WASHINGTON, D.C. – Senator Ron Johnson (R-Wisconsin) released the following weekly Republican address. The address is available in both audio and video format and is embargoed until 6:00 a.m. ET, Saturday, January 29, 2011.
Audio of the address is available here
Video of the address will be available here
You can download the address here
Full transcript of Senator Johnson’s Address:
“Hello, my name is Ron Johnson. I’m the newly elected Senator from the great State of Wisconsin.
“For those of you who don’t know me, this is the first elective office I have ever sought or held. The reason I ran is simple and straightforward. We are bankrupting America, and I thought it was time for citizen legislators to come to Washington to help those individuals already here that are seriously facing that reality.
“For the last 31 years, I have been running a plastics manufacturing plant in Oshkosh, Wisconsin. As a manufacturer, I have learned to identify and attack the root cause of a problem, not spend my time addressing mere symptoms. Huge deficits, slow economic activity, high unemployment, and woefully inadequate job creation are severe symptoms of the problem. They are not the root cause. The ever expanding size, scope, and cost of government is. This is what we must address. This is what I hope the President has come to realize.
“I hope the President and his allies in Congress accept a simple truth: big government is blocking job creation, not helping it. The sooner Washington ends its dependence on more spending, the sooner our economy will see real growth.
“I bring the perspective of someone who’s been creating jobs, meeting a payroll, balancing a budget, and living under the rules, regulations, and taxes that politicians here in Washington impose on the rest of us. I know firsthand the incentives and disincentives, the intended and unintended consequences of government intrusion into our lives. Unfortunately, when it comes to creating jobs, government is rarely helpful. Government tends to make it harder and more expensive to create jobs. We need to make job creation easier and cheaper.
“Recently, President Obama talked about the harmful effect of government overregulation. Highlighting this problem is long overdue. The Small Business Administration estimates that government regulations cost our economy $1.7 trillion annually. According to the IRS’s own figures, it cost taxpayers 6.1 billion hours to comply with tax code just last year. This is a staggering amount of money. And it is money that is not available for consumption, business investment, or job creation. That’s a problem.
“The President often speaks of making investments in our economy. If he means allowing taxpayers and businesses to keep more of their hard earned dollars, and providing them the freedom to invest where they choose, I’m all for it. Unfortunately, I’m afraid he means more government spending and more government control. The lesson we all should have learned from the pitiful results of the $814 billion stimulus bill, is that growing government does not grow our economy or create long term, self-sustaining jobs. It is the private sector that creates jobs.
“History proves that governments do not know how to efficiently allocate capital. Millions of private individuals, acting independently within the free market system, do it best. We need to encourage and incentivize entrepreneurs, not tax and regulate them out of business.
“We’ve also heard the President talk about controlling spending and the deficit. If he’s serious about it, he should present a serious plan. If he does, I feel confident Republicans will be willing to help him get it passed.
“In his response to the State of the Union Address, my fellow Wisconsinite Paul Ryan – a leader in tackling our spending problem - did a great job of expressing our willingness to work with the President, and pointing out how critical it is for us to act now, before it’s too late.
“The issues of spending, deficits, and the debt will be central in the upcoming debate over the 2011 spending bill and the need to raise the debt ceiling. This will be the moment of truth when talk and rhetoric must be turned into action and tangible results. Real reductions must be part of the solution.
“As a business person, I’m used to getting things done. I came here to accomplish something, to help solve the very serious problems facing our nation. I also came to Washington with a deep reverence for the genius of our founding Fathers, what they passed on to us, and what they hoped we would preserve. Their fight for freedom, their belief in the power of the free market system, and their vision of a limited government is what has made America the greatest nation in the history of mankind.
“It is our honor and our duty to be worthy stewards of this legacy. It is our turn to act responsibly.
SENATE REPUBLICAN COMMUNICATIONS CENTER