STERLING, VA - SEPTEMBER 23: House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-OH), holds a copy of "A Pledge To America", while flanked by members of Congress during an event at the Tart Lumber on September 23, 2010 in Sterling, Va. House Republicans held their "Pledge For America" news conference at the family owned lumber store to unveil their proposed governing agenda for the upcoming 111th Congress. (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)
The time has come to restore Americans' trust in their government and create new jobs. That’s the pledge being made by House Republicans leading up to the November elections.
They unveiled what’s being hailed their “campaign manifesto” or “Pledge to America” at a lumber shop in Sterling, Va., on Thursday. It’s a blueprint on how they plan to combat the recession and improve people’s lives. Senior House Republicans sported shirts with sleeves outlining the 21-page document they believe will guide them toward gaining a majority of seats during the midterm elections.
Speaking at the Tart Lumber Company in Sterling, they drove home their concern for small businesses.
Why unveil the pledge at Tart?
"Tart Lumber is a quintessential, typical American family-run small business," House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio) told National Review Online. "This is not the kind of agenda you unveil on the Capitol steps. We wanted to underscore the jobs point, and get outside the Beltway, because this document was built by listening to the people outside of Washington."
Last month, Senate Republicans showcased owner Craig Fritsche on Capitol Hill. According to NPR, the business had not laid off any of the 60 people who worked there and had not made enough money the past couple of years to be effected by the end of tax cuts for the wealthy. But Fritsche said Democrats would be wrong to let tax cuts expire for any small business that would make that much money, according to NPR.
Representative Kevin McCarthy of California said, “The land of opportunity has become the land of shrinking prosperity.” He went on to say “we will take back our country.”
Their new agenda is rife with the kind of grass-roots rhetoric that could appeal both to tea party activists and to independent
voters the GOP is courting in its quest for control.
"Regarding the policies of the current government, the governed do not consent," the pledge says. "An arrogant and out-of-touch
government of self-appointed elites makes decisions, issues mandates and enacts laws without accepting or requesting the input
of the many."
Polls show large majorities are fed up with Congress and both parties and show Republicans have a chance to earn the public's
trust on key issues.
The “pledge” does not, however, address certain financial issues like how the government will balance the budget or plug shortfalls in Social Security and Medicare. Those are key points the Obama administration is using in its defense.
A White House blog issued the following statement: “The ‘Pledge to America’ mentions small businesses not once, but 18 times. But what it fails to mention is the impact the Republican agenda actually would have on small businesses.”
The Deputy Communications director continued to drive home his anger by writing, “In addition to hiking taxes for 110 million middle-class families and millions of businesses, the Congressional Republican have consistently opposed the eight small business tax cuts that the President has already signed into law.”
The latest Associated Press GFK shows a growing number of voters are fed up with both political parties and desire change. Nearly three-quarters of people showed disapproval in the way Congress is handling its job. 68 percent disapprove of Republicans while 60 percent disapprove of Democrats.