Issue: Economy and Jobs

House Members Defend Agriculture in EU Trade Agreement

House Members Defend Agriculture in EU Trade Agreement

Walorski Leads Bipartisan Letter to USTR Signed by 114 Members

WASHINGTON – Today, 114 House members led by Reps. Jackie Walorski (R-Ind.), Ron Kind (D-Wis.), Virginia Foxx (R-N.C.), and Angie Craig (D-Minn.) sent a letter to U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer in support of keeping agricultural products as a key negotiating objective in any proposed trade agreement with the European Union (EU). The European Commission has specifically excluded agricultural products in draft negotiations and Commission officials continually state their unwillingness to include agriculture in the negotiation process.

“As you know, agriculture is the source of a great number of trade barriers and irritants in the U.S.-EU trading relationship. Thus, an agreement with the EU that does not address trade in agriculture would be, in our eyes, unacceptable,” the members wrote. “We want to voice our strong support for the inclusion of agriculture in the upcoming discussions and to reiterate that an agreement that fails to include agricultural products would be deficient, significantly jeopardizing Congressional support.”

A signed copy of the letter is available here. The full text is below.

Dear Ambassador Lighthizer,

We write today to urge you to insist on the inclusion of agricultural products in upcoming trade negotiations with the European Union (EU). As you know, agriculture is the source of a great number of trade barriers and irritants in the U.S.-EU trading relationship. Thus, an agreement with the EU that does not address trade in agriculture would be, in our eyes, unacceptable.

The United States and EU share one of the largest trading relationships in the world, but there are many ways in which the two sides can further grow and improve this relationship. Nowhere is this more evident than in trade in agricultural products. Exports from hardworking American farmers and ranchers across the country face barriers to the EU market, including high tariffs, unscientific sanitary and phytosanitary measures, and protectionist policies on geographical indications that hurt American exports not only to the EU but also to countries all over the world.

We were encouraged to see that the negotiating objectives for the EU that your office released in January included specific objectives on agricultural goods. At the same time, we were deeply disappointed that the European Commission’s draft negotiating mandates specifically excluded agricultural products and that Commission officials continue to state publicly that they will not discuss agriculture in the negotiations.

We want to voice our strong support for the inclusion of agriculture in the upcoming discussions and to reiterate that an agreement that fails to include agricultural products would be deficient, significantly jeopardizing Congressional support.

Thank you for your attention to this matter.

Sincerely,

Walorski represents the 2nd Congressional District of Indiana, serving as a member of the House Ways and Means Committee.

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Walorski Raises Concerns Tariff Exclusion Process Is Unfair to U.S. Businesses

Walorski Raises Concerns Tariff Exclusion Process Unfair to U.S. Businesses

In Letter to Commerce Secretary Ross, Walorski Requests Response to Questions Raised by Latest Data

WASHINGTON – U.S. Rep. Jackie Walorski (R-Ind.) today sent Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross a letter outlining her latest concerns that U.S. manufacturers and small businesses seeking relief from steel and aluminum tariffs are being treated unfairly.

“A fair, transparent, and efficient exclusion process is critical to providing relief to American manufacturers and small businesses affected by the steel and aluminum tariffs,” Congresswoman Walorski said. “I have long worried there was a finger on the scale putting these businesses at a disadvantage, and the early data suggests those worries were well-founded. I stand ready to work with the Commerce Department to fix this process so U.S. businesses that use steel and aluminum – including RV, boat, and trailer manufacturers in my district – are treated fairly.”

A copy of the letter can be found here.

Walorski has pressed the Department of Commerce to fix problems faced by businesses requesting relief from Section 232 steel and aluminum tariffs. American businesses can request a product be excluded from tariffs if it is not available domestically in sufficient quantity or quality.

In response to concerns raised by Walorski, the Commerce Department in September 2018 adopted several changes, including the creation of a rebuttal and surrebuttal process. On February 26, 2019, the Department began releasing decisions for steel exclusion requests that went through that process. No such decisions for aluminum have been released yet.

As outlined in the letter Walorski sent to Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross today, according to statistics compiled by Walorski’s office, between February 26 and March 8, the Department released 1,045 decisions on steel exclusion requests that went through the rebuttal and surrebuttal process. Of those, 61 were approved and 984 were denied, a 5.84 percent rate of approval.

