When we need a government we can trust more than ever, why is Washington still sounding the cry for more jobs? Things have improved since the recession ravaged the job market. Jobs are coming back. What isn’t coming back is something we lost during the recession that has nothing to do with the economy. Under Obama America began to lose its identity and if there was any trust left in government, that trust is gone. We need it back. With Republicans gearing up to take over Capitol Hill this week, we have heard promise after promise about priorities, agenda, and big plans for job creation, plans just begging to start a war with Congressional Democrats and the White House. The House GOP leadership is promising the wrong things. What we need now is a promise of real trust we can believe.
House GOP leadership promises too many things
The Pledge to America’s promises are long forgotten. We have read the Solutions plan for jobs, opportunity, and freedom that vows to “… put the American people first.”1 Just before the midterm elections we were handed the Complete Five Points Roadmap to lower taxes, fix spending and entitlements, rein in litigation, control government regulation, and reform education from kindergarten all the way through college.2 That’s a lot to load on one plate, or at least it’s a lot if you plan to make good on your word. Too often, the House GOP leadership hasn’t had to worry about making good. Doing battle with congressional opponents and the White House means there is someone else to blame when big promises are not delivered on.
Jobs are back, aren’t they?
Are Republicans banging the drum of job creation because they have been doing it for so long that it’s all they know, or are they afraid they will be giving Democrats credit for the improved job market if they don’t keep their focus on employment? The battle over jobs has been waged with no end in sight since Obama took office. November’s jobs numbers were good, almost great. Unemployment is down to 5.8%. The economy is doing what it does best despite too much expensive tinkering from the congressional left. Free market capitalism is working. Isn’t that what conservatives are supposed to believe in?
Four days before Congress goes back into session we heard a Republican address from Illinois Congressman Rodney Davis promoting the Hire More Heroes Act:
The Hire More Heroes Act is an example of the kind of bipartisan jobs bills the House will be bringing up on your behalf. In the coming days, the House will also act on legislation to approve the Keystone XL pipeline, and to restore the 40-hour workweek for middle class families.3
Hire More Heroes isn’t exactly a jobs bill. Rather, it takes a brick out of the Obamacare wall by making an employer exemption for veteran employees who qualify for government health benefits. Given the state of affairs at the VA, whether or not this is doing eligible veterans a favor is up for grabs. What the bill will do is allow House Republicans to either take credit for doing two things at once that don’t have a lot of impact, or blame Democrats for not caring about veterans and jobs.
For many conservatives the real fight is about the direction the country will take. This speaks to the real problems the House leadership can’t seem to get its arms around: how do we turn America back into America and inspire trust in these most untrustworthy of times?
Boehner should promise this one thing
We got a promise of trust from John Boehner after the November elections:
We’ll honor that trust by listening to you, by making your priorities our priorities.4
That promise includes taking on Obamacare, the same promise we heard in 2010. Killing Obamacare is not the promise we need. Right now, we need the promise of trust. That’s not quite the message we heard during an address by Ohio Congressman Brad Wenstrup:
You deserve a government that doesn’t just ‘hear you,’ but actually listens to you and puts your priorities first – that focuses on securing more jobs and a better future for our children. This is what you can expect from the new Republican majority.5
There will not be a better future for a country that politicians slice and dice for anyone with their hand out, including non-citizens. There will be no future as a world leader when we bow to a corrupted religion like Islam and apologize for our efforts to keep our people out of harm’s way. There will be no future for a country that ignores the issue of personal responsibility and instead falls back on racism to explain why some lower income groups aren’t prospering (see: Politics and Responsibility Fail in the Black Community). There will be no future for a country when its conservative party trumps $176 billion in spending cuts over four years while government overpayments in one year total nearly $100 billion.6
We want America back. We want Speaker Boehner to make good on his promise to stop the president when he violates the Constitution, ignores our laws, or creates his own. We want to stop handing what we work so hard for to illegals. We want to stop excusing the behavior of criminals because of their skin color (see: Rewarding Criminals and Scorning the Will of the People). We want the House GOP leadership to stop playing games with Democrats, turning unacceptable compromises like CRomnibus into PR victories. We want Republicans to stop offering their own big government solutions to problems. Most important, we don’t want to have to hear remarks like this from the House majority leader:
Immigration reform is going to happen.7
Or from Republican House members:
The president also continues to raise the possibility of taking unilateral action on executive amnesty. We’ve warned him that such action would make it that much harder to pass immigration reform and find common ground.8
That comment is the essence of playing politics, not earning real trust. If the House GOP leadership can’t summon the will to stop playing games with their opponents, unite the rank and file behind a conservative agenda, and focus on earning our trust, then we need to place that trust in those who can.