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Public Statements

This Week in Washington


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As I've been home this week for the district work period, I've been meeting with folks and I hear the same concerns over and over with every constituent: We have to get control of our economy and get people back to work; we have to get control over our debt; and we have to get gas prices down. We live in a global economy, but our national security relies on our being self sufficient. That is the only true way that we can right our ship and continue on to the prosperity our citizens deserve.

Unfortunately, this week brought more uncertainty throughout the Middle East, with uprisings similar to those most recently seen in Egypt taking place in Libya. We've seen the sad reality of gas and oil prices fluctuating based solely on skepticism and the often outrageous actions of foreign government's leaders. I will not sit by as that unfortunate burden continues to land at the feet of our families, with American citizens footing the bill for the actions of other countries. We simply cannot let these nations dictate an added financial burden on our hardworking American families. I'm working to help tackle this concern by making steps to end our reliance on foreign oil, and also to build up an added level of security for our nation in the form of a National Strategic Gasoline Reserve.

I feel that our nation should be able to store a steady supply of gasoline to be used in times of uncertainty or emergency to help end this unwarranted burden on our families' wallets. We can take further steps towards energy independence in the most important way possible--ending the sometimes manipulative ways of the oil-producing nations on which we so often rely. With an added reserve, times of uncertainty will not result in an added price at the pump, but will be managed and dealt with responsibly with a good old-fashioned dose of self-reliance. I think this is exactly what we need as we work to get back on our feet. I will keep you updated on the progress my legislation to create a strategic gasoline reserve makes this Congress, and I hope to see bipartisan support from my colleagues.

As we continue to work to get our economy back on track, it is important that we realize one very simple fact--our economy is growing and we are making progress. We were able to avert a catastrophic economic crisis that faced us and we're continuing on the path to recovery. As our economy improves, revenue goes up and it becomes easier to get our budget balanced and get our financial house in order. Paired with an honest round of smart spending cuts, the goal of a balanced budget, and the reality of a financial diet that our nation can sustain, becomes more and more of a reality. I'll continue to listen to you when you tell me the ways in which our government can help to trim the fat and end the wasteful ways of runaway spending in Washington.

Last week's votes on spending cuts took added steps to help rein in out-of-control spending, and we were able to restore additional levels of financial discipline. It is important to remember that as we make these cuts, we must do so wisely. We cannot jeopardize the safety of our nation, the wellbeing of our seniors and veterans, or the quality of education that we provide our children. I was proud to join members from both sides of the aisle to vote in support of many of the further reductions in spending, helping to continue to tell American families that Washington simply must begin to realize that enough is enough. I've heard your message loud and clear, and I will continue to fight until my colleagues understand the same realities our working families face. We cannot just spend our way to prosperity. Until we start to do more to make our working families successful, our nation will continue on this path that we simply cannot afford, and I'll continue to fight that unsustainable approach every step of the way.

As we face the realities of the ongoing budget battle, one thing is clear--we have to keep the government up and running. It is very costly for us to shut it down and get it up and running again. I will fight any instances of added waste of your tax dollars. Congress must come together in the House and the Senate, on both sides of the aisle, and prove to the American people we can get control of our debt while getting our economy back on track. Once we've gotten our nation back to work, we can work to take control of our energy issues and become a truly self reliant and secure nation once again.

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