Democrats in Congress just did. It’s irresponsible. And it’s no way to strengthen our economy, create jobs, or build a prosperous future for our children.
In Louisiana, we took a different approach. Since I became governor, we cut more than 250 earmarks from our state budget. And to create jobs for our citizens, we cut taxes six times – including the largest income tax cut in the history of our state. We passed those tax cuts with bipartisan majorities. Republicans and Democrats put aside their differences, and worked together to make sure our people could keep more of what they earn. If it can be done in Baton Rouge, surely it can be done in Washington, DC.
To strengthen our economy, we need urgent action to keep energy prices down. All of us remember what it felt like to pay $4 at the pump – and unless we act now, those prices will return. To stop that from happening, we need to increase conservation … increase energy efficiency … increase the use of alternative and renewable fuels … increase our use of nuclear power – and increase drilling for oil and gas here at home. We believe that Americans can do anything – and if we unleash the innovative spirit of our citizens, we can achieve energy independence.
To strengthen our economy, we also need to address the crisis in health care. Republicans believe in a simple principle: No American should have to worry about losing their health coverage – period. We stand for universal access to affordable health care coverage. We oppose universal government-run health care. Health care decisions should be made by doctors and patients – not by government bureaucrats. We believe Americans can do anything – and if we put aside partisan politics and work together, we can make our system of private medicine affordable and accessible for every one of our citizens.
To strengthen our economy, we also need to make sure every child in America gets the best possible education. After Katrina, we reinvented the New Orleans school system – opening dozens of new charter schools, and creating a new scholarship program that is giving parents the chance to send their children to private or parochial schools of their choice. We believe that, with the proper education, the children of America can do anything. And it should not take a devastating storm to bring this kind of innovation to education in our country.
To strengthen our economy, we must promote confidence in America by ensuring ours is the most ethical and transparent system in the world. In my home state, there used to be saying: At any given time, half of Louisiana is under water – and the other half is under indictment. No one says that anymore. Last year, we passed some of the strongest ethics laws in the nation – and today, Louisiana has turned her back on the corruption of the past. We need to bring transparency to Washington, DC – so we can rid our Capitol of corruption … and ensure we never see the passage