House Chair Profile: Richard Neal, Presumptive Chair of Ways and Means Committee, a Strong ACA Defender

December 07, 2018

Rep. Richard Neal (D-MA), the top Democrat on the House Ways and Means Committee, is poised to become Chairman of the tax-writing panel in January.

Neal will be a solid defender of the Affordable Care Act.  "I think that preexisting condition[s], capping out-of-pocket expenses and keeping 26-year-olds on their parents' health insurance still makes a good deal of sense," Neal said.  "We intend to enshrine the principle of preexisting condition as a guarantee of our national network through the Affordable Care Act."

He has proposed legislation to effectively require employers to offer defined contribution retirement plans while simplifying some rules applying to those plans.  His bill would impose excise taxes on those businesses who do not offer such plans.

Dealmaker: Congressman Neal represents the western and more rural part of the state.  No one would confuse the 1st district for a conservative bastion, but it has approved of Neal’s deal-making reputation over the years.  In a press conference in November, Neal was hopeful for bipartisan cooperation on transportation and infrastructure improvements, which he’s already discussed with Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin.  He has called for a cease-fire in the trade friction with China and has said his committee will review the new trade agreement with Mexico and Canada.