Bring out the folding chairs — there is standing room only. That’s my 2012 election vision at the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC) for Republicans in the House of Representatives.
No doubt, it’s a bold vision, but one that I build from experience with challenged goals. When I became NRCC chairman two years ago, I set out on a mission to do what few thought possible: retire Nancy Pelosi as speaker.
At the time, the Republican Party was declared all but extinct as Barack Obama swept into the White House and Democrats built a 40-seat advantage in the House of Representatives. Political pundits scoffed at my mission statement while others were simply dismissive. But thanks to a plan for victory and the will of the American people, our mission was accomplished.
|Rep. Pete Sessions
The Democratic election wave of 2008 was followed by a Republican wave election in 2010 as the American people rejected Democrats’ job-destroying agenda and handed Republicans a net 63-seat gain — the greatest Republican gains since 1938.
Now with two consecutive wave elections, could we be in for an unprecedented third in 2012? If current trends remain, I believe Republicans will ride the momentum.
The American people retired Nancy Pelosi as speaker and sent Democrats a clear message that it was time for their tax, borrow, and spend policies to go. However, Democrats still own Washington from the White House to the Senate and every federal agency in between, and they show no signs of any lessons learned from the American people last November.
This Congress, 173 Democrats voted for Nancy Pelosi to remain speaker of the House — a vote thankfully drowned out by 241 Republicans voting unanimously for Speaker John Boehner.
Beyond recorded votes, Democrats have publicly stated that their goal is to return the speaker’s gavel to Nancy Pelosi.
As Rep. Steve Israel, the chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, noted to Politico in January, “I hate that she’s not the speaker."
If last November is any clue, the American people could hardly disagree more. But continuing with failed leadership is merely a symptom of their deeper disease: doubling down on failed policies.
Take the economic “stimulus,” for example. On the two-year anniversary of the epic "stimulus” spending binge, in February, Politico quoted Nancy Pelosi: “We’re very, very proud of it. It was definitely worth it."
Democrats are very, very proud of adding nearly $1 trillion to the national debt under a false sales pitch of keeping unemployment below 8 percent even though our nation has suffered over 9 percent unemployment for nearly two years ever since.
You don't have to look far for more examples: Take President Obama’s latest budget. He proposes a record deficit this year, $8.7 trillion in new spending over the next decade, and $1.6 trillion in tax increases on families, small businesses, and job creators. All this for the grand consequence of doubling the national debt under his first term and tripling it by 10 years from his inauguration.
The American people know that this budget is more of the same tax, borrow, and spend policies that stifle needed job growth and economic recovery.
With a Republican House now the first line of defense against the Obama agenda, the president promotes his agenda for more government and regulations by bypassing the representative voice of the people.
For example, bureaucrats at the Environmental Protection Agency are waging an unprecedented campaign to regulate greenhouse gas emissions in a backdoor attempt to implement Obama’s national energy tax. This job-destroying emissions regulatory scheme places political ideology over good public policy when our nation’s economy can least afford it.
The American people are seeing House Republicans fight a Democratic-controlled Washington. We’ve already voted to repeal the government takeover of healthcare; we've cut $100 billion in wasteful Washington spending this year alone; and we've battled the Obama administration over job-destroying regulations.
As Republicans fight for the American people’s priorities of cutting spending and creating jobs, voters will see Democrats thwart the will of the people with more of the same failed policies from every other corner of Washington.
That is why I have set goals at the NRCC for staying on the offense to hold Democrats accountable for their disastrous policies and electing more Republicans to advance an agenda to create jobs for a more prosperous America.
First, Republicans must earn the return of every Republican member running for re-election. In the last election, the American people sent 87 new Republicans to Congress to join returning Republicans in fighting for smaller, more accountable government that frees the American economy to succeed.
Breaking through a Democratic-controlled Washington requires maintaining a team committed to holding the line for the freedom and individual liberty that the American people have demanded.
Second, Republicans will work to make Barack Obama a one-term president. Obama has overseen historic unemployment, record spending, and the fastest debt increase of any president in our history. As every unemployed American understands firsthand, our nation cannot afford more of the failed policies and failed leadership of the current administration.
America’s future viability depends on reversing President Obama’s reckless big-government agenda that assaults our economy and job creators.
Finally, Republicans must grow our House majority to reach the vision of standing-room only on the Republican side of the House of Representatives. Despite our historic gains last November, Republicans still have opportunities on the playing field, including against some of the nearly 50 Democrats in Congress who won with less than 55 percent of their district’s vote.
As we continue to highlight the record and rhetoric of House Democrats, the playing field can expand.
These goals are opportunities to build a stronger nation for ourselves and for our children based on proven Republican principles for smaller government, individual liberty, and a free enterprise system that empowers people — not government — to succeed.
I want to ensure that America’s best days lie in our future — and that starts with ensuring that Nancy Pelosi never holds the speaker’s gavel again.
Congressman Pete Sessions is chairman of the National Republican Congressional Committee. As a member of House Republican leadership, Sessions has led the NRCC since 2009. Sessions represents the 32nd Congressional District of Texas.
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