Concerns and questions raised by Walorski in the letter include:

  • Is the Commerce Department evaluating the overall capacity of an objector to deliver on time the quantity and quality specified for all requests on which it prevails, or is each request evaluated individually in a vacuum?
  • Commerce Department regulations require objectors to be able to make the product or start production “immediately,” or within eight weeks. Is there a plan to verify that the products have been delivered or production started on time? Is there any penalty or avenue for recourse if an objector does not meet the promised timeline?
  • Is the Commerce Department planning to better describe what factors led it to approve or deny a request? There is a lack of transparency in the decision memos, which use stock language that does not overtly explain what factors contributed to an approval or denial.
  • Despite Department regulations barring trade associations from filing objections, Walorski’s office identified at least 53 surrebuttals filed by members of the trade association, rather than by the individual or organization that filed the original objection.
  • Is the Department verifying the correct tariff code is being used before putting requests into the rebuttal and surrebuttal process? It seems backwards not to verify that the correct product has been identified before moving the process forward.
  • In some recent decisions, the Department denied the request for using the wrong tariff code while also appearing to say it would have denied the request anyway based on objections. How is the Department certain it has properly evaluated the correct product if the wrong tariff code was used?
  • For requests that went through the rebuttal and surrebuttal process and were denied for using the wrong tariff code, with no indication they would otherwise have been denied, will the Department provide an expedited path to approval? How is the Department planning to treat the eligibility for retroactive relief from tariffs paid for these requests?
  • Walorski’s office found that of the 1,045 decisions released between February 26 and March 8, 736 of the underlying requests contained one or more objections and no rebuttal or surrebuttal. Many objections did not appear to meet the Department’s scenario under which an objection should prevail. All 736 requests were denied.
  • It is unclear if the Department proactively made participants aware of the rebuttal and surrebuttal process. Walorski’s office found that of the 392 requesters who had an objection filed on at least one of their requests, 200 filed no rebuttals. Every request with no rebuttal has been denied.

Walorski represents the 2nd Congressional District of Indiana, serving as a member of the House Ways and Means Committee.

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Walorski, Top Republican on Worker and Family Subcommittee, Calls for Commonsense Solutions to Help Families Thrive

Walorski, Top Republican on Worker and Family Subcommittee, Calls for Commonsense Solutions to Help Families Thrive

Hearing Examines Challenges and Opportunities for American Workers and Families

WASHINGTON – U.S. Rep. Jackie Walorski (R-Ind.), the top Republican on the Ways and Means Subcommittee on Worker and Family Support, today called for solutions to close the jobs gap, strengthen the workforce, and help families thrive. The panel held a hearing on Leveling the Playing Field for Working Families: Challenges and Opportunities.

“At a time when we have 7.3 million job openings and demand for workers that is producing upward pressure on wages, we do need to know what is holding back individuals who are still not back in the workforce,” Congresswoman Walorski said. “At the root of addressing these challenges needs to be a focus on human interaction, engagement, support, encouragement, and belief in the possible, not just assumptions about the probable. By focusing at the federal level on outcomes, we can empower caseworkers on the ground to focus on the needs of the families sitting across the table, which increasingly means recognizing mental health or substance use issues, to help them achieve their own version of success. It is time to focus on solving the root causes, rather than pushing complex government ideas that will only address symptoms.”

Walorski last week introduced H.R. 1476, the Coordinating Assistance for TANF Recipients Act, legislation to improve case management coordination for individuals and families receiving Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF).

Video of Walorski’s opening statement at today’s hearing can be found here. Her remarks as prepared for delivery are below.

“Thank you, Chairman Davis.

“Before I proceed to my opening statement, I want to again share how excited I am to be part of the Worker and Family Support subcommittee and to work with you on ways to help families experience the American Dream.

“Our districts are only 90 miles apart and share more than just weather. I hope that you’ll take me up on my offer for you to come visit some proud Hoosiers, and for me to visit Chicago so the exchange of ideas will continue well beyond the physical walls here in Washington, DC.

“I agree that at a time when we have 7.3 million job openings and demand for workers that is producing upward pressure on wages, we do need to know what is holding back individuals who are still not back in the workforce.

“Just last week, when governors from across the country were in DC, they raised concerns about the need for workers and highlighted workforce development challenges.  And just this week I met with the head of Governor Holcomb’s workforce cabinet for an update on their work to realign and better coordinate the efforts of the multiple state agencies that play a role in developing Indiana’s workforce.

“Last year, before this subcommittee, we heard from Peter Barrett of Smoker Craft, a boat manufacturer in my district, who told us that with an aging workforce, and the small pool of qualified workers for area businesses to recruit from, he was concerned about the future prospect of finding skilled workers – a critical component for the growth of his business.

