Alexander: Taxes Are Lower, Paychecks Are Bigger, and More New Jobs Coming to Tennessee

Posted on April 25, 2019

“I often suggest Tennesseans look at Washington as if it were a split screen television. On one side of the screen, you’ll see the controversies of the day – the crisis at the border or the special counsel’s report. But on the other side, you’ll see results that improve the lives of every American. In the last two years, Congress and President Trump passed the first major tax reform in 31 years, landmark opioids legislation and record funding for research. And I’m working in a bipartisan way to lower Tennesseans health care costs and ensure college degrees are worth students’ time and money.”

MCMINNVILLE, TENN., April 25, 2019 – U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) today told members of the McMinnville Rotary that “Tennesseans taxes are lower, their paychecks are bigger, and more new jobs are coming to Tennessee.”

“I often suggest Tennesseans look at Washington as if it were a split screen television,” Alexander said. “On one side of the screen, you’ll see the controversies of the day – the crisis at the border or the special counsel’s report. But on the other side, you’ll see results that improve the lives of every American. In the last two years, Congress and President Trump passed the first major tax reform in 31 years, landmark opioids legislation and record funding for research. And I’m working in a bipartisan way to lower Tennesseans health care costs and ensure college degrees are worth students’ time and money.”

“Tax reform has unleashed a strong economy that is helping raise Tennesseans paychecks and grow our automotive industry. Thirty years ago, there were almost no auto jobs in the state. Today, about 136,000 Tennesseans, including over 2,700 Warren Countians, work in automotive manufacturing.”

Alexander then spoke about his work to lower health care costs: “Last year, the Senate health committee I chair held five hearings on the cost of health care, and in December, I wrote to doctors, governors, economists and other experts asking for specific suggestions on how to lower health care costs. I, along with a bipartisan group of senators, are working on turning those suggestions into legislation that will stop surprise billing, so you don’t get an unexpected $3,000 bill from an out-of-network doctor after a hospital visit; lower the price of prescription drugs; and help employers reduce their health care costs.” 

The Senate health committee held five hearings last year on the broader topic of how to reduce health care costs. The committee also held four hearings to explore specifically the costs of prescription drugs. You can read the letter that Alexander sent in December here.

Alexander also spoke on his work to make college worth students’ time and money.

“The questions I hear most often about college are: Can I afford it? Is it worth it? And can you make applying for financial aid and repaying student loans simpler? The United States has most of the best colleges in the world, but also the most graduates paying off college debt. Roughly 40 million borrowers owe $1.5 trillion in collective student loan debt. The first thing Congress should do is simplify the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, the FAFSA, to help the 20 million families who fill out this form every year to apply for federal student aid.”

Alexander laid out his higher education proposal in a speech at the American Enterprise Institute in February. During the last four years, the Senate education committee has held 30 hearings on the Higher Education Act. This year, Alexander has met with Ranking Member Senator Patty Murray (D-Wash.) and other committee members to discuss compiling ideas into a single piece of legislation. His goal is to report that legislation out of committee by spring so that the full Senate can consider it this summer.

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