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12 January, 2021

Statement by Former Speaker Boehner on the Passing of Sheldon Adelson

January 12, 2021

WASHINGTON, DC – Former US House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) today issued the following statement regarding the passing of Sheldon G. Adelson:

 “Sheldon Adelson, born into a family of limited means in Boston during the Great Depression, started his first business at the age of 12 and never stopped working, building, and creating. He was an entrepreneur who believed deeply in the American Dream and free enterprise, and felt a responsibility to use the fruits of his work to do what he believed was necessary to help keep those things alive for others. We didn’t agree on everything, but there was never any doubt about the strength of his commitment to opportunity, or the generosity of his spirit, and he always had my respect. I offer my sincere condolences to Miriam, his family, and his organization on his passing.”

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11 April, 2018

Statement by Former Speaker Boehner on Announcement by House Speaker Paul Ryan

April 11, 2018

WASHINGTON, DC – Former US House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) released the following statement today regarding the announcement by House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) that he will not seek re-election to the House:

“Paul Ryan has done an extraordinary job leading the House through turbulent waters at a time when the political discourse in America is changing. His budgets during my own speakership showed the American people our conservative vision for addressing the drivers of our debt and restoring a path to prosperity for our children. And under his own speakership, his deep-seated belief in pro-growth tax reform has become a reality that is bringing jobs home to America. I admire Paul for his service, appreciate his friendship, and look forward to spending some time with him as a private citizen in the not-too-distant future.”

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16 November, 2017

Boehner on Tax Reform: “I Think They Can Do This…And It Will Be Good for the Economy”

WASHINGTON, DC – Former US House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) today issued the following statement following House passage of the Tax Cuts & Jobs Act (H.R. 1):

 “The US House of Representatives today passed an overhaul of the tax code for the first time in 31 years.  That is an enormous achievement, and one for which Speaker Paul Ryan, Chairman Kevin Brady, the House leadership team and all of their colleagues and staff deserve great credit.  I congratulate them for a job very well done.

 “I haven’t seen congressional Republicans this determined to get something done in years.  There is still a lot of work ahead.  But I think they can do this.  And if they do it, it will be good for the economy. 

 “President Trump has been doing all the right things for the US economy when it comes to government regulations.  If he delivers a tax overhaul on top of those regulatory reforms, it will provide another boost for economic growth and American jobs.  And if that happens, suddenly you’ve got a pretty powerful case to make to the American people that you’re delivering results for them, heading into 2018.  Nobody will be asking ‘Mr. President, where are the jobs?’ the way I did back in 2010, when we took the House.

 “If Republicans can stick together and pull this off, it will make a real impact for jobs and the economy, and it changes the narrative big time.  I’m pulling for them, and I hope it happens.”

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14 November, 2017

Speaker Boehner Delivers Keynote Address at Transatlantic Business Conference, Frankfurt, Germany

October 26, 2017

WASHINGTON, DC – Former US House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH), senior strategic advisor for Squire Patton Boggs LLP, delivered the following remarks (as prepared) at the Transatlantic Business Conference in Frankfurt, Germany on October 26, 2017:

I’m delighted to be here with you in Germany. . .a country where everybody knows my name is not pronounced “John Boner.”

More seriously, this is the land of my ancestors. . .the original home of the Boehner family, before my family crossed the Atlantic in search of the American Dream.

I’m one of millions of Americans who share a special bond with the people of this nation by virtue of our common forefathers. . .and our common foremothers.

This is something I noted in a letter I sent as Speaker to Chancellor Merkel in 2014 to mark the 25th Anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall. I’ll get into that a little later.

A LITTLE BIT ABOUT ME

My grandmother was born in Bavaria. My grandfather was born in the US, but his parents – my great-grandparents – were from Bavaria.

I grew up in a German Catholic family in Cincinnati with 11 brothers and sisters. My dad ran a bar – a tavern my grandfather established.

I worked in that bar growing up. Went on to run a small business in the packaging and plastics industry.

Politics is the last thing I thought I’d do. But I got involved in my neighborhood homeowners association. . .and I ended up as Speaker of the United States House of Representatives.

This too could happen to you.  

For the past year I’ve been traveling the world in my role as Senior Strategic Advisor for Squire Patton Boggs, giving advice to our clients around the world.

That’s what brings me here today.

