[Congressional Record Volume 168, Number 9 (Thursday, January 13, 2022)]
[House]
[Pages H187-H192]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]




                              {time}  1345
                            CURING DISEASES

  The SPEAKER pro tempore. Under the Speaker's announced policy of 
January 4, 2021, the Chair recognizes the gentleman from Arizona (Mr. 
Schweikert) for 30 minutes.
  Mr. SCHWEIKERT. Madam Speaker, it is always impressive to hear Whip 
Clyburn speak.

[[Page H188]]

  Madam Speaker, I am going to try something. We talked about this over 
our Christmas break, that the first floor speech should be one that 
would be a bit more positive. As we started to work through the story, 
we wanted to tell and show some of the good things happening in the 
country, I came to a conclusion that I am going to have to, on a number 
of these, walk through how I believe the left's policies--maybe not 
intentionally--but are actually really causing harm to things that are 
really good for America, good for the world, good for everyone here.
  So one of the things I am going to do is sort of walk through some 
really neat technologies and things that accomplish much of the good we 
want, and then sort of talk through a little bit of the policies that 
are being adopted here or promoted here that were actually screwed up.
  Just before the Christmas break, we did a floor presentation because 
there was an article out that there substantially had been a cure--it 
was only one individual--but it was a proof-of-concept cure for type 1 
diabetes. They basically took a stem cell, turned it into an islet 
cell, reinjected the islet--islet cells produce insulin--and it worked.
  Obviously, we have all had our hearts broken over the years when we 
think there is a medical breakthrough, but this one has been being 
worked on for a decade.
  I found another article, another research team, which actually took 
blood and then, using some hormones, took those blood cells and drove 
them back to functionally being a T cell, and then took the T cell 
being an islet cell--an insulin-producing cell. Why is this important?
  That first article we talked about, saying this is a miracle, we now 
know how to cure type 1 diabetes. The problem was that one was going to 
require anti-rejection drugs. This methodology doesn't. You can cure 
type 1 diabetes and the individual because you did it from their blood. 
This is wonderful.
  My reason for starting with this is if you dig through the paper and 
some of the comments and some of the smart people that fixate on this, 
they start to say this is also a path for many of our brothers and 
sisters who suffer from type 2 diabetes.
  Why do we care so much about ultimately curing type 2 diabetes? First 
off, this is actually a separation. I think it is more because no one 
has really presented this to my brothers and sisters on the left. We 
had the discussion in the Ways and Means Committee about how to help 
populations, the Tribal populations. Many Members here, they have urban 
minority populations that have overwhelmingly suffered with diabetes. 
There becomes this conversation that we are going to build more medical 
clinics.
  When you head in that direction, what you are basically selling is 
that you are going to help Americans live with their misery. What I am 
trying to drill into this place is let's move to cures because the cure 
is the most honorable, loving, caring, and also the most effective 
thing we can do.
  Remember--it is going to be in my last couple boards--in about 29 
years, the CBO says we are going to have $112 trillion of borrowed 
money, and that was on last year's calculation, in current dollars 
publicly borrowed, $112 trillion of borrowing. About 75 percent of that 
borrowing was just the shortfall in Medicare.
  We know 31 percent of Medicare spending is diabetes. Cure diabetes 
and type 2--it is complex. You have to be willing to actually change 
incentives on what we eat, what we grow, what is produced in food, how 
we deliver nutritional support.
  Now that we actually have a way--or, it looks like we are going to 
have a way to help our brothers and sisters deal with their autoimmune 
rejection and go back to producing insulin again.
  It turns out, if it is true, that that path could be one of the most 
effective things ever in actually U.S. sovereign debt but also ending 
misery. We have a small problem, and we are going to get to that.
  I am going to show you as we walk through this where Democrat 
policies will actually stillborn many of these technologies that end 
this suffering and also have these amazing impacts of making people's 
lives better, healthier, and actually having a real effect on this 
crazy amount of borrowing.
  My calculation from last month is we are actually borrowing about 
$47,000 every second. As the next decade comes, that number goes up 
dramatically. If you care about people's retirement security, my little 
girl's economic future, that should be the fixation here. You can take 
it on by doing good things. It is not cutting and slashing programs. It 
is dealing with the drivers of that debt. It turns out healthcare costs 
are the primary driver of that debt.
  I did this slide just because, A, I thought it was cute, but it also 
helps us sort of think where we are technology-wise. Yes, that is a 
group of kittens in a Starlink dish because it was warm, and everybody 
likes pictures of kittens.
  More to the point, today I believe there was another Falcon 9 rocket 
sent up to space to distribute a bunch more of these low Earth-orbiting 
WiFi satellites--broadband satellites. If you take a step backward and 
look at the budget that the Democrats promulgated for broadband and 
then take a realization--hey, all of North America actually has 
broadband. The difference is it is not a wire; it is a satellite dish. 
Yes, the kittens are cute.
  So my Tribal communities in Arizona that may be in the middle of 
nowhere, you know, a chapter house up in the Navajo reservation, they 
have broadband. They have been waiting for that broadband for decades, 
and this place keeps promising that we are going to run a piece of 
fiber, a piece of wire out there. Forgive my language, screw that. Put 
up the satellite dish--the small satellite dishes that are just a 
little larger than some of the big dinner plates. They have broadband. 
It would cost a fraction of what we are spending.

