Congressman Adam Kinzinger joined Dane Placko on Fox Chicago Sunday to discuss August's unemployment rates and what he hopes to hear in the President's upcoming jobs speech.
What do you hope to hear from Obama?
"I'd love to hear the President stand in front of the American people, in front of Congress and say 'I get it- we have to reduce the size of federal government to restore that confidence in the fact that in 10 years, the government is going to be able to pay its bills, but most importantly, we have to get the free market back to work, we have to reduce the regulations which do hinder growth, we have to domestically drill for oil here - domestic energy production. The House of Representatives passed 11 bills - jobs related bills - that are sitting in the Senate. I hope he calls on the Senate to begin passing some of those bills and sending them to his desk."
Why shouldn't there be more federal stimulus to get this economy going?
"A couple of things - the federal government doesn't have any more money.
"We've gotten to where we're spending more money on interest on our debt just to maintain it then we are on the War in Iraq and Afghanistan combined."
This is the best time the government will ever have to borrow money in order to get the economy moving...
"I believe in infrastructure spending. I believe that we need to continue to put our infrastructure as a priority, but we have to do it by prioritizing.
"I remember when the President said 'just give me my $800 billion stimulus and I promise you unemployment won't go above 8 percent.'
"We've been hovering at 9 percent for a very long time now. So, when I look at the argument and then the recycling of the argument, that if we spend some more money, this time we mean it, we're actually going to really do something this time. It's an argument that's lost a lot of sway. And to borrow money and spend it, you're taking money out of the economy in the first place, because you have to borrow that money, so you're taking it out of consumers' pockets, concentrating that power in the federal government, to decide where they want to spend the money. It's not real stimulus."
More taxes on the richest people in America.
"The top 10 percent wealth receiving Americans pay 70 percent of the tax burden of the federal government. That's out of whack, that's big. So to say we need to tax them even more at a time when these are the folks that do invest in the economy, I don't agree. When you look at 2005, 2.1 trillion is what we took in revenue, that's the same as last year, but in the intervening years the government revenues was way up because the economy was churning. When the economy churns, people pay taxes and federal revenues increase. I believe in increasing federal revenues, but you do it by growing the economy, not by raising tax rates."
Are there any taxes you would agree to see raised?
"I would love to see corporate tax loopholes gotten rid of, but I would like to see that also with a lowering of the corporate tax rate to make us competitive with the free world. When we talk about the disappearing middle class, a big reason for that is disappearing manufacturing.
"Manufacturing is at a huge competitive disadvantage because of the high tax rate, we have to pay here to produce a good and then now we try to sell it overseas and it's priced out of the market and the Chinese are able to beat us in that competition."
Where is the US still most vulnerable to terrorist attack?
"I think we're still most vulnerable here in the homeland. When you look at the fact that while border security has gotten better, there was recent reports of Mexican gang that was paid to bring Al Qaeda to the border.
"When you have a porous border, when you have cargo ships that aren't checked, it puts us vulnerable.
"Continuing to press the fight against terror overseas, whether it's in Afghanistan or elsewhere, areas we can't talk about, I think is the best way to stay on the offensive. We have Al Qaeda on the ropes right now and we need to continue to stay on the offense to keep them there and not here."