Jobs and Economic Growth


From day one in Congress, David’s energy and focus have centered on ensuring more Rhode Islanders have access to good-paying jobs. As a member of House Democratic leadership, Cicilline helped design and deliver on an agenda to strengthen the middle class, and he is working hard every day to create, expand, and sustain economic opportunities for all Rhode Islanders.

David knows there is so much more Congress can do to grow and support job creation here at home, and raise family incomes. David continues to be a tireless champion of American manufacturing, fighting to ensure the local companies, men, and women in this vital industry have the tools they need to succeed, and are on an even playing field with foreign competitors.

  • David authored legislation, signed into law in 2018, to provide Rhode Island manufacturers with the ability to compete for new federal funding to grow jobs and strengthen our economy.
  • David wrote legislation, signed into law, that provides greater transparency to government defense procurement – making it easier for American manufacturers to compete for overseas contracts. 
  • As an active member of the House Manufacturing Caucus, David is reaching across the aisle, championing bipartisan efforts to boost American manufacturing. He’s drafted legislation, signed into law in 2018, that permanently authorizes the Defense Manufacturing Communities Program – a proposal that would help states like Rhode Island be better positioned to leverage federal funding to support the advanced manufacturing sector, helping create good-paying jobs right here at home.
  • In 2020, the House passed David’s legislation creating a Southern New England Regional Commission, which would help bring federal funding to Rhode Island to promote economic growth, job training, and infrastructure development in collaboration with our neighboring states of Massachusetts and Connecticut.
  • David’s 21st Century Buy American Act would close loopholes that allow federal agencies to sidestep their obligation to prioritize American companies when purchasing goods or services and enhances resources for American companies to manufacture products that are in short supply domestically. 
  • David also introduced a bill to end taxpayer subsidies that incentivize companies to send jobs overseas and would put policies in place to encourage firms to bring jobs back home to America. 

In Rhode Island, small businesses employ more than half the state’s private workforce. David introduced bipartisan legislation, which was approved by the House of Representatives, that would expand access to capital for small business owners, helping to create and sustain good-paying jobs. David also knows that Rhode Island businesses, large and small, need reliable infrastructure – roads, bridges, ports, and telecommunication systems that allow goods, services, and ideas to move through our economy. Critically important investments in our infrastructure not only help strengthen the broader economy, they also create and support good-paying jobs for Rhode Island workers. That’s why, as a member of House Democratic leadership, David helped pave the way for the Moving Forward Act, an initiative to invest $1.5 trillion to improve our nation’s infrastructure, creating millions of good-paying jobs and improving our quality of life.

Underlying all these efforts to create and sustain good-paying jobs is David’s work to grow the middle class and expand economic opportunity for all Rhode Island families.  He is a strong supporter of legislation to increase the federal minimum and has fought to make certain our tax policies do not disadvantage middle class workers and their families.  

But, with tens of millions of Americans out of work, the COVID-19 pandemic has painfully demonstrated how the American middle class has been hollowed out in the past few decades. David has helped lead COVID-19 response and recovery efforts in the House, pushing for the dramatic expansion of unemployment compensation, billions of dollars in federal funding to help small businesses, and fighting for additional relief measures in the face of inaction by President Trump and Senate Republicans. However, once our nation finally puts this pandemic behind us, David is leading the charge for the creation of a National Commission to Restore the American Dream – an independent, bipartisan body empowered to study the root cause of the deep economic disparities in our country and propose a bold strategy for moving more Americans out of poverty and into the middle class.


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