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Op-Ed - Online and Offline, House Republicans Leading the Way

Op-Ed

By:
Date:
Location: Washington, DC

Log on to AmericaSpeakingOut.com to share how you think the federal government needs to approach a specific problem we face. I look forward to hearing your ideas.

Everywhere we look, technology has changed our daily lives--from the way we pay our bills, to the way we buy plane tickets or keep in touch with friends and family. Yet perhaps the most glaring omission of using technology to meet customer demands is with the government. Uncle Sam has done little to take advantage of the opportunity to flatten our governing system and give Americans a direct voice in setting the priorities of our country. With each borrowed dollar and each passing day the need grows for the American people to take back their government and set the country on the right course. Harnessing new communications technology offers one promising way to make public participation easier and more effective.

As the national Co-Chairman of the America Speaking Out project, I have worked with House Republicans to create and launch the website AmericaSpeakingOut.com. This innovative new site lets people propose solutions to the many problems we face and then comment, critique and vote on them. It also integrates social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter, allowing people's ideas for the direction of our country to be spread far and wide to their network of friends and family. This grassroots approach to governing is facilitated by modern technology, but it is the way the Founders intended for things to work.

From property tax, transportation and education issues affecting Illinois' 6th District, to the skyrocketing national debt and a failed immigration policy that affect all Americans, there are plenty of problems worth discussing. More importantly, the best solutions often come from outside of Washington. One of the best ways to stop the failed policies coming out of Congress is to bring in the ideas and the involvement of the American people, which the America Speaking Out project is designed to do.

The offline effort of House Republicans is just as important as the online one. Last Saturday I hosted a townhall where a packed crowd came to share their policy proposals for reining in out-of control spending, fixing a broken immigration system and eliminating the government red tape that made deepwater drilling a necessity in the first place. For more than two-and-a-half hours, local parents, employees, teachers, doctors and business owners spoke up about how Congress needs to cut the partisan bickering and work for economic recovery and job creation. Afterwards, many sat down in front of a camera and spoke out about what they think of the country's direction, which I posted on my website. Letting your voice be heard is a first step towards changing business as usual in Washington.

Decisions are made by those who show up. If you are one of the millions of Americans who think this country is heading off the deep end, today is an opportunity to start working towards a better direction. Log on to AmericaSpeakingOut.com to share how you think the federal government needs to approach a specific problem we face. I look forward to hearing your ideas.


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