Congresswoman Martha Roby

Representing the 2nd District of Alabama

Roby Column - Feburary 14, 2011

February 14, 2011
Representative Roby's Weekly Column

Cutting Government Spending

Last November, the American people sent a very clear message: our current course of more spending and more debt is unsustainable. Accordingly, the 112th Congress—especially its newest members—have both a mandate and a responsibility to restrain federal spending, reign in skyrocketing deficits, and adopt free market policies that put our country back on track to economic growth and job creation.

Each week in Congress, we are working to trim the fat from government spending. As we enter our fifth week, the majority in the House has approved $541 billion in cuts to entitlement spending, $115 billion in cuts to authorized spending, and $770 billion in cuts to taxes. By this point in the 111th Congress, Speaker Pelosi had already passed $682 billion in new spending.

Certainly this is only the tip of the iceberg. This Congress has plenty of hard work ahead. This week, we begin a frank conversation about the size and power of the federal government. H.R. 1, legislation to impose $100 billion in cuts to discretionary spending—the largest single discretionary spending reduction in the history of Congress, will set the tone for the months ahead.

I expect a robust debate on this measure throughout the week. Under the new rules of the House, members may offer literally hundreds of amendments to alter spending levels for various programs. I am committed to making the tough choices necessary to reduce spending, and I firmly believe that we must all sacrifice today so we can restore American strength and prosperity tomorrow.

I urge you to watch this process closely, and I encourage you to let me know what you think by visiting roby.house.gov to share your thoughts and suggestions.

Removing Federal Regulations to Create Jobs

One important way to spur economic growth is to end onerous federal regulations that provide little benefit to the public, but impose significant burdens on small businesses. With that in mind, I was pleased to join other members of Congress in favor of an initiative to investigate existing, pending, or proposed regulations that limit job creation and economic growth. Many of the regulations under scrutiny place a particularly high burden on our farmers, ranchers, and small business owners in rural America.

Speaking on the House floor as a member of the Agriculture Committee, I specifically discussed the Environmental Protection Agency’s Boiler MACT ruling, which places an unreasonable requirement on companies to upgrade their boilers and will likely lead to the loss of thousands of jobs across a wide range of industries. This ruling is only one in a long line of troubling rule-making decisions by the EPA and other federal agencies.

Inconsistent and overly burdensome regulations that impede particular industries, discourage innovation, and eliminate jobs and businesses should be reversed, and I look forward to working with my colleagues to root out examples of this sort of government intrusion in the market.

Calling on Congress to Defund Planned Parenthood

I proudly joined with the members of the Pro-Life Women’s Caucus and pro-life Members of Congress to call on the House of Representatives to defund Planned Parenthood. The event was organized by members of the Susan B. Anthony List and Live Action.

As you may have heard, Planned Parenthood employees were recently recorded aiding and abetting in the sex trafficking of minors. Not only are these actions demeaning to women, but it unconscionable that taxpayer money was directed to Planned Parenthood with more than $363 million in government grants and contracts. This is another example of why federal funding for Planned Parenthood must be stopped.

District Events

I look forward to another productive district work period next week. I hope to see you at one of our many stops throughout the district. I want to bring two events to your attention:

Wednesday, February 23, 2011:
Open House for Covington County District Office
4:30 pm to 5:30 pm CST
Andalusia City Hall
505 E. Three Notch Street #322
Andalusia, AL

Saturday, February 26, 2011:
Daleville Town Hall Meeting
1:30 pm to 2:30 pm CST
Daleville Culture and Convention Center
750 S. Daleville Ave
Daleville, AL

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