“Since his testimony, the situation has only worsened for employers like Smoker Craft, but that means it has improved even further for workers.

“In my district alone, I know we need 10,000 new hires right now to meet the demand of incoming orders to help continue our record economic growth.

“Competition for workers means increasing salaries, bonuses, and other benefits, such as paid leave.

“These are the challenges, and in each of those are also great opportunities. We have the opportunity to make economic and social gains in ways not seen in decades so families are better off financially, helping to improve their overall well-being in the near and long-term.

“Better wages and stable work bring along a host of benefits, the greatest being the positive impact on children who are spared the trauma that comes from unrest in the home.

“At the root of addressing these challenges needs to be a focus on human interaction, engagement, support, encouragement, and belief in the possible, not just assumptions about the probable.

“I’m talking about jobs and opportunities, with benefits and services, for success, also known as the JOBS for Success Act. For too long states have taken federal tax dollars, but have not done enough to help families.

“By focusing at the federal level on outcomes, we can empower caseworkers on the ground to focus on the needs of the families sitting across the table, which increasingly means recognizing mental health or substance use issues, to help them achieve their own version of success.

“It is time to focus on solving the root causes, rather than pushing complex government ideas that will only address symptoms.

“Thank you to our panel of witnesses for being here today and for sharing their perspectives.

“Again, I am proud to be part of this subcommittee and look forward to the ways we can work together to help more Americans enter and remain in the workforce, climb the economic ladder, and realize their full potential.

“With that, I yield back.”

Walorski represents the 2nd Congressional District of Indiana, serving as a member of the House Ways and Means Committee.

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Walorski Examines Ways to Strengthen Nation’s Infrastructure

Walorski Examines Ways to Strengthen Nation’s Infrastructure

Ways and Means Committee Holds Hearing on Need to Revitalize Aging Infrastructure

WASHINGTON – U.S. Rep. Jackie Walorski (R-Ind.) today in a Ways and Means Committee hearing called for a focus on boosting financing to revitalize our nation’s infrastructure and addressing burdensome regulations that hinder infrastructure projects.

“I have one of the largest manufacturing districts in the country,” Congresswoman Walorski said. “We need to stop using budget gimmicks to keep the Highway Trust Fund afloat. We need to focus our energies on financing infrastructure projects with a sustainable funding stream while also addressing burdensome regulations and permitting requirements that run up costs and delay projects.”

Video of Walorski’s remarks at the hearing can be found here.

Earlier this week, Walorski introduced bipartisan legislation to bring billions of dollars of investment to state and local governments to help grow and repair America’s aging infrastructure.

The Move America Act of 2019 would create Move America Bonds to expand tax-exempt financing for public-private partnerships (P3s) and Move America Credits to leverage additional private equity investment at a lower cost for states. States will have the flexibility to choose which projects are most needed.

Walorski represents the 2nd Congressional District of Indiana, serving as a member of the House Ways and Means Committee.

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Walorski, Kind Introduce Bicameral, Bipartisan Bill to Establish a Section 301 Exclusion Process

Walorski, Kind Introduce Bicameral, Bipartisan Bill to Establish a Section 301 Exclusion Process

In Ways and Means Hearing, Walorski Pressed USTR Lighthizer on Deadline to Establish Exclusion Process for China Tariffs

WASHINGTON – U.S. Reps. Jackie Walorski (R-Ind.) and Ron Kind (D-Wis.) today introduced the Import Tax Relief Act, a bipartisan bill that would require the Executive Branch to create an exclusion process for List 3 (and any future list) of Chinese imports subject to Section 301 tariff imposition. Consistent with precedent and requirements placed on the United States Trade Representative (USTR) in the recent government funding bill, United States companies would also be able to apply for a refund for duties paid on imported good subject to these tariffs that are granted an exclusion. Senators James Lankford (R-Okla.) and Chris Coons (D-Del.) introduced companion legislation in the Senate.

In a Ways and Means Committee hearing yesterday, Walorski pressed U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer on the lack of a product exclusion process for the third round of tariffs on Chinese imports. In response to questions from Walorski, Lighthizer indicated USTR would not meet the 30-day deadline to establish a process as directed by Congress in the recent funding bill. Video of Walorski questioning Lighthizer is available here.

