Pearce Hails Historic New Congress; Opportunities for Bipartisan Achievement

Date: Jan. 5, 2007
Location: Washington, DC

Pearce Hails Historic New Congress; Opportunities for Bipartisan Achievement

U.S. Rep. Steve Pearce today hailed the opening two days of the 110th Congress as historic and productive as he commented on the new ethics and budget rules the House passed last night and this afternoon (as contained in H.Res. 6). The 2nd District lawmaker voted in favor of tough new provisions that ban members and staff from accepting gifts and travel from registered lobbyists and those who employ them, while voting against a budget process that will require a matching tax hike for every spending increase.

"Yesterday, we witnessed the historic election of the first female and first Italian-American Speaker of the House," Rep. Pearce said. "While Speaker Pelosi and I differ on most issues, I look forward to her tenure as a unique opportunity for bipartisan accomplishments that can renew our nation's confidence in their government.

"As a member of the minority, I have a duty to apply thoughtful and diligent scrutiny to the majority's proposals. I will support Democratic legislation when it has the reasonable potential to move America forward, even when it's far from perfect. That's why I voted for the majority's ethics reform package despite my misgivings that it leaves a loophole open for lobbyists to funnel money to politicians through non-profit entities. These new provisions, which incorporate legislation the Republican majority passed last year, constitute a solid first step. We have a duty to move forward while working to fix the new rules' shortcomings.

"I will also ask tough questions, propose alternatives, and vote against bills that don't serve the national interest. That's why I opposed today's budget provisions, which could subject Americans to a tax increase every time we need to temporarily increase spending as in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. Time and time again during the last 43 years, tax cuts have dramatically increased federal revenues. Because of the 2001 and 2003 tax relief bills, our economy has boomed; producing record federal revenues; more than 7.2 million new jobs; rising wages; and a stock market that has soared to record highs. Our gravest mistake would be a return to the "green eyeshade economics" of the past, where we raise taxes on working Americans, contract our economy, destroy jobs, and increase our federal budget deficit.

"Nevertheless, I am optimistic regarding the potential for real progress during the next two years, both for New Mexico and for America. Through their ballots last November, Americans ordered Republicans and Democrats to work together for the good of our nation. I will do my part in an effort to exceed their expectations."