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Ideas


Renew America

“I believe America is the greatest country on earth. Our nation has given more people the chance to work hard and achieve their dreams than any other in human history and is still the best hope for those who want to make better lives for themselves and their families. But achieving the American Dream is becoming harder and harder for too many.

In order to restore what’s made this country great, we need to clear out government-created hurdles and empower individuals to succeed again. We need to reform our outdated bureaucracy, create an economic environment that drives job creation, and make the tough decisions needed to put our finances on a more stable and secure path.

Americans have always risen to overcome great challenges before us. Help me Renew America, and we can ensure that we hand future generations a country that is stronger, more prosperous, and more free than the one we were given.”


Economy

Returning our economy to its full strength must be at the heart of everything we do. An economy running at full force is what drives the American dream; it makes it possible to secure a steady income, achieve a quality education, get ahead, and provide our families and future generations with more opportunity than we were given.

The way we get our economy back on track is to get government out of the way and enable individuals to succeed. Washington should be creating an environment that encourages growth, not suffocates it, by fostering innovation and driving success. We must be the engine, not the anchor.

Today, too many families struggle to make ends meet. Individuals looking for work and a steady income instead find a bloated government bureaucracy, fleeting jobs, and fading opportunity. We can and must do better.

I have fought and will continue to fight to renew our economy and create better opportunity for Americans. I have worked to enact pro-growth tax reform, revitalize our manufacturing base, lower energy costs by creating good-paying energy jobs, open world markets to American products, and establish a fair and level playing field for American businesses. We can establish an environment that encourages growth, empower millions of Americans to succeed, and make it possible to hand future generations a stronger and more secure country. Here’s how we do it.

Revitalize manufacturing

Manufacturing makes up the core of a robust economy and strong middle class. In Illinois alone, it accounts for over 500,000 jobs. To build on these jobs and facilitate a manufacturing renaissance, we must make America the best place in the world to do business again. This involves reforming our complicated tax structure, rooting out burdensome and costly regulations, lowering the cost of energy by expanding domestic energy production, streamlining workforce training programs, and ensuring our children are equipped with the skills needed to thrive in an ever-evolving, high-tech industry.

Opening world markets for American products

Opening markets for products grown or made here on American soil helps businesses’ bottom lines and leads to new jobs for American workers. I have voted for numerous free-trade deals that eliminate unfair barriers on US exports and allow American products to be sold around the world. In addition, I have been active to ensure our Administration is doing all it can to hold China accountable for its unfair trade policies that hurt American jobs.

Enact pro-growth tax reform

America needs a tax structure that encourages businesses to build and keep jobs here, not overseas. Our current system is unfair to small businesses, discourages US investment, and sports the highest corporate tax rate in the world. We need tax reform that gets rid of unfair loopholes, lowers rates, and gives American businesses owners the certainty they need to expand their businesses. In addition, we need leaders willing to put partisan politics aside to get this important reform done for a stronger economy and brighter future.

Develop American energy

By adopting a true all-of-the-above energy approach, we can be a global leader in energy production which ultimately creates good-paying energy jobs here at home. Throughout my time in Congress and on the Energy and Commerce Committee, I have made it a priority to protect and ensure certainty of domestic energy production, lower Americans’ energy costs, and creating more energy jobs here. The Sixteenth District is a model of what a true all-of-the-above energy approach looks like, and I pledge to continue working to bring this model to Washington and enact it on a national scale.

Eliminate government obstacles

One of the top job-destroyers I hear about from Illinois business owners is our own government. Burdensome regulations, runaway debt, and widespread uncertainty coming from Washington are holding back an American renewal. I support reigning in sprawling agencies like the Environmental Protection Agency, enacting the structural reforms needed to tackle our debt, and making government less apparent in your everyday life.


Fiscal Restraint

Americans want a limited government that protects the most vulnerable while spending within its means. Unfortunately, our current government continues to spend more than it takes in, heaping trillions of dollars onto future generations and weakening America from the inside out. In order to build the country Americans deserve and ensure we pass future generations a strong and secure nation, we must rein in our spending and tackle our debt.

