U.S. Congressman Kevin Brady (R-TX) announced today he will seek the chairmanship of the House Ways and Means Committee. The gavel will come open following Paul Ryan’s expected election as Speaker of the House later this week.
Brady, second in seniority on the committee to fellow Texan Sam Johnson, chairs the prominent Health subcommittee and is the former leader of the Trade subcommittee. He is also the top House Republican and former chairman of the Joint Economic Committee.
“House Republicans are unifying behind Paul Ryan and his bold, positive vision for America. To advance Speaker Ryan’s pro-growth agenda we need a pro-growth conservative Ways and Means chairman who has a proven record of working successfully with House Republicans of all philosophies to advance tax reform, entitlement reform and free trade.
“The next chairman of the Ways and Means Committee will have to hit the ground running. In addition to major accomplishments as leader of two subcommittees and chairman of the Joint Economic Committee, I’ve worked hard to earn a reputation for fairness, hard work and respect for member’s opinions across the spectrum.
“What unites House Republicans – moderate or conservative, new or long serving, wherever your district – is our common hunger to tackle the big challenges that face our nation. While these big issues originate in our committee, I intend to invite and engage the entire Republican conference to develop and sell these solutions to the American public.”
As the health subcommittee chairman, Brady helped craft and pass a bipartisan, bicameral solution to the growing crisis of how to pay Medicare doctors. This reform not only provided certainty to doctors and their patients, but also strengthened Medicare solvency.
A recognized champion of free trade, Brady was the White House point man for the Central America agreement – and as trade subcommittee chairman helped lead passage of the South Korea, Colombia and Panama agreements.
As the top House Republican on the JEC, Brady has emerged as a GOP leader on economic issues: championing permanent tax policy reforms such as an improved research and development tax credit and elimination of the ‘death tax’, challenging President Obama’s economic policies, crafting reforms of the Federal Reserve and developing memorable tools to fight ObamaCare – including the bewildering flow chart of the Affordable Care Act.