Today, Congressman Eric Cantor (VA-07) joined business leaders and entrepreneurs from around the country at "Revitalizing America: Encouraging Entrepreneurship," a conference hosted by Congressman Tim Scott (R-SC). Below are Congressman Cantor's excerpted remarks:
"The model of success in America is premised upon ordinary citizens, ordinary people, being able to do extraordinary things. Reaching potential beyond their wildest dreams. That there are no limits in the system of economic freedom, that there's no government, there's no power to get in the way to stop one from striving to do their best, and with a little luck, exceeding anybody's expectation. That's what the dream of this country is about. That is what America is about. It is about economic freedom, it is about entrepreneurialism. It's not about the government being there to shower largesse upon people forever with no limits. That's not what we're about. One thing we don't ever want to limit is entrepreneurialism in this country, it's the dream of everyone looking to climb that ladder of success. That's really the essence of the aspirational American history.
"So much of what the discussion is on the House floor - every single day and in committees and subcommittees - is how do we set a structure of laws that allows for the greatest potential for individuals? How does government assume its proper role, in a responsible way, so that those who cannot help themselves can develop the tools so that they too can ascend the ladder of success? It is through an attitude of competitiveness and creating an environment where people can take a risk. That is the essence of entrepreneurialism.
"Anytime you want less of something, just increase the price of risk, just lower the ultimate return, you'll get less of it. That is exactly the opposite of what we ought to be doing here, which is why you are seeing in the House, we are very focused on making sure that we address this alarming trend in the country of the declining number of business startups. Going back to who we are, we should be a nation of start ups. But for the last three years, fewer and fewer people have taken the step to start a business to be entrepreneurs.
"We're going to continue to have these discussions, I can't think of a better way than this to highlight the overall goal of entrepreneurialism in America, which is that we want to be that startup country. We want to be the destination for the world's best and brightest, for those willing to come to work hard, to take a risk and make something of themselves. Our role as policymakers at the federal level is to create and environment for that to happen for everybody, to afford equal opportunity, not equal outcome. To make sure everyone has a fair shot at earning their success. That's what we ought to be about, that is the essence of entrepreneurialism in America. So again, thank you for very, very much for being here. Tim, thank you."