Press Releases

Smith Opposes Republican Tax Bill

Washington, D.C. - Congressman Adam Smith released the following statement on the tax plan marked-up by the House Ways and Means Committee this week:

November 9, 2017

“Our country’s federal government is already massively in debt and cannot sustain the tax cut President Trump and the Republicans are proposing. It is both bad economic and fiscal policy to be debating a $1.5 trillion tax bill at a time when we are already $20 trillion in debt and running deficits of nearly $700 billion.  With deficits already projected to rise for the foreseeable future, this bill will have devastating impacts on our national debt and the priorities that the constituents of my district have made clear they support. We need to be able to invest in our education system, repair highways and bridges, support healthy children and families, advance scientific innovations and research, and provide for homeland security and our national defense.   

“History has shown that cutting taxes does not increase revenues or grow the economy. We raised taxes in the early 1990’s, and the country experienced strong economic growth. In contrast, we slashed taxes in the early 2000’s which led to ten years of sluggish economic progress, a ballooning debt, and diminished investment in the economy.  Drastic cuts like the one we will be voting on in the coming days will cause serious risks to the future health of our economy.” 

Washington, D.C. – Today, House Armed Services Committee Ranking Member Adam Smith (D-WA) made the following statement about the mishandling of criminal history data for the mass shooting perpetrator in Sutherland Springs, Texas:

“It is unbelievably devastating to hear that multiple data entry errors by the Air Force allowed someone who should have been prohibited from purchasing a firearm to buy one, and use it to kill at least 26 people. This tragedy should not have happened and these processes need to be fixed. 

“These facts only reinforce the need to improve background check databases such as NICS, and expand who must receive such checks before obtaining a firearm. Systems like this can help stop horrific acts like what happened in Texas before they occur, but only when supplied with appropriate information.”

Smith Statement on Republican Tax Bill

Washington, D.C. - Congressman Adam Smith released the following statement in response to the tax bill released by House Republicans:

November 2, 2017

“The Republican tax plan released today is disastrous for American workers and middle class families. Instead of having an honest discussion about our federal budget, House Republicans are attempting to force a partisan bill that will hurt millions of middle class Americans, only to give tax cuts to corporations and the wealthiest among us. This tax plan illustrates how far out of touch the Republicans are with the needs of the American people. 

“Republican’s overly optimistic claims are deeply disingenuous. Their plan will cost Americans $1.5 trillion, or more, and is only partially paid for by eliminating credits and deductions that working and middle class Americans rely on to make ends meet. The cuts in this bill, and the debt increases that they will exacerbate, will not help families or spur job creation. With federal revenues already significantly reduced by the Bush-era tax cuts, this misguided tax plan will further constrain our ability to grow the economy for everyone. To cut taxes for those that do not need it, following trillions of dollars of tax breaks over the past decade and a half, continues to take us in the wrong direction.” 

bating a new nuclear arms race.”

Numerous national security officials have pointed out the need for an accurate long-term cost assessment of U.S. nuclear modernization plans:

"Starting in 2021, between 2021 and 2035, it's about $18 billion a year to reconstitute and recapitalize our strategic nuclear deterrent … If that comes out of our conventional forces that will be very, very, very problematic for us. … So, rather than talk about the bow wave, there is future fiscal risk that the country, Congress and future administrations and this administration must come to grips with … Because as soon as we have a better understanding of that, we'll know for sure that our defense strategy is on the right track."

-        Deputy Secretary of Defense Bob Work,  February 9, 2016

“We do have a problem in the budget, and that problem is called the recapitalization of the triad.”

-        Frank Kendall III, Undersecretary of Defense For Acquisition, Technology And Logistics, December 2, 2015

“After the end of that period, as we start to actually produce the systems I talked about, we're going to have an affordability problem that we have to deal with … In 2021, we're gonna start to have a problem finding ways to afford these systems. We will work to do that. It's a very high priority and we will work to do that, but it is gonna be a challenge for us.”

-        Frank Kendall III, Undersecretary of Defense For Acquisition, Technology And Logistics, March 4, 2015

"We're looking at that big bow wave and wondering how the heck we're going to pay for it, and probably thanking our stars we won't be here to have to answer the question.”

-          Brian McKeon, Principal Deputy Undersecretary of Defense for Policy, October 2015

“I don't know of a good way for us to solve this issue."

-         Mike McCord, Defense Department Comptroller, November 3, 2015

“This recapitalization will involve substantial outlays over the coming decades, and the merits of some aspects of this expensive recapitalization can be debated. Recapitalization of all three legs of the nuclear Triad with associated weapons could cost between $600 billion and $1 trillion over a thirty year period, the costs of which would likely come at the expense of needed improvements in conventional forces.”

-        National Defense Panel review of the 2014 Quadrennial Defense Review

“Our problems become unmanageable in FY22 when the Ground Based Strategic Deterrent (GBSD) advances … How much should we recapitalize? We want to have a national debate on that."

-         Lt. Gen James Holmes, USAF Deputy Chief of Staff for Plans and Requirements, February 12, 2016

"The strategic deterrent fund could be moderately useful to the department, but our real issue is not the fund but funding. … The fund may have some authorities or acquisition tools that could come with it that could provide some modest savings, and that would be fine. But the real question is do we have the resources to do that modernization additive to the rest of the requirements of the department, or will we have to squeeze out other high priorities, and those will be the national decisions that have to be made in coming years."

-         Jamie Morin, Director of the Office of Cost Assessment and Program Evaluation (CAPE), March 18, 2016

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Letter Smith Visclosky CBO.PDF 

Congressman Smith Statement on Budget Vote

Washington, D.C. - Congressman Adam Smith released the following statement after voting against the budget passed by the House of Representatives today:

October 26, 2017

“Today’s budget vote is the height of irresponsibility. The resolution passed today is not a legitimate budget. It is the vehicle for reckless tax cuts that will drive up the deficit and overwhelmingly benefit the wealthiest Americans.  Tax cuts for the rich will do little to stimulate our economy or help the middle class. Since 2001, the Bush tax cuts have cost us trillions in lost revenue, and produced virtually no economic growth. Another tax cut now will only further jeopardize our economic and national security. Republicans are not sincere about reforming our tax code to help the middle class – their tax framework shows their priority is helping the few at the top.

“We have real fiscal issues that need to be addressed. We have skyrocketing debt and insufficient investment in priorities such as education, infrastructure, and nutrition assistance. Crafted without Democratic input, the Republican budget bill is a clear attack on those critical programs that working families, veterans, and seniors rely on. The trillions of dollars of tax cuts Republicans are pushing through Congress will only serve to increase the rampant inequality that is already on the rise in our country.”