Fixing ‘broken things:’ Davidson talks about 18 months in Congress

Most working Americans should notice a smaller tax bite from their paychecks in coming weeks, U.S. Rep. Warren Davidson, R-Troy, said Thursday in a wide-ranging interview at Cox Media Group Ohio offices.

“I think that’s how most individuals should start to experience the change, through payroll (deductions),” Davidson said.

Businesses should also get more leeway for growth, he said. Small businesses will be able to take advantage of a new deduction to “expense” — or deduct the cost of — certain pieces of newly purchased equipment.

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“Talking to some of the machinery and equipment dealers, they’ve been busy,” he said.

In the interview, Davidson said the “key question” facing those who wrote the tax legislation was: How can we sustain growth in the U.S. economy?

“We went from being one of the worst corporate tax rates in the world to kind of average, really,” Davidson said. “At 21 percent, that’s a win from 35 percent. But when we put 35 percent in in the 80s, that was an average rate.”

“If you’re talking 15 percent, that would have put us near the front among competitive rates,” he added.

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Looking back over his past 18 months as a member of the U.S. House of Representatives, Davidson pointed to the recently passed and signed tax package as perhaps the most tangible example of change in that time.

Davidson, a U.S. Army veteran and former owner of small Miami County manufacturing businesses, won a special election in June 2016 to take over the seat previously held by Speaker John Boehner, R-West Chester Twp.

Davidson, a Sidney native, was sworn in two days later in what he at the time called a “surreal” experience.

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Since then, the 47-year-old conservative has been elected to a full two-year term representing the sprawling 8th congressional district, which stretches from Butler County north nearly to Celina along the Ohio-Indiana border, encompassing Troy, Springfield and northern slices of Montgomery and Greene counties.

He sits on the Financial Services Committee and is a member of the House Freedom Caucus.

Davidson said much of his time in Congress has been spent trying to fix “broken things.”

“If I had been totally happy with how Congress is going, I would not have run for office,” he said.

Davidson took aim at the practice of using “continuing resolutions” to fund the federal government, a mechanism that doesn’t allow Department of Defense leaders to plan on dependable long-term spending via a “regular appropriations process.”

That’s a particular problem because of what he called a growing “bi-partisan awareness” that the nation has a military “readiness” problem.

“You have ships colliding, planes falling out of the sky, troops being killed,” he said. “We still have some combat operations going on. But we have people dying in training — mostly because of readiness issues.”

Warfighters need Congress to break free from “CR mode” to help achieve dependable funding, he said.

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“The status quo in Washington, D.C. is broken in many ways,” Davidson said.

Asked about the possibility of Democrats taking over the majority in the House in the November congressional elections, Davidson said historically, the party belonging to the president loses about 32 House seats in mid-term elections.

“If Republicans lose 32 seats, we’ll be in the minority in the House,” he said.

Today, the GOP has a 239-193 advantage in the House, with three vacancies.

However, he expressed confidence that if Democrats continue in what he called “resistance” mode, Americans will be turned off by that.

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