Press Releases

“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.”  

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.”

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.” 

National Defense Authorization Act Conference Report Passes with Key Provisions

National Defense Authorization Act Conference Report Passes with Key Provisions

November 17, 2017

Washington, D.C. – House Armed Services Committee Ranking Member Adam Smith (D-WA) made the following statement on passage of the Fiscal Year 2018 National Defense Authorization Act Conference Report:

“This week, the House of Representatives voted to approve the Fiscal Year 2018 National Defense Authorization Act Conference Report. This legislation establishes the policies of the Department of Defense that impact our service members, their families, and our local communities.

“During the conference process and debate, in my role as Ranking Member, I made sure that a number of important policy provisions remained in the legislation. In addition to supporting members of our Armed Forces and their families, the bill includes important provisions supporting investments in education, public health, workforce development, and prioritizes environmental cleanup. Additionally, the bill secured $190.9 million in funding for construction projects in Washington State that will help create both civilian and military jobs throughout our region. I fought back against efforts to include discriminatory language and ensured critical funding continues to support life-saving medical research. I will continue to advocate for a comprehensive policy that addresses our national security and economic challenges.”  

Congressman Smith fought for numerous provisions in the FY18 NDAA Conference Report, such as:

Environment:

  • Establishes that it is policy of the United States Congress to acknowledge climate change and the impact it continues to have on our national security.
  • Authorizes $755.6 million for environmental cleanup of the Hanford Nuclear Site.

Education:

  • Provides record funding for Impact Aid schools by increasing funding by $50 million to support military connected school districts, including many in Washington State.  

Immigration:

  • Directs the Secretary of Defense to ensure legal permanent residents serving in the military are informed of the availability of naturalization through their military service.

Military Health:

  • Directs DOD to study safe opioid prescribing practices for those currently serving in the Armed Forces.
  • Blocked earlier attempts to discriminate against transgender service members that would have limited their ability to receive health care.
  • Successfully fought to maintain funding to conduct medical research on diseases that contribute to military readiness, such as breast cancer and traumatic brain injury. 

Diversity in the Military:

  • Recognizes the important contributions of Historically Black Colleges and Universities by increasing funding by $12 million to help educate and train the next generation of scientists and engineers.

Military Spouses:

  • Extends survivor benefits for military widows and widowers by permanently extending the Special Survivor Indemnity Allowance.

Nuclear Proliferation:

  • Requires a report from the Secretary of Defense on how DOD is responding to and reducing the threat of nuclear proliferation.
  • Requires a plan to reduce risk of accidental war and encourages dialogue with Russia, China, and North Korea.

Washington State projects include:

  • $44.4 million for construction of a project to ensure the safety, accuracy, and efficient storage of munitions required to support ships homeported in Washington State.
  • $19.5 million for a new fire station at the Yakima Training Center to provide fire protection and emergency response for base facilities, fires on the training ranges, and local communities in the region.
  • $30.0 million for a new Army Reserve Center at Joint Base Lewis-McChord.
  • $31.0 million for a new National Guard Readiness Center in Tumwater to replace an outdated facility constructed in 1939 and provide administrative, training, and storage areas for Washington National Guard units.