay is based on the stock price. what a marvelous way to use the tax cut. and research on the most expensive illness in america. alzheimer's. anddy mengia. and instead use -- and dementia. and instead use that money to buy back stock. so you can increase your pay as the corporate president. now, there's a good american capitalistic idea. that's where we are. and so today, today we had a hearing on infrastructure in the transportation-infrastructure committee. great. great opportunity to understand the president's infrastructure plan. well, it's big, it's beautiful.
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he says. and it's going to provide a gazillion jobs. well, we took a look at it and we go, where's the beef? where's the money? $200 billion over a 10-year period, $20 billion a year, said to be new money. and then you look at the president's budget proposal and you tee it up with the infrastructure proposal and you go, well, wait a minute. what kind of shell game are you playing here? your budget removes over $200 billion from infrastructure, and you come over here on your infrastructure plan and you say you have $200 billion of new money. no, you don't. you really don't have $200 billion of new money. you have $200 billion of
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repurposed money in programs that actually devolve the nation's infrastructure back to the states and the counties. so that we will have a disconnect between an interstate in one state and an interstate in another state, that connect at the state lines. and one is repaired and the other is not. . so infrastructure, transportation is a national network but in this case what happens is that the states are said to be given the responsibility and the federal government will simply pick and choose among those programs that the administration happens to like. now, sure, it's now to have an extra $50 billion for rural infrastructure. that would be great. but what is the definition of rural? it's 50,000 people. excuse me.
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55,000 people. and how much territory? an entire state? well, there's no state that's rural then. in a county? in a multitude of counties? in a metropolitan statistical area? we don't know. but i will tell you i do have a rural area. yuba city, cities, merrisville. rural is 10 miles down the road. so where is the line around where is this rural area? i'm concerned, particularly concerned because the federal government will maintain control of that money. doesn't go out by formula, at least as we now look at the language. so it's a great and glorious, a wonderful, spectacular infrastructure plan. oh, incidentally, there's a
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small problem for cities and counties. presently, if the federal government is involved in a levee project to prevent flood, highway project, one of the federally designated highways or an airport, the federal government will usually come up between somewhere of 70% and 80% of the money. all well. the president's proposal -- well, let's see. 70%, 80% federal. another 30% to 20% local money. in the president's proposal that flips. the state and local government comes up with 70% to 80%, and the federal government comes up with 30% to -- 20% to 30%. so the role of the federal government is diminished, becomes the minor partner, and the state or local community
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become the major partner. i had a meeting today with hamilton city, a community of about 1,600 people right on the sacramento river with a levee that's maybe good for a 10-year high water but not for any extended amount of flood beyond what normally occurs. they have been trying for 30 years to raise the money locally to match the 80% federal. they did it. are they going to be able going into the future to complete that flood project if this program goes into effect and they got to come up with 80% of the money? won't happen. i would dare say all across this country with the exception of houston, texas, that no community is going to be able to come up with 70%, 80% of the money for a flood control project. this is a role that has traditionally been the army
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corps of engineers and the federal government. but, no. the administration flips it over so now the great burden lies with the local government. well, that's fine, you say. i think not. all across this country, small communities, rural communities and even urban communities do not have the resources. so here we are. here we are in a situation where we've had a massive tax cut that benefits the superwealthy and american corporations, the american corporations clearly indicating, not from me. go look at the wall street folks that have done the analysis. clearly indicating that that tax reduction, which is now in the pockets of the corporations, is not being used for higher wages, not being used for plant and equipment and new jobs above the 16%. the rest of the money is used
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for acquisitions and buying back stock. so much for trickle down. and, of course, the superwealthy, how much can you possibly spend? how much can you possibly spend on your mcmansion? how much can you possibly spend on a fleet of mercedes? the bottom line, when it comes to infrastructure, there is no money. it's gone. it disappeared with the tax cut. think about what could have been done if that tax bill actually had hearings in which the democrats could have put forth proposals that we have introduced in bills, proposals to repatriate the off-shore earnings of corporations with a lower tax and then use that money for infrastructure. we would have real dollars for an infrastructure program to the tune of maybe $50 billion to $100 billion over a period
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of time. but, no, no hearings, no amendments from democrats. no. not at all. we could have used that tax bill to create infrastructure banks so there would be a financing mechanism for those small communities around the nation that needed to build a road, needed to build a levee, needed to build a broadband infrastructure for their community but, no, that didn't happen either. not one hearing. not one democratic amendment to that tax bill, and, therefore, we go into the great infrastructure program where we really need to do some things. what do we need to do? well, let me find the right placard. some of you may have noticed just 12 months -- 13 months ago the manmade creation of the big
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estuaryfall in the world. oraville dam -- biggest waterfall in the world. oraville dam. 200,000 of my constituents had to evacuate within hours because that spillway, the emergency spillway next to it, was being overtopped by the river and eroded at the base and a 30-foot wall of water almost descended upon those 200,000 people. the number of deaths, unknown, but it would have been in the thousands because they couldn't get out of town fast enough. thankfully the rain stopped and the reservoir receded. had it not, had it continued and the water continued to spill over the emergency spillway here, unmitigated disaster. why did this fail? this failed for lack of repair,
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for a lack of maintenance. just one example of the thousands of dams in america that could fail. we saw this potential failure in puerto rico with one of the major reservoirs there. fortunately a third hurricane didn't occur. r maybe you're interested in bridges. this isn't a bridge to nowhere. this happens to be one of the , in bridges on interstate 5 interstate highway system that goes from vancouver, british columbia, to tijuana, mexico. it's the major trade route on the west coast. this is about seven years ago. the bridge fell down. i could put a bridge up here
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showing another bridge that failed on the mississippi river in the twin cities area. we could put thousands of pictures up here of bridges that could fail and have failed. this is an infrastructure issue. where's the money to rebuild this? well, it's in the hands of the corporations who are spending it to buy back their stock, to increase the stock price so the corporate officers can have a higher paycheck. oh, did i forget to mention how generous they were in bonuses? we're talking about one-time bonuses here. we're not talking about increasing the paycheck over time. we're talking about one-time bonuses. oh, i do like my san francisco base wells fargo bank who said we're going to increase the pay for the minimum wage workers. good for you. you're obeying the state laws
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that require minimum wage increases. good for you obeying the law. take credit if you will. but it's not out of the generosity. where's the money for all this? it's gone. it's gone. we had a what if chance in that tax bill to talk about a program that democrats have been putting forth for the last year? it's a better deal. a better deal for america. tax policy that actually provides benefits to the working men and women of america. to the families that are on the edge of poverty. it actually provides an infrastructure program that has real money, money that can be used to build the foundation for economic growth, money that can be used for employing people in high-paying
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construction jobs. oh, and by the way, it's not all clear, and there are those who think this may be in the present infrastructure plan, all of the talk about buy america, build america, it appears that language in that infrastructure plan would do away with the buy america provisions in highway infrastructure. we can't let that happen, but a better deal for america would be tax policy. it would be a program that would provide the education and training for the men and women that need -- that we need in our manufacturing sector. every six months i do a manufacturing advisory organization of manufacturers, and every time over the last eight years we have met, they came back with the very same concern and that concern is, we need highly skilled workers. how do you get highly skilled workers? you train them.
