Rep. Gardner: My Constituents Are Frustrated With Washington

Friday, 14 Dec 2012 03:47 PM

By John Bachman and Stephen Feller

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Colorado Rep. Cory Gardner said he and his constituents are frustrated by fiscal cliff fixes batted back and forth in Washington because not only is the focus of the debate on raising taxes but because this predictable crisis was created, and then ignored, by Congress itself.

Over-regulation and too much spending is plaguing the economy Gardner said in an exclusive interview with Newsmax TV.

“I’m frustrated, [and] my constituents are frustrated, because they see Washington doing the same exact thing,” he said. “This was the most predictable crisis anybody could ever imagine. So, months ago we knew this was going to happen. It got closer, closer, closer and here we are now days away instead of months away and we’re talking about kicking the can down the road, and the American public, the constituents I represent, they’re tired of it. They want to see tax rates that are lower, not higher. They want to see a fair, flatter system that results in a better, competitive market place. And they want a fix. They don’t want a Band-Aid.”

Watch our exclusive interview. Story continues below.

Speculation in Washington is that the Speaker of the House John Boehner and President Barack Obama will agree to a stopgap fix and leave the heavy lifting, theoretically, until next year.

Gardner said the upcoming debt ceiling and regulatory reform debates early in 2013 are essential to getting the economy moving, and addressing tax reform, the debt and deficit, and then regulatory reform are the ways to do it.

“What we’re going to do to make sure that the government’s getting out of the way,” Gardner said. “If you look at the attacks that are taking place right now on energy developments, I have a district that is booming in energy development. In fact, one of the companies that’s doing business in my district just announced they’re going to be investing $10 billion into the district over the next couple of years to develop national resources.

"And this administration is getting in the way instead out of the way. We should [eliminate] those regulations. Now, when it comes to the debt ceiling, it’s far too early to give this president the keys to the kingdom knowing that he’s going to have a debt ceiling increase. There’s a lot of work that has to be done before anything like that can even be talked about.”

Gardner said his Energy Savings Performance Caucus in the House, created with Vermont Democrat Rep. Peter Welch, is working to find bipartisan private sector opportunities that will save the government money, as well as create jobs.

“It’s all geared around energy savings performance contracts and utility savings contracts which are very simple, market-based ideas,” he said. “Say you’ve got a government building. A private contractor walks in and recognizes, hey, I can save you $5 million if we were to make this building more efficient. The way it works is that private business, they take the risk. They finance the efficiency program and then they are paid through the negotiated savings that the government building receives.”

“So if it you could save $5 million and they’re going to earn a little bit of profit in the meantime that saves the government a significant amount of money, the private sector creates jobs and they make money and the taxpayers save money in the end. With three billion square feet of federal offices, we can save the taxpayers $20 billion.”

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