Congressman Greg Walden

Representing the 2nd District of Oregon

A Better Way: Our Vision for a Confident America

As I listen to people during town halls and other meetings around our state, Oregonians too often voice the same concerns: an overreaching federal government that ignores our please, overregulates our lives, and depresses job growth in our communities. That's why I push back with legislation to address the problems we face, and I've joined with my fellow House Republicans to propose a new agenda--called "A Better Way"--to offer solutions to some of the biggest challenges we face here in Oregon and across America. 

Our agenda focuses on six key areas, and introduces hundreds of ideas to solve problems in our communities. We're developing clear agendas for House Republicans so we can be the proposition party instead of just the opposition party. I'd like to take a moment to share with you some of the details (courtesy of Speaker Paul Ryan’s office).- Greg 

 


Growing jobs and the economy

  • Regulate smarter. We need to take a smart approach that cuts down on needless regulations while making the rules we do need more efficient and effective, particularly for our small businesses that shoulder a disproportionate share of the federal regulatory burden.
     
  • Deliver affordable and reliable energy. We need to connect our energy boom to consumers and companies, responsibly produce more of our own resources, and end the needles delays that hold up jobs and projects indefinitely.
     
  • End bailouts and promote financial independence. We need to end cronyism, reward people who work hard and do the right thing, and put an end to Wall Street bailouts once and for all.
     
  • Put students and workers first. We should make it easier for Americans to excel in schools and workplaces, and rip up the red tape that gets in their way.
     
  • Preserve Internet innovation. We need to establish clear and consumer-friendly rules that prevent the FCC from making up regulations as it goes along and make sure Internet users will continue to be the decision makers for the content they want.
     
  • Crack down on lawsuit abuse. We need to reform the system so that it no longer tips the scales in favor of trial lawyers and better protects consumers and small businesses.

One page summary                          Full task force report                           By the numbers

 

Combating poverty

  • Improve skills and schools: To break the cycle of poverty, we have to protect the next generation from poverty. Our plan makes sure that poor kids have more chances to overcome obstacles at every stage, from childhood through college.
     
  • Reward work: A good job is the surest way out of poverty, but most welfare programs do not actually require or even encourage work. After the government put this into place for welfare in the 90s, employment rates for single mothers increased by 15 percent. If you are capable, we will expect you to work or prepare for work as a condition of assistance.
     
  • Tailor benefits to people’s needs: Under the status quo, you are punished for working hard and doing the right thing. Instead of a one-size-fits-all system, our plan matches poverty-fighting programs with your needs so that it’s easier for you to take a job and start a family.
     
  • Help you plan and save for the future: The basic tools to put away money and save remain beyond the reach of too many Americans (27.7 percent of Americans do not have bank accounts). Our plan expands access to basic banking services and makes it easier for you and your family to plan for the future.
     
  • Demand results: Washington measures success by how much it spends, not by how much it helps. Our plan opens up the system to accountability and collaboration, backing ideas that work on the front lines.
     
  • NOTE: Our plan does not cut or increase spending. Instead, we take what we are spending now and direct it to things that are working in our communities. 

One page summary                            Full task force report                            By the numbers
 

Implementing real health reform

  • Provide more choices and lowers costs:  By making health insurance portable, expanding patient-centered care, and allowing the purchase of insurance across state lines, our plan gives you more control and more choices so that you can pick the plan that meets your needs—not Washington’s mandates.
     
  • Provide real protections and peace of mind:  By protecting patients with pre-existing conditions, prohibiting sudden cancellations, and protecting coverage for young people, our plan makes sure that you never have to worry about being turned away or having your coverage taken away—regardless of age, income, medical conditions, or circumstances.
     
  • Foster cutting-edge cures and treatments:  In addition to the 21st Century Cures Act, by strengthening the NIH, removing barriers to research collaboration, and accelerating drug discovery and development, our plan seeks to close the gap to help patients, lower costs, and solidify our status as the biomedical innovation capital of the world. 
     
  • Strengthen and sustain Medicare:  Millions rely on Medicare but the program in its current form is on an unsustainable path.  Our plan takes a three-step approach to save and strengthen Medicare:
    • Strengthens Medicare Advantage and repeals the most damaging Medicare provisions in Obamacare, including the Independent Payment Advisory Board
    • Makes Medicare more responsive to patients’ needs, while at the same time updating outdated and inefficient payment models
    • Gives future beneficiaries starting in 2024 the opportunity to choose from an array of competing private plans alongside traditional Medicare and helps seniors cover the costs

One page summary                        Full task force report                          By the numbers
 

Strengthing national security and keeping Americans safe

  • The President’s experiment with “leading from behind” just hasn’t worked. Our enemies no longer fear us and our allies no longer trust us
     
  • Our plan:
    • Protects the homeland by helping to keep terrorists out of America, secure our borders, and stop cyberattacks.
    • Takes the fight to the terrorists. We have to take the fight to the enemy so that American doesn’t become the primary battleground. And we have to work harder to win the battle of ideas around the world.
    • Tackles new threats. We must boost our military, strengthen law enforcement, improve the VA, and overhaul our diplomacy.
    • Defends freedom by advancing free enterprise and working to restore American influence. 

One page summary                         Full task force report                          Fact sheet
 

Upholding the U.S. Constitution

  • Make the government more accountable by subjecting agencies to more scrutiny from Congress and boosting inspectors general so they have more tools to root out fraud and abuse.
     
  • Make government more representative by giving Congress the power to take up or down votes on midnight regulations or “major rules.”
     
  • Restore constitutional checks on spending by conducting a complete inventory of what the government is spending outside Congress’ control.
     
  • Make government more transparent by publishing more data on the money the government spends and so the taxpayers can better scrutinize where their money is going. All data should be published in an accessible, searchable, and reliable format.

One page summary                        Full task force report                         By the numbers

Reforming and simpifying the tax code

  • Make the tax code simpler, fairer, and flatter by…
    •  Making it so Americans can do their taxes on a form as simple as a postcard.
    • Consolidating the system down to three tax brackets and lower the top individual income tax rate to 33 percent
    • Helping hardworking families by creating a larger standard deduction, larger child and dependent tax credits, and improving the EITC.
      • Reducing the deduction means taxpayers who are currently in the 10% bracket will always pay lower taxes than under current law
    • Repealing the death tax so that the loss of a family member is no longer taxable.
       
  • Create jobs, raising wages, and expanding opportunity for all Americans by cutting taxes on small businesses and lowering our corporate tax rate from 35 percent—the highest in the industrial world—to 20 percent.
     
  • Reform the IRS so it is simpler, fairer, and more accountable to tax payers by…
    • Installing a new commissioner, subject to term limits, to administer the new tax code with fairness.
    • Creating the Office of Dispute Resolution, an independent arbiter, to protect taxpayer rights and resolve disputes in a timely manner.
       
  • The Wall Street Journal recently called our plan “the most pro-growth [agenda] in years.”
     
  • What’s more, an analysis of our plan by the Tax Foundation projects that these reforms would boost our economy’s growth by over 9% in the long-run, lift wages by 7.7%, and add 1.7 million jobs. This is the type of growth our country needs. 

One page summary                         Full task force report                          By the numbers

 

 

You can find even more details, graphics, and videos on our A Better Way agenda at https://abetterway.speaker.gov/​