Friday, September 25, 2009

Rep. Kevin McCarthy: allow a full hearing on health care and let's hear from the generals on Afghanistan

 A weekly update from Congressman Kevin McCarthy, R-Bakersfield. Let him know how you feel.
 "I happened to run into “Dear Abby”.  She was very frank, and as we talked, it was very telling to hear her comment that most of the letters she receives are about jobs and the economy.  Americans are working to do their part, but Washington needs to do better.  Take the stimulus spending for instance: Congress should wisely look to cut the waste that isn’t creating jobs, and reprogram money towards small business tax cuts that will create jobs.  After all, American small businesses create over 70% of our nation’s jobs.

'While our state continues to suffer from record unemployment (12.2%), Congress seems fixated on passing a health care bill that most Americans do not support.  Rather than passing one large bill, Congress should start over and focus on areas of agreement. We can take up individual reform bills that pursue common sense solutions, like real medical malpractice reform and other reforms that lead to less government involvement and more choices for individuals and families.  Some news in the midst of all the health care debate is that my colleagues and I signed a discharge petition to allow for an up or down vote on a bipartisan bill that would allow the American public and Members of Congress to have 72 hours to review legislation before it is brought to the House floor for a vote.  The Speaker of the House this week said she supports having a final health care bill posted online for 72 hours before it is voted on, but she is not letting this bill come to the floor for a vote.  We need 218 member signatures (178 signed on as of Friday) in order to force the Speaker to bring this bill to the floor for a vote.  American taxpayers deserve more transparency and accountability so they can keep tabs on Washington planning and spending.  

 "The Financial Services Committee held a hearing on H.R. 1207, the Federal Reserve Transparency Act, also known as the “Audit the Fed” bill.   I am a cosponsor of this bill, which now has 295 cosponsors, and I look forward to continuing to work with my colleagues to bring additional transparency to the Fed.   Secretary Geithner was also on Capitol Hill this week to discuss the Administration’s plan for financial regulatory reform.  I continue to be concerned about Democratic proposals that would create new bureaucracy.  Next week Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke testifies about the Administration’s plan, and it should be a good hearing, as we have seen differences in opinion between the Secretary and Chairman over these issues.  I’ll update you next week.    

"The Administration should allow General McChrystal, the U.S. Commander in Afghanistan, to testify before Congress soon and also spell out its overall strategy for stabilizing the country and continuing to eliminate the threat of terrorists in the region that could attack us.  Our men and women serving our country deserve our support, but also the resources and strategy necessary for successful engagement. 

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