May 03, 2021

Weekly Column: Protecting Idaho Water Rights

Effective management of water resources affects the vitality of communities and their ability to grow and develop. Respecting water rights is a central factor in the management of water resources. I have been a longtime opponent of federal agencies eroding states' water rights practices. I have authored and introduced legislation in multiple congresses to prevent federal encroachment on the management of water resources, best controlled at the state and local levels. I am again backing legis… Continue Reading

April 26, 2021

Weekly Column: An Attack On States' Rights And Minority Opinions

Over the last few weeks, I have heard from many Idahoans expressing their concerns with H.R. 1 and S. 1, the "For the People Act." I share these concerns. This patently unconstitutional legislation looks a lot more like a "For the Bureaucrats" bill. It would circumvent our entire elections process and stifle freedom of speech. H.R. 1 would federalize our election process and strip states of election authorities guaranteed to them by the U.S. Constitution. Participation in the electoral proc… Continue Reading

April 19, 2021

Weekly Column: Removing Red Tape Preventing Combat-Injured Veterans From Receiving Full Benefits

Idahoans' input is extremely helpful as we work together to ensure federal laws are sound and federal services are accessible and effective. A great example is the time SMSgt. Jeremy Kitzhaber, U.S. Air Force (Retired), Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) Post 63 Legislative Committee Chairman, of Boise, and his wife, Sharette, have taken to discuss veterans-related policy, including ensuring medically retired and combat-injured veterans receive full compensation earned through their service to our … Continue Reading

April 12, 2021

Weekly Column: Legislating For Idaho

As the 117th Congress is now in full swing, legislation is being reintroduced and work is underway on needed policy changes. Following is a brief overview of important legislation I am working with fellow senators to reintroduce this Congress. Energy Work continues with a bipartisan group of senators to update and reintroduce the American Nuclear Infrastructure Act (ANIA). This legislation further facilitates our nuclear competitiveness. ANIA ensures the research conducted at the Idaho N… Continue Reading

April 05, 2021

Weekly Column: Sound Immigration Reform

Throughout my time in Congress, I have consistently maintained there is a real need for a rational immigration policy built on several important principles. I have weighed past immigration reform legislation against these principles, and have voted against immigration reform efforts that do not meet them. I continue to use them as a guide for consideration of current immigration reform proposals: First, the United States must commit the resources necessary to have the strongest border enfo… Continue Reading

March 29, 2021

Weekly Column: Supporting Idaho Manufacturing Through A Competitive Federal Tax Code

A vibrant manufacturing sector is a cornerstone of strong economic activity and jobs here in Idaho and across America. Manufacturing accounts for more than 106,000 jobs in Idaho and 9.97 percent of Idaho's workforce with an output valued at $10.4 billion, according to 2018 and 2019 data compiled by the Idaho Department of Commerce. Nationwide, the manufacturing sector accounted for 15.7 percent of our country's gross domestic product (GDP) in 2019 and 14.6 percent of Idaho's GDP. To help make… Continue Reading

March 22, 2021

Weekly Column: Scrutinizing Federal Regulation

Major federal rules must be rare and well-reasoned, given their outsized impact. While Congress has enacted legislation attempting to curb federal overregulation, we cannot let up in working to ensure American productivity is not stymied by federal mandates. I joined a bipartisan group of fellow senators in reintroducing legislation that would help keep federal regulation in check. On January 27, I joined in reintroducing S. 68, the Regulations from the Executive In Need of Scrutiny (REINS) … Continue Reading

March 15, 2021

Weekly Column: As In The Past, COVID Relief Should Be Bipartisan, Targeted

Prior to the recent passage of the American Rescue Plan, Congress came together five times to pass bipartisan bills totaling roughly $4 trillion to help Americans weather the pandemic. Recent economic projections from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) provide proof of their effectiveness, predicting a robust economic recovery. We should be encouraged by this, as well as vaccine distribution underway, and look to fill any gaps in the response instead of just piling more taxpayer dollars on … Continue Reading

March 08, 2021

Weekly Column: Working Hard For Idahoans As Finance Committee Ranking Member--Trade Policy Focus

Free and fair trade is vital for Idaho's $4 billion export industry. As Ranking Member of the Senate Finance Committee, with jurisdiction over reciprocal trade agreements, tariffs and import quotas, I have welcomed the opportunity to continue to work to ensure fair and open market opportunities for Idaho and U.S. goods. Over the past few weeks, I have released two guest columns outlining priorities in three key areas of the Committee's jurisdiction-tax, health care and trade. This third and f… Continue Reading

March 01, 2021

Weekly Column: Working Hard For Idahoans As Finance Committee Ranking Member--Health Care Focus

As Ranking Member of the Senate Finance Committee, I continue to bring Idaho values of conservatism and commonsense to the work of the Committee. In a three-part guest column series, I am outlining priorities in three key areas of the Committee's jurisdiction-tax, health care and trade. This second of the three columns is focused on federal health care priorities. In the 117th Congress, I intend to work with Senate Finance Committee Chairman Ron Wyden (D-Oregon) and all members of the Committ… Continue Reading