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you provide the job training. for those that have lost their jobs, for those that want to improve themselves and in our high school, whatever happened to technical training, vocational training? it's critically important. the programs that are out there, they need this support. the programs of american unions where they have apprenticeship training. scritcal way of building into our -- critical way of building into our economy, highly skilled men and women that earn a good, solid living of lders, plumbers, tech -- technicians of all kind. that's what we want. it takes money to do those things. so what are we going to do? i don't know how we're going to come back from this tax cut. it's not going to be done anytime soon. but i know this, that we're going to be really, really short of money. it's been estimated that in this current budget year the
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eficit will reach $1 trillion, and i know that we're just weeks away from on this floor the return of the deficit hawks that are going to say, oh, my goodness, the money is gone, we're going to have to make cuts. we can't have these kinds of deficits. i can hear them already. i hear the voices of the past, and i hear the voices of the future and i know they're going to come back and they're going to go after programs that are bsolutely essential. we got work to do. we got things we need to do in america. the american society of civil engineers point out where we need work. aviation. we got a d for how good our aviation system is. bridges, c. dams, d. drinking water, d.
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anybody here from michigan? anybody here from the central valley of california? shall we talk about water supplies? it used to be -- i remember when i was in college you would never go outside the united states and drink the water from the tap. now you don't go to the united states and drink water from the tap because there's a high probability that it's contaminated. we've seen this story. we've seen this story in flint, michigan. we've seen this story up and down the central valley of california. so what are we spending our money on? not on drinking water. on energy systems hazardous waste, inland water waste. oh, this is a good one. if you're on the mississippi and the ohio river and you are running a fleet of barges, you got your tug boat and you have a fleet of barges, you depend upon the federal government's
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lock system so you can travel up and down the river. if you're out there in the maritime and you're an international shipper and you want to go into one of the harbors on the east coast, where's the money for dredging? well, it disappeared with the tax cuts. it's not there. so is your ship going to run aground? no, you won't let that happen. what you do is you go to some other port. cuba. we love to talk about cuba. they're building an international port for the purpose of taking the new ships that are able to go through the panama canal, bring them to cuba, offload them, put them on a smaller ship and bring them to american harbors. there's an american success story. we don't have the money to dredge our harbors but we got new mercedes for
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the super wealthy. parks and recreation, sports. rail system. rails are doing pretty good, but not amtrak. the president's budget proposes to cut amtrak. to basically defund amtrak. you want to go on the east corridor here? you want to go from washington to boston? you want to take a plane, we know we've got an aviation problem. want to take the train? i guess you're going to hop a freight train. because amtrak isn't going to be around to run it. that's the president's budget proposal. schools. d-plus. solid waste transit, wastewater. american society of civil engineers rate america in the d range. oh, we should be so proud of the most advanced nation in the world. no, i think not. wouldn't take pride in our infrastructure. but, gentlemen and ladies, it
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takes money. where did the money go? well, just happens i like charts. the trump infrastructure scam. cuts more than $168 billion from existing transportation and infrastructure programs. i haven't talked about this one. remember i told you about the flip, 80% federal, 20% local flipped to 20% federal, 80% local? unless you happen to be a private investor. you want to buy dulles international airport or neighbor reagan international -- excuse me, i promise not to do that, whatever the name of that airport here is. i'll say reagan. reagan airport, it's up for sale, according to the trump
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administration. the federal government will come up with 80% of the money. not a bad deal. slashes federal investments and passes the buck back to the local governments. just talked about that. we haven't talked about the environmental programs. environmental protection programs that are significantly harmed, reduced, gutted in the proposal. say it's going to speed up projects. hello, anybody around here know that over the last two transportation programs, congress with democrat and republican support significantly reduced the time for an infrastructure program to be done. it's not 14 years. the new -- the laws that have been in place for the last decade, significantly reduced the processing time for infrastructure projects in which the federal government's involved in without, without
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harming the vital environmental protections that are out there, clean water, clean air, all of hose things. nyway. i see my republican colleagues anxious to get up and engage me in a debate. if they want to, i could yield to them, we could debate the wisdom of what has happened here. but what is happening is there's an alternative. an alternative we put forth from our side that unfortunately was not considered in the tax legislation. we're going to be working on the infrastructure bill, i dare say the president's infrastructure program is going nowhere in congress, at least it shouldn't. we're going to have to find the money as best we can and i have an idea. over the next 15 years, we're
