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June 28, 2024

Schweikert Unpacks the Republican Response to the Economic Report of the President

WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Representative David Schweikert (AZ-01) delivered a speech on the House Floor this week that expanded on the newly-released Republican Response to the 2024 Economic Report of the President. The report found alarming, but not surprising statistics that display the potential devastating effects to the U.S. economy. Aspects of the President’s budget that our Joint Economic Committee analyzed found that deficit growth, rapidly changing demographics, the flawed “tax the rich” solution, and the increasing obesity prevalence in America have contributed severely to America’s fiscal crisis. The report concludes by exploring potential policy solutions that capitalize on the benefits of artificial intelligence and how innovation implementation is actively reducing government bureaucracy. 

Excerpts from Rep. Schweikert’s floor speech can be found below:

On income tax receipts contributing vastly to covering interest and Medicare costs:

[Beginning at 17:12]
“Basically, the point is everything you think of as government is borrowed. When I would talk about that a few years ago, I would have members here saying, “David, you got to stop making up stuff. You’re scaring my voters!” Tada! it happened, it’s real. This chart is a little tougher, but I’m trying to point out majority of income tax. If you actually take every dime in income tax, and you add it up, this year, 36.9% of all income tax will go to just cover Medicare. Then, you add in another 36.5% that is net interest. If you’re honest, it’s gross interest, which is closer to 40%. Think about that: [in] this year, almost all the income tax is consumed by interest and Medicare. When we go out in time, it starts being beyond. You start having 43.1%. In nine budget years, all income tax will go to Medicare. Another 42.3% will just go to interest. If you plug in all net interest, [it will be] closer to 45%, meaning, in nine years, all income tax which, remember, we are an income-tax based tax system the majority of U.S. receipts come from income tax. We can’t cover our interest and Medicare. We actually cross this threshold in [around] five years. Every dime of tax you pay will be just covering Medicare and covering interest.”

On promoting talent-based immigration:

[Beginning at 27:00]
“We have actually found the economic baselines that say you can grow by hundreds and hundreds of billions of dollars the size of the economy just keep the people who have talent. My argument is talent could be a skilled carpenter or a synthetic biologist. If you are going to grow a society at the same time the number of children remember, we are closing schools all over this country, except we don’t like to talk about it because we don’t have enough children– maybe actually keeping those who pay taxes, grow the economy, make your life better, and maybe make you healthier. We should fix our immigration system. You lock down the border, you don’t import poverty. This is a non sequitur, but let’s do it: the immorality of the open border, the cruelty. [Let’s say] you are the family that your mom and dad didn’t graduate high school. You basically sell your talent. You sell your willingness to work. You hang dry wall. What happens when tomorrow I add four, five, six, seven million people with similar skill sets? What happened to your income? The data is showing that what the president did on the border has made poor people poorer. We are working on a paper right now to also show when you add several million people with a limited housing stock particularly the least expensive types of housing much of the reason that inflation and that pricing went up [is because of] border policy. You want to understand why you can’t afford an apartment and you are working your heart out? Border policy. Its economics. It’s just math.”

On acknowledging obesity remains as our top health care spend:

[Beginning at 30:05]
“The side car is we’ve known for decades that 5% of our brothers and sisters who have multiple chronic conditions are over half of our health care spending. The data set for this 5% [shows] the majority are obese. Help them, don’t mock them. Don’t shame them. Help them! The morality of having a society when you’re having your fifth year of prime age males dying, [many claim] “Oh, it’s drugs.” No, turns out drugs is way up there. Just above drugs is actually obesity. I would argue this place is absolutely immoral because of its unwillingness to tell the truth. If I come to you and say the Joint Economic Report spent years putting together the data and refining the data to demonstrate that the excess health care costs of obesity to this country the next ten years is $ 9.1 trillion. Why isn’t this an alarm bell? We’ve gotten some nice editorials saying, “Hey, it’s neat  that Mr. Schweikert is willing to tell the truth about where the real driver of debt and deficits are, and things we can actually fix.” The brain trust around here saying, “Oh, let’s just raise taxes! Let’s just cut things!” It doesn’t get you even close. Change policy. Oh, but changing policy would require thinking and we’d have rooms full of lobbyists who don’t want us to change their business models. We’ll have bureaucracies that will have to think differently. Well I’m going to show you that you can replace most of the bureaucracies with AI, which is another thing we need to do.

The full 2024 Republican Response can be found here.
A one pager can be found here.

Congressman David Schweikert serves on the House Ways and Means Committee and is the current Chairman of the Oversight Subcommittee. He is also the Vice Chairman on the bicameral Joint Economic Committee, chairs the Congressional Valley Fever Task Force, and is the Republican Co-Chair of the Blockchain Caucus, Telehealth Caucus, Singapore Caucus, and the Caucus on Access to Capital and Credit.

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