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118th Congress Update

118th Congress update - structured settlements

The 2022 Congressional elections included 435 individual races for Members of Congress who serve in the U.S. House of Representatives and 35 races for Members elected to serve in the U.S. Senate.  After all the votes were counted, 85 newly elected Members of Congress were sworn into office—seven new U.S. Senators and 78 newly elected Members of the House of Representatives.

Republicans won control of the House of Representatives for the first time since the 115th Congress. The House of Representatives has 222 Republicans and 213 Democrats—one of the smallest margins in history. House Republican Members have elected Congressman Kevin McCarthy of California as the new Speaker of the House.  House Republicans also selected new Committee Chairs and new Committee Members, established several new Special Committees, and approved new Rules for House Floor debate and legislation consideration. 

Starting At the Top

The new Speaker of the House, Congressman Kevin McCarthy, is a strong supporter of the use of structured settlements to provide long-term economic security for seriously injured persons. The new House Majority Leader, Congressman Steve Scalise from Louisiana, strongly supports structured settlements. NSSTA members met with House Speaker Kevin McCarthy during the “Two Days to Make A Difference” event on Capitol Hill.

Newly Elected Members of Congress: At the start of the 118th Congress, there were 79 brand new, newly elected Members of Congress. One major challenge for our industry is to meet with and educate these newly elected Members of Congress on the value and importance of structured settlements.

Focusing on What is Importantthe House Ways and Means Committee
While there are 21 Standing Committees and four Joint Committees in the U.S. House of Representatives, there is only one Committee on Ways and Means:

--Chief tax-writing committee in the House of Representatives --Jurisdiction over revenue and related issues such as tariffs

--reciprocal trade agreements

--The bonded debt of the United States

--Social Security system, Medicare, and social services programs

New House Ways and Means Committee Chairman
NSSTA has worked effectively with the new House Ways and Means Committee Chairman, Representative Jason Smith, R-Missouri, most notably on the 2017 “Tax Cut and Jobs Act,” which fully protected Section 104(a)(2) and Section 130. On March 29, in Washington, D.C., the leadership of the NSSTA met with Chairman Smith for an extended discussion focused on structured settlements.

New Members Serving on the House Ways and Means Committee
Of the 47 Members serving on the House Ways and Means Committee in the 118th Congress, 25 are Republicans, and 22 are Democrat.

Republican Committee Members:

--15 Members have served on the Committee for at least three years --10 Members are newly appointed to serve on the Committee

--11 Republican Members are knowledgeable supporters of structures Democrats on the Committee:

--22 Members have all served at least three years on the Committee

--15 Democrat Members are knowledgeable supporters of structures

Key Ways and Means Committee Members
NSSTA and NSSTA-PAC have worked effectively to build strong political and policy relationships with Members serving on the House Ways and Means Committee.

Subcommittee on Health
Chair Vern Buchanan, R-Florida will examine how we can expand access to more affordable healthcare options for Americans and protect and preserve the Medicare program for today’s seniors and tomorrow’s retirees.

Subcommittee on Tax
Chair Mike Kelly, R-Pennsylvania, will renew Congress’s focus on tax relief for families and small businesses and examine what new incentives and policies will help more Americans succeed.

Subcommittee on Trade
Chair Adrian Smith, R-Nebraska will put American farmers and manufacturers first by prioritizing opening up global markets to sell their products, and secure and re-shore strategic supply chains.

 Subcommittee on Work and Welfare
Chair Darin LaHood, R-Illinois will strengthen the American workforce and support families by making careers more valuable than government checks, stopping the theft of American tax dollars by international fraud rings, and examining how federal assistance programs can help get more able-bodied Americans back into the workforce.

Subcommittee on Oversight
Chair David Schweikert, R-Arizona will be at the forefront of an aggressive oversight effort focused on the utilization of and compliance with America’s tax code as well as protecting families and small businesses from the supercharged IRS’s army of 87,000 auditors, holding the IRS accountable.

Subcommittee on Social Security
Chair Drew Ferguson will continue to, first and foremost, protect and preserve that vital program for 
America’s seniors while finding new ways to help individuals and families to plan and save for their futures.

118th Congress—United States Senate
The 2022 Mid-term election resulted in the election of seven new Senatorsfive Republicans and two Democrats. The Democrats control the U.S. Senate by a margin of 51 seats to 49 seats.

Senate Finance Committee
Senator Ron Wyden, D-Oregon is the Chairman of the Senate Finance Committee for the 118th Congress. There are a total of 14 Democrats serving on the Finance Committee. In addition to Chairman Wyden, several Democrats on the Committee are considered very strong supporters of structured settlements, including Senator Casey from Pennsylvania, Senator Brown from Ohio, Senator Hassan from New Hampshire, Senator Warner from Virginia, Senator Whitehouse from Rhode Island and Senator Cortez-Masto from Nevada.

The Ranking Republican Member on the Senate Finance Committee is Senator Mike Crapo from Idaho, who is considered a very strong advocate in support of structured settlements. In addition to Mr. Crapo several Republicans on the Committee are considered strong supporters of structured settlements, including Senator Grassley from Iowa, Senator Thune from South Dakota, Senator John Cornyn from Texas, Senator Todd Young from Indiana, and Senator Tim Scott from South Carolina.