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going to spend $1 trillion rebuilding our entire nuclear armaments. all of the delivery system, all the bonds, all the satellites. all rebuilt. so will russia so will china and we're in the midst of a nuclear arms race. well into the second quarter. of a new nuclear arms race. exceedingly expensive, exceedingly dangerous. because the delivery systems are stealthy, designed not to be observed. that's a problem. because that increases the risk. so maybe we can use some of that money to build the infrastructure, to educate our kids, to provide for seniors who have alzheimer's, care for the care givers that are taking care of their parents. to build an infrastructure program that really gives america a solid foundation for economic growth. one in which the research facilities are the most modern
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nd in which the most advantageous research is conducted. maybe we can find amongst our choices here money to build a highway system that is worthy of this nation. one in which there's not potholes every 100 yards. one in which bridges don't collapse. that we can build water systems in which you can take tap water from every fountain in this nation and drink it. without a concern about contamination of lead or something else. we could do that. we can make some choices. we can go back and revisit the tax scam in which there are specific inducement for offshoring american jobs. maybe we can do that. maybe we can look at some of the military spending and say, why does it cost a billion dollars to launch a satellite with one
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system and $90 million with another system to do the same thing? there are things we can do. most of all, it's time for a better deal for america. a better deal for the working men and women. a better deal for the elderly. a better deal for the children. that's what we need to do. and so with that, mr. speaker, i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. under the speaker's announced spoifl january 3, 2017, the gentleman from michigan, mr. mitchell is recognized for 60 minutes as the designee of the majority leader. mr. mitchell: thank you, mr. speaker. before i begin, i ask unanimous consent that all members may have five legislative days in which to revise and extend their remarks and include extraneous materials on the topic of my special order. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. mitchell: this is the second week of the tax truth squad effort to share the facts, the real facts about the tax cuts
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and jobs act and the impact it's had on the american economy and the american people. i'm pleased to be here with my fellow colleagues representing michigan and illinois. these two states include diverse industries and diverse people from farmers to bankers to manufacturers. i am humbled to represent the hardworking people of the 10th congressional district and the midwest. this is exactly what the tax cuts and jobs act has done, helped our stilts work every day supporting their family and helped the local economy. my colleague before me proceeded to speak about we should pay attention to the needs of those close to and living in poverty. i wish he'd stayed, i grew up in poverty. like many in michigan i grew up in a large family, six brothers and sisters. my dad worked full-time at a factory, my mom often worked a job to make ends meet.
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that's why i support polities -- policies that provide economic growth and tuns for a family like the one in which i grew up. i was butt a young pup in 1986, the last time the tax code was modernized since then it's grun to 74,000 pages of rules and regulations that only confuse people. you'd need to be a wizard to understand the tax code as it stood at the end of the year. that's why i promised my constituents that when i ran for office i would work hard to achieve meaningful tax cuts and reforms for the american people. i believe americans can and should make independent decisions about the use of their own money, the money they worked for, not the government. the government shouldn't come first. the tax cuts and jobs act allow hardworking individuals to do just that. across the nation and back home, we have already seen the direct impact of the tax cut and jobs act. more than 400 companies have already announced pay raises, bonuses, increased 40 -- 401 d
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k benefits and lowered rates. direct bonus announce pts reached over $3 billion across the nation. $3 billion. companies in michigan have already committed more than $180 million in bonuses to employees. a couple of examples, fiat-chrysler, one of the state's largest employers, is reinvesting its tax savings to our employers and the community. in addition to giving a $200 bonus to employees, in addition to profit sharing as part of their contract, they announced they'll move heavy duty ram truck construction from mexico to michigan, an investment that ill create 125 jobs. lakestone bank a small community bank, gave all hourly employees a $1 an hour raise. some consider that crumb bus where i grew up, $1 an hour more
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is real money. they gave them all a bonus saying they're appreciative of all lakesten bank and trust employees and what they've accomplished over the years. s that once in a lifetime opportunity and we know we want to reinvest much of the savings from the tax bill in our bank and the first place we're going to put it is in the hands of our employees. employees are our most important asset. stories like this are not unique from c.v.s. to which i poet lee, at&t to wells far ge. they're reinvesting in hardworking mes throughout the country. this is the second week of the tax refrm truth squad, we're calling it, initiative where members from states across the nation are invited to tell their stories about the benefits of tax reform. there are countless stories that they're anxious to express. at this point in time i'd like to recognize one of those members. i would like to introduce to all of you, my colleague, serving on the energy and commerce committee a defender of the
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stronger economy and good friend, representing the seventh congressional district, i yield two congressman tim walberg. mr. walberg: i thank the gentleman. i appreciate the opportunity to talk about the truth. we heard so much dismissal of the tax cut plan before we passed it. now that we passed it, not only did we read it beforehand but rereading it again we're seing the truth is working out. you know, as i travel around, mr. speaker, the seventh district of michigan, optimism about the new tax cuts is hard to miss. i have people coming up to me at the grocery store, at gas stations, even in church, saying you know, congressman, we heard a lot of reports that this wasn't for middle class people but i saw my paycheck. in february. and it's true. i got a raise.
