Every day that I am in Washington D.C., I will be focused on fostering a pro-worker, pro-business environment that allows the Northeast Ohio economy to thrive. When my father immigrated to this country, America was the greatest place on earth to build a business and create prosperity for our families. Unfortunately, the war on business waged by the Obama Administration caused incredible pain to our economy and threatened our long-term prosperity. President Trump’s return to the America First economic principles of a competitive tax and regulatory environment has been a welcome change, and we are already seeing the results. Our work is far from over, though, and we must make additional reforms if we are going to reclaim our American economic identity:
- Education: The biggest threat to the long-term economic strength of our nation is an education system that ranks middle of the pack amongst competitive advanced economies. By the time our children graduate from high school, they should either be work-ready or college ready. Neither of these things are the case today. I believe the path towards improvement starts with expanding parental choice while empowering our state and local leaders with more resource and decision-making flexibility. The combination of choice and flexibility will force schools to be accountable to parents and children, not teachers’ unions and the federal bureaucracy.
- Workforce development: In Northeast Ohio, we are facing a skills and talent gap that leave far too many people on the sidelines, ill-equipped to thrive across all sectors of the economy. As such, I will support President Trump’s efforts to expand career and technical education, thus providing cost-effective ways for our workers to expand their skill set and take advantage of the many good-paying jobs available throughout the economy.
- Tax and regulatory environment: Over 60% of the net new jobs are created by small businesses in this country. The best thing we can do for our small businesses is provide a competitive tax and regulatory environment that allows them to grow and prosper, thus creating the good paying jobs that our families rely on to thrive. The 2017 tax cuts were a great start. Now we need to continue the thoughtful rollback of the administrative state and allow our businesses to thrive in the 21st century economy.
- Balanced budget: Our federal government continues to spend far beyond its means, and this runaway spending is threatening the future of our nation. Our debt and interest burden prevents us from being able to make the necessary investments in defense and other critical areas of our economy. I fully support a balanced-budget amendment that would force Congress to make the hard tradeoffs that we know are essential to a sound fiscal future.
- Welfare reform: Today, we have over 80 federal welfare programs that spend over $1T annually in the fight to alleviate poverty. While well-intentioned, the reality is that the system is too complex and discourages the very behaviors we know ultimately lead people out of poverty — work and family stability. We need to consolidate these programs, and align the incentives inside the system to encourage people to return to productive work as soon as possible and live stable family lives.