In the last eight years, President Obama and Washington Democrats have exploded our debt and placed more burdens on future generations. Under President Obama, our debt has grew by over $6.6 trillion, more than during any presidency in history. What’s more, Washington Democrats have completely failed to work with Republicans to put forward any meaningful solutions to address the fiscal health of our nation.

Since taking over the House in 2010, my Republican colleagues and I have put a halt on the Obama spending spree. We’ve reduced our deficit by over $150 billion and overall spending has fallen for three straight years – the first time that’s happened since the Korean War. You better believe we’re just getting started.

The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) estimates spending on already expensive government health care programs will more than double over the next 75 years. Federal debt held by the public is already 73% of our country’ s economic output, a ratio higher than at any point in our history after World War II. In less than a generation, that debt will eclipse the total size of our economy.

I have voted to balance our federal budget, establish a balanced budget amendment, and put runaway entitlement programs on a path to solvency. In addition, I have sponsored legislation in the House that garnered bipartisan support to rein in mandatory spending and inject some much needed fiscal accountability into these programs.

A slimmer, more efficient government that lives within its mean will encourage growth, create opportunity, and power the investments needed to move our country forward. I will continue to work for this reform and bring about the government Americans want and deserve.


Healthcare

Repealing and Replacing Obamacare

For years, Americans have felt the burdensome consequences of Obamacare. Families are paying more in premiums, businesses are cutting employees’ hours, patients are losing choice in their care, and millions of Americans are finding they can no longer keep the health insurance they’ve relied upon for years.

In November 2016, Americans sent a message: they no longer want big-government Obamacare to continue to dictate their health care decisions. Under President Trump’s leadership, House Republicans are working towards the repeal and replacement of Obamacare. Reform will empower individuals to purchase health care across state lines, ensure those with preexisting conditions have access to coverage, allow young adults to stay on their parents’ plans until age 26, provide reduced premiums for small businesses and individuals, and enact real medical liability reform, which is key to lowering costs. I have voted dozens of times to repeal Obamacare and now that we have the opportunity, I am committed to seeing it through.


National Defense, Homeland Security, and Immigration

Countless American men and women have put their lives on the line, with many making the ultimate sacrifice, so that we may enjoy the liberties and freedoms we hold dear; it’s our responsibility to ensure we carry this torch, and hand our kids and grandkids a strong and secure nation with the same advantages we were given.

We must continue to provide leadership in an ever-volatile world by showing our allies and enemies alike that America stands by its values. This means ensuring our troops are equipped with the best technologies available while maintaining a mobile, reactive fighting force capable of responding to threats at a moment’s notice. When the United States rejects its leadership position in the world, it opens the door for countries like China and Russia to fill the void, something I will continue to fight in Congress to prevent.

At home, we face security challenges as well. As a pilot in the Air National Guard, I have flown surveillance missions over the southwest border and worked firsthand with Customs and Border Patrol on the challenges they face. Our porous borders pose one of the largest security threats to our nation as they present those who would do us harm a way into our country. Thus, one of our top priorities must be to secure our borders. We can accomplish this task through a host of actions, including the use of unmanned aerial patrols, the construction of a physical and virtual fence, and an enhanced border patrol presence along the border.

While I believe we must make reforms to our broken immigration system, we must first ensure that our borders are secure or we risk returning to the status quo. It is vital we update our antiquated immigration system to better suit the needs of a 21st century economy, but we must not reward those who have come here illegally. I will continue to work with my colleagues in Congress to ensure we develop immigration policies that secure and strengthen America and provide fairness to those who attempt to enter our country legally.


Energy

America has the potential to be a global leader in energy production and good-paying energy jobs – but we need a true all-the-above energy plan first. By taking advantage of all our energy resources -renewable and non-renewable – we can create more good-paying energy jobs here, lower utility costs for families and businesses, and reduce our reliance on volatile regions of the world to meet our energy needs.

As a member of the Energy and Commerce Committee, I have worked hard to reverse the “no new energy” stance of the Obama administration and enact a true all-of-the-above energy policy, as we have here in the Sixteenth District. Our district contains a diverse supply of energy producers, including the most nuclear reactors of any district in the country, coal plants, biodiesel and bioethanol facilities, hydropower, and more.

