A Report From Congressman Paul C. Broun, M.D.
This Week: The need for a solution to lower gas prices is more pressing than ever; the housing market downturn provides the government with a chance for fiscal reform, and the District of Columbia is actively ignoring the Supreme Court and the Constitution.
We Need Energy Solutions Now!
Since January, there have been twenty-two bills introduced in Congress to allow for more drilling and exploration – which would lower the price of gas. We have seen twenty-two different plans, introduced by twenty different Representatives and Senators, for ending the energy crisis and increasing oil production. Unfortunately, Congressional liberals –specifically, Nancy Pelosi and Congressional Liberal leadership- have prevented all of those plans from even getting a vote.
On July 16, Chairman of the Federal Reserve, Ben Bernanke testified before the House Financial Services Committee that, “new energy exploration…will help bring us to a more stable situation as far as energy is concerned.” His testimony further proves that the Republican energy solutions would work if Nancy Pelosi would allow them to come up for a vote and they were passed into law.
Instead, Pelosi and other Congressional Liberal leaders would rather continue their finger pointing and playing political games.
The time to act is now. The fact is that if liberals do not allow energy solutions to pass by the end of this month, families will be forced to continue paying high gas prices throughout 2008 and into the foreseeable future.
The August recess is quickly approaching, there is an abundance of American oil and gas waiting to be tapped, and liberals seem more than happy to continue allowing their constituents to suffer.
The Housing Crisis Is an Opportunity
The federal government created Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac with the intentions of helping people buy homes and helping to expand the housing market. Now, because government is incapable of controlling such huge market-barons, the entire housing market and economy is taking a hit.
Both of these market-barons have federal guarantees that allow them to borrow money more cheaply than competitors. Worse yet, it has recently come to light that the heads of these companies have been cooking the books to hide their financial problems.
Put together a market-baron that plays by its own rules with a group of executives that break the rules, and now we have a housing crisis on our hands. But where is the opportunity?
The opportunity lies in government learning from its past mistakes and using the failure of these programs as a lesson for future fiscal responsibility. The federal government messed up when it created Fannie Mae in 1938, and it messed up when it created Freddie Mac in 1970.
Congress must only do what Article 1, section 8 of the Constitution allows, and it only allows for a small government.
Soon, the federal government will attempt to bail out these two companies with your money. I will stand against any bail-out plans because taxpayers should not be put on the hook for trillions of dollars because of an unconstitutional creation and a liberal quick-fix.
Instead of voting for a quick-fix bill that will cost our grandchildren trillions, I have planned a Foreclosure Prevention and Education Forum.
I believe that people can do a good job of running their own lives as long as they have the proper tools to do so. Experts from a number of government and non-profit organizations will be in attendance at the Augusta State University Jaguar Student Activities Center Ballroom to make that possible on July 28, from 10am to 12 noon.
The United States Congress should not add to our national debt, it should learn from the mistakes of the past and allow mortgage reform to take place through the use of market forces – not judicial activism, government mandates, or other federal intervention.
Arrogant Defiance by the District of Columbia
On June 26, the U.S. Supreme Court affirmed that the Second Amendment to the Constitution protects an individual right to possess firearms. This ruling, in District of Columbia v. Heller, struck down a horrible gun ban in Washington DC.
Now, just weeks after the ruling, the city of Washington D.C. has enacted a new law that is just as bad as before. This new law is representative of the city government’s clear disregard for the Supreme Court and the U.S. Constitution.
The new D.C. gun law requires a city-issued gun permit which will require anyone registering their gun to pass a written test, vision test, ballistics test, submit proof of residency, and it requires that guns be kept secured in homes unless there is a “threat of immediate harm.”
The only change in the two laws is that the old one made it impossible to own a gun in Washington D.C. and the new law makes it nearly impossible.
The National Rifle Association has already signaled that it will challenge the new law, and I will support any effort to do so since this law represents a horrible infringement on our individual right to own firearms.
I believe that our federal government has many problems, but I am confident that those problems can be fixed in time. As the People’s Congressman, I promise to continue to work to create a government that listens to the people, a country that is energy independent, and a Congress that embraces fiscal responsibility.