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Mr. CALVERT. Mr. Chairman, I rise in strong support of Chairman Ryan's FY 2012 budget. For the first time in several years, this budget tackles our fiscal reality and stops burying our collective heads in the sand. Let's start where we all agree: We are in dire financial trouble. But if we make some adjustments now, we will set our country on a long-term path of fiscal solvency. That's exactly what the Republican budget does.
President Obama and my friends on the other side of the aisle lament the lack of tax increases in our budget. First, let's remember that we already have a deeply progressive tax structure. The top 5 percent of earners pay 60 percent of Federal income taxes collected. Yet our President and my friends on the left want to tax them even more.
There seems to be a trifecta of economic strangulation under President Obama: increased regulation without congressional consent, skyrocketing energy prices and the doubling of gas prices, and now an attempt to increase taxes. How can businesses survive in this environment? We're not just talking about a precipice of fiscal solvency in our country; we're talking about the death of the American entrepreneur as we know it if we go down the path outlined by the President.
Thankfully, there is a better way, the only way. The Republican budget recognizes that we must end the relentless drive to seize wealth and redistribute it. This is an alternative to the class warfare tactics of the left that pits one American against another. The Republican budget is a fair, pro-growth plan rather than a punitive tax plan. Make no mistake, the budget includes tax reforms to simplify our Tax Code, broaden the tax base, create a more fair and equitable system that will provide certainty.
The Ryan budget reflects the most basic American principles. It provides for the strong defense of our Nation, ensures the safety net for our most vulnerable citizens remains solvent, and it gets government out of the way of the American free enterprise system and makes sure that entrepreneurs can survive.
The budget demands that we as leaders step up and make a choice between what's popular and what's right. I choose right.
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