The House of Representatives approved Rep. Judy Chu (CA-27) to fill the seat on the House Ways and Means Committee left vacant by former Rep. Xavier Becerra on Feb. 7. The 40-member Ways and Means Committee, the oldest committee of the U.S. Congress, is the chief tax-writing committee in the House. Rep. Chu released the following statement: “I am honored to be approved by my colleagues to sit on this important committee where I am confident I can continue my work to ensure opportunity for all Americans – from entrepreneurs to single parents and middle-class families. Our work on this committee is particularly important this Congress as Republicans look to repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and privatize Medicare. I will use my position to fight for a healthcare system that ensures coverage for all and keeps costs down. “I believe my strong background in tax reform work on the state and local level will help me effectively contribute to this committee. In this new position, I will work to create a tax system that is fair to all Americans while fighting against loopholes and exemptions that protect the wealthiest few from paying their fair share. “As the first Chinese-American woman to serve on this committee, I expect to draw on my personal experiences as well. I’m particularly sensitive to the needs of vulnerable communities who struggle for opportunities. As a member of the House Small Business committee, I’ve seen this up close, which is why I have championed bills and programs that increase access to capital for all small business owners, and particularly minority-owned businesses. I look forward to continuing my work and collaborating with my colleagues to fight for these communities on this committee.” In addition to her position on the Ways and Means Committee, Rep. Chu will continue her service on the Committee on Small Business for the 115th Congress. Prior to Congress, Rep. Chu was elected to the California State Board of Equalization, which collected $53 billion annually in taxes. In this position, Rep. Chu implemented measures to close an $8.5 billion tax gap by improving the means by which taxes were collected. As a Member of the California State Assembly, where she also chaired the Appropriations Committee, Chu authored a successful tax amnesty bill, helping to collect $4.3 billion without raising taxes.