Op-Eds

Originally printed in the Daily Caller, June 20th, 2011

Prior to being elected to the United States Senate last November, I spent 31 years building a plastics manufacturing business in Oshkosh, Wisconsin. My educational background is in accounting and finance, but when you help start a business from scratch, you wind up doing just about everything. I operated machinery, loaded trucks and railcars, hired and trained the staff, kept the books, paid taxes, purchased raw materials, sold our finished products, did payroll, opened mail, emptied trash, and made coffee.
Why am I telling you this?

Because I’m not in the least bit unusual. Every day, millions of hard-working business owners, and the good people that work with them, struggle to build a good life for themselves and their families. They are the backbone of America. They work hard and play by the rules. And they live within their means.

Why can’t Washington?
Printed in the Washington Post, June 16th, 2011

Obamacare poses two great dangers to our nation: lower quality of care and runaway costs. It will stifle innovation and lead to rationing. But the overwhelming cost and the damage it will do to our nation’s finances at a pivotal moment in our history deserve greater scrutiny.

The promises Obamacare supporters have made about the ultimate cost of the program are based on highly unlikely premises. Those who support the 2010 health-care law are betting that costs will remain under control largely because its central feature — health insurance exchanges, which amount to a centralized, government-run market of subsidized insurance policies — will not be all that popular. They are counting on the notion that when the government offers “free” money, there will be few takers. This is not realistic.
Originally printed in the Racine Journal Times, May 17th, 2011

One year ago, I decided to step up to the plate and run for the U.S. Senate. I made that decision because I believe that for too long, elected officials from both parties have not told the American people the truth.

Their intentions may have been good, but many simply did not understand the long-term consequences of their actions.

They took an oath to defend the Constitution, but ignored a primary purpose of that document – to define and limit government.
Originally printed in Investors' Business Daily, April 15th, 2011

Monday is Tax Day, when we collectively "celebrate" the passage of the 16th Amendment. If we want to identify a single catalyst for the growth of the federal government, this would be a prime candidate.

When the amendment was conceived, few could have imagined how dramatically it would empower the growth of government — and the extraordinary influence it would exert over economic growth and job-creation.
Thank you Mr. President. It is my honor to represent the good people of Wisconsin in the United States Senate. It is an awesome responsibility - a responsibility I take very seriously.

Today, it is my distinct privilege to address this historic body for the first time. It is a moment in time when our nation is in peril. Not only do we continue to face the very real threat of international terrorism, but we also face a threat of our own making - one that challenges the very foundation of this republic.

Mar 23 2011

Wall Street Journal: ObamaCare and Carey's Heart

My daughter probably wouldn't have survived in a system where bureaucrats stifle innovation and ration care.

Originally printed in the Wall Street Journal, March 23rd, 2011

Today is the first anniversary of the greatest single assault on our freedom in my lifetime: the signing of ObamaCare. As we consider what this law may do to our country, I can’t help but reflect on a medical miracle made possible by the American health-care system. It’s one that holds special meaning for me.

Some years ago, a little girl was born with a serious heart defect: Her aorta and pulmonary artery were reversed. Without immediate intervention, she would not have survived.
Originally printed in Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, January 25th, 2011

Dear Mr. President,

Welcome to Wisconsin.

November's election sent a clear message to Washington. Simply stated, millions of Americans believe that government is too large, too intrusive and spends too much of our hard-earned money.

The median household earns $49,777. Last year, the federal government spent $3.6 trillion, which calculates to over $31,000 per household. Of that amount, $1.3 trillion (40%) was borrowed. Our nation's debt now has surpassed $14 trillion. These are staggering figures. The people of Wisconsin realize this is not sustainable.