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Legislative Program

Floor Speech

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Date:
Location: Washington, DC

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Mr. CANTOR. I thank the gentleman from Maryland, the Democratic whip, for yielding.

Madam Speaker, on Monday, the House is not in session. On Tuesday, the House will meet at noon for morning-hour and 2 p.m. for legislative business. Votes will be postponed until 6:30 p.m. On Wednesday and Thursday, the House will meet at 10 a.m. for morning-hour and noon for legislative business. On Friday, the House will meet at 9 a.m. for legislative business. Last votes of the week are expected no later than 3 p.m.

Madam Speaker, the House will consider a number of bills under suspension of the rules, a complete list of which will be announced by the close of business tomorrow.

In addition, the House will consider H.R. 5872, the Sequestration Transparency Act, sponsored by Congressman Jeb Hensarling. This is a bill that will bring needed transparency to the administration's process for implementing devastating cuts to our national defense and many social programs on January 2. Chairman Paul Ryan and the Budget Committee passed this bill in a bipartisan fashion, so I expect it to be brought up under suspension of the rules.

Finally, and in keeping with funding our national security, the House will consider H.R. 5856, the Department of Defense Appropriations Act, sponsored by Congressman Bill Young. This will be the House's seventh appropriations bill of the year.

I expect the defense funding bill to be on the floor for the balance of the week. Members should be aware that late evening votes are possible on Wednesday, July 18, and Thursday, July 19.

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Mr. CANTOR. I thank the gentleman for the question.

Madam Speaker, we've been, as the gentleman knows, very transparent about scheduling the floor, sending out a memo making Members aware of where we're headed for the remainder of the July period. I would say to the gentleman that, after next week, we will be focusing on cutting red tape, reducing the regulatory burden on our job creators. As we know, the regulatory atmosphere in this country is making it more difficult and more expensive for small businesses and large to create jobs. We'll be focusing on that.

The following week, Madam Speaker, will be the week in which we will bring forward a piece of legislation to stop the tax hikes to ensure that all Americans know we are not going to see taxes go up for them at the end of this year.

In addition to that, we'll bring forward a bill that will be focused on how we get to a pro-growth tax system in this country, laying out the principles for tax reform and suggesting an expedited procedure so that we can actually achieve results for the American people so that our job creators and working families can get back to work.

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Mr. CANTOR. Madam Speaker, I thank the gentleman for yielding.

I would say to the gentleman about this week's vote--in fact, today--today we voted on a bill that helps us ``Mine it in America.'' The gentleman likes to speak about ``making it in America.'' Why shouldn't we also be mining it in America? So it's very much a bill to facilitate that business and industry in this country in an environmentally sensitive way. In fact, 22 of the gentleman's caucus Members joined us in that vote--"Mine it in America,'' Madam Speaker.

As to the gentleman's question about the suggestion that perhaps the regulatory environment does not affect the potential growth or real growth in this country, that is something that I don't believe the gentleman agrees totally with that statement, because I know he and I both have worked on trying to streamline regulations here. We don't want overly burdensome regulations on small or large businesses or working families.

So again, I would take issue with the suggestion that economists would say that regulatory atmosphere and framework don't have anything to do with job creation. Of course it does. It has to do with the environment for one to take a risk, for investors to put capital to work, for entrepreneurs to go out and sign their name on the dotted line with the bank. Of course regulation has something to do with job creation and growth. That is exactly our point. And I hope the gentleman will join us in the week that we bring these red tape reduction bills to the floor to help us accomplish something so that we can roll back the unduly burdensome framework and make sure we have a smart framework of regulation so that we can see America grow.

As to the gentleman's final question about scheduling another repeal vote of ObamaCare, if the gentleman would like to do so, I'm happy to meet with him. Right now, as the gentleman knows, we have done that this week. And I would say to the gentleman, the reason why perhaps we spent so much time on that issue, it is the most personal issue to many millions of Americans. It's their health care; it's their family's health care. At the end of the day, this election season will underscore the importance of people engaging in this discussion and participating in our democracy because the kind of health care that we will have in this country will be determined by the outcome of the election.

The real question is, Madam Speaker, are we going to have Washington-based health care or patient-based health care? That's what it comes down to. Who's in the driver seat, patients and their doctors, or Washington-based bureaucrats deciding what kind of coverage we can have? We all know what's happened with that approach under ObamaCare: costs have gone up, employers are beginning to shed the plans, and people will not be able to have the health care they have. That's why we've spent the time we have on this bill.

