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Speech Short on Solutions

While I was sitting in the House Chamber, watching the President deliver his State of the Union address, I couldn’t help but think of Yogi Berra’s quote “It’s déjà vu all over again.” During the annual speech, President Obama pitched much of the same recycled ideas that have left our country in a stalled economic recovery. He made his intentions clear that he wants to continue on this path with or without Congress.

The framers of the Constitution designed our democracy with a system of checks and balances. President Obama’s wish to avoid Congress and the legislative procedure to pursue his big spending, overregulation, big government policies fail to follow this procedure and prevent input from legislative branch members who are elected to represent the voice of Americans.

The President’s agenda has resulted in mounting regulations, broken health care promises and skyrocketing federal debt. Arkansans are hurting. Arkansas is one of just six states with an increase in the jobless rate from the same time last year according to the December jobs data. Arkansans deserve a plan that will reverse that trend and create well-paying jobs so they can provide for their families and put food on the table.

In his speech, the President called 2014 a ‘year of action.’ If he’s serious about acting to restore jobs and economic growth, he needs to abandon his ‘do-it-yourself’ approach and work with Congress to promote policies that will strengthen our economy, encourage innovation and endorse methods to help our businesses expand and grow, in order to put hardworking Americans back to work. Fortunately half of the task is already done. Last year the House approved dozens of jobs bills that are sitting on Majority Leader Reid’s desk awaiting action in the Senate. The President should encourage Sen. Reid to bring these up for a vote.

Unfortunately, the President didn’t offer any solutions to the problems Americans now face as a result of his signature health care law. Every day I hear from Arkansans who are losing their doctors, seeing their coverage cancelled or having to pay more for health insurance because of Obamacare. This is a problem the President created. Now he’s failing to fix it.

My colleagues and I have offered many legislative proposals to provide relief to those who are hurting as a result of this flaw law, while still recognizing we must care for those who do not have access to healthcare. These bills deserve a fair and open debate in Congress.

If the President is serious about a ‘year of action,’ he needs to work with Congress, follow the Constitution and support policies that offer Americans opportunities to secure jobs, provide for their families and allow them to take home more of their hard-earned pay. Arkansans deserve to see progress and we need the cooperation of the President to accomplish this.

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