Congressman Dave Reichert, who represents the Eighth District, was honored on Monday by the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) with the Manufacturing Legislative Excellence Award.
The award, which was presented to Reichert at Terex Corporation/Genie Industries, in Redmond, recognizes members of Congress whose voting records are 70 percent or more on key legislation that will help manufacturers create jobs and compete in the ever-growing global economy.
“I really appreciate the recognition,” Reichert said. “You don’t go into (politics)…because (you) want to get an award.”
Reichert, whose voting record on key legislation for the 111th Congress (2009-10) was 78 percent, said being recognized at a local manufacturer makes the award more significant because he also gets the opportunity to learn what he can do to help them build their business.
He said congress want to put people to work and want their businesses to succeed. Reichert’s goal is to make it easier for this to happen. To make that possible, he said everyone needs to work together, adding that this could be difficult because federal and state regulations and taxes can discourage people from starting businesses more than they can encourage.
“(Lawmakers) get in the way more than we help,” he said.
Tim Ford, president of Terex Aerial Work Platforms, presented Reichert with the award. Ford said the award is simply a way for Genie, which specializes in material lifts, and other manufacturing businesses to express their gratitude for Reichert’s support.
“Manufacturers in America are critical to the strength of the economy,” Ford said.
Reichert agrees, saying everyone is tied in with the rest of the world and even the smallest businesses can have an impact on the global marketplace. He said to remain competitive with other countries, the United States should take this opportunity to begin an education process on the global economy, especially since everyone is just going to become more interconnected.
“We’re only going to get closer,” Reichert said. “(Americans) need to stay on top of that.”
One way to stay on top is to create legislation supporting manufacturing. During the 111th Congress, key manufacturing votes included energy policy, taxes, regulations and labor law reform. Along with Reichert, two other representatives from Washington were recognized: Doc Hastings of the Fourth District and Cathy McMorris Rogers, who represents the Fifth District.