Tech firms cheer McCarthy’s rise

Rep. Kevin McCarthy’s (R-Calif.) ascension to House majority leader is good news for the tech sector, according to some of the sector's biggest names.

“Few members of Congress have as deep an understanding and appreciation for the economic impact and social change created by technology as Leader McCarthy,” said Linda Moore, chief executive at the industry group TechNet, in a statement shortly after McCarthy was elected to the No. 2 post among House Republicans.

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“With his California roots and longstanding relationships inside the technology community, he knows what public policies make the innovation economy thrive,” Moore added. “TechNet and our member companies congratulate Leader McCarthy on his election and look forward to working together on issues important to our country.” 

TechNet’s member companies include industry giants Apple, Google, Facebook and Microsoft. 

McCarthy, formerly the House Republican whip, has been a frequent guest at major Silicon Valley headquarters and has stood with major technology companies on multiple issues over the past few years, industry advocates have said.  

In his previous post, McCarthy was instrumental in culling together votes on a number of industry priorities amid intense partisanship in the House and a fractured GOP.

That includes patent reform, which sailed through the chamber in December, as well as tax incentives for research and development. More recently, the chamber also passed new restrictions on the National Security Agency's surveillance programs. Tech companies have pushed for the reforms in the wake of revelations from Edward Snowden that showed the companies cooperated with the NSA's spying programs.

Since passing the House, many of those issues have languished in the Senate.

McCarthy also represents a heavily Hispanic district, and some advocates have hoped that he could be willing to usher through an immigration reform bill, one of the industry’s remaining priorities for the year. 

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