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because the government is taking less out of it. aye heard from a number of workers excited about their bonuses and pay raises. and for businesses that are looking to expand their operations. just last week, i toured loew's home cent for the atreian, michigan, to visit with their team. because of the new tax law, their employees are receiving $1,000 bonuses and expanded maternity and parental leave. syntest lansing operations, the tax cut afforded their employees $1,000 bonuses and they reported they jumped now on a plan they were holding off but now they're going to build a $17 million facility to add on to to their operations. we already heard about fiat-chrysler giving out $2,000 bonuses to all their workers. they're also moving production of the ram heavy duty truck
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plant back from mexico to michigan. i wanted to reiterate that, that's coming home and creating 2,500 new good-paying jobs. we've also seen announcements from d.t.e. and consumers energy, utilities in michigan and in other states that their customers can expect to see lower utility bills thanks to the tax cuts. in fact, they submitted a request to the p.s.c. for almost $400 million in rate reductions. that's real money. as vice president pence said last week when we welcomed him to the motor city, tax reform is working for michigan. here's even more good news. the benefits are just beginning to kick in. this tax season is the last time taxpayers will have to file under the old broken tax code. under the updated code, individuals and families had every -- at every income level will see tax relief. the standard deduction is nearly
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doubled to protect more of people's hard-earned income from taxation. the child tax credit is expanded from $1,000 to $2,000 to help with the cost of raising kids. with these new reforms, the typical middle income family of four will receive a tax cut of more than $2,000. on top of that, the law will help small businesses thrive, boost job creation, here and at home and make our economy stronger and more competitive like it ought to be in the united states. and in michigan. it meevens bigger paychecks and more money in their pockets, not the federal government's pockets. that's where it plongs. mr. speaker, i appreciate the opportunity at any time to put forth truth but more importantly truth that's optimistic, that builds on our people that builds
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on letting them do for themselves with the resources they've earned. and i express i appreciate my colleague for holding this truth squad tonight because people need more of that. they need more optimism that comes from truth that impacts them in a growing and positive way and glad to be part of it. i yield back. >> thank you, mr. walberg. i served with mr. walberg in the education and work force committee which he is a subcommittee chair so i thank you for the time to joining us. i want to share with everyone tonight, as we move forward, with the changing of the standard deduction, nearly doubling of the standard deduction, 90% of taxpayers will be able to file their taxes like this rather than the pile of paperwork they dealt with for years. mr. mitchell: most will file their wage and compensation income and use the standard
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deduction. it will be done except for a few other tax cuts we'll talk about. family child credit, we'll talk about that. but most americans can file like this. that's one of the things we wanted to achieve. one of the greatest achievements. the i'd like to recognize former chairman of the energy and commerce committee, another colleague from michigan, senior member of our delegation -- experience in only, not age -- with decades of experience in congress focusing on job creation and economic opportunity for our state and for our nation, representing michigan's sixth congressional district, i yield to congressman fred upton. mr. upton: i thank the gentleman. i thank the gentleman, my good friend, for hosting this hour tonight and i look forward to the comments by all my colleagues from michigan and illinois. let me just start off by saying a couple of things. i had a great ninth grade civics teacher. we learned how the government worked. you pass a bill in the house, you pass a bill in the senate,
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i learned later on the house bill is always better than the senate. in this case, john shimkus and i -- and he's going to be a speaker from illinois a little bit later on yet this evening -- john shimkus and i were two conferees on this bill. i got to say as we debated this bill, there were some elements that were not so good. but at the end of the day as this bill meshed together, we took the best elements of both the house and the senate bill and we got a bill that the president was able to sign. i can remember being trashed left and right back in november and december about what this bill was going to do or not going to do. wasn't going to provide real tax relief to the working class. companies weren't really going to give bonuses. this is all going to be bogus arguments. but now at the end of the day, two months-plus since the bill was signed and became enacted, my constituents are finding out good things about the bill. yes, they're getting real
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take-home pay increases from the jobs that they do. yes, they're getting bonuses. i was at a small little almost farmers market, multigenerational market just north of notre dame. shelton's. they have 83 employees. the owners gave every employee there a bonus. i talked to one of them who literally stocks the shelves. he got $600. he said, you know, mr. upton -- i said, call me fred. he said, this wasn't just crumbs. this made a real difference. what are you going to do with that $600? he said, you know, my wife has cancer and i bought her a new dress. he was so excited that that increase in the take-home pay was going to do some real benefit for he and his family. i was at a groundbreaking at pfizer, my largest employer. invest $6 l they
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billion -- that's b as in big -- $6 billion in new facilities here in north america, they're also giving the -- they also announced they're going to give $100 million in bonuses for all of their nonexecutive employees. that's real money, and that's thanks to tax reform. mr. walberg talked a little bit about some of the utilities in michigan. i was with a little bit earlier today the chair of consumers energy. very important player. and the chair of d.t.e. as well. yes, because of the reduction in the corporate tax rates, they are going to pass on those savings, as they want to, to the consumers. in the case of consumers energy, they're going to give back $200 million in rate relief to virtually every one of their customers that they serve across the board. that's good news. it has to be approved by the public service commission, but
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in fact that money's going to be there. whether it's a small business who's now going to get a lower rate. pass-through rate means a lot. keeping your deductions on health care. seeing the highest corporate rate being reduced to 21%. and i remember well that debate hat we had between mitt romney and barack obama back in 2012. the question was on tax reform. and even barack obama said he would support lowering that corporate tax rate to 25% because we were already at the highest corporate tax rate in the world. that's what this bill did. and thank goodness. the last point i would make, i was tired of economic growth being at .7% or 1%. we can do better than that. this bill is now leading the way to see this happen. the report this week i think is predicting a 3.5% growth rate for fiscal year -- for calendar
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year 2018. that is a far cry from where we were just a few years ago, and i dare say in large part it's due because workers are in fact getting more money from their paychecks. we've reduced the corporate rates. companies, instead of having an incentive to go overseas as they did by my largest employer in one of my counties a few years ago, they now have a reason to come home and invest that money here. so i appreciate the gentleman. look forward to the other folks' comments tonight, and i'd yield back to my good friend, the gentleman from the great state of michigan. mr. mitchell: thank you for taking time out of your busy schedule to talk about how the tax cuts and jobs act has impacted your district. let me state -- as we get ready for e next speaker -- in the average filer in my state they save $2,700. now some refer to that as
