MONONGAHELA, Pa.—House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R., Calif.) outlined on Friday a governing agenda of what voters can expect in 2023 and beyond should Republicans retake Congress this November.
McCarthy’s remarks were part of the House Republicans’ newly revealed “Commitment to America,” a comprehensive policy pitch for voters in the lead up to the November midterms. That pitch contains bold policy goals related to border security, cutting spending, tackling inflation, and reversing several of President Joe Biden’s legislative victories.
“It’s a one-party rule that we’ve had for two years that have led to the disaster that we’re in right now.” McCarthy said. “It’s going to take the values of southwestern Pennsylvania in ‘Real America’ to get us back on track. That’s why we’re here.”
The policies McCarthy announced include ending the practice of “catch-and-release” for illegal immigrants, loosening regulations on domestic oil and gas production, repealing large portions of the Inflation Reduction Act, and slashing taxes.
“As we went across this country listening, we heard the same thing, at the kitchen table, the dining room table, and inside the factory. ‘Can I afford it? Can I afford to fill up my tank? Can I afford the food, the milk, the baby formula?’” McCarthy said at a warehouse outside of Pittsburgh on Friday morning. “We asked everybody across this country, ‘Could you afford to give up one month of your wages? One month?’ The sad part is the Democratic Party has already taken one month of your wages.”
McCarthy’s announcement of a future House Republican majority policy agenda was reminiscent of former House Speaker Newt Gingrich’s 1994 “Contract With America.” That proposal, meant to show voters that Republicans were committed to governing in a way that was responsive to voter concerns, was revealed six weeks before Republicans retook the House for the first time in 40 years.
The event also revealed the party’s strategy of returning to kitchen-table issues such as the economy, illegal immigration fueling the fentanyl crisis, and left-wing overreach in public schools. Polling shows voters trust Republicans on issues related to the border and inflation, and Republican members told the Free Beacon they were confident it will increase the likelihood of a red wave in November.
“You don’t have to walk down the sidewalk to trip over one of Joe Biden’s crises,” said Rep. Kat Cammack (R., Fla.) at the Friday event. “You don’t have to be highly political and involved to realize how bad things are in everyday America. Everything in this country has turned for the worse.”
“I talked to Republicans, Democrats, independents, they don’t care who broke it,” Cammack said. “They want to fix it and Republicans are the only ones that have a plan to actually fix it.”
Although situated thousands of miles away from the southern border, voters in Monongahela expressed concern about the border, which has seen more illegal crossings a day than at any other point in U.S. history. With all those illegal crossings comes a flood of fentanyl, which has been deadly for communities across the country. A local police officer who spoke with the Free Beacon said his county has seen 69 fentanyl overdoses in 2022, a near record with still three months left in the year.
“Every city in America is a border city, whether you’re in Texas, Pennsylvania, like we are now or anywhere across the country,” Rep. Tony Gonzales (R., Texas) told the Free Beacon. “We’re all a border city. Fentanyl is killing everybody, regardless of the color of your skin or live in rural America or live in urban America. We’re at the forefront of these dangers in Texas, but your city is next.”
Republicans emphasized that their agenda resulted in participation from nearly every member, rather than party leadership. A wide range of members attended the event, from Steve Scalise (R., La.) to Marjorie Taylor Greene (R., Ga.), signifying a unified party on the cusp of retaking Congress.
“At the end of the day, we have to provide some tangibles on what our plan is,” Rep. Lisa McClain (R., Mich.) told the Free Beacon. “When I’m in my district, voters will say what the problems are but also ask me, ‘Lisa, what are you going to do about it?’ And that’s what today is about.”