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Mr. CANTOR. I'd say, Madam Speaker, to the gentleman, can you repeat the question?

Mr. HOYER. Yes. Do you expect the vote on taxes, which you have referred to, to occur the last week--which I believe is the 29th of July, the week of 29 July--to be on that week?

Mr. CANTOR. I would respond to the gentleman, Madam Speaker, that, yes, we have scheduled for that week a vote on the bill to extend existing rates. That extension will be for a year.

We will also be bringing up a bill that will outline the principles for tax reform that I know the gentleman also has said we need to reform our Tax Code so that we can help make it fairer, more simple, and so that we can see the economy grow again. Those vehicles will be brought up that week, yes, Madam Speaker.

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Mr. CANTOR. Madam Speaker, I'd say to the gentleman, I think I disagree with the gentleman, there haven't been hearings.

I think, for the last year and a half, Chairman Camp and his committee have been fast about looking at the Tax Code, talking about tax reform, divulging what it would mean for us to have an increased tax environment for this economy. We've been all about the economy and growth.

I'd say to the gentleman, he likes to say, why can't we do jobs bills? We have been doing jobs bills. He complains about the 30-some bills we've been doing relating to ObamaCare. I would say we've done even more than that relating to jobs.

I would ask the gentleman to just remember where those bills sit right now. They're on the doorstep of the Senate, and the leader over there refuses to bring them up.

And so, again, I'd say to the gentleman, we stand ready to work together so that we can produce results for the people that sent us here, and that is the purpose of bringing forward the bills that have been talked about, have been dissected, in terms of existing tax rates, where they may or may not go, how they affect growth in this economy. That's what we're doing.

We've had multiple votes, multiple hearings on tax reform, on what the tax rates mean, and this vote will be very clear. If you want to stop the tax hike for all Americans, at all income levels, you'll vote for the bill. If you want to engage in tax reform, if you feel the Tax Code is too complicated, it needs to be simplified, rates brought down, loopholes closed, you'll vote for the bill. It's that simple.

Mr. HOYER. When you say, I presume, as the gentleman said, we're talking about two different bills, are we not?

Mr. CANTOR. I would say to the gentleman, that is correct.

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Mr. CANTOR. Madam Speaker, I would say to the gentleman, this is a very simple and clear choice here. Given this economy, if one wants to raise taxes on all Americans, you vote against the bill. If you want to go and help folks through a more simple Tax Code, and you want to look towards tax reform, you vote for the next bill. Straight up or down.

There has been enough discussion, enough hearings, in the Ways and Means Committee, as well as the Budget Committee. These issues were central to our budgets. Your Members on the Budget Committee, as well as ours, I had a full open hearing on that budget document and a markup.

We believe now's not the time to raise taxes on working people, small businesses and large. The economy is anemic. We don't have enough job growth. Why do we want to take more of people's hard-earned money? That's why we're bringing this bill forward.

This bill is straight up or down. Stop the tax hike or not.

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Mr. CANTOR. Madam Speaker, the gentleman knows that his side of the aisle will have an opportunity to posit their position on taxes through the regular process of a motion to recommit. And as I had said publicly yesterday, when asked, are the Democrats in the House going to be able to offer the President's tax proposal, I said, absolutely they will.

So we'll see. We'll see, Madam Speaker, if the gentleman decides to put forward the President's tax proposal calling for a tax hike on American small businesses. We'll see if that happens, Madam Speaker. But we will see, and that will be the week it will happen.

You're either for stopping tax hikes or you're not.

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Mr. CANTOR. Madam Speaker, what I would say to the gentleman is holding hostage working families is denying them a job. It's about jobs. The gentleman can play with the statistics all he wants and claim that 97 percent of the small businesses will get a tax break this way and that let's leave the other for later; but the significant fact is, it's with the others where the significant job growth can be.

Why would we want to go and tax job creators? We know that 50 percent of the people who will get a tax hike under the President's proposal get at least a quarter of their incomes from small business, and the more their incomes the more the percentage. That means the jobs

So why would we want to stop job creators from hiring people? Because Washington takes more of their money. Why would we want tax rates to go up on anybody in this anemic economy? And why would we want to go and raise taxes when we haven't put an end to the out-of-control spending in Washington? Because what you're doing is digging the hole deeper.

That's our position, Madam Speaker.

So I would ask the gentleman straight up: Is the gentleman going to bring to the floor a motion to recommit for his proposal, the President's proposal? Is that going to be the motion to recommit? Will the gentleman actually put his words to work and have that be their motion to recommit?

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