House Republicans vowed to hold the Biden administration accountable for alleged misconduct and pursue an economic agenda that puts money back into American taxpayers’ wallets — if voters give them the majority in Congress.
House Minority Kevin McCarthy of California was joined by dozens of his Republican colleagues in unveiling the party’s legislative priorities in a package they titled “Commitment to America.”
“If you’re like everybody else we hear, whether you can afford it, whether you feel safe, the challenge of your children getting left behind or a government that’s run amuck, who has a plan to change that course? We do. The Democrats have no plan for the problem they created,” Mr. McCarthy said when debuting the new agenda at an event in the Pittsburgh suburbs.
The agenda includes policies designed to mitigate inflation, reduce federal regulations, shore up public safety and tackle illegal immigration.
Republicans also vowed to make the country energy independent, arguing that doing so will help bring down high gas prices they’ve blamed on Democratic policies.
Near the top of the to-do list is investigating the Biden administration on a wide range of issues, including the politicization of the Justice Department.
“In a Republican majority, we will hold this administration accountable. We will make sure we are conducting oversight. We will root out the corruption and return it to the People’s House,” said GOP Conference Chairwoman Elise Stefanik of New York.
The blueprint was inspired by former House Speaker Newt Gingrich’s 1994 ‘Contract for America’ plan that helped the GOP win a House majority for the first time since the 1950s.
This year, House Republicans are expected to regain control of the chamber by easily overcoming the Democrats’ thin majority. Republicans need only a net gain of five seats to take the majority.
The GOP agenda includes measures such as recruiting 200,000 more police officers nationwide and repealing the 87,000 new IRS workers the Biden administration is seeking to hire.
Republicans promised to pass a “Parents’ Bill of Rights” to give Americans more input on the curriculum that goes on in public schools. The bill would expand school choice, invest in post-pandemic resources, and bar transgender athletes from competing in women’s sports.
On election security, the GOP will seek to mandate voter ID at the polls nationwide and expand access for election observers. Mr. McCarthy said he will also end proxy voting in Congress, which House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has extended multiple times during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Republicans also want to expand affordable health care options and create more transparency in the health care system.
The agenda is heavy on bolstering national security from the border to the rapid rise of China.
Mr. McCarthy said he would create a select committee on China, and that the party would close loopholes on catch-and-release policies, fully fund law enforcement on the southern border, and invest in infrastructure and technology needed to prevent illegal crossings.
They would also seek to permanently criminalize “all illicit fentanyl,” while cracking down on prosecutors and district attorneys they say are lax on crime.
Lawmakers said their proposals were developed by conversations they had from public input across the country. They heard from local attendants in the town hall-style rollout of the agenda.
Democrats have painted the GOP as being extreme and beholden to former President Donald Trump.
“The contrast between House Democrats’ commitment to our Constitution and the American people versus extreme MAGA Republicans’ commitment to protecting their own political power has never been more evident,” said Rep. Pete Aguilar of California who serves as vice-chairman of the Democratic Caucus.