Press Releases

“The Republicans’ final tax bill affirmed my opposition to this dangerous proposal. Today’s vote increased the deficit by a staggering $1.5 trillion, which overwhelmingly benefits the rich and corporations at a time when we are running historic deficits and wealth is concentrated at the top. This bill was so partisan and poorly constructed, and the process so lacking, that Senate parliamentary rules required provisions to be dropped at the last minute, which required the House to vote on the bill twice.

This measure endangers Medicare and other mandatory programs, leaving them susceptible to drastic cuts that will hurt ordinary Americans. It will throw our health care system into chaos and even harms our environment by opening up the Alaska National Wildlife Refuge up for oil drilling. This bill set our government on an extremely irresponsible path and its negative effects will be felt by generations to come.”

 

“The Republicans just reneged on their responsibility to properly fund the federal government because they were too busy giving away a $1.5 trillion dollar tax cut to corporations and the wealthy. By falling back on another short-term continuing resolution, almost a quarter of year past the due date for proper appropriations bills, they have clearly demonstrated that they are not willing to do their job. Their lack of action will directly and negatively affect the people who reside in the Ninth Congressional District and across the country. 

House Republicans cannot continue to punt their responsibilities. We must do the job that we have been elected to do; particularly enacting a comprehensive budget that fairly funds important priorities, such as education, job growth, protection of the environment, and our national security. We also need to bring up the legislation necessary to ensure DREAMers can remain at home in this country, and not live in fear of their families being pulled apart.  Inaction on these vital issues is unacceptable.”

“As Republicans in Congress continue to push their reckless tax cuts, they put at risk crucial agencies and programs, such as the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), military pensions, and Medicare. In addition to massively benefiting the wealthy and corporations, as well as reducing revenue by more than a trillion dollars, the tax bill endangers important mandatory spending priorities on which middle class and working Americans rely.                                          

“In 2010, to help reign in deficit spending, Congress passed what is known as a PAYGO law, requiring that the legislation enacted during a session of Congress not increase the deficit under threat of automatic cuts. Because of its imbalance, the Republican tax bill risks triggering these automatic and across-the-board PAYGO cuts to critical mandatory spending programs. In a strikingly disingenuous statement, the Senate Majority Leader and Speaker of the House have asserted that the PAYGO cuts to mandatory programs that will be triggered by their tax bill ‘will not happen’ for some unspecified and seemingly miraculous reason. Either Republicans have a way to skirt the law that they haven’t shared, or their tax bill is going to trigger the automatic cuts. Both scenarios are terrible for the middle class.

“Empty rhetoric is not enough, and Republicans’ irresponsible disregard for the consequences of their actions is dangerous. I continue to oppose the Republican tax bill and the damage it will inflict on the future of our economy and our country.”  

Congressman Smith Opposes Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act

Washington, D.C. – Congressman Smith released the following statement in opposition to H.R.38, the Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act:

December 6, 2017

“The Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act is a dangerous bill that would supersede concealed carry laws in states across the country. In a stark departure from current reciprocity standards, this legislation will force states with strict concealed carry laws to recognize the lowest common denominator. As written, this bill would allow citizens from some states to carry firearms nearly unrestricted in any state in the country, while only requiring a driver’s license. With gun violence on the rise in America, the act of Congress injecting more firearms into public spaces, while weakening both state and federal statutes, is irresponsible.

“Unfortunately, Republicans have chosen to include language in this bill that makes marginal improvements to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS). While changes to NICS reporting standards are needed, these benefits do not outweigh the danger posed by the Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act. We need to be working together to enact sensible firearm safety reforms, including universal background checks on all purchases as well as bolstering our mental health care across the country. This is a step in the wrong direction.” 

Smith Statement on President Trump's Decision to Recognize Jerusalem as the Capital of Israel

Washington, D.C. – Congressman Smith released the following statement in response to President Trump's decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel:

December 6, 2017

“Since its formation in 1948, the nation of Israel has been under near constant threat. I strongly support Israel, and have advocated for robust U.S. engagement to help ensure their security. It is critical that we continue to press for a comprehensive two-state agreement that creates durable states for both the Israeli and Palestinian people. Long-term peace is a goal that has long eluded all parties, however it is critical that we not lose sight.

“The President’s decision today to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel will not help advance this goal, and will only serve to increase regional instability. Ultimately the U.S. gains nothing from this announcement, and this Administration has chosen to further isolate itself from our global allies. There is no reason that the President could not choose to sign an additional waiver preventing the U.S. Embassy’s move to Jerusalem, and the damage this does to any ongoing negotiations will be significant.”