 THE TRUMP PRESIDENCY NEAR THE ONE-YEAR MARK

Everywhere I go, I get the same question: what in the hell is going on in America?

Without question, the past two years have been the craziest time I’ve ever witnessed in American government.

We’re 10 months into Donald Trump’s presidency, but it’s still too early to render a verdict on it.

He’s had some stumbles – health care.

He’s had some wins – US Supreme Court, and the economy.

There’s been no government shutdown – yet. There’s been no default on America’s debt. Having spent five years in the Speaker’s Office – seemingly lurching from crisis to crisis – I can tell you, these are not small things.

But the defining chapters of this book have yet to be written.

We won’t really know what to say about Year 1 of Donald Trump’s presidency until we are well into Year 2.

The effort to overhaul the US tax code is the centerpiece of Trump’s domestic agenda. It’s going to be tough, but they’re doing well so far.

I was pretty skeptical about tax reform after the health care effort failed.

But lately I’ve been pretty impressed. I haven’t seen the GOP this determined to get something done in years.

The failure of the health care effort actually seems to have had the effect of making tax reform more likely.

A tax reform bill may actually happen. . .but we may not know until early 2018.

We also may not know until 2018 where all of the Administration’s saber-rattling on trade is taking us.

Will we end up with a stronger, more modern NAFTA – or the end of NAFTA?

Will we end up with a stronger Korea-US trade agreement – or will the president pull the US out of KORUS?

Will we see the US and China forge a stronger relationship that increases pressure on North Korea – or will US-China relations get worse, escalating tensions in the region?

Will the president impose tariffs on imported steel, aluminum, washing machines, and solar panels, risking a trade war – or take a more measured approach?

Will the president take steps against our allies doing any type of business deal with Iran – or take a more measured approach?

I don’t know the answers to these questions. . .and candidly, I don’t think the people around the president know the answers yet either.

America has never had a president like Donald Trump. . .and I don’t just mean in the obvious ways.

Donald Trump is the least ideological person ever to sit in the Oval Office.

As Charlie Cook said in a forum at our firm a few days after the election: Trump is blissfully unencumbered by ideology.

He runs the White House the way he ran a business: letting his advisors duke it out, on the theory that the best answers will rise to the top. It’s survival of the fittest. It’s policy Darwinism.

INSIDE THE TRUMP WHITE HOUSE

Consequently, inside the Trump White House, two factions are constantly competing for influence. . .it’s “America First,” versus America as leader of the free world.

The best way I can say it is that Donald Trump sees merit in the arguments both sides make. So he plays them off against each other.

We see this playing out on issue after issue – on trade, on national security, on immigration.

 My friend Senator Corker said recently that people like John Kelly, Mattis and Rex Tillerson are “standing between the American people and chaos.” And frankly there is something to this.

Even if you’re uncomfortable with President Trump’s style and rhetoric, I think you have to give him credit for having put people like Kelly and Mattis in such positions of influence in his administration.

The competing factions within the Trump White House are a microcosm of the clash going on inside the Republican Party and America itself.

WHY DONALD J. TRUMP IS PRESIDENT

 The 24-hour news cycle and the advent of social media have put government under a microscope like never before. People are bombarded by information.

The Internet has accelerated globalization. But in America, globalization hasn’t automatically translated into higher wages or prosperity.

The combination of these trends has resulted in an American electorate that is deeply skeptical of globalization and our governing institutions themselves.

It came to a head in 2016 with the election of Donald Trump.

It wasn’t just an American phenomenon; we also saw it in the UK with Brexit; in Colombia, with the failure of the peace initiative there.

We haven’t really seen the wave continue in 2017, and it could be because what happened in 2016 took some pressure off, and made people think twice.

So that’s how I think we got here. And now that we’re here, you’re probably thinking, how do we deal with it?

ENGAGEMENT WITH THE TRUMP ADMINISTRATION IS VITAL – AND OFTEN EFFECTIVE

What we’ve seen over and over again with this Administration is that engagement works.

If you are a country that is a major traditional ally of the US – or a corporation with major business stake in the US – the worst thing you can do right now is look at President Trump and his administration and decide to check out, ignore Washington, or dis-engage.

Disengaging gives ammunition to those who are arguing in favor of American isolationism in the fight for the president’s ear.

Consider the example of Japan and the experience of Prime Minister Abe. The Japanese were terrified at first, but reached out immediately – even before Trump took office – and these days t