It’s been one of my top priorities to highlight the Sixteenth District’s energy diversity and bring this vision to Washington. I’ve held energy roundtables, discussed energy issues at town halls and local gas stations, and visited energy-producing facilities across the district, including conducting a day long, district-wide energy tour.

In addition, I have worked with my colleagues on a host of legislation to hold the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) accountable for its job-crushing regulations. One such bill, the Transparency in Regulatory Analysis of Impacts on the Nation Act, included an amendment I introduced to stop EPA from imposing new regulations that would increase the cost of gas on hardworking Americans.

In addition to implementing an all-of-the-above approach, there are specific steps we can take to move toward an all-inclusive energy approach and create more energy jobs here. We need to more aggressively explore our energy resources, expand drilling on federal lands, including offshore and in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, streamline permitting regulations, and ensure the government does not stand in the way of developing new energy resources, such as natural gas and renewables.

It’s time we fully utilized our nation’s abundant natural resources to create jobs here and provide Americans with more reliable and affordable energy.


Agriculture

During my time in Congress, I have fought hard to give Illinois farmers the certainty and reliability they need to be successful.  Any farmer will tell you that planning for next year’s crop begins long before planting season, and I have made it a priority to ensure food and farm policies coming from Washington are predictable and work for farmers of the Sixteenth District.

Since coming to Congress, actions I’ve taken to help Illinois farmers succeed include:

  • Voting for free trade agreements that open new export markets for Illinois producers;
  • Voting to reform and reauthorize farm and food policy to give Illinois farmers long-term certainty;
  • Voting for legislation to rein in the Environmental Protection Agency to protect farmers from costly and unnecessary federal regulations;
  • Voting to strengthen the Crop Insurance Program;
  • Supports the Renewable Fuel Standard as an important part of an “all of the above” energy approach
  • And voting for legislation to rehab America’s waterways, a critical lifeline for Illinois farmers to get their products to international markets.

Agriculture is vitally important to our state, serving as source of income and way of life for families all across the Sixteenth District. I will continue to fight to ensure Illinois farmers are given the tools they need to be successful and ensure we have smart food and farm policies that work for our nation’s producers.


Manufacturing

The United States has long led the world in the quality of our products and the productivity of our workers. But our manufacturing edge is being eroded by government-created barriers and an inhospitable regulatory environment.

To ensure we remain the world’s manufacturing leader while allowing for the creation of new, good-paying jobs, we must establish an environment in America that incentivizes companies to build here, not overseas. This is why I have sponsored two bills that would help jumpstart the process of bringing manufacturing jobs back to Illinois:

The American Manufacturing Competitiveness Act: this bill would have the best and brightest in the manufacturing industry and government author recommendations for a national manufacturing strategy aimed at improving our national competitiveness with the rest of the world.

The Manufacturing Reinvestment Account Act: this bill allows manufacturers to use pre-tax dollars to invest in their business, putting more money back in the hands of job creators and out of the hands of government bureaucrats.

Below are steps we can to take to revitalize our manufacturing base and ensure the next generation of manufacturing jobs are built right here in America:

Expand American energy exploration

A true all-of-the-above energy strategy will lower costs on manufacturers and make it easier to attract new jobs to our shores. During my time in Congress serving on the Energy and Commerce Committee, I have worked hard to bring a diverse energy model to Washington – one that helps grow our economy and which has made the Sixteenth District a national energy leader.

Enact pro-growth tax reform

Our burdensome and out-of-date tax structure unfairly hurts small businesses and weakens us globally – and our workers deserve better. By closing loopholes and lowering rates, we can create an environment that encourages companies to build in America and create millions of jobs in the process.

Eliminate government barriers

From burdensome health care mandates to inefficient reviews and compliance standards, unnecessary government burdens are holding back an American manufacturing renaissance. We need to entirely rethink our outdated bureaucracy to make it work for American businesses and the American workers they employ.

Reform workforce education programs

In order to ensure the manufacturing jobs of the 21st century are created here, we must ensure American workers have the skills needed for these jobs. Streamlining workforce education programs and focusing on preparing America’s youth for jobs in advanced manufacturing will help us get there.