“I support President Trump’s goal of stopping China’s unfair trade practices, but we need to do so in a way that does not harm American farmers, manufacturers, and workers,” Congresswoman Walorski said. “A fair and transparent exclusion process for the latest round of China tariffs is long overdue, but it is clear USTR does not intend to meet the deadline imposed by Congress to establish one. As a result, this bipartisan bill is necessary to provide much-needed relief to the American businesses and consumers paying the cost of these import taxes. I am hopeful the ongoing trade talks with China will lead to long-term benefits for our economy, but the administration must do more to create certainty for businesses and farmers and to stay focused on the goal of holding China accountable.”

“American companies deserve a process to petition our government to prove how and why these tariffs are hurting their bottom line, their workers, and their consumers. The Administration’s unwillingness to create this exemption process has forced Congress to reassert its Constitutionally granted powers, and move forward in finding a soft landing zone for our workers, farmers and families – with or without the help of the Administration,” said Rep. Ron Kind.

“US importers deserve a chance to petition their government for import tax relief, and this bill would set up a process to do just that,” said Sen. James Lankford. “I have heard from many Oklahoma businesses that have expressed concern about the impact these tariffs will have on their ability to hire employees, give back to their communities, and expand their business operations. Already, American importers have paid the US government more than $12 billion in import taxes due to last year’s tariff action on Chinese imports, which has a direct impact on our economy since those costs are passed down to consumers in the form of price increases on food, clothing, and shelter, on which low-income families spend a disproportionate share of their incomes compared to wealthier families. Unfortunately, this has resulted in a reverse-redistribution of wealth, whereby Americans basically end up paying their government $12 billion. I am proud to partner with Senator Coons to introduce this bipartisan, bicameral legislation to help provide necessary financial relief for families and businesses across the US.”

“It is time for China’s unfair trade practices to come to an end,” said Sen. Chris Coons. “It is vital, though, that the Administration not harm our own American companies in the course of pressuring China. That’s why I’m introducing the bipartisan Import Tariff Relief Act, to require that US companies be given the opportunity to apply for exclusions from tariffs on Chinese goods. If you manufacture a product here in America, you shouldn’t have your supply chain upended for this trade war.

BACKGROUND

The first two rounds of tariffs imposed under Section 301 of the Trade Act of 1974 included an exclusion process (the process by which U.S. importers can request exemption from the tariffs), but the third round, imposed on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods, did not include such a process. The third tranche of tariffs was imposed on September 24, 2018, pursuant to Section 301 of the Trade Act of 1974.

According to the Congressional Research Service, as of February 21, U.S.-based importers have paid $12.2 billion to the government as a result of tariffs imposed under Section 301 of the Trade Act of 1974, more than double the $5.8 billion collected in tariffs on steel and aluminum pursuant to Section 232 of the Trade Act of 1974.

In October, Walorski and Kind led a bipartisan coalition of 169 members of Congress in calling on Lighthizer to establish an exclusion process in regards to Section 301 tariffs.

Walorski represents the 2nd Congressional District of Indiana, serving as a member of the House Ways and Means Committee.

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Walorski Statement on Section 232 Auto Investigation

Walorski Statement on Section 232 Auto Investigation

Commerce Department Completes Investigation into Whether Auto Imports Threaten National Security

MISHAWAKA, Ind. – U.S. Rep. Jackie Walorski (R-Ind.) today released the following statement after the Commerce Department completed its investigation into whether auto imports threaten U.S. national security:

“While I have not seen the results of the Commerce Department’s investigation into auto imports, I am concerned it could set the stage for costly tariffs on cars and auto parts. President Trump is right to seek a level playing field for American businesses and workers, but the best way to do that is with a scalpel, not an axe. Broad-based auto tariffs would lead to retaliatory measures by our trading partners, raise costs for hardworking families, and hurt local manufacturers in my district and across Indiana that make cars, RVs, auto parts, and more. I urge the president and his administration not to take any action that would threaten our nation’s economic momentum.”

BACKGROUND

In July 2018, Walorski led a bipartisan letter signed by 149 members of Congress urging Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross not to put American jobs and economic growth at risk by imposing tariffs on automobiles and automotive parts.

The members highlighted the economic benefits of the auto industry and warned of negative consequences if the Section 232 national security investigation into imports of automobiles and automotive parts results in tariffs, quotas, or other restrictions. A copy of the letter is available here.

Walorski recently helped introduce bipartisan legislation to reassert congressional authority over trade and tariff policy by reforming the Section 232 tariff process. The Trade Security Act (H.R. 1008) would restore fairness, transparency, and accountability to the Section 232 process, ensure these tariffs are only used when necessary to protect our national security, and give the American people a voice by strengthening congressional oversight.

