President Obama's second stimulus bill should have been an opportunity to put forward a plan that would actually revive our sagging economy. Instead, the president chose to play politics by offering a plan that was designed to score political points. Republicans believe it is time to abandon the failed policies of the president's first stimulus bill and focus on real solutions that will make it easier and cheaper to create private-sector jobs.
Despite our sagging economy and the urgent need to create more jobs, President Obama's jobs plan consists of just more of the same tired policies that informed his first stimulus bill and spectacularly failed to revive our struggling economy. Republicans are focused on spurring job creation by doing the things that really matter to businesses: eliminating burdensome regulations, lowering tax rates, and increasing trade by passing the trade agreements the president has been stalling.

Despite the fact that our economy is in a slump, unemployment is high, and businesses large and small are struggling, the president continues to push for failed economic policies and more government spending and regulation. Senate Republicans are committed to making it easier and cheaper to create private-sector jobs by repealing burdensome regulations and creating a climate of tax and regulatory certainty that will give businesses the confidence to grow.

In the Weekly Republican Address, Nevada Senator Dean Heller discusses the recession, which has hit his state hard, and the impediments to job creation put up by the Obama administration.

Sen. Heller says, "Americans have had to endure great hardships over the past few years. This recession has robbed millions of people of their jobs, their homes, and their sense of security. No state has been hit harder than Nevada. My state has the unfortunate distinction of leading the nation in unemployment, foreclosures, and bankruptcies. There is no question that the status quo of dysfunctional government must end. People from all over the country are struggling just to get by and are desperate for real solutions.

"Unfortunately, job creation and economic growth has taken a back seat to political posturing and grandstanding in Washington. It is clear that the approach of this Administration and its supporters have taken for economic recovery has failed miserably. Out of control spending, a Health Care law that no one can afford, and a seemingly endless stream of regulations are crippling employers, stifling economic growth and killing jobs. Threats of a Cap and Trade bill that will cause energy costs to skyrocket, and efforts to pass Card Check Legislation that would take away American workers' rights to a secret ballot are more of the same.

"Instead of fighting for measures that create and protect jobs, this Administration has created more government that continues to impede economic growth at every turn. To paraphrase one of the business leaders in my state, this President and his policies have been a big wet blanket on our economy."

Sen. Heller says "we need to change course now" and suggests, "Let's pass a balanced budget amendment to force the federal government to live within its means, repeal the President's small business killing Health Care law, open up our country to energy exploration, and reverse the regulations that are tying the hands of entrepreneurs across America. We can help hasten an economic recovery by embracing pro-growth policies that place more money in the pockets of Americans. At the same time, we should be assisting those who have lost their jobs and need help. These are all the things that both this Administration and Congress could be doing immediately to boost economic recovery."

He adds, "Then we should take the aggressive steps of reforming our tax code, make it simpler for individuals and employers. Cut out the special interest loopholes while reducing the overall tax burden on all Americans. Instead of looking for new ways to tax the American public, we should make our tax code more competitive and provide businesses the stability they need to grow and create jobs. The continual threat of tax increases feeds the uncertainty that serves as an impediment to economic growth."

Sen. Heller concludes, "Let's give the American people a government that works for them. Removing impediments to job creation will get Americans working again and ensure our children and grandchildren have a brighter future."

In the Weekly Republican Address, freshman Pennsylvania Senator Pat Toomey discusses job-killing government regulations implemented by the Obama administration and how they hinder economic growth.

Sen. Toomey says, "Every day, small business owners, job creators and entrepreneurs are bombarded with new regulations and higher costs, discouraging these employers from expanding their businesses and hiring additional workers. This is what I hear when I travel across my home state of Pennsylvania. Whether I am touring a manufacturing plant, talking to dairy farmers or energy producers, visiting a trucking company, or meeting with medical device makers, the message I hear is the same: The crushing burden of federal regulations is making it increasingly difficult for them to grow their new businesses, hire new workers, and in some cases, just keep their doors open....

And, the number of regulations has only increased since President Obama came into office. The Federal Register, containing all federal regulations, now totals a whopping 49,000 pages, covering everything from paint, to dust, cement, to cars, medicine and livestock. With so many burdens and the threat of new obstacles in the future, it's not hard to understand why job creators are leery of assuming the risk and costs that come with starting a new business or expanding an existing company. As a former small business owner who ran several restaurants with my brothers, I can attest to the burden these regulations impose on our job creators."

"Despite all these obstacles," Sen. Toomey says, "I remain very optimistic about our future. Americans are still the hardest working, most industrious, and innovative, most entrepreneurial people in the world. And if we just let them, they'll build more factories, start more businesses, hire more workers, produce more goods, and create more inventions. But first, government has to get out of the way.

"Course, we need some regulations to keep us safe, but these regulations must be enacted in a thoughtful manner and with a careful consideration to the impact they have on jobs. First, we should start by eliminating some of the most harmful regulations already on the books, including the president's health care bill with its maze of new costly rules."

He concludes, "You know, I have every confidence that the 21st century can be another great American century. And I know we can have a booming economy. But to get there, we have to remember the source of our national strength. Our strength doesn't come from a bigger government controlling our economy. It comes from a free enterprise system and the hard-working, honest citizens who make it run—the kind of industrious folks I see every day in Pennsylvania. When government lets these folks grow their businesses and work hard without putting obstacles in their way, that's when we'll achieve the flourishing recovery and the job creation that our country needs and deserves."
If one thing has become clear over the past couple years, it's that the president's policies are making our economy worse. Businesses are afraid to grow and create jobs because they don't know what's coming next from Washington. Senate Republicans are committed to eliminating burdensome Washington regulations and reducing excessive taxes so that businesses have the freedom and certainty they need to flourish.
With our nation's debt topping $14 trillion and our government borrowing 40 cents of every dollar it spends, it's high time to call a halt to Washington's big-spending ways. Senate Republicans are pushing for a balanced budget amendment to put permanent constraints on Washington spending, so that Congress no longer has the option of racking up trillions of dollars worth of debt.

U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander today spoke on the floor of the United States Senate about the debt ceiling votes, saying "I hope that the spirit of today and of tomorrow and of Sunday is that we spend less time plotting about how we can defeat each other's proposals as quickly as possible and more time working together to come up with ways to reduce spending and honor our obligations."