Hello, I'm Peter Roskam. I serve as the House Republicans' Chief Deputy Whip, and I have the honor of representing the people of Illinois' Sixth Congressional District.
Like you, I'm frustrated with America's jobs crisis: more than 650,000 people are out of work in Illinois, President Obama's home state.
Small business owners are fighting every day to create and innovate, but continue to face government barriers to job creation. Among them: our unsustainable debt, the constant threat of higher taxes, and excessive regulations.
Today I'd like to talk to you about excessive federal regulations, how they hurt jobs and household budgets, and what we can do about it.
Let me start with this: appropriate and responsible regulations help protect our health and safety. But things have changed quickly -- and for the worse.
Washington has become a red tape factory, with more than 4,000 rules in the pipeline -- hundreds of which would cost our economy more than $100 million each annually. The disappointing reality is that what may be a faceless regulation to most can have a profound impact on local economies and families like yours.
Just one rule has Chicago White Metal Casting, a manufacturer in my district employing 240, fighting to survive in an already tough economy. Already facing a stream of regulations, they'll soon face new regulations from unelected bureaucrats implementing a back-door national energy tax -- after it failed in Congress. Chicago White Metal Casting already has one employee who spends half his time dealing with existing federal audits, certification requirements, and complex paperwork.
By now, you've probably heard about the case of Boeing, one of the world's leading manufacturers. This Chicago-based company invested more than $1 billion in a new plant in South Carolina that would generate thousands of good-paying jobs only to be sued by the government and told that the plant can't open. Who in the government sued them? No one that's elected, I'll tell you that. No, Boeing is being sued by the National Labor Relations Board, which is charged with looking out for labor unions.
I'd also like to share with you the story of Gibson Guitars, a company that makes world-class guitars. Well a few weeks ago, Gibson was raided by 26 armed federal agents. No charges have been filed and regulators have not explained to the company what they may have done wrong or how to rectify the situation. Well I'd like to know how job creators can be expected to prosper with the threat of a federal raid hanging over them?
Stories like these are cropping up coast-to-coast. One Illinois farmer stood up at a town hall meeting last month and pleaded with the president. He said, 'please don't challenge us with more rules and regulations from Washington.'
I couldn't have said it better myself.
That farmer was one of several job creators who attended [the] president's speech to the Congress as guests of House Speaker John Boehner.
Republicans are listening to America's job creators and working to address their concerns with real solutions. In the House, Majority Leader Eric Cantor has scheduled several bills for a vote this fall aimed at cutting red tape and addressing the excessive, Washington-imposed regulations that hamper job creation.
This week, the House passed a bill to eliminate the barriers Boeing faces. It stops the government from telling an employer where it can -- and cannot -- create jobs.
We can take common-sense steps like these and still have rules that look out for our health and safety. What's important is that these rules are effective and dependable. Job creators should be able to focus on their work -- not on Washington's busy-work.
In his speech last week, the president talked about the urgency of this moment. He said we can act 'right now.' I agree.
He can help us fix this hostile regulatory environment immediately. He already canceled some counterproductive rules that hurt our economy, and he can cancel more.
He can call on the Democrat-led Senate to pass the dozen or so jobs bills we've passed in the House and ones that are on their way. That includes the Boeing bill that I just mentioned. There's also the REINS Act, common-sense legislation that gives Congress a say before Washington imposes new rules and regulations. So instead of being circumvented, the people's representatives should be able to hold accountable unelected bureaucrats who encroach on our freedoms and make it harder to create jobs.
I hope the president will consider our ideas as we take a look at his. Let's listen to the people and find common ground to remove barriers to job creation. Let's help small businesses return to creating jobs so that they can pick up where they left off instead of being left behind.
You can learn more about our jobs plan by visiting Jobs.GOP.gov. Thank you for listening.