Press Releases

Congressmen Adam Smith (WA-09) and Dave Reichert (WA-08) released the following statement after hosting the Help Identify Real Employment (HIRE) for America Jobs Fair at the ShoWare Center in Kent where nearly 2,400 job seekers met with 90 local employers:

“I am extremely proud that thousands of job seekers joined me and Congressman Reichert to meet with more than 90 employers at today’s event," said Smith. "Our goal is to put Americans back to work, and it starts by making sure we connect employers with potential employees who have matching skills and needs.  That is exactly what happened today. This bipartisan effort brought our community together to address the most important issue our country faces right now, and we’re grateful to everyone who participated for making it a success.”  

“The HIRE America jobs fair was a success,” said Reichert. “I spent the entire day talking with local employers and job seekers, hoping to fill hundreds of jobs. It’s too early to tell exactly how many positions will be filled but I’m confident, after speaking with those in attendance, that today’s bipartisan effort was effective. I spoke with constituents who were eager to make an impression and employers who were energized by their interviews with capable candidates. What a blessing it would be to a family, a business, and the community if we can place one employed person in a new position this holiday season.

“The community pulled together to make this successful event possible. I plan to take this best practice – along with a strong spirit of bipartisan cooperation – to Washington, DC in hopes of spreading this message with my colleagues.”

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Congressman Adam Smith (WA-09), Ranking Member of the House Armed Services Committee, made the following statement today after the Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction announced the Committee did not reach an agreement:

“It is deeply concerning that after months of discussions the Supercommittee has failed to reach a deal to reduce the federal deficit. Once again, we’ve missed the chance to implement a comprehensive plan that balances revenue and spending reform and puts us on the path toward fixing our long-term fiscal and economic problems.

"There is a firm understanding of the challenges our nation faces. However, there is a lack of will to confront them. The math is simple: the federal government spends far more money that it brings in. The solution to this problem lies in reducing spending while raising new revenues – a fact many of my colleagues have now acknowledged. But simply acknowledging it is not enough.

"Now, due to the divide in Washington and through sequestration, we face significant cuts to a wide range of important programs that have supported our middle class, built our economy and created opportunities for future generations. In addition, the Department of Defense now faces deep, indiscriminate cuts that would not be based on sound policy or strategic review and could undermine national security. This is no way to defend our nation, and this is no way to run our government.

"While today's announcement is very concerning, it is not the end of the road. The now pending cuts will not be implemented until Fiscal Year 2013, but that still does not give us much time. Even the specter of sequestration will be extremely disruptive and could lead to cut backs in defense spending well before January 2013.

"Congress must act now. No committee can address these issues on its own. It is my hope that Democrats and Republicans will recognize the severity of the problems we face and act now with urgency to solve them."

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WASHINGTON - Congressman Adam Smith (WA-09), Ranking Member of the House Armed Services Committee, made the following statement today following his No vote on the Balanced Budget Amendment:

"I opposed the balanced budget amendment considered by the House for two reasons.  First, it does nothing to address the immediate challenges we face in our budget or in this economic crisis.  Congress has repeatedly created commissions or rhetorically claimed that at some future date they will try to get our federal deficit under control.  But that's the easy part.  The tough part is actually cutting the spending and raising the revenue necessary to get us on a path to fiscal responsibility.  This amendment again failed to do that. I strongly believe that Congress passing a ten-year plan that cuts spending and raises revenue in a way that gives people confidence that our government will finally get its fiscal house in order is a critical part of solving our economic crisis.  But this bill simply delayed the tough decisions necessary to make that happen.

"I also oppose this amendment because there are rare circumstances when running an annual deficit is necessary. In an economic crisis or national emergency, requiring a balanced budget would have a devastating impact on our economy. If this amendment were in effect during the 2008 financial crisis, it would have required deep spending cuts or tax increases at a time when such action would have made our economy much worse.

"Congress has the power to do what is necessary to balance the budget without a restrictive constitutional amendment. We don’t need another distraction. We must make the tough decisions on what spending to cut and what revenues to raise."

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WASHINGTON - House Armed Services Committee Ranking Member Adam Smith made the following statement regarding passage of the VOW to Hire Heroes Act that will lower the rate of unemployment among our nation’s veterans:

“The VOW to Hire Heroes Act is a bipartisan bill that honors veterans for their service and leadership by providing the support they deserve after returning home. After years of service, struggling to find work should be the least of our veterans’ concerns.

“This legislation will improve the transition back to civilian life for thousands of veterans by expanding education, training and counseling, while providing incentives for businesses and organizations that hire veterans who are out of work or who have service-related disabilities. Our nation’s veterans are highly-skilled and have expertise that will greatly benefit our workforce and help strengthen our nation’s economy if given the opportunity.

“There is no better way to offer veterans our gratitude and respect for their service, than by ensuring they receive the best treatment our nation has to offer. I applaud my colleagues for swiftly passing this bill and making sure their well-being is one of our top priorities.

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U.S. Rep. Adam Smith (WA-09), Ranking Member of the House Armed Services Committee, has introduced legislation to address the inefficient uses and management of public land through the federal grazing permit program:

The Rural Economic Vitalization Act of 2011 would:

  • Save taxpayers up to $115 million each year by reducing the costs of public lands management.
  • Attract private investments that will help stimulate rural economies.
  • Provide federal grazing permit holders the option to exchange permits for market value compensation.
  • Improve wildlife habitat and reduce environmental damage due to livestock grazing.

“The current federal grazing program is among the most economically inefficient uses of our public lands. My legislation opens the door for private solutions to a long-standing problem that costs taxpayers millions and has prevented public land ranchers from efficiently utilizing resources available to them.

“Many permit holders would choose to retire from public lands grazing if they could recoup their investment in their federal grazing permit. REVA provides a private market mechanism to do this. On a voluntary basis, current permit holders will have the option to relinquish their grazing permits in exchange for market value compensation paid by private parties.  

“The Bureau of Land Management and the Forest service run an annual deficit administering grazing permits and managing private cattle grazing operations. My bill eliminates wasteful spending, gives ranchers the choice to retire permits, allows public lands to recover natural habitats and fosters the return of native plants and wildlife.”

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