  That would be actually having this place read about technology, 
encouraging our staff to pay attention to what is happening in the 
scientific world instead of this place sounding like we are debating 
from the 1990s. How much of what goes behind these microphones is 
functioning decades out of date, rhetorically, technology-wise? It is 
just very, very frustrating.
  So one of my personal fixations--and we are going to talk about 
things like the Democrats' H.R. 3 and their approach to healthcare. 
There is a revolution happening, and it is called personalized 
medicine. We are about to--not about to. It has happened. I beg people 
to sort of think about this conceptionally. Disease is about to become 
a software program. Stop and think about that.
  What we have learned on stem cells, messenger RNA, and some of the 
derivatives of messenger RNA, the fact of the matter is the cancer you 
have, the heart disease you have, the virus you have, even now the 
bacteria you may have in your bloodstream, by using the new technology, 
we are turning cures, but cures are functionally almost a software 
problem. We code it; we understand the DNA; we produce a cure.
  Yet, the vision of the legislation where the left says, well, we are 
going to control pharmaceutical prices, crushes the very innovation 
that is about to cure people. It turns out those cures are the thing 
that crashes the price of healthcare because 5 percent of our brothers 
and sisters who have chronic conditions, chronic diseases, chronic 
ailments are the majority of our healthcare spending.
  What the left has proposed is great politics. It is brilliant 
politics. Hey, we are going to go and functionally nationalize the 
pricing mechanisms by referring to Europe, and that is how we are going 
to price drugs. Yes, the economists who do pharmaceutical research say 
all these new innovative drugs are going to disappear, and we basically 
make Big Pharma bigger.
  What you have done is you have crushed the capital for the innovative 
cures, and you take those that are the maintenance drugs, the things 
that maintain our misery, and you incentivize them just to make tweaks 
to maybe make them a little better and extend their patents. That is 
actually the outcome of the left's approach on healthcare.
  I don't think it is done maliciously. I think it is just one of those 
occasions that you are going to see multiple times on these boards. 
Good intentions aren't necessarily good outcome. Virtue signaling 
doesn't mean that it worked. It just means that the left gets

[[Page H189]]

