Capitol Connection Newsletter
Senate Health Care Bill Will Increase Taxes and Hamper Consumer Choice:
According to the Congressional Budget Office (CBO), the Senate Finance Committee's health care mark, like the House health care bill, would mandate health insurance. Specifically, beginning in July 2013, the proposal would establish a requirement for individuals to obtain insurance and would in many cases impose a financial penalty on people who did not do so. Moreover, the Senate mark would allow the government to decide what health care insurance policies are acceptable, thereby limiting consumer choices and increasing government intrusion in personal decisions. Although CBO estimates the modified Senate Finance Committee healthcare overhaul bill would cost $829 billion over 10 years and will decrease the deficit by $81 billion, this is accomplished by raising taxes by $500 billion on employers and those who already have insurance, as well as by cutting Medicare and Medicaid benefits by over $400 billion. Furthermore, according to CBO and the Joint Committee on Taxation, at least 71 percent of the individual mandate tax penalties in the Senate Finance bill would be levied on Americans earning less than $250,000. Congressman Miller is deeply concerned about Congressional health care proposals that increase taxes and slash benefits for our nation's seniors and will continue to fight for effective health care solutions.
As Administration Claims "Stimulus" is Working, Unemployment Soars to 26-Year High:
Although Vice President Biden recently stated that the so-called economic stimulus package is working better than in his "wildest dreams", last week the Department of Labor reported the highest unemployment rate in 26 years. For the month of September, the unemployment rate soared to 9.8 percent, with 263,000 jobs eliminated, nearly two million people laid off, and a total of 15.1 million people unemployed and looking for work, which is the highest number ever. Furthermore, the rate of underemployment is estimated to be a staggering 17 percent, accounting for the unemployed and those who are unable to find adequate work. On average, it takes job seekers who are unemployed after losing their job over 26 weeks to find a new job, which is the highest number since the statistic was first recorded in 1948. All in all, since the enactment of the Democrat Stimulus Package, nearly three million jobs have been lost. Congressman Miller is deeply concerned about these alarming statistics and will continue to oppose any legislation that hampers job creation by creating more government programs and intrusion.
House Clears DOD Authorization with Constitutionally Questionable Bill Attached:
On Thursday, the House passed the conference report on the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2010. The report authorizes $680 billion in funding for the Department of Defense and other important national defense activities, sets forth a comprehensive annual defense policy, and authorizes budget authority for the Pentagon for the coming year. Although these provisions are important to the security of our nation, during the House and Senate conference on the bill a constitutionally questionable and unrelated bill was attached. Specifically, this bill, if enacted, would create two new categories of federal crime. While certain groups are designated for special protection under the bill, similar protections would not be extended to senior citizens, expectant mothers, and a long list of others. Although Congressman Miller supports our troops and is committed to ensuring the safety of the American people, he had to oppose the conference report because he believes firmly that all crimes of violence should be severely punished and all citizens deserve equal protection under the law.
Conference Report on FY 2010 Agriculture Appropriations Passes House:
The House on Wednesday passed the conference report on the Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies Appropriations bill for Fiscal Year 2010. The conference report appropriates $23.3 billion in discretionary spending, which is a 14 percent increase over last year's levels, and a total of $121.1 billion in discretionary and mandatory programs, to a wide variety of programs. Although the report contains funding for several important and necessary government programs, such as safety-net food and nutrition programs, it overcompensates with unsustainable, double-digit funding increases throughout the bill. During these times of economic struggle, Congressman Miller believes firmly that Congress must rein in wasteful Washington spending and get our nation's fiscal house in order.
Congressman Miller to Host Service Academy Night:
Interested in attending one of our nation's military colleges? Join Congressman Miller for a Service Academy Night on Thursday, November 12 at 6:30 P.M. in the in the East Room of the Nixon Library. This event will give students and parents an opportunity to learn about the five Military Colleges and also the application process. Representatives from each Academy will be present to speak to students and answer questions about the application and admissions process. For those interested in applying to a Service Academy for the class of 2014, congressional nomination application must be submitted to Congressman Miller by November 2, 2009. Those interested in attending the Service Academy Night should RSVP as soon as possible by calling Congressman Miller's Brea office at (714) 257-1142. Also, for students and candidates interested in attending an Academy, the U.S. Naval Academy will be hosting a tour of the USS Lake Champlain on October 21, 2009 at 3:30 P.M. Those interested in the tour should contact their Blue and Gold Officer or contact Congressman Miller's Brea office.