Congressman Jim Gerlach (PA-6th District) issued the following statement Tuesday night after President Obama's State of the Union speech:
"All of us agree that a strong middle class is the true engine of America's economic growth. The problem is this President believes that engine runs only if Washington spends more money and wields greater power. That's why our country has been running on empty the last four years. I am hopeful we can find some common ground with the President on solutions for cleaning up our Tax Code, strengthening Medicare and Social Security, rebuilding our crumbling roads, highways and bridges, and encouraging students to pursue careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics. However, the President is in denial about the seriousness of Washington's spending problem if he truly believes we are "more than halfway" to our deficit-reduction target. Each American would have to chip in $52,000 right now to erase our $16 trillion national debt.
And if the President is serious about creating jobs here in America, he should repeal a new $2.6 billion a year gross receipts tax on bed pans, heart stents and other medical devices made here in Southeastern Pennsylvania. This tax threatens 43,000 American jobs, according to a recent survey. Unfortunately, it sounds as though the President wants to raise taxes to fund a half-dozen new federal programs rather than repeal levies hampering hiring and investment in America."