Walorski represents the 2nd Congressional District of Indiana, serving as a member of the House Ways and Means Committee.

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Walorski, Kind, Sewell, LaHood Introduce Bipartisan, Bicameral Trade Security Act Aimed at Reforming National Security Tariffs

Walorski, Kind, Sewell, LaHood Introduce Bipartisan, Bicameral Trade Security Act Aimed at Reforming National Security Tariffs

Bill Will Give Power to Department of Defense Over Department of Commerce When Determining National Security Threat of Section 232 Tariffs, and Increase Congressional Oversight

WASHINGTON – U.S. Reps. Jackie Walorski (R-Ind.), Ron Kind (D-Wis.), Terri Sewell (D-Ala.), and Darin LaHood (R-Ill.) today introduced the Trade Security Act, a bill that would reassert Congressional authority over trade and tariff policy by reforming Section 232 of the Trade Expansion Act of 1962. The bill would also redesignate national security threat assessments (in regards to Section 232 tariffs) to the Department of Defense.

Senators Rob Portman (R-Ohio), Doug Jones (D-Ala.), Joni Ernst (R-Iowa), Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), Deb Fischer (R-Neb.), Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.), and Todd Young (R-Ind.) introduced the Senate companion version of the bill today.

“The president is right to seek a level playing field for American businesses and workers, but the best way to do that is with a scalpel, not an axe,” Congresswoman Walorski said. “Overly broad tariffs continue to harm manufacturers in my district and threaten our nation’s economic momentum, and it’s clear the national security tariff process is flawed. This bipartisan bill would restore fairness, transparency, and accountability to the Section 232 process, ensure these tariffs are only used when necessary to protect our national security, and give the American people a voice by strengthening congressional oversight.”

“This Administration’s go-it-alone approach of resolving our trade imbalances has sparked a trade war that is hurting Wisconsin farmers, workers, and families. The National Security tariff process is being misused, at the cost of our rural and local economies. It is long-past time for Congress to reassert its constitutionally-granted power in our Nation’s trade policy and protect our export power,” said Rep. Ron Kind.

“Congress must reassert its trade authority and take steps to protect our manufacturers and farmers from the Trump administration’s reckless and isolationist trade policy. Alabama – where auto manufacturers like Hyundai and Mercedes employ nearly 40,000 hardworking men and women – is proof the Trump administration’s policies are misguided. The auto industry strengthens America; it doesn’t threaten it,” said Rep. Terri Sewell.

“Agriculture is the top industry in the state of Illinois and I have seen firsthand the positive effect that free trade has had on our farming communities and agribusiness. Our agriculture producers and manufacturers need markets and customers to remain competitive in the global economy. While I appreciate the Administration’s efforts to go after bad actors, implementation of Section 232 tariffs has resulted in increased costs for consumers and retaliatory trade actions that have hindered the ability of producers in my district to sell their products and have access to open markets. I look forward to working in a bipartisan fashion to ensure Congress is properly consulted on trade actions of critical importance to our farmers and manufacturers in central and west-central Illinois,” said Rep. Darin LaHood.

A copy of the bill can be found here.

NOTE: The Trade Security Act reforms the Section 232 statute to ensure that (1) any Section 232 actions are based on a national security determination by the Department of Defense; and (2) Congress has a larger role to play in 232 actions. Specifically, this bill will:

  • Bifurcate the existing Section 232 process into an investigation phase, led by the Department of Defense, and a remedy phase, led by the Department of Commerce. Splitting these responsibilities, while guaranteeing consultation between the two departments at all stages of the process, plays to each department’s strengths to ensure that the statute is used for genuine national security purposes.
  • Require the Department of Defense – instead of the Department of Commerce – to justify the national security basis for new tariffs under Section 232 and make the determination about the national security threat posed by imports of certain products. If a threat is found, the Department of Defense would send its report to the president. In the event that the president desires to take action based on the finding of a national security threat, the president would then direct the Secretary of Commerce, in consultation with the Secretary of Defense and the U.S. Trade Representative, to develop recommendations for how to respond to the threat. After receiving the recommendations of the Secretary of Commerce, the president would decide whether to take action.
  • Increase the role of Congress in the Section 232 process by expanding the process whereby Congress can disapprove of a Section 232 action by passing a joint resolution of disapproval. Currently, Section 232 contains a disapproval resolution process limited only to the disapproval of actions on oil imports, which was inserted into Section 232 in 1980 by Congress in response to concerns about the misuse of the statute. This bill would expand the use of that disapproval resolution process to all types of products. The reformed disapproval process will only apply to future Section 232 actions.
  • Require consultation with Congress throughout the Section 232 process.