judged on good intentions, not on the outcomes.
  Even in the new papers that are out in the last month or two talking 
about CAR-T, which is a derivative of functionally messenger RNA being 
used on heart disease--remember, heart disease is the number one killer 
as we get through this pandemic time.
  What happens if that back-to-healthcare disease is substantially a 
software problem? We actually have a way to have an incredible impact 
on the number one killer in our Nation. This is a wonderful thing. This 
is a really good thing. This does not happen quickly under the left's 
H.R. 3 mechanisms. They will stillborn much of this technology, the 
investment in it, and the ability to bring it to market.
  If the left and the right, if we actually give a darn, what we should 
be looking at here are the things that are disruptive that cure and 
what we do to get these technologies to our brothers and sisters as 
fast as possible. If it is true--and there now has been multiple 
research papers on this, and they are trying to now commercialize it, 
the ability for this to deal with the proteins that cause some of the 
heart damage, allowing the heart to heal, that it is really incredibly 
effective. This is wonderful because we did not have this a year ago, 
even conceptually, and it is here.
  What happens if I come to you and say: Well, we have just learned how 
to do editing of small snippets of genetic code. We can end sickle cell 
anemia.
  This is working. It is back to my constant of trying to pitch this 
concept of cure the disease, end the misery, don't do what is the 
rhetorical method around this place, saying it is great politics for me 
to offer more healthcare clinics because that way it looks like I just 
did something, and it helps my reelection. Yes, getting the actual cure 
to market might take a little bit longer.
  Do you remember at the beginning of the pandemic when we talked about 
getting a vaccine and this concept where we would get a vaccine in less 
than a year? The debates we were having here were that, oh, that is pie 
in the sky, that is a fantasy, but it happened. It took a bunch of 
money. It took unleashing a lot of resources and freaky smart people 
and pushing the bureaucracy to become more efficient. But it happened.
  Madam Speaker, could you imagine if we had that same type of passion 
to cure diseases? We know how to cure now sickle cell anemia. How do we 
get this to our brothers and sisters who are suffering instead of 
trying to come up with another way to just do the maintenance?

                              {time}  1400

  My argument behind this microphone right now is that these are 
wonderful things that are happening.
  How do we keep the Democrats', the left's, policies from destroying 
this progress?
  This is a little board that basically talks about the Democrats' H.R. 
3--wonderful rhetoric. Every voter, right and left, Republican and 
Democrat, is frustrated with pharmaceutical prices. Okay, but do they 
understand that the mechanism being proposed by the left--basically, 
the economists tell us that there are dozens and dozens of cures that 
are real expensive.
  Remember, many of these cures take billions and billions and billions 
of dollars of research just to get them to market, and a substantial 
number of them, a majority, fail. A lot of those costs are our fault. 
The bureaucratic mechanisms--and a couple of us have ideas on how to 
streamline that process and reduce that cost to get these revolutionary 
pharmaceuticals that cure to market. But this is really important.
  There is one other thing on this board that needs to be understood. 
The left's pharmaceutical pricing proposal does something called 
reference pricing. They reach over to Europe, take a handful of 
countries there that actually have what they--think of it as a formula 
that says quality life years. So if this drug costs more than a certain 
amount of money for an additional quality life year, they don't buy it. 
There are countries over there that have pricing like I think in Great 
Britain was equivalent to 38,000 USD, that if the drug costs more than 
that, you can't get it. That will reduce drug prices. It will also kill 
