March 07, 2013
Thursday, March 7, 2013
From the Chairman
Last Friday Congress stood firm against President Obama by insisting on the $85 billion sequester cuts that were originally proposed by the White House in 2011. It marked a significant step forward in that we finally forced Washington to start living within its means by cutting spending. Instead of working with Congress to implement the cuts in a targeted fiscally responsible manner, the Obama administration neglected their responsibility to govern and instead flew around the country on Air Force One trying to scare families with false threats of impending doom. The president’s long history of false claims and broken promises add to the diminished credibility he has when he overplays his hand by threatening that the sequester, a 2.4% cut to a bloated federal budget, will somehow be the end of American civilization as we know it.
The sequester is the first of many reforms that need to be made to force Washington to start living within its means, so we can get our economy back on track and to control our runaway debt that has increased by more than $6 trillion since Obama took office. Because of the sequester, our non-emergency discretionary spending levels will drop below $1 trillion for the first time since fiscal year 2008. While the sequester is not perfect, Washington must get serious about kicking its spending habit that only further propels us down the path paved by Greece.
Yesterday the House voted to take another important step toward getting Washington back on the path towards fiscal responsibility. By passing a CR at post-sequester levels, the House finally reduced discretionary Washington spending to levels not seen since Nancy Pelosi took the gavel as Speaker, and locked in the largest discretionary spending cut since World War II. Not only did the vote lock in real spending cuts, it also shifted some across-the-board cuts from the DOD and VA, substituting them with more responsible targeted cuts. In the coming weeks, the House will bring forward a bold budget that repeals Obamacare, advances pro-growth tax reform, and balances in 10 years - all key steps as we work to foster the creation of good middle-class jobs, get rid of radical regulations, and get our economy back on track. I look forward to the fights ahead in the coming months as House conservatives present common-sense plans to cut spending, eliminate government waste, and preserve the American Dream for our children and grandchildren.
Stand with Rand
It was inspiring to watch Rand Paul take to the Senate Floor last night in a filibuster to stand up for our constitutional freedoms that are under attack by the Obama Administration. The possibility of targeted drone strikes on American citizens here at home would be a clear violation of the 5th Amendment, and I share the valid concerns raised by Senator Paul yesterday. America was founded on the principles of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, and President Obama has no right to unilaterally rob innocent Americans of their constitutionally guaranteed rights. I'm proud to stand with Rand in defense of our liberties!
Congressman Steve Scalise
Chairman, Republican Study Committee
RSC Media Activity–Visit our Media Center for more.
- Rep. Paul Broun (GA-10): Obama Is More Interested in Campaigning Than Governing; US News and World Report, March 6.
- Rep. Jeff Duncan (SC-03): Returning Unspent Office Funds, and Sequestrations; Fox Business, February 25.
- Rep. Sam Graves (MO-06):Small-business growth and recovery are inseparable; Politico, February 27.
- Rep. Tim Griffin (AR-02): Congressman gets specific about budget; Arkansas News, March 3.
- Rep. Bill Huizenga (MI-02):Congressman Wins Voters One Snowmobile Ride At A Time; Buzzfeed, February 27.
- Rep. Bill Huizenga (MI-02):The Sequester: Cuts and Consequences; The Tavis Smiley Show, March 1.
- Rep. Raul Labrador (ID-01): Congressman Labrador on NBC's Meet the Press; NBC, March 3.
- Rep. Michael McCaul (TX-10): Hardening Our Defenses Against Cyberwarfare; The Wall Street Journal, March 5.
- Rep. Mike Turner (OH-10): MikeTurner Talking Sequestration; MSNBC, March 1.
- Rep. Rob Woodall (GA-07): Sequestration: Crisis or opportunity?; Gwinnett Daily Post, March 2.
RSC Member Activity
- Rep. Rob Bishop (UT-01) is building support for the A-PLUS Act, which is the education alternative to No Child Left Behind—the Academic Partnerships Lead Us to Success (A-PLUS) Act—aims to remove the bureaucracy handed down to states from Washington and allow states to lead education reform by directing how their education dollars are spent.
