By the Journal Star

Rep. Adrian Smith, a member of the House since 2007, says his experience as a member of the Gering City Council, the Nebraska Legislature and the House has prepared him to serve communities and families effectively.  Smith says his focus would include “getting our fiscal house in order,” tax reform, regulatory relief, trade agreements to expand markets for Nebraska products and making health care more affordable and accessible.

What are your legislative priorities?

My top priorities are getting our fiscal house in order, providing regulatory relief for hardworking Nebraskans, reforming our overly complex tax code, enacting new trade agreements to expand markets for Nebraska products, making health care more affordable and accessible for all Americans, supporting American energy production, and ensuring farm policy supports not undermine our rural economy.

Can you describe a bipartisan debt reduction agreement that you would be able to support that includes elements important to both sides?

I supported the bipartisan Budget Control Act of 2011 which enacted significant spending cuts and reforms. This agreement was passed by the Republican House, Democratic Senate, and signed by President Obama. I hope future budget agreements contain revenue-neutral tax reform to encourage economic growth, and ultimately reduce deficits. We must also reform entitlements. Such a plan should receive bipartisan support.

Are you willing to depart from your party leadership and can you identify issues where that has occurred or is likely to occur?

I vote guided by my principles and in the best interests of the Third District and our nation — not party leadership. For example, I voted against the Wall Street bailouts in 2008 against the urging of party leadership and President Bush.

What is the biggest strength you bring, or would bring, to the House?

As a member of the Committee on Ways and Means, Nebraska’s Third District has a voice in some of the most important policy debates in the House of Representatives including taxes, trade, health care and Social Security. I will continue to be an effective leader for our district on these and other issues.

What specifically would you intend to do for your congressional district?

My offices has assisted thousands of constituents cut through the red tape of the federal bureaucracy. I am working hard through my Regulation Rewind initiative to address the most burdensome government-imposed barriers to businesses and local governments. As chair of the Rural Caucus, I will continue to be a leader on issues affecting rural areas such as the Third District.

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