Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, a senior member of the Florida Congressional Delegation, issued the following statement regarding the jobless rate in Florida hitting 11.5%.
Statement by Ros-Lehtinen:
"The economic mess we are in continues unabated according to the many constituents with whom I speak every week. My constituents tell me how they personally feel the constant drumbeat of rising unemployment; the ballooning cost of college tuitions; the reality of postponing retirement and the unending credit implosion that has hurt so many homeowners and small businesses.
Without a doubt, our nation continues to struggle economically and people need our help. The Congressional Majority just doesn't get it: they have spent the last year on an agenda that grows big government, escalates the deficit and borrows hundreds of billions from dangerous foreign regimes.
Floridians expect their elected representatives to act in a responsible manner and to put into place policies that create jobs, spur economic growth and lower taxes. Republicans have put forth many good ideas that accomplish this yet the Majority has ignored us at every turn.
We should block any federal tax increases until unemployment drops to at least 5%; we should freeze domestic discretionary spending at last year's level without raising taxes; we must approve three promising free trade agreements with Colombia, South Korea and Panama; and we must enact a jobs creating program that encourages small businesses to hire and purchase new machinery.
As long as the unemployment rate in Florida continues to rise, we have our work cut out for us. We cannot say that the economy is improving while millions continue to look for work without any hope. Without a low unemployment rate, our so called "recovery' will be fleeting at best."