a whole bunch of people, and it will end the resources for the cures 
that come in the future.
  There are other ways to get there without crushing small pharma. That 
is basically the way that you make Big Pharma less big because you cure 
the very disease that the book of business over here makes money on by 
maintaining. This isn't hard economics. It is just math. And I accept 
this place is a math-free zone, but the math is the math.
  There are good things happening. We just have to stop much of the 
Democrats' policies, which are crushing these opportunities because, 
look, it is great politics. The rhetoric is great politics. It is 
crappy economics.
  I want to give you another simple example, Madam Speaker, and this 
one is more maybe closer to home, being from Arizona. A couple weeks 
ago, a big rig tractor-trailer--I believe it was on I-10 in Arizona--
drove a fairly substantial distance completely autonomously. No driver 
at all, completely autonomously.
  Well, think about that. Let's take a step.
  Didn't we hear President Biden--what was it, a few weeks ago?--talk 
about the supply chain: We don't have enough truck drivers. We are 
going to fix this. We are going to make it so goods can make it to the 
warehouses where they can be value added, the manufacturing, the store 
shelves.
  This was part of it because the United States, one of our greatest 
difficulties is our demographics. The reality is we are getting much 
older very fast. I mean, what is it? The mean truck driver is somewhere 
in the mid-fifties. This is part of the solution. Okay. This is 
wonderful.
  How much of this place is really fixated on the combination of 
resources, but it is also the regulatory, the litigation, and the 
liability standards to make this happen so it helps solve the 
transportation of goods here in the country?
  It is wonderful, except one small problem. The Democrats, in their 
infrastructure bill, slipped in a wonderful little section. Because, 
remember, this is a supply chain. So the container comes off the ship, 
goes to the stack, goes to the truck, the truck we just saw we now have 
the autonomous technology that is starting to work. So what did the 
Democrats slip into their infrastructure bill? Making it so you can't 
automate the port.
  So they, once again, sold out to the union because, well, that is who 
writes them checks. But you can't have it both ways. You can't have a 
President get behind the microphone and say: I am working on this; I am 
going to help solve the supply chain problem, wink, wink, nod, nod. I 
am going to hide it in the infrastructure legislation where the vast 
majority of the money did not go to actually infrastructure, and then 
put in things in there saying: But we are going to also make sure you 
can't automate the ports.
  This is special interest legislation because Congress has become a 
protection racket. You are this union. You come in. You have enough 
friends here. They will actually do something that protects that book 
of business against what was good for the entire country.
  So all of this technology that is about to help us deal with our 
worker shortage, our supply chain shortage, actually gets stymied 
because the left basically says the union is more important than the 
rest of the country. Let's make sure you make it so we can't make our 
ports more efficient.
  That is a classic example of good things were happening. And the 
technology isn't Republican or Democrat, but you have to make it so it 
comes together.
  The left constantly selling out to their special interests basically 
crushes the very things that create the productivity that we 
desperately need for the future of this country because, remember, 
growth is moral. Growth makes the poor a lot less poor. And then to do 
these backdoor little deals that actually crush the efficiencies and 
the productivity that make the society wealthier, it is a wink, wink, 
nod, nod. It may be great politics, but it is really crappy economics.
  So let's actually talk about another thing that is happening. How 
many speeches have we been giving about global warming here? A lot of 
our brothers and sisters care passionately about this. And then on the 
other side

