Growing Our Economy
To grow our economy, we need to invest in our workforce, education, and job training. We need to fix our crumbling infrastructure, bringing it into the 21st century. We need to invest in health care, research and development, and bolster small businesses and local manufacturers.
I voted against the Republican tax bill because it threatens these vital investments in our economy, hurts working families, balloons the national debt, and threatens Social Security and Medicare, all to lavish tax breaks on multinational corporations and those already on the top rung of the economic ladder. I discuss my concerns in this interview on PBS News Hour.
Combating Tax Loopholes that Ship U.S. Jobs and Tax Dollars Offshore
Tax dodging by large multinational corporations is not a victimless offense. The failure to close tax loopholes means we are forced to borrow more from foreign creditors, like China and Saudi Arabia, or make hard-working families and small businesses pay the difference.
The Republican tax law created new incentives for multinationals to outsource American jobs abroad and stash their profits in island tax havens.
I have been a strong advocate for closing tax loopholes that allow multinational corporations to avoid paying their fair share for our national security, infrastructure, and education system. My "No Tax Breaks for Outsourcing" Act would level the playing field for small and domestic businesses, ensuring that large multinationals pay the same rate on profits made abroad as they do here at home.
With my strong support, Congress enacted legislation to create the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, a powerful consumer advocate. Consumers need protection from financial predators. When your family is counting on something--a home, a job, or a retirement plan--we should not let big government get in your way, but neither should we let other powerful forces, such as Wall Street banks, health insurance monopolies, or pharmaceutical giants, interfere. Throughout the Trump Administration, much of the important work of the CFPB was undone, and I will work to repair the damage in the Biden Administration.
Opposition to Bank Bailouts
I voted against all of the Big Bank bailouts. While the Wall Street Reform bill should have done more -- much more -- about those Wall Street interests that are paid too much and taxed too little, it represented a modest but important step toward preventing future bailouts.
Keeping the Internet Open
As a longtime advocate for a free and open internet for all, I have consistently supported net neutrality, which provides a level playing field for small businesses and entrepreneurs to compete, while protecting consumers from exorbitant fees for faster service. I was strongly opposed to former Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai's repeal of the net neutrality rules. On multiple occasions, I urged him to remove this proposal from the FCC's agenda and sponsored a congressional resolution to override the FCC's awful decision.
I was also one of the first members of Congress to oppose the so-called Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and urged the House Judiciary Committee to reject the bill's overly broad language that could harm free speech and threaten cybersecurity.
The internet is an engine for economic growth. We should balance the goal of fighting copyright infringement with protecting the freedom of expression and creativity that has contributed to the internet's success. I remain committed to encouraging innovation and to promoting an unfettered internet for consumers and our many tech startups in the district.
San Antonio Missions National Park Expansion
In 2014, President Obama signed into law legislation that included my bill to expand San Antonio Missions National Historical Park by 137 acres near Missions San José, San Juan, and Espada. The inclusion of more historical areas within the boundary of the park allows the National Park Service to protect significant cultural resources, including labores, original Spanish farm fields near Mission San Juan. In 2015, I joined the National Park Service, Bexar County, and local leaders to ceremonially expand the Missions National Historical Park boundary. With San Antonio's Tricentennial, we continue to celebrate the successful addition of all five San Antonio Missions to the UNESCO World Heritage List, which will boost our local economy.