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Representative Darin LaHood

Representing the 18th District of Illinois

Paul Ryan: The fresh face the GOP needs

November 6, 2015

On Oct. 29, I stood proudly on the floor of the U.S. House Of Representatives to overwhelmingly elect Wisconsin Rep. Paul Ryan as the next Speaker of the House. I believe we could not have found a better, more prepared person.

Speaker Ryan’s background, political experience and skill set are a perfect match for the job. He is bright, a terrific family man, understands that we need a pro-growth economy, and believes in upholding the Constitution.

Through his rise from an aide on Capitol Hill to chairman of two of the most influential committees in the House to the Republican vice presidential candidate in 2012, it is clear that Ryan is a leader who shares our common-sense Midwestern values and work ethic. He was called to do this job, a job that he did not seek, because of his ability to move our party, and indeed our nation, forward.

Throughout my recent special election campaign for Congress, I stressed the need for Republicans in Washington to be more proactive in advancing ideas that will allow our economy to thrive again and create more private sector jobs, instead of being in a constant reactive and stagnant position. I am excited to work with him on that. Ryan has unmatched policy expertise on budget, tax and trade issues, as proven through his previous positions as chairman of the House Budget Committee and, most recently, House Ways and Means. He is an excellent communicator with a unique ability to describe complex policy issues in a way that translates to all Americans.

Specifically, I look forward to working with the new speaker on fixing our broken tax code to make it simpler and fairer for all hard-working taxpayers and to provide certainty for our small business owners and farmers throughout the 18th District. We need smart, fair free trade agreements that open markets overseas, which help create high-paying manufacturing in central and west-central Illinois. Additionally, Congress needs to focus on reducing our deficit so our children and grandchildren aren’t stuck with the bill. Finally, let’s repeal the Affordable Care Act so health care decisions are left between doctor and patient, not with Washington bureaucrats.

Our country faces enormous challenges and now, more than ever, we need leaders who not only have bold ideas but also the ability to solve problems and communicate a clear vision and agenda. Paul Ryan is that person. I was proud to cast my vote for speaker for Paul Ryan and I look forward to working with him.

Congressman Darin LaHood represents Illinois’ 18th District, which includes Peoria, in the U.S. House of Representatives.

Journal Star