February 22, 2021

Weekly Column: Working Hard For Idahoans As Finance Committee Ranking Member--Tax Policy Focus

Serving on the Senate Finance Committee has given me the opportunity to help make a positive difference in shaping important policy affecting the lives of Idahoans and all Americans. The Committee's extensive jurisdiction includes federal tax policy; federal social safety net and health care programs; and implementation of reciprocal foreign trade agreements. I always look for opportunities to simplify our tax code, create jobs and help Idahoans save for retirement. The 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs… Continue Reading

February 15, 2021

Weekly Column: Faulty Budgeting

Over the last year, Congress has come together multiple times to pass massive, bipartisan bills totaling trillions of dollars in relief measures to back the medical response and help American families and businesses weather the pandemic. I have been encouraged by this bipartisan approach, and recent economic projections from the Congressional Budget Office, which estimates that already-enacted pandemic-related provisions, built upon the strong fiscal policy foundation we already have in place, … Continue Reading

February 08, 2021

Weekly Column: Third Federal Judge For Idaho

In 1953, then-U.S. Senator Herman Welker (R-Idaho), a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, made a convincing case for the addition of a second federal judgeship for Idaho at a Judiciary subcommittee hearing. The Senator cited the increase in cases, rising case backload and considerable distance between places of holding court for the only federal judge in Idaho at the time. He asked, "How long can this able jurist physically and mentally stand this tremendous workload?" In 1954, Congress… Continue Reading

February 01, 2021

Weekly Column: Reflecting On Banking Committee Chairmanship

In the 116th Congress, I had the great honor of serving my second term as the Chairman of the Senate Banking Committee, which has broad jurisdiction over the financial system, from housing to sanctions to transit. Much of the term was focused on the implementation and oversight of laws passed in the previous congressional session and on several important reauthorizations. However, as the pandemic spread rapidly across the world, Congress was tasked with confronting an unexpected challenge unli… Continue Reading

January 11, 2021

Weekly Column: The Taxpayer First Act

We have all likely heard some variation of the famous saying that nothing is certain but death and taxes. Given the preeminent inevitability of taxes, we must make certain that the federal agency tasked with administering this responsibility operates with just and up-to-date guidelines. Since Congress passed and President Donald Trump signed the Taxpayer First Act (TFA) into law last year, work has been underway to implement its provisions to modernize the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to exp… Continue Reading

January 04, 2021

Weekly Column: Increasing Retirement Savings Opportunities

Saving for retirement is important but often difficult, especially when faced with the increased uncertainty of the pandemic. When paychecks have to cover mortgages, rent, car payments, food, utilities, gas, college and other important obligations, steady retirement savings is often challenging, if not nearly impossible. Unexpected medical expenses or car repairs can upset even the best retirement plans. Recognizing the challenges, Congress has taken steps to increase retirement savings oppor… Continue Reading

December 21, 2020

Weekly Column: Nez Perce-Clearwater Forests Example Of Collaboration Bringing Results

I recently had the opportunity to speak on the Senate floor about important progress underway on the Nez Perce-Clearwater National Forests to improve the health of the Forests that is a great example of the benefits of collaborative efforts. The following contains parts of the speech and a video of the full speech can be accessed through my website at: www.crapo.senate.gov. I have been a longtime champion of collaboration to address public lands management disputes, as collaborative processes… Continue Reading

December 14, 2020

Weekly Column: Impact Aid: 70 Years Of Delivering Resources To Federally Impacted School Districts

Impact Aid is a crucial program that provides needed funding to school districts in Idaho. The Senate unanimously passed S.Res. 775, a bipartisan resolution I led with fellow Senate Impact Aid Coalition Co-Chair, Senator Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii), that recognizes the program's 70 years of delivering resources to federally impacted school districts to provide high-quality education and access to opportunities children need to reach their full potential. The Congressional Research Service (CRS) p… Continue Reading

December 07, 2020

Weekly Column: Reinforcing America's Nuclear Infrastructure

Over the last couple of years, Congress has ushered in a new chapter in U.S. nuclear energy by enacting legislation promoting nuclear innovation. The advancement of clean, reliable nuclear energy is paramount to maintaining the United States' eminence in nuclear power, research and innovation. My colleagues and I recently introduced S. 4897, the American Nuclear Infrastructure Act (ANIA) of 2020, which would further facilitate our country's nuclear competitiveness through enhanced collaboratio… Continue Reading

November 30, 2020

Weekly Column: From The Mailbag--Public Lands

As participants in the decisions made in Congress, Idahoans contact me with valuable input about the issues our country faces. Realizing that many may not have the chance to contact me, I post information about various issues of importance on my website, http://crapo.senate.gov. One of the issues Idahoans have contacted me about is the management and ownership of our public lands. The following is my response: Put simply, public lands should remain public. Their values should be preserved a… Continue Reading

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