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There's good news and bad news in this lame duck session. The good news is that thanks to your phone calls and emails, GOP leaders are lining up behind earmark bans in both the House and the Senate. Just today, Sen. Mitch McConnell said "the people have spoken - and I'm listening" and that he will support an earmark moratorium.
Getting rid of earmarks is an important first step toward cutting the spending in Washington and it looks like we've met the first post-election challenge for the tea party movement. But our fight is far from over.
It's clear that grassroots action can make a big difference, even when the opposition is a group of lawmakers on the way out, desperate to pull out all the stops to enact their socialist agenda. Now that the liberals have been thrown out of power in Congress, the pressure is that much greater on Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi in these last weeks.
The Bush-era tax cuts are about to expire and taxes could shoot up for millions of Americans already struggling in the current economic downturn. The election was clear: Washington has a spending problem, not a fudning problem. Tax hikes would hurt the economy even further.
and tell Congress: No Lame Duck!
Unfortunately, getting rid tax cuts aren't the only thing on Pelosi's Big Government Wish-List before she exits the Speaker's office. She, and Harry Reid would still like to pass the cap and trade energy tax, slap the American taxpaeyrs with another "Stimulus" bailout, pile on more tax hikes to fund their socialist agenda, and allow the death tax to come back next year at 55%.
Tax hikes, bailouts, and more big government spending in the face of the recent election would amount to little more than a violation of the will of the people. "We the People" spoke with our votes and we said "We want less - lower taxes, less spending, less government."
Congress should stop the out-of-control spending, not try to raise taxes. One of the best places to start reigning in the spending is the bloated EPA budget. This agency's budget has grown exponentially more than any other government agency and should be first on the list for a serious spending diet.
and tell your lawmakers: No Lame Duck!
According to a Rasmussen poll, 65 percent of voters oppose a lame-duck session because it would trample on our founding documents, mute the voice of the people and disregard the final results of the November election. Now that the election is over, congressional leaders should act with the dignity their office demands and refuse to pass controversial legislation until the new Congress is sworn in next January.
Thank you for your ongoing vigilance on behalf of more freedom. Keep up the great work.
On Wednesday, the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform held a hearing to examine employee misconduct at the EPA. Misconduct has continued at the EPA despite repeated reform efforts and multiple hearings. Chairman Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah) opened the hearing by calling the EPA “one of the most toxic places in the federal government to work.” That is a big claim, and one that should alarm conservatives and libertarians who consciously worry about corruption, protectionism, and bureaucracy in the federal government.
On the eve of the March 30 oral argument in U.S. Army Corps of Engineers v. Hawkes, a key Supreme Court case that will determine the rights of landowners to challenge the federal bureaucracy's assertion of regulatory jurisdiction over their land, FreedomWorks Foundation Executive Director Curt Levey commented:
A recent report from the Daily Caller highlights how the Environmental Protection Agency frequently uses private email accounts to communicate with environmental lobbyists, ducking the transparency and record-keeping requirements that are supposed to bind the agency.
Following the release of a letter from Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) to the National Governors Association, in which he urged states to cease compliance with the EPA’s Clean Power Plan regulations, FreedomWorks Foundation Executive Director Curt Levey commented:
Lately, Congress has been taking some significant steps to push back against federal regulatory agencies. Regulations cost our economy $2 trillion a year, and are written and enforced by unelected bureaucrats with no accountability to voters. They undermine property rights, representative government and the rule of law, and its high time someone did something about it.
The negative impacts of federal regulations on jobs, wages and innovation was the subject this week of hearings before the House Judiciary Committee. Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA 49) opened the hearing before the subcommittee on regulatory reform by noting that many in Washington consider the “endless expanding web of intricate [federal] rules” to be natural or desirable. “No one they know is going to lose a job because of overregulation,” he added.
In Louisiana, fiscal integrity is going from bad to worse. Already, the state is facing the largest budget deficit in its entire history, at a whopping $700 million this year, and shortfall projections for next year reaching as high as $1.9 billion. However, in a misguided attempt to try to solve this behemoth of a problem, newly-elected Governor John Bel Edwards has proposed a massive package of tax hikes that affect all walks of life, from personal income to industry. What’s worse, if he has his way in imposing these hikes, the state residents could be feeling the brunt of the costs as early as April of this year. Clearly, Edwards isn’t fixing what ails the state.
Following unsuccessful action in the Senate to override President Barack Obama’s veto of a resolution of disapproval of the Waters of the United States (WOTUS) rule, FreedomWorks Chief Economist Wayne Brough commented:
As one of our more than 6.9 million FreedomWorks members nationwide, I urge you to contact your representative and senators today and ask them to support the resolutions of disapproval against the EPA’s new air quality standards for ozone emissions. The House resolution, sponsored by Congressman Paul Gosar, is H.J.Res. 74; the Senate version, sponsored by Senator Jeff Flake, is S.J.Res. 25.
As one of our more than 6.9 million FreedomWorks members nationwide, I urge you to contact your congressman and senators today and ask them to support the resolutions disapproving of the EPA’s new power plant regulations, H.J.Res. 71 & 72, and S.J.Res. 23 & 24, and to co-sponsor the resolutions if they have not already done so.