[[Page H190]]

of the very beginning of the Biden administration with the help of many 
of my Democrat colleagues here, they basically trumped down on 
permitting, regulations, accessibility, pipelines, those things for 
natural gas, even though we know over the previous decade and a 
half natural gas was the substantial, by far, driver of the reduction 
of North America's greenhouse gases because it burned so much more 
efficiently. Because accessibility had become so available, the price 
of natural gas had come down so much that facility after facility that 
were generating electricity had switched to natural gas away from coal.

  So what did the Democrats do this last year? They made natural gas 
substantially more expensive. Well, what did they think was going to 
happen?
  Congratulations to my brothers and sisters on the left, which I 
believe they have increased coal usage by 23 percent last year over 
where the Trump administration was, which was accused of being too 
friendly to coal by the environmental left had, because of the 
productivity and accessibility to natural gas, natural gas prices fell, 
and use of coal went down dramatically. The left comes in and starts to 
do all sorts of regulations, permitting, restrictions, those things for 
natural gas, and natural gas prices go up. Those facilities converted 
back to coal. Congratulations. Twenty-three percent more coal got 
burnt.
  It is just, once again, a simple example of if you don't do basic 
math. It is great rhetoric: come behind the microphones, tell us about 
how much you care about the environment, and then screw up the 
economics so much that this Nation actually over the next few years, 
greenhouse gas-wise, is about to get dirtier.
  You have seen my slides I have brought to the floor before on how 
much of our baseload nuclear is about to come off line. There will be 
more baseload nuclear about to come off line than every bit of 
photovoltaic that has been put into this entire Nation.
  It is math. It is not hard. But we don't seem to reward facts around 
here. What we reward is brilliant virtue signaling, pretty words, and 
not the final outcome.
  Having had a conversation with a couple of my friends who are good 
people--they are on the left. They care passionately about greenhouse 
gases. I asked them about this natural gas.
  Why do you go so anti-natural gas even though it was responsible for 
the vast majority of the reduction of U.S. greenhouse gases?
  Well, I don't like methane.
  Okay, that is fair. May I suggest actually purchasing a scientific 
journal subscription or two and read because a couple of weeks ago some 
of these articles came out about a dramatically, dramatically less 
expensive way to capture methane? It is functionally clay with a slight 
alteration. I think it is called copper oxide, added. It is 
functionally kitty litter.
  Do you see a theme, Madam Speaker, kitties in the Starlink satellite?
  This is functionally an MIT paper saying: Hey, we found a really 
inexpensive way to capture the methane. So if you are worried about 
wellhead bleed-off or interconnection bleed-off or these things, 
apparently the model even works for ambient capture.
  So instead of going anti-natural gas and making everyone's life more 
miserable and more expensive and then pushing manufacturers of ions, 
electric generation, back to coal, get your head right. Learn the 
economics and say: There is technology out there that we can capture 
the thing you say you are worried about very inexpensively, put your 
resources, put the regulatory push behind a solution.
  It is a little harder to explain in front of your environmentalist 
townhall, but they are facts. There are wonderful things happening. 
There are solutions, and solutions that don't bankrupt the American 
people. It just requires this place stop sounding like it is the 1990s 
policywise.
  Understand, this is one of my biggest frustrations around here. We 
need a moment of honesty. The policies pushed by the administration and 
my brothers and sisters on the left here have made America poorer. They 
have made the working men and women poor and the working poor poorer.
  Here is the chart. The facts are the facts are the facts are the 
facts. Wages have gone up. They were also going up dramatically in 
2018, 2019, and in the very beginning of 2020 with no inflation.
  Our problem right now is the classic problem between sort of the 
Keynesian, stimulus, consumption side of economics and those of us who 
are more on the supply side where you make more product and, by doing 
that, you raise wages because you become more efficient. You 
incentivize productivity, and that productivity makes it so you can pay 
people more.
  We did just the opposite: push cash after cash after cash in society, 
push up inflation, and Americans got poorer. You saw the inflation data 
the last couple days, Madam Speaker. So all the nice speeches around 
here about Republicans did this, Republicans did that, moment of 
clarity, honesty--and it is math--Democrat policies made the working 
poor poorer this last year. And it is math.

  What are the two things you do most that create the most economic 
violence to the working poor? I really wish I had someone here who was 
willing to answer that. It is real simple: Open up the border so you 
create a flood of individuals who have similar skill sets. My drywaller 
or my gardener or whoever these people are, they sell their labors. 
They sell their willingness to work their hearts out. When you flood 
the market with people with similar skill sets, then you crush their 
wages and then, at the same time, create inflation on top of that.
  From an economic standpoint, if you want to commit economic violence 
on the poor, do exactly what the left is doing right now: open up the 
borders and incentivize inflation.
  A tough part with both of these is that it is not a switch you can 
just turn off. The labor availability for those who sell their labor, 
they sell it because they didn't graduate high school and didn't have 
some of the benefits many of us did, but their wages were going up 
dramatically in 2018, 2019. In the beginning of 2020, a new regime 
comes in, the border is opened up, we are in the middle of a pandemic, 
there are lots of other things going on, and there are numbers out 
there that are really difficult because you have to adjust for the 
amount of cash that was pushed into society. But when you start to try 
to normalize that, I think when we look back there is going to be an 
understanding of just how brutal the policies of opening up the border 
and inflation were to the very people we talk about and claim we care 
about.
  My fear is that brutality economically looks like it is going to be 
with us for about a decade. It may take 10 years to squeeze out what we 
have done in our population dynamics and inflation.
  I hope this place is willing--and when I talk to some of my Democrat 
colleagues and I walk them through the numbers, they just stare at me 
angrily and say, well, we are going to just send them more money, not 
understanding that just sets off the cycle even more.