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crumbs, as meaningless. that's real money that allows for people to make a difference in their lives, to move forward, make decisions about fixing their houses, go on vacation. you know, put a down payment on a new car. all things that wouldn't be possible, and more importantly that's money they work for. that's not money that somebody gave them. that's money they earned and they get to keep it. that's so important. the next speaker that wants to come forward and talk about his district is representative shimkus who, as mr. upton said, was a conferee on this bill. i now yield to a member of the energy and commerce committee, a conferee on the tax cuts and jobs act, who's been an advocate for smaller government for years, representing the 15th congressional district, congressman john shimkus. mr. shimkus: thank you very much. it's great to be with you and my friends from the great state of michigan. you know, as a republican, sometimes people ask, what's the difference? i say, well, republicans, we believe in less government, individual responsibility, lower taxes, more personal
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freedoms and liberties. so from my time here in washington, i've always wanted a fairer, flatter, simpler tax code. to fear ouldn't have filing our income taxes. we shouldn't have to fear whether we have the receipts and i think the other thing that was always frustrating about the code is you never know if you've done enough of the itemizing if you'll get anything or not and then have you forgotten something that you are not recouping, so having said that, that's why -- and i'm glad congressman mitchell raised this issue, the fairer, flatter, simpler tax code. before we passed the bill, 80% of my constituents did not itemize. under this tax reform, 90% of all my filers -- 90% will be able to do it on this simple
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postcard. and it's easy to find. people can pull it up. fairandsimplegop to check it out. congressman upton was correct. this process worked. we had a house bill. we had a senate bill. and then the two sides merged to keep some of the deductions that people really thought were important and a great compromise that was working. the question is, the proof -- is the proof in the pudding? in other words, is it operating as advertised for either side? and i think we're down here to say it's operating as advertised, and we can probably stand down here and tell some of these stories. what we did is we posted a question on our newsletter to ask people to respond, and i want to share some of these responses. and these are on the individual
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side. i'll talk about the corporate side in a minute. ken and pam from st. joe -- st. joseph -- st. joe we call it, they say, and i quote, personally, we've seen an increase in our net wages each week. with our business we seem to ave an increase in companies starting new things. eg says more money in my take-home check. jane said, my retirement went up. positive results only so far. just as expected with commonsense tax cut. carl from collinsville, that's my hometown, glad carl is happy. i'm seeing more in my paycheck each week. keep up the great work. so that's just on the individual side. then we briefly want to talk about what's going on from the usiness -- you know, greats.
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announcements, i had the chairman of the ways and means committee, my good friend, kevin brady say, listen to this, 50% of all manufacturers in this country are planning expansion. not 50% of the manufacturers in illinois or michigan. across the country. that's pretty awesome. so what's going on in my district? griffith trucking, broadway express, heartland classics, which is in newton, gave $1,000 bonuses to 65 full-time employees. fedex has a big distribution hub in my district, same place in effingham. fedex is committed to more than $3 billion in wage increases, bonus, pension funding and expanded u.s. capital investment. charter communications is raising their minimum wage to $15 an hour as a result of this tax cut plan. t's great to see congressman
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raskin on the floor. congressman r -- rosk up on the floor. he was a major player. these stories are attributed to peter's great work. the other one i wanted to mention, of course. i live in the metro st. louis area. boeing has a big presence in st. louis but, of course, a lot of their great workers probably live on the illinois side. so boeing has an now understanded employee-related and charitable investments of $300 million as a result of the tax law. so great things are happening. i want to follow what fred upton said and that we as a body we're tired of being in a malaise. is this all we can hope for? we wanted an employee that would grow and create jobs and
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be vibrant, that people would be excited going back to the work force, working hard, taking more of their pay, investing into the market or in their retirement savings and that's just what we're having. i have a lot of my colleagues here on the floor. congressman mitchell, with that i could talk a long time on the benefits. i'm very, very excited about it. thank you for organizing this tonight, and i'll yield back my time. mr. mitchell: thank you for the enthusiasm and detail of the tax cuts and jobs act. we'll continue this conversation and talk a little bit about trade states because it's had a great impact not only in illinois but michigan. joining us at this point in time is congressman mike bishop, a neighbor of mine in a neighboring district to the 10th congressional district, member of the ways and means committee that had a direct impact on in bill. he's been a leading advocate for a simpler and fairer tax code. i now lead to congressman bishop. mr. bishop: thank you for yielding and leading in this
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effort. ery exciting to be back in the comeback state of michigan. after years of stagnant economic growth, our state is experiencing the benefits of a modernized tax code. so far more than four million ders have g michigan benefited from higher wages. across michigan, i've had the opportunity to travel, not only in my district but across this great state, and i have seen firsthand great things, so many great stories to tell, sitting down with folks, hearing about the new tax law and how it's impacting their community and how it's impacting their businesses and i take away from this a number of really excited testimonials from everyone i sat down with. for example, dan, a small business owner from rochester hills, michigan, shared with me as a result of tax reform he
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was able to invest in his new car wash by buying new equipment. another constituent is seeing extra money in his take-home pay. i stopped by the fiat-chrysler truck assembly plant to talk with workers about the new ram truck production line that's relocating from mexico all the way back to michigan, where it belongs, bringing with it 2,500 new jobs. as you can imagine there's extreme excitement within the four walls of that beautiful plant. michigan is the auto capital of the world. we produce more than 2. million cars and trucks, we produce more cars and trucks than any other state in the union and we are excited and proud to be the auto capital of the world, the state that put the world on wheels. the fiat-chrysler decision will
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prvide more than $1 billion in u.s. investment and $2,000 boe news, $2,000, for each employee, all as a result of tax reform. in lake warren, michigan, complete automation. they employ about 250 employees. i visited their operation to talk with employees about the new benefit they'll soon be seeing. as a result of tax reform, employees that complete will in their 401k contributions see a match of up to 50%, up to 4% of their investment in their 401k. that's a big deal for a lot of people. a great deal for their family. it's a great deal for them individually, but it's a great deal for their family. i also say this. with the average tax cut in my district of about $2,500 per family, average family, that's not crumbs. that is real, real, relief for families that could really use
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it right now. the takeaway from all these conferrings i've had across my district is that the tax cut and jobs act is working. america's optimism is rising and the work force is taking notice. we're finally creating an environment that fosters economic growth and brings jobs back to the united states and back to my home state and the comeback state of michigan. this is just the beginning. hank you and i yield back. >> thank you, mr. bishop for your feedbook. mr. mitchell: next, i have the honor to recognize the chairman of the ways and means subcommittee on tax policy, thank you for your leadership on this and i hope for continued success on tax laws, congressman peter roskam. mr. roskam: thank you for yielding.
