Friday, July 17, 2009

$700 Million Welfare Program for Horses

“Mr. Speaker, I think I must be confused. The unemployment rate in our country is at over 9.5 percent as I speak. Unemployment in my home state of Ohio is now over 11 percent. Two million Americans have been put out of work since the ‘stimulus’ bill was signed into law. Our budget deficit is already, this year, over $1 trillion and expected to reach nearly $2 trillion.

“Faced with this news, what’s the House doing today? Talking about a $700 million welfare program for wild horses and burros. Is it any wonder, Mr. Speaker, that our constituents may be confused about their Congress?

“Let’s get this straight. We’re debating a bill to spend millions of dollars to save wild horses, but yesterday, Democrats in the House blocked Republicans from offering an amendment to prevent federal dollars from being spent on saving unborn children. Oh yeah, $700 million today to save wild horses and burros – and yesterday we weren’t allowed to offer an amendment to save the lives of unborn kids. That doesn’t make sense to me, but I think most of my constituents would look up and go, well, that’s just Washington being Washington.

“And it doesn't make any sense that we’re debating a welfare program about wild horses when the American people really want to know, where are the jobs? Debating this bill, I frankly think, is an insult to the American people who are out there looking for work and small businesses who are looking for customers and trying to keep their doors open. If Democrats want to do something serious here in this House they should join with Republicans and focus our efforts on those things that will help create jobs in America, which, after all, is the number one priority of the American people.

“We probably ought to do a few other things if we’re going to talk about creating jobs and keeping jobs in America. Maybe we ought to scrap Speaker Pelosi’s national energy tax which will cost about two and a half million jobs every year over the next 10 years. Or, maybe we should shelve the health care bill which is being debated in committee as we speak - which is going to take private health care away from millions of Americans and shove them into some government-run system - and on top of all that, has a giant tax on small businesses, taxes employment and will lead to greater job losses in our country.

“If we’re serious about wanting to create jobs, maybe, maybe, we could work together to bring the American Energy Act to the floor of this House - our all of the above energy strategy which will create well over a million new jobs here in America, bring us more energy to the marketplace with lower prices, reduce our dependence on foreign sources of oil, and guess what? If we do all of the above, we’ll actually have much cleaner air than the bill that passed here last month.

“Mr. Speaker, I think American families and small businesses deserve better than what they’re getting out of this Congress. They expect us to work together on their behalf. They expect us to deal with issues to get this economy moving again and help create jobs, not to be debating a $700 million program - welfare program - to save wild horses and burros. I think the gentleman’s amendment is a good amendment. His amendment will cost $500,000. That’s $699,500,000 less than the underlying bill. It would be a step in the right direction so maybe our constituents, Mr. Speaker, would think we’ve got some sense for once in our lives. I yield back.”

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