Our Representatives: Kitchens Lauds Walker’s Speech

Representative Joel Kitchens

Kitchens issued the following statement after Governor Walker’s State of the State address Tuesday night. “Tonight, Governor Walker laid out an exciting plan for Wisconsin’s future in his State of the State Address. His emphasis on continuing the growth of our economy, limiting the size and scope of the government, and ensuring our educational system is the best it can be are also top priorities for me. I look forward to working with Governor Walker on our shared commitment to improving Wisconsin.

“I also am pleased that Governor Walker’s goals are in line with the Assembly Republican Forward Agenda that was released last October. By working together on this shared vision for the state, Wisconsin can continue to move forward.

“We all know what a special place Wisconsin is and the numbers will back up the claim that the state of our state is exceptional. Our economy strengthens every day. Our unemployment rate is on the decline as the number of people finding work continues to increase….As your state representative, I will continue to fight for the best interests of the people in the First Assembly District and the state as a whole. I will push for a transparent, responsible government that serves the people of this state. I am ready to work on behalf of my constituents to make an even better Wisconsin.”

Governor Scott Walker

Walker confirmed he has hired former state and national GOP official Rick Wiley to lead a potential presidential campaign team. “I wanted someone who had an understanding of people on a national basis, but who I had been familiar with from years ago in Wisconsin to kind of try to help us sort that out,” Walker said.

Then came news that Walker will join several other prospective presidential candidates at a high-profile event later this month in Iowa. “If I’m serious about this, obviously there’ll be many more trips to Iowa and other states out there,” Walker said.

Source: WISN 12 Milwaukee

Rep. Reid Ribble

Ribble, along with U.S. Reps. Jim Cooper (R-Tenn), Ami Bera (D-Calif), and Ron DeSantis (R-Fla), introduced bipartisan legislation that would stop congressional pay if Congress doesn’t pass America’s budget bills on time. “If Congress fails to fulfill its foremost responsibility by exercising the ‘power of the purse’ and passing a budget on time, we are not doing the job the American people elected us to do,” Ribble said. “And in that case, we should not be paid.” Congress overwhelmingly passed a watered-down, one-year version of No Budget, No Pay in 2013. That year, the House and Senate passed individual budgets for the first time in four years. No Budget, No Pay would halt paychecks for all House and Senate members if they miss annual deadlines for budget and appropriations bills. No Budget, No Pay would prohibit members from receiving pay for each day past Sept. 30 that budget and spending bills don’t pass. Members would not be allowed to recover the pay retroactively. Sen. Dean Heller (R-NV) and Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) introduced the No Budget, No Pay Act in the Senate. While the House and Senate recently passed their own budgets, Congress has not adopted a budget for America in five years. Meanwhile, it has been 18 years since all appropriations bills were passed on time.

Source: Ribble press release

Senator Ron Johnson

The Senate Republican Conference ratified Johnson as the 4th Chairman of the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs, following a vote by his fellow committee members on Jan. 7. “I am honored by the support of my colleagues, and I look forward to working with Democrat Sen. Tom Carper of Delaware as ranking member of the committee. As committee chairman during the last two years, Senator Carper has set an excellent example by running the committee with a spirit of bipartisan teamwork, respect, integrity and professionalism. I fully intend to continue that tradition….Under the committee’s homeland security jurisdiction, our initial priorities will include border security and enforcement, cybersecurity, the protection of critical infrastructure, and assisting the Department of Homeland Security to succeed in achieving its important missions.”

Source: Johnson press release

Senator Tammy Baldwin

Baldwin released the following statement after the U.S. Senate passed the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act (TRIA) by a vote of 93-4. The bill now heads to the President’s desk for his signature. “With this bipartisan legislation, we are restoring the long-term security our economy and the American people deserve. TRIA serves as a crucial backstop and will give confidence to Wisconsin’s small businesses and taxpayers alike. However, I am disappointed with Republicans’ continued insistence on attaching changes to the Wall Street Reform Act with must-pass legislation. While I’m supportive of the underlying provision that separates end-users in Wisconsin’s manufacturing and agriculture sector from Wall Street banks, I fear continuing this precedent will lead to future rushed changes to the Wall Street Reform Act that will cause harm.”

Source: Baldwin press release

President Barack Obama

Obama says his plan for two years of free community college for any American will help train the work force and improve U.S. competitiveness with other countries. The White House says the program will cost the federal government about $60 billion in a 10-year period. Details on how Obama proposes to pay for it are to be released next month. States that want to participate in the program will have to chip in, too. Obama modeled his program after one started in Tennessee by the state’s Republican governor. But Obama is getting a cool reception from a Republican-controlled Congress uninterested in big new spending programs.

Source: The Associated Press