U.S. Representative Howard P. “Buck” McKeon released the following statement today after House Republicans unveiled “A Pledge to America,” a new governing agenda focused on addressing the American people’s top priorities.
The Pledge is the culmination of a months-long engagement with the American people in which House Republicans sought their ideas and priorities for Congress. The agenda offers concrete solutions that can be implemented immediately to tackle the issues that are most important to the nation, including job creation, spending restraint, national security, health care, and reform to Congress itself.
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“There has been an uprising among Americans over the past year and half, because they feel D.C. hasn’t been listening to or doesn’t care about what is happening in their states, communities, and daily lives. That’s why Republicans scoured the nation to engage the America people in a conversation through the America Speaking Out initiative, where we received input directly from workers, employers, educators, parents, and anyone who wanted to be heard. It is through those conversations, like the ones I had with constituents in the 25th Congressional District, that today Republicans are able to present bold solutions, renewing a commitment to our country’s founding principles and offering a new way of doing business in Washington.
“There has been far too much mouth-service about job creation, while Californians still suffer through a 12.4% unemployment rate, one of the highest in the country. Republicans are offering a jobs plan to end the economic uncertainty for American small businesses and make America more competitive. As massive debt threatens the prosperity of our children and grandchildren, we have a credible plan to rein in the budget deficit. To honor the will of the people and protect the American health care system, we have a plan to repeal the new health care law and replace it with solutions to bring down costs. And, as Americans increasingly view Congress as a broken institution, we offer a plan for reform to provide real accountability and transparency.
“The American people have spoken and it’s time for us to turn their voices into legislative action,” McKeon said. “From my seat as the lead Republican on the House Armed Services Committee, I have seen Congressional Democrats playing political games with the troop funding and defense policy bills that generally garner broad bipartisan support. The American people are tired of our troops being used to advance liberal social policy goals.
“The American people want this Congress to immediately provide our troops deployed in harm’s way with the resources, authorities and support they need to successfully complete their missions and return home to their loved ones. Our citizens also want this body to keep terrorists locked up at Guantanamo Bay instead of importing dangerous criminals into our communities. A House-passed amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act would do just that.
“They want their government to fully invest in, develop, and deploy a robust homeland missile defense system that will protect our citizens and allies from current and emerging threats. The American people want us to hold the Iranian mullahs accountable for the hate they spread around the world and the destabilizing force that the theocracy plays in the Middle East.
“Finally, the American people want a secure Southwest border with Mexico. Specifically, they are frustrated with the federal government's attempts to undermine state efforts to protect our citizens, and don't want the federal government to stand in the way of these state efforts to protect them.
The preamble to “A Pledge to America” reaffirms Republicans’ commitment to principles of smaller, more accountable government; economic freedom; lower taxes; fiscal responsibility; protecting life, American values, and the Constitution; and providing for a strong national defense.
- Creating Jobs. “A Pledge to America” reflects Americans’ demand for immediate action on policies that will end uncertainty for small businesses and help our economy get back to creating jobs. This new governing agenda contains a plan to create jobs, end economic uncertainty, and make America competitive – including stopping all tax hikes, reining in red tape, and repealing ObamaCare’s ‘1099 mandate.’
- Cutting Spending. “A Pledge to America” embodies Americans’ rejection of the now-thoroughly discredited notion that we can simply tax, spend, and borrow our way to prosperity. This new governing agenda contains a plan to cut spending and reduce the size of government – including cutting government spending to pre-‘stimulus’, pre-bailout levels, imposing a hard cap on future discretionary spending, and ending TARP once and for all.
- Reforming Congress. “A Pledge to America” acknowledges that we cannot get our arms around the issues of the day when we have a government that refuses to listen to the people and ignores their priorities. This new governing agenda contains a plan to reform Congress and restore trust – including implementing ‘read the bill’ reform, allowing for more open and fair debate, and requiring that every bill contain a citation of Constitutional authority.
- Repealing and Replacing The Job-Killing Health Care Law. “A Pledge to America” recognizes that the American people continue to squarely oppose the government takeover of health care, with its higher costs, higher taxes, job-killing mandates, and Medicare cuts to pay for a massive new entitlement. This new governing agenda contains a plan to repeal and replace the job-killing health care law with common-sense reforms focused on lowering costs and protecting American jobs.
- A Strong National Defense. “A Pledge to America” reinforces Congress’s responsibility to help provide for a strong national defense and determine a coherent strategy to confront and defeat the terrorist threat. This new governing agenda contains a plan to keep our nation secure at home and abroad – including passing clean troop funding bills, keeping terrorists off American soil, and fully funding missile defense.