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mr. speaker, thank you for the time. i think it's so interesting, we're all coming together, various states, to celebrate these accomplishments and to take a step back, huh far we've come in the past year or the past several months where you look back and basically there was a national consensus that developed and the consensus was nobody liked our tax code. nobody. nobody could defend it. because it was absurd. it was so complicated. those of us who are from the chicago area, we know that the last time the tax code was updated was when the bears won the world series -- when the bears won the super bowl. world series, i'm thinking cubs. so that's 30 years ago. and yet we've got a tax code that's a complete throwback. the tax code was such a throwback that the last time it was updated, in 1986, the internet didn't exist as a commercial enterprise. there was no shared economy.
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air bnb, uber, those things didn't exist. global supply chains were not as exected -- connected as they are today. here's what's interesting. the high per ghow bowe lee that surrounded the debate on the tax h.r. 1 kept moving in and came to a crescendo, passed through the house, passed through the senate, signed into law, it was described by our friends on the other side of the aisle as worst bill ever, armageddon and obviously now the famous line, the result of these things, were crumbs. well none of that turned out to be true. this was a terrific bill. let me give you a couple of examples, mr. speaker, of people in my constituency who have written publicly or written to my privately about this bill. here's mary from wheaton, illinois, my hometown he said our family is already feeling the positive impact of the changes made in the tax code.
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our daughter and her husband just had their first baby and they'll be able to take advantage of the doubled child tax credit next year. throughout our extended family, those who work for big and small businesses are -- alike are witnessing immediate effects. companies are nsting the anticipated benefits of the new tax law in the form of bonus, pay raises, capital improvements -- improvements and new hire. that's just the beginning. the true value of the tax code will come in the months and years ahead. mary is absolutely right. or another person, nicole from elgin. she says thanks to the new tax bill my family will be saving an estimated $4,000 on our taxes next year. not only that, but i'm getting a $1,000 bonus, and an extra $150rks0 in my employee pension account if my employer as a result of these changes. or how about an enrolled agent,
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stephen, from wayne, he says this, he prepares people's taxes. he said as an enrolled agent entering my 35th tax season i'm anxiously awaiting the smiles i'll be getting from my clients when i inform them how much they'll be saving on their 2018 tax return. the clear majority of my clients will be paying lower tax rates in 2018 due to the recrebly passed tax cuts and jobs act. then i'll go to the end of his note, i haven't been able to say this very often over the past 35 years but i'm actually looking forward to this sax season. -- this tax season. with eknow these things are true. we know they're manifesting themselves. i've got a constituency where there's about 30,000 people that get hit, hard, by the alternative minimum tax. and they're not going to be hit by the alternative minimum tax. they're going to be spared that tax. there's many other examples in the state of illinois where you
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see real progress being made. up by me in chicagoland, m.k. incorporation a fleet management company, is giving $1,000 bonuses to 150 employees. amaron, illinois, the customers are using both electricity and natural gas. they'll see a combined savings of lower utility rate. we've talked about a. b at&t already, $1,000 bonuses to 10,000 illinois-based mes and nationwide, over $1 billion, and increase in capital expenditures. there's example out of example after example. look, if all the critics can do is basically say, well this isn't enough, or this is crumbs, they've not been to my constituency to tell a family i represent, mr. speaker that $1,000 is crumbs is just patently obtuse.
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$1,000 is real money. $1,000 is getting ahead on a car payment. $1,000 is the ability to move forward and say we're going to go on a little extra special vacation. going to put a little more money toward our college fund. going to put a little more money toward retirement. that's just one particular example. so i want to thank the gentleman for organizing this time and i will yield to him and very much appreciate your bringing us together to celebrate these things. mr. mitchell: i ask you to stay far moment for a real quick question. the bears, as your example and stevizeman was a young captain in the national hockey league. a question for you, 90% of our taxpayers, we believe are going to file a standard deduction but we kept, we talked about it, we kept some key tax credits and --
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in the tax code to help families. can you briefly talk about maybe the family and child tax credit, what we did with that, and why we think it's important. >> what we did with it is we doubled it. folks say, i don't like this tax plan. really? you don't like doubling the child tax credit? there was very much an intentionality as you know to say, we value family. we value children. we value domestic life. toward that end we're going to support it through the tax code. there was a very specific design not just to keep it but to enhance it. mr. mitchell: we want to be clear with folks, there's the child tax credit, the earned income credit and those are credits against your tax liability. this is not a deduction. those are credits back. mr. roskam: right. mr. mitchell: not a deduction. mr. roskam: a deduction is a decrease in taxable liability.
