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Public Statements

The Stimulus Plan

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC

THE STIMULUS PLAN -- (House of Representatives - February 4, 2009)

Ms. JENKINS. Mr. Speaker, the folks in Kansas are struggling right now, and they are hoping Congress can provide some relief. Instead, this body introduced and passed a bill, spending nearly $1 trillion, disguised as a stimulus package, without a single Republican vote in favor of it.

By large majorities, I am hearing from Kansans that while they are eager for action to stimulate the economy, they do not support the bill the House passed last week. They also express continued frustration with the ``partisan rule'' in Washington, as opposed to a balanced bipartisan approach to good government.

When discussion about this package began, it was all about infrastructure investment and job creation. But somewhere along the way, the Speaker and the majority have lost sight of that and instead decided to craft a massive pork-laden bill.

The Speaker's bill spends almost as much as Congress has appropriated for all war-related programs since 2001. And now we hear that the Senate wants to spend even more. This bill will take resources from the private sector, creating more government, not more jobs. In the long-run, this extreme expense of Federal spending will burden our children.

This bill will take resources from the private sector, creating more government not more jobs. In the long run, this extreme level of federal spending will burden our children. That's not an economic stimulus. That's a crime.

What's more, many of the programs funded in this bill may have merit but they will not stimulate our economy. Before any program was included, two questions should have been asked. (1) Will this help the economy? And (2) Will it create jobs? If the answers were NO, then it should have been saved for another day.

The House Republicans had an alternative recovery package that, according to President Obama's economic advisors, cost less and created more jobs. It would have allowed fast-acting tax relief for working families and small businesses.

Immediate tax relief would allow Kansans to keep more of their paychecks to use however they want. My constituents in Kansas know better than Washington politicians and bureaucrats how to use their money to stimulate our economy.

A real stimulus needs to have a balance of tax relief and targeted investment in our crumbling roads and bridges. The majority party forced through a bill full of wasteful and irresponsible government spending, and it needs to be fixed.

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