As the district work period continues on and I talk with people about their concerns, I have been telling them I have a plan to get America back to work, shore up our economy, and keep us secure. I know I sound like a broken record, but it is simple--we have to make things here at home in America.
One thing we can do immediately is kill the three pending trade deals that are coming down the bureaucratic pipeline as we speak. The last thing our economy needs is another series of unfair trade agreements with Korea, Panama and Colombia--putting our workers at a disadvantage and stifling growth of our small businesses. Our region has seen and heard it all before. The fact remains that well intentioned trade deals like CAFTA and NAFTA brought nothing more to our district than pink slips and shuttered mills. I believe we can trace our current economic ills in our district back to the passage of NAFTA. I'll do every single thing I can to block these pending new trade deals and keep opportunity alive for our businesses.
If we want to create jobs here in America, we need to give our companies a fair shot in the global markets. If trade deals like the flawed Korea agreement go through, we'll only help usher in boatloads of Chinese goods to our shores and stores--suffocating our domestic manufacturers. I'm sick and tired of seeing "Made in China" printed on items I remember once buying that were made locally by proud, hard-working Americans. I bet you share this sentiment, too.
We need to make it here, and make it now. We need a domestic manufacturing strategy that works for our nation, not the economies of the rest of the world. I'm fighting to extend Buy American provisions to cover more of our Department of Homeland Security, knowing that if we truly want to secure our country, we must also secure our economy along the way. Just as the Berry Amendment originally intended, the Department of Defense should be purchasing domestic items made right here by our fellow countrymen. We must outfit and equip those who protect us with the very best uniforms and equipment we can--ones that proudly display the Made in America label. We must take care of our soldiers at every turn, from our active duty and reserves to our retirees and veterans. Just as we respect those before us who helped build this nation, we must also fight for those who protect it and keep it great. I find it amazing that we have to fight to equip the Americans protecting us with American-made goods. Isn't it just common sense? Apparently not.
I fight to protect these troops, our seniors, and the working families and small businesses that call our district home. All they want is a chance to find success and help move our nation forward. We should all work together to make sure that we leave our country better off than we found it. I'll continue to do all I can to help keep the American Dream alive.
In order to do this, the gridlock holding up solutions to the real issues at hand must stop. We need folks in Washington to get back to work on the job they were elected to do--represent the people of their districts and act in the best interest of our nation. Our founding fathers created this democracy to promote the very real discussions our lawmakers should be having--but they must be constructive. I'll continue my fight to end this "recess" period, bring Congress back into session and hopefully all will see that we have a clear and fair path to repairing our economy--we must defeat these unfair trade deals and reinvigorate domestic manufacturing and America will get back to work.