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Congress adjourned last Friday for its weeklong July 4th recess. Since many Representatives use this time to spend time in their districts, this means that it is a perfect opportunity for you to seek them out and find out their stances on key issues. For your convenience we have assembled a list of district town hall meetings. This list is by no means comprehensive and Representatives and Senators may be holding meetings with their constituents that are not on this list. If your representative or senator’s name does not appear, please contact their district offices to find out when they are making public appearances or to schedule a meeting.
Demonstrating a blatant disregard for the traditions of our nation, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals just last week declared the Pledge of Allegiance unconstitutional. Although virtually every member of Congress has come out against this ruling, it is important that they know that their constituents oppose the ruling as well. Furthermore, this presents a perfect opportunity to let your Senators know that they need to stop stalling and approve President Bush’s judicial nominations in order to prevent a ruling like this from occurring in the future. Democrats do not want to see these judges confirmed because they would prefer activist judges engaged in Constitutional revision as opposed to those committed to Constitutional interpretation. For more information, visit our Pledge of Allegiance website at www.keepthepledge.com. Ask your Senators and Representatives where they stand on the issue of the pledge, what positive actions they are planning on taking to ensure that the 9th Circuit is overturned, and what they plan on doing to ensure that the Bush nominees receive their Senate hearings as soon as possible.
In the next 4 weeks before the summer recess in August, Congress has 23 major issues to debate that will have a major effect on government spending. Among these 23 bills are 13 appropriations bills, an Emergency Supplemental, The Largest Reorganization of the Federal Government in fifty years, Medicare Prescription Drugs, Trade Promotion Authority, Terrorism Re-Insurance, Debt Limit, Patient Bill of Rights, Energy Legislation, and Bankruptcy Reform. Unfortunately for the taxpayer, the political climate right now is one that has historically led legislators to inflate the size of government through increased spending. Nowhere has this been more apparent than in the pork laden Emergency Supplemental Bill. President Bush made a request to Congress for just over $27 Billion to help fight the War on Terrorism. The House responded by passing a $29 Billion bill that, although it did not exceed the spending limit set by the president, substituted pork for many of the president’s requests. To make matters worse, the Senate turned around and passed a $32 Billion dollar bill. This bill is set to go to conference committee where, instead of actually compromising, the two houses will probably find it more expedient to combine their pork and create an even larger bill. When you talk to your Representatives this week, find out whether they think government is spending too much, the right amount, or not enough. Ask them if $2 Million to build the Smithsonian an offsite specimen storage facility is really necessary for national defense. Ask them whether or not they will vote to uphold a Bush veto of the inflated Emergency Supplemental. Finally, ask them which version of the Terrorism Re-Insurance Bill they support, the big government version of the Administration and the Senate, or the more limited and responsible version put out by the House. For more information on these issues, please visit the following links.
Unfortunately, due to Senate rules which make it easier to pass a tax increase over a real tax cut, the move to repeal the Death Tax permanently was defeated 54-44, six votes shy of the necessary 60. However, the fight to permanently repeal this unfair, immoral, and un-American tax is far from over. Click here to find out how your Senators voted on the issue. Over the next week, if they voted against repeal, be sure to contact them and tell them how much their vote upset you and that you will remember it come election time. If they voted for permanent repeal, take a moment to thank them for their vote and let them know they are doing a good job. Be sure to keep this issue on their radar screens. The more you mention it, the more they will realize that the Death Tax wont die until it is officially buried. Ask your legislators what they are doing to ensure that this tax does not harm any more family farms and businesses.