Congressional Western Caucus Vice Chair and Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy unveiled the Commitment to America to outline the priorities of House Republicans based on four pillars: An Economy That's Strong, A Nation That's Safe, A Future That's Built on Freedom, and A Government That's Accountable. Learn how Western Caucus Members are committed to delivering results for rural communities across the United States in the 118th Congress in alliance with these pillars.
Click here to learn more about the Commitment to America.
An Economy That’s Strong
American energy dominance
Western Caucus Members believe we should empower American energy producers to provide affordable and reliable domestic energy for families and businesses throughout the United States and to our allies abroad. Energy produced in the United States is done with some of the highest environmental and labor protections in the world, and increased production in the U.S. has resulted in the reduction of global emissions. By expanding opportunities to produce domestic energy, we can strengthen energy security here at home and around the globe while also protecting the environment.
In order to meet our energy needs, Western Caucus Members believe we must continue to diversify our energy resources, lead the world in clean energy development, and embrace an all-of-the-above energy portfolio that utilizes critical baseload carbon-free energy sources like nuclear and hydropower. Instead of a rush-to-Green New Deal Agenda, Members support American innovation and clean energy development that supplements traditional resources like oil and natural gas.
Broken permitting processes and duplicative regulatory requirements hinder economic development, domestic energy production, infrastructure projects, and more throughout rural America. Western Caucus Members believe we must modernize and streamline federal permitting processes to unlock the potential of rural communities while maintaining strong environmental protections.
Responsible American mining
The United States is rich with domestic mineral resources, many of which are critical for our nation to remain a leader in scientific innovation and clean energy development. Instead of relying on foreign countries for these minerals, Western Caucus Members understand that by strengthening the American mining industry and encouraging domestic mineral processing, we can create good-paying jobs, greatly contribute to local and state economies, and ensure a strong mineral supply chain for current and future generations.
A Nation That’s Safe
Western Caucus Members know that food security is national security. By supporting the American agriculture industry, we can ensure a strong national food supply chain. Doing so includes providing the tools and safety net producers need to be successful, encouraging continued conservation practices to protect our natural resources, and reducing burdensome regulations that tie the hands of U.S. farmers and ranchers.
Protection from foreign threats
Western Caucus Members also understand that we must ensure our agriculture land is not dominated by foreign countries in an attempt to control our food supply chain. By increasing reporting of agriculture assets held by hostile countries like China, we can protect our national interests and support our domestic agriculture producers.
Domestic critical mineral supply
Critical minerals are defined as strategically important for our national security. By supporting research into and domestic development and expanding processing of these critical minerals, Western Caucus Members are working to ensure that we are not dependent on foreign countries like China and Russia for the resources we need to support U.S. manufacturing, military operations, or our energy grid.
Resilient rural communities
Western Caucus Members believe we must create resilient rural communities to withstand and prevent natural disasters, from catastrophic wildfires to devastating hurricanes. By reducing regulatory burdens and encouraging rural development, we can increase active federal forest management and hazardous fuels reduction, ensure efficient development of critical infrastructure to reduce damages from flooding, maintain a strong energy and communication grid during times of disaster, and more.
Reducing violent crime and delivering justice
Tribal reservations and native communities throughout rural America face devastating rates of violent crimes, and the crisis of missing and murdered indigenous women plagues districts across the country. Western Caucus Members are working to increase federal law enforcement collaboration with tribal agencies to investigate these crimes, prevent the spread of violence to surrounding communities, and deliver justice to the families who have suffered without answers.
A Future That’s Built on Freedom
Rural healthcare access
Rural communities across the United States face a shortage of healthcare workers, which can impact access to necessary services. By increasing telehealth opportunities and empowering communities to develop housing and facilities, Western Caucus Members are encouraging access to lifesaving health services throughout rural America.
Western Caucus Members are working to eliminate the digital divide by supporting increased deployment of rural broadband. From telehealth services and education to precision agriculture, rural communities depend on a reliable broadband connection to compete in today’s digital economy.
Local tax bases throughout the West are impacted by massive swaths of federal lands. In order to provide the resources local school districts need, Western Caucus Members support initiatives such as Secure Rural Schools (SRS) and Payment in Lieu of Taxes (PILT) to ensure current and future students have access to a good education.
Private property rights
Private property owners are the best stewards of our lands. Western Caucus Members believe that by maintaining these rights and ensuring landowners are free from bureaucratic interference from the federal government, we can encourage and incentivize economic development and prosperity throughout rural communities.
A Government That’s Accountable
Western Caucus Members understand how decisions made in D.C. impact communities throughout rural America. By working to promote transparency within the federal regulatory process and ensuring regulations are created using the best available science, we can ensure the federal government does not weaponize laws like the Endangered Species Act against rural communities.
Certainty and freedom from government overreach
Western Caucus Members believe rural Americans deserve certainty – not government overreach. Overbearing regulations, like the 2015 Obama-era “waters of the United States” (WOTUS) rule, create confusion and unnecessary bureaucracy throughout rural communities. Instead of allowing Administrations and activist judges to bow to political interests and attempt to dictate policies that exceed congressional authorization, Western Caucus Members are working to discourage serial litigation, prevent “sue and settle” practices, and provide much-needed stability and freedom for rural America.
Western Caucus Members support local control of lands, waters, and resources because we understand that locally-led and voluntary conservation is the best way to manage our lands. Stewardship is best conducted by those who are closest to the land, not by federal bureaucrats in Washington, D.C. By empowering local communities to continue effective conservation practices as outlined in the Western Conservation Principles, we can maintain working lands while ensuring healthy ecosystems.