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Week In Review: 4/12 To 4/16

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FairTax Update:

On Thursday, April 15, otherwise known as Tax Day, I attended a rally in Washington, D.C. with thousands of individuals in support of fundamental tax reform. Together, we gathered on Freedom Plaza to demonstrate to President Obama and the Democrat controlled Congress that we will not stop fighting for real tax reform until we have successfully eliminated the current oppressive income tax code.

On Friday, April 16, I spoke with Representative Steve King (R-IA) at a FairTax conference held in Crystal City, Virginia. At this conference, FairTax supporters from across the nation gathered to demonstrate their continued support for H.R. 25.

I believe that these two events, in which thousands of individuals from across the country came together, illustrate just how determined the American people are to force Congress to listen to their demands for change. I was proud to be a part of both the Tax Day rally and the FairTax conference, and I am more convinced than ever that we will be successful in our fight for fundamental tax reform.

Agriculture:

This week, I co-sponsored H.Res. 1196, a bill that supports increased market access for exports of United States beef and beef products to Japan. The legislation aims to revitalize the U.S. beef industry by urging the Japanese government to fully open their borders to U.S. beef imports.

Japan ceased importing U.S. beef in 2003 after the discovery of a Canadian-born cow infected with Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy (BSE) in Washington State. Since then, the U.S. government has taken additional precautions to ensure the quality and safety of beef; however, the Japanese are continuing to restrict U.S. beef imports despite the fact that the World Organization for Animal Health classified the United States as a "controlled risk" country for BSE.

I am confident that our country has the safest agricultural products and some of the highest-quality livestock in the world. It is time for Japan to reopen their borders to U.S. beef and to stop punishing the hard-working cattlemen and farmers in America. To view the text of this legislation, please click here.

Space and Technology:

The Obama Administration has made it clear that they have no intention of preserving the U.S. space exploration programs that have been developed throughout the past century. Our space exploration initiatives have not only improved navigation systems by making programs such as Google Earth available and GPS technology possible, but space missions have helped ensure our nation's security through satellite tracking technology and missile defense systems.

The budget cuts to space exploration initiatives that the Obama Administration have proposed would indefinitely halt U.S.-led space exploration, and we would cede our leadership in space to Russia. Though the Obama Administration has expressed desire to cut space exploration funding, it is Congress that has the ultimate authority to fund additional space programs.

I have long been a staunch supporter of our nation's space exploration program. Space is our last frontier and we should be there. That is why I co-sponsored H.R. 1962, the "American Space Access Act." It is my hope that this legislation will be enacted in order to help secure our leadership in space research and technology for future generations. To view the text of this legislation, please click here.

Foreign Affairs:

Israel
As many of you know, I have long been a strong supporter of Israel. As the Obama Administration moves forward in its diplomatic relationship with Israel, I have joined with a bipartisan group of House members in urging Secretary of State Clinton to lend our nation's unequivocal support to Israel. In addition to providing Israel with our full support for strengthening their democracy, peace, and prosperity, we also call on Secretary Clinton to ensure that our two countries recommit themselves to the highest level of diplomatic engagement and work on resolving any differences we might have.

To view a copy of this bipartisan letter, please click here.

Iran
America's relationship with Iran has grown tenser in recent months as it becomes clearer that the Iranian government is bent on developing nuclear weapons. Though the Obama Administration has decided to address this problem in a slightly different manner than the George W. Bush Administration did, it is nonetheless apparent that America needs to work with our allies around the world to come up with a better solution to the Iranian problem than what we are currently pursuing. One of those solutions should be tough economic sanctions on the Iranian regime.
If you would like to read a copy of this bipartisan letter, please click here.

Water Update:

As you know Earth Day is upon us, and anyone who is keen on an environmental issue has taken full advantage of the spotlight this day provides. Well I am no different. I will use the day to talk about my 21st Century Water Bill and put the focus on the desperate need for improved water storage. It is truly a matter of life and death for the future of our country.

I also forwarded a "Dear Colleague" to all House Members in an effort to garner their support for securing fresh water for future generations. I encourage you to read the letter when you have a moment by clicking here.

Recognitions:

This year, the University of Connecticut women's basketball team won the NCAA Championship, and while I was still rooting for Georgia teams, I was glad to see that one of the star players on the UCONN basketball team, Maya Moore, grew up in the Seventh District of Georgia. Ms. Moore helped make it possible for her and her teammates to achieve their victory, and I want to extend warm congratulations to her for all her hard work and great accomplishments.

Blog of the Week:

We enter this year's Tax Day with our work cut out for us. As a nation still at 10% unemployment, with an historic deficit hanging over our heads, $670 billion in tax increases since January 2009 and the Democrats in the midst of scraping together the votes for yet another financial "reform" bill--we need to stop these runaway train tax-and-spend policies and focus on reforming the tax code to encourage more economic growth and break the oppressive yoke that is holding the U.S. economy in its clutches. We need simple, fair tax reform and I believe the FairTax is the solution.

This week, as I participated in a number of FairTax and Tax Day reform events, I was heartened and humbled by all the outpour of support of my efforts to make the FairTax a reality for all Americans. This is truly a grassroots movement and the American people are its lifeblood. I am confident that although my tenure as a U.S. Congressman will end in a few short months, the FairTax movement and our pursuit of sound fiscal reform of our nation's complex and burdensome tax code will continue to grow until one day in the future it is the law of the land.

Click here to join my FairTax Team and the nearly 300,000 participants in the Americans for Fair Taxation Tax Revolt.


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