Republican and Democrat leaders and cosponsors of H.R. 2772–The Rape Survivor Child Custody Act
My Priorities in Congress
Protecting the Second Amendment
Like so many in my community, the 10th Congressional District, and across America, I am thankful for the foresight and wisdom of our Founding Fathers. These wise patriots knew a law abiding and armed citizenry was essential to assuring our republic was safe from tyranny and capable of protecting our families and property. Their ideals are just as important now as they were then. I am proud to support the 2nd Amendment and the entire Constitution for it is a sacred document we should follow more closely.
I firmly believe that enacting term limits on all Members of Congress, in both the House of Representatives and Senate, will fundamentally change the way business is done in Washington. It will also encourage elected officials to work harder, smarter, and more closely with members of opposing viewpoints. By enacting a term limit, Congress can help stifle partisan gridlock and prevent a political royal class from imposing needless burdens on Americans.
My proposal is to term limit members of the House and Senate to a total of 12 consecutive years – that is six terms in the House and two terms in the Senate, consecutively. We term limit the President of the United States in order to ensure that executive power does not become permanent, so why do we refrain from imposing similar restrictions on the most powerful branch of the republic? Many states impose term limits on their public officials as a way to keep ideas fresh and reflective of their constituents, I think now is the time for Congress to do the same.
One Subject at a Time
With Congressional approval ratings continuing to drop and partisan gridlock becoming commonplace, my constituents often ask me why so little seems to be accomplished in Washington. In my view, part of the problem is the massive pieces of legislation members are asked to vote on. Often times, the title of a bill is misleading because the fullness of the legislation covers several subjects and contains provisions which are not germane to the original bill’s subject or intent. So while I may agree with 80% of a bill’s content, the 20% I do not agree with is often something I cannot compromise on because I would fail to properly represent my constituents. It is easy to see how a Member of Congress can have a hard time supporting legislation which contain significant provisions within proposals which they cannot, under any circumstances, vote for due to their principles.
That is why I propose congressional leadership simplify things by only allowing single-subject legislation to the House floor. For example, if a proposed bill is primarily concerning changes to energy policy then no immigration policy language would be contained within it. Congress would then debate and vote on each subject and solely on its own merit. This would dramatically increase transparency with our constituents because every citizen would be able to see which legislation their representatives supported or opposed. This is exactly the kind of thing the American people want to see coming out of Congress these days.
Rule Change to Allow Passed Committee Bills on the Floor
As many Americans know, there are several parliamentary procedures and rules which govern the internal business of the House of Representatives. Specifically, rules allow the discretion of House Leadership regarding which bills can make it to the floor for votes. That means, even though an entire committee may vote for a bill and approve of it being sent to the general voting body, members in leadership positions are not required to allow that legislation to the floor for debate and consideration by other House members.
to remedy this I propose that if a bill is passed within a full committee then it should be sent to the entire House of Representatives for a vote. This, in conjunction with my single-subject proposal, would speed up business and increase transparency and accountability while fine-tuning legislation to ensure imperfections or improprieties are identified and stricken at the committee level. Think of it as a distillation process – the more committees and votes a bill goes through, the more likely its final product is to be of high quality.
Cut Taxes & Reign-in Spending
Taxes and federal spending are out of control. It has been far too long, no matter the President or the political parties controlling the chambers of Congress, since meaningful restraints to our budget have been enacted. Since assuming office on behalf of the people of Pennsylvania’s 10th Congressional District, I have sponsored and cosponsored legislation that cuts the federal government’s frivolous spending practices on duplicative programs and initiatives which are better left to the states. With our national debt exceeding $17 trillion and total debt well over $59trillion, Congress is not doing what it takes to pay down those debts and balance the budget. It is unacceptable.
I fought, and will continue to do so, to lower taxes so you can keep more of your hard-earned money. I have joined my colleagues on proposals to lower the individual and corporate tax rates and lower the burden of federal taxation. The federal government has not demonstrated to the American people that it can spend tax dollars in a responsible and sustainable way. So, my ongoing battle will remain to find ways to lower taxes and reign-in out of control government spending.
Research & Development Funding for Disease Cures and Treatment
I am a four-time cancer survivor and my daughter suffers from a rare illness. If it were not for government-funded programs in the fields of research and development, both of us may not have received the treatments we required to return to normal and productive lives. Healthcare research is one area the federal government has affected positive change in the lives of millions of Americans, and in fact, millions around the world. By investing in disease research, vaccines, equipment, and treatments, we can improve the lives of the elderly, veterans, and those suffering from illnesses. We need to start getting smart on medical spending for research and development.
Please Contact Me
If you would like to share your comments, concerns, or opinions on legislation being considered by the House of Representatives, please send me a personal message by clicking here.
For more information concerning my work and views on important issues, you can contact my Washington, DC office, where you can speak with myself or a member of my staff.