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a screat credit. once the tax is tall cuelated, the credit is an amount that comes off the tax liability. it's a very significant thing. said another way, dret -- credits are more valuable than deductions. mr. mitchell: thank you very much for that, i hope some people listened to that, some people don't understand the difference. thank you for taking the time tonight. i'm now pleased to yield time to the gentleman representing the 12th district of illinois and a small family business owner himself, congressman mike bost. mr. bost: i thank the gentleman for hosting this special order and because we're going down a theme if we put in perspective of how long ago it was that we did tax reform in this nation, i was running for my first political office, on county board, i had a mullet, and it looked good, or at least my wife told me it did. after we passed this tax reform
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irk come from deep southern illinois, nowhere near chicago, a rural area a typical family of four will receive a break of over $2,000 per year. folks, i don't know how it would be in your district or your hometown if you're listening to this tonight, but that's not crumbs where i come from. some of the folks here in washington may think that's the case but that's not. let me tell you that i've been around my district, talking to people and you go to barbershops and coffee shops and my wife and i own a beauty salon and you hear from people how much they're saving. so much so we actually asked for people to start replying in on our facebook and tell us what their story was. i'm going to give you a few of these. i know we're on limited time but i'm going to tell you that bobbie from mccann, here's what he writes. i'm a police officer, my wife is a high school teacher. combined the new tax rates saves
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us over $300 a month. we have two teenage children. the additional income will help us save for upcoming college expenses. terry from royalton writes, my wife is an educator, i'm in health care. since these changes have affected my pay, about the same s hers, we know -- we now have -- we the how much it change ours monthly income. bout $3,000. tracy from wood river writes, tax reform allows more money for college, more money to be put toward paying off our home. provides more activity for our children and allows us to save more money for the future. these are just three stories. of countless othat we've heard. countless that come in not only from individuals on the individual tax rate but business
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tax rates as well. expansion of business. growing of business. using it to expand the 401k's of their employees. giving increases in pay to their employees. the bottom line is this. the tax reform allows people to keep more money in their paycheck. it allows them the opportunity to use that money in the way they see fit, not how the government wants to use it. they earn that money. it's theirs. they should be able to keep more of it. to spend and save as they please. this new tax reform does just that. with that i yield back. mr. mitchell: thank you for taking time to join us this evening. i'd like to now recognize congressman adam kinzinger who serves on the foreign affairs committee, i yield the gentleman from the 16th district of illinois to talk abtax cuts in
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is district. >> i was 18 years old the last time the tax code was reformed. i think this is something we ought to do every decade, worst case every two decades, not every 30 years. i wish this could have been bipartisan. i think there's a lot of fantastic things in here. i think it's obvious the economy is showing big benefit as a as a result. it's hard to hide that or pretend that's not the case even though some of our friends try to do that. it's obvious it's worked. i want to tell a few stories, then i'll yield back, of my district, the 16th district of illinois. i was at a tax reform round table last month at the illinois valley chamber of commerce and heard from my local business community about how this bill affects them and what they'd like to see moving forward. one gentleman from walnut, illinois, in bureau county, was exited about the tax cuts his small business would receive. the plans to increase hourly
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wages and hire seven to 10 new employees. that's not crumb, that's important. the tax relief for business large and small being shared with employees all over. over the last few months more than 300 companies and count having announced plans to add people, add bonuses, add to retirement benefits, give back to the u.s. economy. employees at u.p.s. in my district, home depot, bank of america, ryder, at&t, u-haul and many others with illinois locations will receive these bone ibo nusses and benefits. a few years ago tissue a few weeks ago i went to the fie yacht-chrysler plant in belvedere and the employees were excited about the bonus they'll receive in the second quarter of this year. 85% of illinoisans will see a tax cut next year and the nonpartisan tax foundation estimates that the state of illinois stands to gain tens of thousands of jobs from this reform. . this is real and tangible in
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terms of the benefits it will put onto our economy. our future's bright. our economy's growing stronger, and with tax relief, the american dream is once again on the horizon for folks in my district and across the country. i thank the gentleman for yielding and i yield back. mr. mitchell: thank you for joining us this evening. i appreciate the detail in your district. we'll continue with illinois for a bit here. i guess it's illinois night for a while. i now yield to the representative of the 14th district of illinois who has been a voice for business owners across america through his work on the committee, congressman randy hultgren. mr. hultgren: thank you so much. illinois is a high tax state. we've seen illinois state taxes continue to go up so it is welcome relief that congress has brought federal tax relief to the people of illinois and especially i'm grateful for the residents of the 14th congressional district, the suburbs of chicago who are seeing great relief and especially the benefits that come to small businesses, truly
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the energy and the engine behind illinois' economy. they are going to receive immediate benefits from reduced tax burden and more flexible accounting rules. i'm pleased the final version included this portion of my bill which was to lower taxes on illinois' largest employers, which is small businesses, and it's called bring small business back tax reform act. further, the tax cuts and jobs act reduced corporate tax rates to 21% and includes provisions to deter u.s. companies from moving their headquarters and investments abroad. encouraging them to bring income and jobs back home again. again, this is welcomed news for illinois residents. numerous companies who employ residents of the 14th congressional district have announced new investments and new hiring and giving more money to their employees, wages, bonuses, training, and more. just a sampling of these are american community bank, first
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midwest bank, m.k., boeing, u.s. bank, wells fargo, wind ust financial, home depot, wal-mart, c.v.s. and starbucks. they're hiring more employees in my district. geneva has brought on two new employees to manage the equipment the company invested in under the new expensing rules. one plans to hire two new employees in 2018 with the money the company saved through tax reform and the list goes on and on. mr. speaker, it's time americans were given the truth about the tax cuts and jobs act. 80% of u.s. households will see a tax cut in 2018, according to the nonpartisan tax policy center, but only 17% of americans actually think they will. in fact, the bill lowers individual rates for low and middle-income americans across the board and doubles the standard deduction for both individuals and families. if you're one of the 70% of americans that currently take the standard deduction, getting an immediate rate cut and a doubling of the earnings you can keep tax-free will make a
