Last month, there were 266,000 new jobs added across the United States, which resulted in a 3.5 percent unemployment rate, which is the lowest unemployment has been in fifty years. The unemployment rate has been at or below 4% now for 21 months, creating a wonderful track record of Americans finding the opportunities they need to provide for themselves and their families. In addition, wage growth has been very strong, with earnings increasing by over 3 percent in November and in the previous 15 months. It had been over ten years since wage growth that high was recorded previously and the consistent wage growth has allowed average full-time workers to increase their compensation by over $1,000 over the past 12 months.
It is clear that our economy is performing well for Americans and I am proud to continue working with President Trump to sustain a favorable business and investment climate. The Wall Street Journal recently published an article that demonstrated that after President Trump’s tax cuts, Americans’ tax burden is among the lowest in the world. Pro-growth policies like that tax cut and regulatory streamlining will enable our economy to continue defying the skeptics and put more money in the hands of North Carolina families.
We have all heard the troubling stories of mothers and fathers, grandmothers and grandfathers, friends, and colleagues who suffer every day because they can’t afford their medications. That is why Congress started a collaborative and bipartisan process to tackle the issue of drug prices earlier this year. In October, this bipartisan collaboration was cut abruptly short by Speaker Pelosi with the introduction of H.R. 3, which was written in secret, without Member input or the regular Committee process.
Instead of a bipartisan solution we are left with H.R. 3, which is nothing more than a Democrat down payment on a government-run health care system that would eliminate private insurance and implement a government-controlled rationing of prescription drugs. It would even require the Treasury Department to issue regulations to extend government price controls to private healthcare plans. If we enact H.R. 3, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office says we could see up to approximately 38 fewer cures for deadly diseases over the next 20 years. The Council of Economic Advisers says up to 100 fewer cures over the next ten years. Democrat supporters of this bill have said fewer cures in exchange for government-controlled prices is ‘worth it.’ This is shameful. Democrats may be okay with fewer cures. I am not.
The American people deserve better from Congress. They deserve a real solution that will lower the cost of prescription drugs without jeopardizing access to new treatments and cures. That is why House Republicans have introduced H.R. 19, the Lower Costs, More Cures Act, a bill I am an original cosponsor of. This bill contains measures that have bipartisan support in the House and the Senate, and it can become law this year. Specifically, H.R. 19 will help lower out-of-pocket costs, protect access to new medicines and cures, strengthen transparency and accountability, and champion competition. I look forward to working to enact H.R. 19 as a real solution to the problems we face and encourage Democrats to join us in that effort.
Each year, Congress enacts the National Defense Authorization Act to provide our troops with the funding and equipment they need to succeed in their charge. While this year’s legislation was not perfect, I was proud to support the 3.1% raise provided to our troops, the highest in 10 years. This legislation will also provide a priority for President Trump, the establishment of a U.S. Space Force to advance our national security needs in space. Finally, the legislation ends the Widow’s Tax, which has had a negative impact on our servicemembers’ families for years and will now no longer be a burden. We are blessed to live in the most secure nation in the world, and I’m proud to help provide our servicemembers the resources they need to maintain that status and the compensation they deserve for their many sacrifices.
Lance and Linda Campbell from Blowing Rock came to Washington to support Wreaths Across America
Representatives of the Air Conditioning Contractors of America came in to discuss workforce issues
On December 14, 1947, NASCAR was conceived in Daytona Beach, Florida when Bill France Sr. organized a meeting to discuss the future of stock car racing. The first NASCAR race was held two months later on February 15, 1948 at the beach road course, and the first “strictly stock” race was held in June 19, 1949 in Charlotte, North Carolina. In a few short decades, the riveting American sport catapulted itself into one of the most popular past times in the nation.
Next week, the House will debate the final version of my legislation, the Grant Reporting Efficiency and Agreements Transparency Act, or GREAT Act, before it heads to the president’s desk. Furthermore, in addition to debating legislation to implement the USMCA, the House of Representatives will exercise a duty that the Constitution grants solely to the House of Representatives – impeachment. I believe Alexander Hamilton’s cautionary notes in Federalist No. 65 about this duty are truly prescient.
“A well-constituted court for the trial of impeachments is an object not more to be desired than difficult to be obtained in a government wholly elective. The subjects of its jurisdiction are those offenses which proceed from the misconduct of public men, or, in other words, from the abuse or violation of some public trust. They are of a nature which may with peculiar propriety be denominated POLITICAL, as they relate chiefly to injuries done immediately to the society itself. The prosecution of them, for this reason, will seldom fail to agitate the passions of the whole community, and to divide it into parties more or less friendly or inimical to the accused. In many cases it will connect itself with the pre-existing factions, and will enlist all their animosities, partialities, influence, and interest on one side or on the other; and in such cases there will always be the greatest danger that the decision will be regulated more by the comparative strength of parties, than by the real demonstrations of innocence or guilt.”