Walorski represents the 2nd Congressional District of Indiana, serving as a member of the House Ways and Means Committee.

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Walorski Statement on President Trump’s State of the Union Address

Walorski Statement on President Trump’s State of the Union Address

WASHINGTON – U.S. Rep. Jackie Walorski (R-Ind.) today released the following statement on President Trump’s 2019 State of the Union address:

“President Trump spoke to the American people with clarity, a call for unity, and a renewed commitment to our shared ideals.

“We need to work together to keep our economic momentum going, allow our manufacturers and farmers to succeed, and make sure hardworking Hoosiers have the opportunity to achieve the American Dream. We need to defend against global threats by working alongside our allies, standing strong against our adversaries, and continuing to rebuild our military. And we need both sides need to come together to fix our broken immigration system and secure our borders.

“I stand ready to work with President Trump, his administration, and my colleagues in Congress to find commonsense solutions that make our country and our communities stronger.”

Walorski represents the 2nd Congressional District of Indiana, serving as a member of the House Ways and Means Committee.

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Walorski Named Top Republican on Ways and Means Worker & Family Subcommittee

Walorski Named Top Republican on Ways and Means Worker & Family Subcommittee

Panel Has Jurisdiction Over Programs to Help Workers, Children, and Families Thrive

WASHINGTON – U.S. Rep. Jackie Walorski (R-Ind.) today was named the top Republican, or ranking member, of the Ways and Means Subcommittee on Worker & Family Support, which has jurisdiction over programs aimed at helping workers, children, and families thrive.

“The key to keeping the American Dream alive is to expand economic opportunity and empower workers and families to succeed,” Congresswoman Walorski said. “I’m honored to serve as ranking member of the Worker & Family Support Subcommittee, and I look forward to working with my colleagues to find commonsense solutions that make a real difference in people’s lives. We have important work ahead of us to build on our economic momentum, support stronger and healthier families, and help hardworking Americans build a bridge from poverty to prosperity.”

“Hardworking Americans who were left behind during the previous administration are now finally seeing more jobs and bigger paychecks thanks to President Trump and our GOP pro-growth agenda,” said Ways and Means Committee Ranking Member Kevin Brady. “Ms. Walorski and I are ready to roll up our sleeves and work with our Democrat colleagues to protect the growing paychecks of America’s workers and ensure this booming economy isn’t slowed down. I look forward to working with Jackie as we continue to fight for policies that promote more opportunities for workers and families across the country.”

BACKGROUND

The panel, previously called the Subcommittee on Human Resources, authorizes and oversees a wide range of programs and services, including Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), the Social Services Block Grant, the Supplemental Security Income (SSI) program, the Maternal, Infant, and early Childhood Home Visiting (MIECHV) program, child and family services, and foster care and adoption.

Walorski will also serve as a member of the Ways and Means Subcommittee on Oversight.

Walorski represents the 2nd Congressional District of Indiana, serving as a member of the House Ways and Means Committee.

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Walorski Statement on Audit of Commerce Tariff Exclusion Process

Walorski Statement on Audit of Commerce Tariff Exclusion Process

GAO to Review Process After Requests from Congress

WASHINGTON – U.S. Rep. Jackie Walorski (R-Ind.) today released the following statement after the Government Accountability Office (GAO) announced it would review the Commerce Department’s tariff exclusion process, an investigation of which Walorski was a co-requestor:

“A robust product exclusion process is critical to providing relief for American manufacturers and small businesses affected by the steel and aluminum tariffs. The Commerce Department’s process has been broken from the start, and while improvements have been made, I continue to have serious concerns about its efficiency, transparency, fairness. I am hopeful this GAO investigation, along with the ongoing Commerce Department Inspector General review, will shed light on flaws in the process and lead to additional reforms.”

BACKGROUND

The GAO this week agreed to a request led by Senator Pat Toomey (R-Pa.) to formally review the the tariff exclusion process for the Section 232 steel and aluminum tariffs administered by the Department of Commerce. Walorski joined a group of House members in co-requesting the audit.

Walorski has led the charge in the House to hold the Department of Commerce accountable for fixing problems faced by businesses requesting relief from the tariffs. In response to concerns raised by Walorski, the Commerce Department in August adopted several changes to the exclusion process.

Walorski represents the 2nd Congressional District of Indiana, serving as a member of the House Ways and Means Committee.

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