100 days of Congress - Ahwatukee Foothills News: Opinion

100 days of Congress

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Posted: Saturday, April 16, 2011 2:00 pm | Updated: 3:40 pm, Tue Nov 22, 2011.

Friday, April 15 marks the 100th day of the 112th Congress. While there have been many issues facing our country in these four short months, the battles raging in Washington have remained consistent - lowering the scope, size and cost of government.

And thankfully, due to the voice of the American people and Arizona's District 5, we are making progress.

One of the first votes I took in the first 100 days as your congressman was to fully repeal Obama's government take-over of health care. It is crystal clear that the American people do not want a massive bureaucracy nor the $2.7 trillion price tag that comes with Obama-care. Instead, I will continue to fight for real common-sense health care reforms that do not jeopardize every corner of the free enterprise system or restrict an individual's right to health care choices.

In the first 100 days, Congress has achieved several victories for small business and job creators. Whether you're in Ahwatukee, Chandler, Mesa, Tempe, Scottsdale or Fountain Hills - we are working to remove costly barriers to economic growth in medicine, manufacturing and small business start-up. We can still have a strong recovery, but we are not going to get there by building government on top of innovators and entrepreneurs.

For the first time in a long time we have seen a serious commitment to producing economic growth, cutting Washington spending, and allowing the private sector to create jobs. As part of this commitment to fiscal responsibility, I, along with other members of Congress, have left no area of spending untouched - including our own. In January, I voted to reduce my Congressional office's budget and return it to 2008 levels. If American families and small businesses have to tighten their belts in this tough economic environment, so can Congress.

Perhaps the most remarkable of our accomplishments in our first 100 days is the sunshine we have brought to Washington. Gone are the days of Nancy Pelosi's smoke-filled back room deals, legislation created behind closed doors, and unread bills passing through Congress.

The new Republican majority has created a clean and open legislative process that was previously prevented. No longer is a piece of legislation, loaded with pork and unread amendments, brought to the floor for a vote before anyone can see it. In the first 100 days, each bill has been posted online for the public to read at least 72 hours before a vote.

I am blessed to be able to represent you and serve as part of a freshman class and a majority that is slowly but surely changing Washington. It started 100 days ago when Republicans passed an earmark moratorium on all of our legislation and it will continue as we change the spend, borrow and bailout culture of Washington.

Last week, Republicans introduced a 2012 budget that reforms entitlements, lowers taxes and cuts trillions in spending. This is a commonsense proposal that will get our careening debt and deficit on track. And it is absolutely imperative we pass this bill to save our country from economic collapse for our children and grandchildren.

We have picked a big fight. A $1.6 trillion fight, for that matter. In just 100 days, Democrats have had to accept the biggest spending cuts in nearly 30 years with much more to come.

Imagine what the next 100 days will bring.

• David Schweikert, R-Ariz., is a member of Congress in Arizona's District 5, which includes Ahwatukee Foothills. Reach him locally at (480) 946-2411 or in Washington D.C. at (202) 225-2190.

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