Congressman Morgan Griffith (R-VA) Friday voted no on the Democrat reconciliation bill in the U.S. House of Representatives. He issued the following statement:
“The Democrat reconciliation bill is a mess. It promises to ‘Build Back Better’ but is littered with policies that will make life more expensive and less free for the average American. That such a reckless bill is the treasured priority of Washington’s current one-party rulers says all we need to know about their unfitness to govern.
“The prescription drug component of the bill will deprive Americans of innovative cures and treatments and will do so in a manner that violates the Constitution. Since H.R. 3, which is substantially what Democrats included in the reconciliation bill, was introduced over two years ago, I have repeatedly advised my colleagues that it violates the Takings Clause of the Fifth Amendment prohibiting the taking of private property for public use without just compensation. My analysis was confirmed by the nonpartisan Congressional Research Service. Even after I asked them to do so in the Energy and Commerce Committee, no Democrat has yet bothered to rebut these constitutional problems or even point to an authority that might do so for them.
“If unconstitutionality wasn’t enough, the problems with reconciliation are as numerous as its 2,135 pages or its almost $4 trillion cost, as estimated by the Penn Wharton Budget Model. One of its most expensive components is a tax cut for the wealthy in the form of a dramatically increased state and local tax (SALT) deduction. If this reconciliation bill was passed, thanks to SALT taxpayers in Marion would subsidize Manhattanites living high on the hog, and residents of St. Paul would help pay for lavish lifestyles in San Francisco. And reconciliation would make sure Ninth District residents pay for wealthy blue staters because it supercharges IRS enforcement on Americans at all income levels.
“Illegal immigrants also benefit from the surge in spending and debt for which this bill provides. By eliminating the requirement for Social Security numbers to verify eligibility for the Child Tax Credit, people who broke our country’s laws and cut in line ahead of legal immigrants would receive payouts of $3,600 per child under age six and $3,000 per child over age six. Rewarding illegal immigrants with taxpayer dollars will no doubt attract more to the southern border to break our laws.
“There are thousands of pages of text, but Democrats don’t have room for the longstanding Hyde Amendment designed to protect the conscience rights of Americans who are pro-life or even support abortions but do not want to pay for them. President Biden once backed Hyde’s protections for freedom of conscience but has turned his back on them in this travesty of a bill.
“I did not hesitate to vote no when reconciliation came up for a vote in the House. For the sake of the hardworking people of this country, I hope it never passes the Senate and does not reach the President’s desk.”