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big difference to you and to your family. this bill does not cut medicare, medicaid, or social security, period. this bill does not get rid of medical expense deduction or the charitable deduction. those are protected and expanded. the bill did not take health care away from americans. 80% of those who pay for the individual mandate tax are families making less than $50,000. this bill gets rid of the individual mandate penalty so families are not burdened by yet another tax. it's clear, the tax cuts and jobs act is already delivering positive results to illinois individuals, families, and small businesses and to americans everywhere. it's good news and more good news is coming. with that i'll yield back. mr. mitchell: thanks for joining us. appreciate you taking the time to explain the importance of this in your district. y next speaker has extensive experience on the ways and means committee representing
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the 18th district of illinois, i yield to congressman darren lahood. mr. lahood: thank you. i want to thank you and mimi walters for putting together and organizing this special order in order to highlight the effects of the tax cuts and jobs act in illinois and across the country. 31 years is way too long. that's what it took before we passed comprehensive tax reform at the end of last year. in my 2 1/2 years here, i couldn't be more prouder to support the bill, and when i went into looking at the legislation, i really looked at two things as we looked at comprehensive tax reform. one is, how do we help middle-class and lower middle-class people across this country in my district? second, how do we get the economy roaring again? we almost for nine years had a sluggish economy, stagnant wages. how do we get the economy robust, vibrant again? and we succeeded on both those
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counts with this bill. and very proud to support it. this historic tax reform law is making a real difference for our families and our workers. but don't -- you don't have to take my word for it. take it from the hardworking people i've spoken with across illinois' 18th district. the workers i've spoken with are already seeing the results of the new withholding tables which is no surprise. in fact, the median family of four in my district will save $2,593. let me repeat that. $2,23593 every year from this -- $$2.593 every year from this law. this is certainly not crumbs -- $2,593 every year from this law. this is certainly not crumbs. the benefits have already gone beyond lowering the rates with more bonuses and pay raises being announced every single day. one example from my district is
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census spa in peoria. for over a decade, paula has relief customers with in her spa. with the passage of this bill, they are now providing tax relief to their employees. after calculating the savings from her business that she saw through the tax cuts and jobs act, paula handed out $500 bonuses to all of her employees. as a thank you for their hard work. this is real money that the employees can put towards expensive, new purchases, or even saving up for things like education or a home or a new car. but tax reform also has positive effects beyond larger paychecks. last month i spoke with a constituent named chris who's a small business owner and also the fire marshal for springfield county.
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chris attended a roundtable discussion i hosted in springfield and talked about how the new depreciation rules as part of the tax reform law have already incentivized building owners to upgrade their sprinkler and safety equipment which has benefited his small business. safer buildings and up-to-date fire prevention are a win-win for everyone. and i was glad to hear that even our local fire marshal was seeing the real effects of commonsense tax reform and reforming our tax code. stories like these are coming from every district across this great country, and the benefits of the tax cuts and jobs act show no sign of slowing down and that's good news for all americans. it should be clear by now that letting workers keep more of their hard-earned paychecks is a recipe for a healthy economy. and i am excited to see how this bill continues to improve the lives and security of all american families. i yield back.
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mr. mitchell: maybe the congressman can stay one moment for a quick question. mr. lahood: sure. mr. mitchell: you were talking about the depreciation allowance and what it means for especially small businesses. what one of the things we did was change how the taxes are structured for pass-throughs, small businesses. maybe explain that briefly how we helped small businesses be viable and grow in this country. mr. lahood: small businesses are the lifeblood of our economy. they create the most jobs in our economy. when we looked at compre-ive tax reform we -- agree hencive tax -- comprehensive tax reform we asked, what can we do to help you, expensing, we took that into account and now you're seeing the results of that. what does that mean? what do they do with those savings? well, they're hiring more people. they're investing in higher wages. they're investing back into their companies which has a downstream effect throughout this country and those are real results and, again, that's a positive nature which will
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continue into the future and we're awfully proud of those provisions. mr. mitchell: thank you for detailing that and appreciate taking your time this evening. we'll now rotate back to michigan. fellow freshman, good friend of a prout i am proud to yield to my colleague from the northern regions of michigan who throughout this process served on the budget committee and had nput, i yield to the congressman from the first district of michigan, mr. bergman. mr. bergman: thank you, mr. speaker. thank you for letting me smile and talk to the american public with the words of constituents from michigan's first district because these are not my words. these are their words over the last 2 1/2 months or so since we passed the tax cuts and jobs
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act. you know, in november, 2016, the great people of michigan's first district sent me to washington with the direct, yet simple mandate, get washington, d.c., out of our pockets and off our backs. that's pretty simple instructions. the tax cuts and jobs act was the first major step to accomplishing that goal. since we passed tax reform, i've traveled throughout many of the first district's 32 counties talking with constituents, business owners, and hearing their individual stories. farmers, businesses, both large and small, and families are already seeing the benefits that tax reform brings, and we're just getting started. many of these small companies said, well, i don't know yet but i got to meet with my accountant in the middle of april and then we'll see.
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now they're starting to see. wage increases, bonuses and expansions are starting to roll in and take effect and it's long overdue in our neck of the woods. and when i say our neck of the woods, that's not a figurative statement, that is a literal statement. you know, many families in our district live paycheck to paycheck, and even a small crisis could send them into a tail spin. an extra $100 or $150 in a paycheck in my district is not crumbs. it's not armageddon. it's a big plus. it gives that family flexibility to live its life and to raise their kids and be proud community wage-earning members of that community. that $1,000 a year may mean a new set of snow tires. and by the way, we only have roughly -- a little over two weeks of winter left, but we use our snow tires up there
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through about mid may. that's just the way it works. that money might go for the kids to play on a sports team. hockey is not a cheap sport to put your son or daughter in. or it could be saving up in that family's rainy day fund. e hear businesses growing, expanding their staff, raising their wages, as a result of a fairer, simpler tax code. you know, when i talk to some folks they say, you know what, i don't mind working. i'm proud to work. the dignity of work is what makes me strong as an individual, what makes me strong as a mother or a father. and they just think in some ways it's just not fair if you don't earn your wage. so there's a certain sense of pride that goes along with that. we all know that if you're looking for thanks,


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