Column: Our leaders should heed call of the peopleOne year ago, I joined my fellow Americans to celebrate a historic day of hope and pride as Barack Obama was sworn into office as the 44th president of our great nation.
By: John Kline, Lakeville, Minn., The Republican Eagle
One year ago, I joined my fellow Americans to celebrate a historic day of hope and pride as Barack Obama was sworn into office as the 44th president of our great nation.
I shared the president’s desire for Washington to put principles above partisanship and work on behalf of all Americans - regardless of ideology or party affiliation.
Unfortunately, over the past 12 months, we have seen the president and majority leadership in Congress continually embrace the age-old Washington culture of taxing, borrowing, and spending that has only exacerbated this recession.
Minnesotans know that we can’t borrow and spend our way back to a growing economy. Yet in Washington, majority leadership continues to work in concert with the president to shut Republicans out of the debate, wheel and deal behind closed doors, and ram reckless bill after reckless bill through Congress.
We have seen a trillion-dollar so-called stimulus fail to create jobs as promised. We have seen a job-killing 2,700-page cap-and-trade bill that taxes anyone who dares turn on a light.
And the Senate continues to reach for a government takeover of health care that includes economy-slowing tax increases, federal funds for abortions, and massive cuts to Medicare.
Throughout the administration’s first year, Americans repeatedly have raised red flags, voiced their concerns, and made their feelings known.
At a town hall meeting hosted last fall in my district, an overwhelming majority of the 900 Minnesotans in attendance voiced concerns that enough was enough.
During a telephone town hall meeting earlier this month, a majority of the questions and comments expressed concerns about an overreaching government extending its hands into all areas of their lives, burdening our children and grandchildren with a mountain of debt we can’t even comprehend.
Senseless energy tax
Minnesotans have reasons to be concerned.
They are troubled by skyrocketing debt and runaway spending.
They are disturbed by a senseless national energy tax at a time when Americans can least afford it.
They continue to oppose a nationalized health care plan that puts government bureaucrats between them and their doctors.
Throughout the past year, I have joined House Republicans in offering common-sense solutions that would have reduced unemployment and put Americans back to work, increased our energy independence, and given Minnesotans the peace of mind that comes with knowing they have the health care their families need, when they need it.
• When Congressional majority leadership rolled out its stimulus package last February with promises that it would curb unemployment and spur job growth we offered a better solution. Our approach was free of pork-barrel spending and full of concrete steps to provide jobs. It was a plan built on fast-acting tax relief for working families and small businesses.
• Instead of a job-killing “cap and tax” system, my Republican colleagues and I offered the “American Energy Act,” an all-of-the-above solution that offers energy independence, good jobs, and a cleaner environment in ways that promote new, clean, and reliable sources of energy.
• Rather than the Democrats’ proposed government takeover of health care, we promote reform that makes health care more affordable, reduces the number of uninsured Americans, increases quality at a price our country can afford, and ensures Americans who like their health care coverage can keep it.
Like most Americans, Minnesotans want less government and more freedom - it’s that simple. And it is time for the president to listen.
As we look ahead, I encourage the president and majority leadership in Congress to join me in heeding the calls of the American people and work together toward common-sense solutions that will grow the economy and put Americans back to work.
Republican John Kline can be reached at (952) 808-1213 or http://kline.house.gov