Congressman Roger Williams is a businessman who is fully aware that he will be living with the laws passed in Washington, D.C.
During a stop in Stephenville to speak to local business owners, Williams visited the Empire-Tribune to give some updates on recent happenings, which included the recent passage of a tax break pushed by President Trump.
“A month or two ago we just passed the largest tax cut we’ve seen in the country, and already we’re seeing it working and we’ve seen that businesses are coming over here, employees are getting raises, we’re seeing new business startups like we haven’t seen in the past,” said Williams, the representative for the 25th District of Texas. “Tax cuts are working, it’s putting money in the hands of the people where it should be, and it’s creating an economy we haven’t seen since the Reagan days.”
Williams said a second phase is needed now.
“The main thing is, on the tax cuts, when we go back in September, we’re going to have tax cuts phase two. The first thing we’ve got to do is make these tax cuts permanent.
“I’m going to be talking about cutting the payroll tax in half for the employee and the employer, which I think’s a big deal. I’m going to be pushing cutting capital gains and dividends back down to 15 percent.”
However, spending is still a concern.
“The problem is, on both sides we’re spending more than we’re taking in and there’s no appetite to quit that except for about 40 of us that want to stop the spending,” Williams said.
Williams noted that he is also “focused on reducing more regulations for main-street America,” and is backing legislation “to give $700 billion back to the military, give our kids the largest pay raise they’ve had, ever, in the military. So we’re beginning to do that and get America back on solid footing from the military standpoint.”
He’s also promoting programs to help with the growing problem of students dropping out of school at younger ages, noting that “100,000 kids every year dropping out of school in the ninth grade in Texas alone.”
Williams learned first-hand that Washington seems to be driven by anger. He suffered an ankle wound from shrapnel during the shooting at the congressional baseball practice in June of last year, which resulted in a serious gunshot injury to House Majority Whip Steve Scalise. A police officer and two other people were also wounded by the gunman.
“It’s driven by anger. The hate and dislike for this president is unbelievable,” Williams said. “You’re got people on the left (who) would rather America fail than for him to get any credit at all. And you see that every single day.”
Williams said that, in the past, people could debate the issues and just agree to disagree. That seems to have changed, according to Williams.
“I’m a car dealer. I make deals all the time,” Williams said. “Washington, I’m here to tell you, is driven by anger. It is so angry up there, and I don’t see how we fix it.”
Williams, a former pro baseball player who was in the Atlanta Braves organization, had one idea that seems to have helped. He created what he calls the Baseball Caucus, and invited some Hall of Famers to attend as an added attraction
“We got about 300 members in it, bi-partisan,” Williams said. “And about every quarter, I bring some of my former teammates in that I played with. We’ve had Tommy John, Johnny Bench, Brooks Robinson. For an hour, we all meet in a hearing room, Republicans and Democrats, and we feed them hot dogs and apple pie and all we do is talk baseball. It works.
“We use baseball as a come-together. Then I started the college football caucus. Those are ways to bring people back together to get them civil again.”
Williams said he looks at the people he represents as his customers.
“You deserve service, and we need to give it to you,” he said. “We represent 800,000 people. Not everybody voted for Roger, but I’ve got to help you and what your needs are.
“I’ll never get away from my core, and I’ll never get away from my platform. It’s lower taxes, less government, cut spending, defend borders, listening to generals, understanding the 10th Amendment and stay with Israel. I’m never going to waver from that.
“Do we want America that’s driven by the people, or one driven by the government? I believe in you and I believe in me. I don’t believe in the federal government. The federal government should collect my taxes, defend my borders, help with infrastructure and get out of the way.”
Williams said he now supports term limits because politicians vote to save their own political future “rather than to save America’s future.”
Willams added, “We love representing Erath. And we think we’re right with the issues. We don’t know how much longer we’re going to do this but as long as we’re there we’re going to be fighting hard for the issues that are important to Erath.”