The Facts

By: U.S. Rep. Gregg Harper (R-Miss.)

The president has spent much of the last month traveling the country asking Congress to put party aside and “pass the bill,” referring to his $447 billion “jobs” plan.

But if the president were to get off the campaign trail and focus on the facts, he would learn that House Republicans have already advanced a pro-growth agenda that creates jobs without expanding the federal government’s role.

Let’s start with the federal budget.

The Facts: I voted to cut spending $5.8 trillion over the next decade relative to current law, to cap federal spending at the historical average of 20 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) and for a Balanced Budget Amendment. To boot, I voted to cut my own budget 11.4 percent, and for the last two years I have voluntarily returned approximately 10 percent of the money that my congressional office was authorized to spend.

How about energy jobs?

The Facts: I voted four times to increase American oil production, putting Americans back to work and leading to a reduced dependence on foreign oil and lower gas prices at the pump. These bills speed up the permitting process for drilling in the Gulf of Mexico, require the Secretary of the Interior to conduct more offshore oil and gas leases, direct the Department of the Interior to proceed with exploration and production in the areas estimated to contain the most oil and gas and eliminate the administration’s bureaucratic delays that have stalled offshore energy production in the Outer Continental Shelf.

Further, I voted to push final approval of the Keystone XL pipeline and bring nearly 1.3 million barrels of oil from Canada and North Dakota to U.S. refineries each day, creating more than 100,000 jobs.

And health care?

The Facts: I voted to repeal the president’s overreaching health care law, commonly referred to as “ObamaCare.” The repeal would cut federal spending $2.6 trillion over ten years and reduce the deficit by $700 billion. I also supported a bill to eliminate abortion services from “ObamaCare,” prohibiting federal subsidies for insurance coverage.

Presidential elections, foreclosures and small businesses?

The Facts: I voted to end taxpayer funding of presidential campaigns and party conventions, to eliminate four ineffective federal foreclosure programs and to scratch a small business reporting requirement that would have forced businesses to submit a separate 1099 form to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) for every single business-to-business transaction that totals more than $600 in a given year.

These are the facts.

This is only a snapshot of the bills Republicans have been passing since day one of regaining the House majority. Our jobs agenda promotes prosperity through individual freedoms and liberties, not bloated budgets and government controls.

If the president really wants to “pass the bill,” he should swap a campaign trip for a visit to the U.S. Capitol where he would see that Republicans are already advancing common sense proposals on a daily basis.

A Republican representing the Third District of Mississippi, Gregg Harper serves on the House Energy and Commerce Committee, the Committee on House Administration and the Committee on Ethics.

10/19/11