By Governor Rick Perry
Washington is broken and must be completely overhauled to get America working again.
The tinkering technocrats think Washington can be fixed with a pair of tweezers. I, on the other hand, think it will require a president with the courage to take a sledgehammer to the three pillars of big government: overspending, overtaxation and overregulation.
Upon taking the oath of office, I will take immediate executive action to begin dismantling the Washington establishment so we can rebuild the American economy from the foundation up.
First, I will issue an executive order prohibiting the Department of Health and Human Services from any further implementation of Obamacare until we can fully repeal this unconstitutional government mandate, which, if it stands, will diminish our health care and kill jobs.
Second, I will order federal agencies to begin opening American energy fields for exploration and development, which will kick-start economic growth, reduce our dependence on energy from hostile foreign sources and eventually create 1.2 million jobs across every sector of the economy. I also will work with Congress to ensure that new revenue generated from energy production on federal lands is used to pay down the national debt.
Third, I will impose an immediate moratorium on all pending federal regulations, during which government agencies must audit every measure passed since 2008 to determine its necessity and impact on job creation. Those measures that kill jobs will be repealed.
And fourth, I will deploy thousands of National Guard personnel to secure our southern border until we can provide the permanent increase in manpower, technology and fencing needed to protect the American homeland in the long run. If I am elected, Washington will no longer abdicate its constitutional responsibility to secure the border or force states to fend for themselves.
In addition to exercising executive authority during the first 100 days of my presidency, I also will lay out a sweeping legislative agenda that will fundamentally change the way Washington works.
My Cut, Balance and Grow plan will jolt our economy back to life by cutting taxes and spending, balancing the budget by 2020 and growing private-sector jobs.
With a 20 percent flat tax that will enable Americans to file their tax returns on a postcard, we will end the Internal Revenue Service as we know it.
My-flat tax proposal will derail the gravy train of lobbyists and lawyers feeding at the government trough by eliminating the loopholes and carve-outs that the biggest companies with the most lobbyists exploit to avoid paying any taxes whatsoever. My plan not only will level the playing field for small businesses, it will cut the corporate tax to make American employers of all sizes more competitive in the global marketplace and encourage job growth at home.
My plan also will force government to live within its means by cutting billions of dollars from discretionary spending, capping spending at 18 percent of gross domestic product and putting Congress on track to balance the budget by 2020.
Despite all the promises of reform, earmarks remain a congressional addiction. My plan will make Congress kick the habit cold turkey. Throughout my presidency, I will veto any budget that contains earmarks. The same goes for bailouts.
I am confident we can make progress on all of these reforms in the first 100 days. But ultimately, the status quo will never change until voters take back Washington.
As the federal government grows and grows, the ruling elites in Washington are insulated from the economic mess they created. Consider just two examples: While home prices have continued to slump in virtually every other region of the country over the past year, Washington bureaucrats have seen their homes increase in value, thanks in part to a surge in government spending.
And according to a Bloomberg analysis, Washington is now America's richest metropolitan area on a per capita basis, surpassing even Silicon Valley. While millions of Americans have lost jobs since 2009, the average federal worker in our nation's capital has seen his pay increase to more than $126,000 per year, including benefits.
This is simply obscene. As president, I will fight for an across-the-board pay freeze for Congress and all federal employees, excluding the military and public-safety workers, until the budget gets balanced.
There is a massive reality gap between the American people and the ruling elites in Washington. Our next president must have the courage to close it.
America cannot afford four more years of a president who continues on the course to economic ruin or a Republican alternative who simply tinkers with the status quo while the Washington establishment brazenly continues its spendthrift ways.
If I am elected, I will take a wrecking ball to the Washington establishment so we can get America working again.