                              {time}  1415

  I threw this one in because I think this is actually something, we 
should all just be hopeful. We now have, actually, an antiviral in the 
pandemic. We have the Pfizer pill. I believe Merck has one, but the 
Pfizer is remarkably effective.
  So if you have a home COVID test and can actually take an antiviral 
pill at home--you've got to take a number of them--should you still 
have a declaration of a pandemic?
  And my reason is, go back to the discussions we had when this began, 
when the pandemic was declared. This has been a miserable thing for 
everyone to go through. But it was always we are doing this because our 
emergency rooms are going to be full. We won't have enough ventilators. 
We don't have therapeutics.
  Well, now we have therapeutics where you can take it at home. You can 
identify the virus at home.
  Is it time for us to actually step in and say, this is something we 
are going to live with? We now have the tools to take care of it. If 
you happen to be in one of--where you have a compromised immune system, 
you have other sorts of co-morbidities--which I still hate that word--
yes, there are different protocols.
  For the vast majority of our Nation, this is what we had said a 
couple of years ago; when we get this, we don't

[[Page H191]]

need to have a declaration of a pandemic because you can test at home 
and take a pill at home--well, a number of pills--and it is an 
antiviral that is incredibly effective.
  Is it time we start having the conversation that the declaration of a 
pandemic has outlived its welcome, and we start now figuring out we 
have methods to help our brothers and sisters who are suffering take 
care of themselves and do it from home? They don't have to be in the 
urgent care centers. They don't have to be in our emergency rooms, our 
hospitals. This is hopeful, and it is here.
  Now, of course, you already saw an earlier debate, I believe, between 
our leaders discussing about the Biden administration's failure to 
properly pre-order and those things. I will let others who specialize 
in this have that debate.
  But that should be considered hopeful, and it is time, and we are 
already starting to see some movement with our brothers and sisters on 
the left starting to understand that this is something that we are 
going to live with.
  All right. This one is uncomfortable, but it is math. The University 
of Chicago, four Ph.D. economists were looking at parts of the Build 
Back Better, the social entitlement spending bill, and the childcare 
tax credit. And it turns out, because the left insists on de-linking 
the money from getting job training, from learning skills, from 
actually pursuing work, from taking work, economists basically say, 
once again, the left's great rhetoric of how they are going to help 
working men and women who have children, actually, the data says they 
are going to make them poorer.
  So what we have proposed over and over and over to the left is: Okay, 
if you intend to do this, could we put in a component that says we need 
you to gain skills? We want you to be part of the economy. We want you 
to be part of society. We would like you to work.
  And the reaction--we actually had testimony in the Joint Economic 
Committee from a leftist Democrat witness who basically said, why 
should people have to work? Even a couple of the Democrats on the dais, 
you know, their jaws are dropping saying, well, that is your witness.
  But then the economists turn to you and say, the way you are 
designing your legislation you are hurting working poor people. You 
have already done it with opening the border. You have already done it 
with inflation. Now you are going to make sure it sticks.
  These are just crappy economics. And they know better. It is just the 
politics of this craziness right now.
  So let's actually go on to something else that I am hoping will make 
some sense. I did this board specifically for someone who will probably 
never see this moment of the speech. So, last week, we sent out, you 
know, a postcard saying it is about to become a new year. Tell us what 
issues you care about. And someone on the left stuck one in my mailbox, 
and the first thing said, rich people need to pay more.
  Okay. It would have been nice if this individual had actually had the 
fortitude to actually give me their name or phone number so I could 
talk to them and walk them through the numbers. Because you hear the 
left's folklore all the time. Well, the tax reform, it was for rich 
people. No, it wasn't.
  Once again, the data makes it very clear, the wealthy, after tax 
reform, are paying a higher percentage of the Federal income tax. 
Understand, one more time. The tax code got more progressive after tax 
reform. So the math is the truth.
  How many times do you hear it?
  I remember last year, I did a presentation, Speaker Pelosi came in on 
it, and then Speaker Pelosi talks in the mike and says, 82 percent of 
the benefits went to the rich people. And even the Democrats who were 
on Ways and Means, their jaws are dropping, and they are looking down 
at the floor.
  But this place makes math up. It makes crap up because we are about 
virtue signaling, not the facts. The tax code we are under today is 
more progressive. The rich pay a higher percentage of the Federal 
income tax burden than before tax reform.
  But back to the rhetoric and that postcard that was in my mailbox 
saying rich people need to pay more taxes. Okay. Maybe the left should 
stop trying to subsidize them.
  In the left's Build Back Better, their social entitlement spending 
plan, the amount of tax cuts that are functionally designed into that, 
tax credits, money transfer--you do understand, two-thirds of 
millionaires get a tax cut under the Democrats Build Back Better.
  It is, once again, the rhetoric versus the math; the virtue signaling 
versus owning a calculator. The analysis says the Democrats are, once 
again--talk a great game. The wealthy need to pay their fair share. And 
then they turn around and do legislation that actually subsidizes the 
rich.

