Passing the recent deal to raise the debt ceiling stabilizes our economy by renewing confidence in the U.S. government's ability to meet its obligations. Part of the deal provided for the establishment of a bipartisan "super committee" to provide recommendations on how to tackle the budget deficit. The committee of twelve members, chosen by Democratic and Republican Party leaders from both Congressional houses, will take on the difficult task of reducing our budget deficit by $1.5 trillion over the next 10 years, with a bipartisan solution due before Thanksgiving.
While this committee works against its November 23 deadline, we must keep our nation's priorities in mind. We must continue to protect this country. We must not permit the middle class to shoulder the entire burden of balancing our nation's budget. Most Americans agree that any budget deficit reduction plan must include revenue increases; however, any revenue increases must elicit contributions from all Americans regardless of income. We need to make tough choices, but this cannot be accomplished without shared sacrifice. This will require lengthy and thorough dialogue between all parties, where will we need to come together and put the good of the American people above all other interests.
I will not vote for any measure this committee makes without a clear demonstration that it involves shared sacrifice by all. I cannot vote for a budget that decimates the programs that middle class Americans rely on, when Wall Street is still getting billions in unjustified tax breaks. I understand that certain aspects of our social entitlement programs must be adjusted to ensure solvency for future generations, and the passage of the health care reform act was the first step in that process. But we still need to recognize that with a still sputtering economy, these programs are more important than ever, and serve as a tremendous help to families nationwide.
Now with this historic debt deal in place, it is time to turn the page and focus on the real problems facing Americans, namely jobs. Nothing should be more important than creating jobs in America. With a national unemployment rate of 9.2% and an unemployment rate of 10.5% in Michigan, creating jobs has to be policy makers' number one priority. Congress must not stop focusing on job creation to instead only concentrate on the budget deficit detour while countless Americans are looking for work. This is not going to be an easy task, but I am fully committed to doing everything I can to help Americans find employment and ensuring the financial security of their families over the years to come.
We as politicians cannot be distracted from job creation for the sake of political gamesmanship at the cost of the American taxpayer. I will not fall victim to this, and I call on my colleagues in Congress to do the same.
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