- Rep. Diane Black (TN-06) and Rep. Jeff Fortenberry (NE-01) are building support for the Health Care Conscience Rights Act, a comprehensive conscience rights bill that will respect the religious freedom of Americans seeking health insurance, as well as the ability of the greater health care community to provide patient care in accordance with deeply-held, reasoned beliefs.
- Rep. Jim Bridenstine (OK-01) and Rep. Tim Huelskamp (KS-01) are building support for a letter to Speaker Boehner and Leader Cantorasking that any future appropriations bills, including the next CR, take all necessary steps to fully defund the implementation of ObamaCare.
- Rep. Rick Crawford (AR-01) is building support for a letter to the EPA regarding the recent release of private poultry and livestock producer information to environmental activist groups.
- Rep. Scott DesJarlais (TN-04) is introducing the Stop Needless Additional Payments (SNAP) Bonuses Act, which removes the $48 million in bonuses annually given to states by the U.S. Department of Agriculture for payment accuracy, correct decision making, timely considerations and all around improved performances in administering and issuing the Food Stamp Program, now known as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).
- Rep. Jeff Duncan (SC-03) and Rep. Rob Whittman (VA-01) are building support for their letter to the President urging the completion of the Environmental Impact Statement for seismic testing in the Atlantic Ocean. As you may know, allowing seismic testing on the Outer Continental Shelf will give us an updated assessment of our energy resources in the Atlantic and pave the way to becoming energy independent in North America.
- Rep. Randy Forbes (VA-04) is building support for a letter to the Department of Defense urging the Secretary of Defense to issue implementation regulations that exemplify congressional intent, not the President’s personal opinion on the merit of NDAA Section 533, which provides religious freedom protections for military chaplains and other servicemembers. The letter explains Congress’ intent in including the religious freedom protections in the NDAA and calls on DoD to enthusiastically “accommodate servicemembers’ moral and religious convictions” and “refrain from using a servicemembers’ beliefs as the basis for adverse personnel action.”
- Rep. Tim Griffin (AR-02) is building support for H.R. 176, which puts an end to the Lifeline program by returning the program back to its original structure and ending federal subsidies for free cell phone services.
- Rep. Mike Kelly (PA-03) is building support for a Concurrent Resolution Opposing the UN Arms Trade Treaty, which opposes the UN Arms Trade Treaty because of threats to our Second Amendment rights,our domestic defense manufacturing base, and our ability to defend our allies such as the Republic of China (Taiwan) and the State of Israel.
- Rep. Steve King (IA-05) is introducing the National Right to Work Act, which would return workplace freedom to its rightful place as default collective bargaining law.
- Rep. Cynthia Lumis (WY) is building support for H.R. 824, which achieves a 10 percent reduction in the federal civilian workforce over three years by allowing the federal government to hire only one employee for every three who retire or otherwise leave service.
- Rep. Michael McCaul (TX-10) is building support for H.R. 755, which recognizes the lifesaving contributions made by the World War II members of the Civil Air Patrol by honoring them with a congressional gold medal.
- Rep. Jeff Miller (FL-01) is building support for H.R. 324, which would grant the Congressional Gold Medal to the First Special Service Force, a covert WWII military unit.
- Rep. Markwayne Mullin (OK-02) is building support for the Preserving Jobs in the Oilfield Act of 2013, which rolls back the onerous regulations put in place by the Federal Motor Carriers Safety Administration againstthose who transport elements to and from well sites.
- Rep. Randy Neugebauer (TX-19) is introducing the PRO-LIFE Act, which would eliminate federal funding to state or local educational agencies that contract with school-based health centers unless those centers certify that they will not perform an abortion, and will not provide abortion-related materials, referrals, or directions for abortion services to any student.
- RSC Updates are now online! Looking for one of our recently released charts and graphs? Click here.
- Stay up to date on budget and spending news with reports from the RSC Budget and Spending Task Force.
- Keep up with national security by reading the National Security Working Group’s newest report.
- Check out the Repeal Task Force’s work to eliminate bad laws and regulations.
- And don’t forget to see the great work of the Sunset Caucus.