This Week in Washington


Date: Jan. 28, 2011

As we work to tackle the important economic issues our country faces, one thing is clear--we must rein in the out-of-control spending in Washington. I've often said that there is no reason for our government to not be held to the very same common sense guidelines American families are: you simply cannot spend what you don't have and if you do there are consequences. I've called on my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to join me in taking an honest and serious approach to ending the wasteful ways of Washington, and returning their focus to doing what is right by the American people, fighting to get our economy back on track and bringing good jobs back to the hardworking Americans who deserve them.

This week, I joined the new Republican majority in supporting a resolution that I believe is an important first step to return fiscal responsibility and common sense to our government. I was proud to support H. Res. 38, a measure to reduce non-security spending back to fiscal year 2008 levels or less. As a nation, we must work to live within our means, just as our American families do. We can maintain our focus on fixing our economy while taking an honest and realistic approach to cutting government waste and excess. We owe it to the American people to do just that.

While this legislation will help set guidelines to roll much of our federal spending back to more responsible levels, it maintains all necessary approved funding levels for the brave men and women who serve in our Armed Services, as well as our nation's Veterans who have kept us safe and preserved our freedom in years past. We simply cannot jeopardize our national security as we fight to protect our way of life from serious and real threats across the globe. Our troops must remain equipped and protected, and I will continue to work to see that they have all the tools they need to accomplish their mission and return safely to their families, where they belong.

As we work to trim the fat out of our budget, we must also make sure that we maintain our commitment to the very people who made our nation what it is today: our seniors. I will continue to fight to preserve Social Security and Medicare and ensure that our seniors are taken care of. I believe that a promise made should be a promise kept, and my commitment to that very trust is firm.

Now more than ever, our government must come together to invest our capital wisely, in real infrastructure projects that will not only rebuild our nation but also take steps to rebuild our economy. We can set an environment that allows for the creation of the real and long-term jobs that we so desperately need. Our government must set only the guidelines that allow our small businesses to do the one thing they know how to do best--create jobs and prosper--and then it must get out of the way. I will continue to work to make sure that every opportunity exists for the small businesses of our nation to grow and be successful.

This week also brought both houses of Congress together for the President's yearly address to the American people, his State of the Union speech. As we all saw, this year's message was welcomed by many on both sides of the aisle, as the President discussed our ongoing approach to cutting spending and creating jobs. Our nation must come together to help secure that dream for future generations, and the first step to doing that begins right here at home in the storefronts and factories in every city and town in America.

The goods and industries of the future can be created and centered here in America. We must revitalize our manufacturing sector, and renew and restore our faith in the very best brand name across the world: Made in America. As we invest more in domestic manufacturing, we can begin exporting more of our American products and fewer of our American jobs. The trade deficit our nation faces with China and other countries throughout the world must be addressed. A strong Made in America agenda is the very best way of getting our economy back on its feet, and I will continue to fight to do just that.

We must also make sure that our workers and small businesses have an honest and fair shot at competing in growing global markets, and that we do not fall victim to the very same bad trade deals we've been subjected to in the past. Americans can manufacture goods of the highest quality and provide unparalleled services, better than anyone in the world. I will continue to look out for and fight for the American worker as we look to the future. You can count on me to keep this issue front and center.

We've taken some substantial steps this week towards getting our fiscal house in order and our economy back on track, but our work is certainly not over.