  A few months ago, we did a presentation here and said, if society, if 
government really needs another trillion dollars--okay, if that is the 
argument coming from the left, stop subsidizing the rich.
  We came here with a series of boards that showed almost $1.4 trillion 
over 10 years--and I am talking the really rich, you know, the 
subsidies that are built in. And you could just hear--what is the 
colloquialism--crickets. Because if you actually look at the wealthiest 
ZIP codes in the Nation, they are actually represented by people on the 
left.
  So just a couple more of these to sort of help walk us through.
  We all know the Democrats' passion for State and local tax 
deductions, and it goes up and down in their negotiations. But once 
again--and to Bernie Sanders' credit, he actually told the truth on 
this. It is a tax cut for the really, really, really rich, when the 
vast majority of the money goes to people making $1 million or more.
  But how many times have we read in the political press that a number 
of our Democrat brothers and sisters here won't let the legislation 
become law unless they get these tax cuts for their rich taxpayers?
  Okay. Then stop sticking a postcard in my mailbox without your name 
on it saying tax the rich more, and being part of, obviously, a 
political party that wants to either subsidize the rich, hand them tax 
credits, or hand them money. You can't--it is just fascinating. We work 
in a place that the words don't match the facts.
  And this was one of my favorite things. In Ways and Means, when we 
were grinding through the Democrats' Build Back Better bill, we 
actually did some simple math. Once again, we actually tried to read 
part of it.
  So you make $800,000 a year. Your family makes $800,000 a year. Built 
into that legislation was $118,000 of tax credits for a family making 
$800,000 a year. Buy the right Tesla; buy the battery wall; buy the 
right solar panels.
  That is their version of taxing the rich, getting the wealthy to pay 
their fair share? Or is it their version of, hey, we are going to 
subsidize the people that finance our campaigns. And, oh, by the way, 
these are their constituents.
  So back once again, what is the greatest threat to our Republic? 
Besides all the craziness here and the shiny objects and the debate of 
the day that will change tomorrow, the sense of indignation, people 
will walk behind these microphones--I am going to argue it is the next 
two boards. This year, 77 percent of all the spending is mandatory. It 
is functionally a formula. It is Social Security. It is Medicare. Ten 
percent is defense, 13 percent is everything else.
  When you and I go home, and if I am in front of a Republican 
audience, it is often, oh, you have got to get rid of waste and fraud. 
You have got to get rid of foreign aid. In front of a leftist audience, 
well, it is defense.
  But, no, it is demographics. The vast majority of this here is 
functionally demographics. Demographics, getting old, is not Republican 
or Democrat.
  But yet, even last night, you saw more legislation being pushed by 
the Democrats that expands these mandatory portions, and this is based 
on a CBO report from a year ago.
  But functioning 29 years, you have $112 trillion of publicly borrowed 
money, so that is not borrowing from trust funds, and it is on today's 
dollars. This isn't inflated dollars in the future. That is like 205 
percent of projected GDP. The majority of it is the shortfalls in 
Medicare, then Social Security. The rest of the budget is in balance.
  If you have made a commitment, you are an elected official here and 
you made a commitment that you are going to protect Social Security; 
you

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are going to protect Medicare; you are going to protect retirement 
security; start telling the truth about the math. And understand, those 
previous slides I showed, that there is a miracle of wonderful things 
that are going to cure misery, cure diseases.
  Why isn't that the fixation here, that we are going to actually fix 
the things that create this incredible amount of debt? Instead, we have 
a body that doesn't do math, and is rewarded for absolutely absurd 
virtue signaling.
  Madam Speaker, I yield back the balance of my time.

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