Letter: Praise For McHenry’s Work As Interim Whip
As we head into the fall it’s important to take stock of where we stand before heading into the maelstrom of an election year. It feels like the roller coaster ride of the 2016 election carried on into 2017, and in the case of Congress it took an almost tragic turn on June 14th. On that day James Hodgkinson, a Bernie Sanders supporter, attempted to massacre Republican members of Congress as they practiced for the annual Congressional softball game. Two Capitol Hill police officers took out the gunman, but not before they were hit, and Congressman Steve Scalise was gravely wounded.
Scalise is the elected Whip of the Republican Caucus, meaning he gets the head count to be sure bills on the floor will pass or not. Because of his injuries that role temporarily has passed to the 10th District’s own Patrick McHenry. McHenry stepped into the role at a critical time for the House given the priorities laid out by President Trump. McHenry more than proved his mettle working on behalf of the Trump agenda. McHenry helped the House do what the Senate has thus far failed to do as the House passed a bill to repeal Obamacare. The House has also moved to undo key parts of Barack Obama’s legacy, first by repealing Dodd-Frank, and also funding to rebuild our military after 8 years of leading from behind.
Perhaps the clearest sign that McHenry and the House are in line with the President’s priorities is that they have voted for work to begin on the border wall with Mexico. Ever since being elected to Congress in 2004 McHenry has proven a staunch opponent of amnesty for those who broke the law coming into this country illegally. All too often lawmakers have been coopted by those wanting to give amnesty, but to his credit McHenry has stood with the voters of the western North Carolina instead of the folks on K Street.
Much work remains to be done in 2017 on tax reform to get the economy roaring again. But despite the sluggish Senate we have seen great progress from the House, and any successful floor vote comes in large part thanks to McHenry’s work as interim Whip. Unlike the voters of Alaska, Maine, and Arizona we can be proud of our representation here in North Carolina, representatives working to Make America Great Again.
Published in the print version of the Hickory Daily Record on Saturday, October 7th 2017.