In December, President Trump signed our historic tax cuts bill. As a result, the average South Dakota family of four will see their after-tax incomes rise by $2,400. How? We made it so the first $24,000 a couple makes is now tax free. We doubled the Child Tax Credit to $2,000 per child. We eliminated the marriage penalty and built in pro-growth reforms that produced higher wages, lower utility bills, and a booming job market.

Just like Ronald Reagan did in the 1980s, we’ve proven the true value of tax cuts and are ready to do even more. This July, we targeted additional tax cuts toward the healthcare system, passing a series of bills in the House to reduce Obamacare’s burden.

Under Obamacare, we pay a 2.3 percent tax on medical devices, which include everything from powered wheelchairs to replacement heart valves to examination gloves. This tax has led to an estimated 22,000 job losses between 2013 and 2015 and as much as a $2 billion reduction in research budgets. The House-passed bill, which I helped introduce, would repeal this tax.

Additionally, we passed provisions I wrote to delay the Health Insurance Tax (or HIT). This tax is supposedly paid by health insurance companies, but like any tax, consumers ultimately pay. The tax costs families and small businesses an estimated $400 per year, although the overall economic impact is much higher. According to one recent survey, 80 percent of respondents reported concerns about the HIT’s impact on small businesses and 74 percent said the tax “puts affordable health care further out of reach for hard-working Americans.”

As we pursue additional tax cuts, we also need to make sure the agency responsible for implementing them is accountable. The IRS has been plagued by scandal and mismanagement for years, and work to correct previous indiscretions continues. In late-July, the House passed legislation I authored to bring a bit more commonsense to the agency’s hiring and firing process.

In 2016, the Treasury Department reported that over a 15-month period, the IRS had rehired more than 200 people who had previously been terminated for misconduct or performance issues. Some had mishandled sensitive taxpayer information; others had abused taxpayer resources; one even had “DO NOT REHIRE” stamped on their employment folder and still was rehired.

We need to know there is integrity in the IRS, and when they rehire people who have already mishandled our most sensitive data, that trust is broken. My bill to prohibit this practice passed the House unanimously, so I’m hopeful we have the momentum needed to get through the Senate as well.

We’ve seen tax cuts work. In the last few months alone, economic growth has exploded, work opportunities have expanded, and wages have risen. The same principles that worked there will work in healthcare. I believe Obamacare needs to be repealed, and I’ve voted to do that. But until a majority of Congress can agree on repeal, we need to lift the tax burden on healthcare. 

Of course, we began doing that through tax reform by eliminating the individual mandate, but more must be done. With this recent legislation, the House has voted to remove two of the largest remaining Obamacare taxes. This, combined with my IRS integrity measures, would be yet another step in the right direction.

Do you want to sign up for my E-Newsletter?