Kevin Brady, head of the U.S. House Ways & Means Committee, on Jan. 23 expressed concern about the route of the proposed high-speed rail project while touting his accomplishments in Congress.
Brady, R-Conroe, also took the government to task for the three-day shutdown.
"That shutdown never should have happened," he said.
Delaying a bill that contained funding for the military, hurricane relief and Children's Health Insurance Program while delaying Obamacare taxes for two years was ridiculous, he said.
Brady said he was blessed to lead the push for tax reform in Congress, and to work with President Donald Trump.
"It's not perfect tax reform, as there's no such thing, but, boy, we got the fundamentals right," Brady said.
He cited the numerous business and industry that are reinvesting in America, as well as the numerous pay raises companies across the country are providing employees as examples that the tax cut is working.
"For families in Madison County, the average family will see a tax cut of a little more than $2,600," he said. "In Washington, they sneer at it, call it crumbs. But for working families, that's real help."
Brady also said that businesses will see a 20 percent reduction in taxes as well.
Republican Party Chair Betty Nosovitch asked about the secret memo detailing possible violations of the FISA act, hoping that it would be released (Note: House members voted to release the memo on Monday).
Brady said the contents of the memo were disturbing, and raises serious questions about how surveillance was conducted.
"We (need) a full investigation into this, because it's tied to the presidential election," he said. "The government should not be intruding on the private sector through surveillance."
County Judge C.E. McDaniel sought information about Washington's role in the high-speed rail project.
"So far, we've succeeded in keeping high-speed rail out of Washington," Brady said. "So far, they've sought two permits for construction, and authorization to take eminent domain, which we were successful in stopping."
Brady said that the issue is a Texas issue, and that Texas Central, the company behind the project, has stated that they don't intend to use tax dollars, and he intends to hold them to that.
He also said the route is unacceptable, but whether you like it or not, it's not going to put tax dollars at risk, and similar projects have turned into huge "boondoggles."
Brady also addressed questions regarding immigration, which he said needs reform.
"It seems to me that immigration shouldn't be based on who you know, but on what you can bring to America," he said. "The president is right: you've got to shut the back door of immigration and fix the front door."