Tags: eric | cantor | gop | government | abuse

Republicans Launch Effort to Combat 'Government Abuse'

Saturday, 27 Jul 2013 11:21 AM

By Sandy Fitzgerald

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House Republicans are taking several steps to combat the "government abuse" that is threatening Americans' paychecks, including pushing legislation to keep the Internal Revenue Service from having an "unholy union" with healthcare, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor said Saturday in the weekly GOP address.

"Many in Washington have forgotten the most important principle -- that the federal government works for you -- and not the other way around," said Cantor. "All the while, an out-of-touch government in Washington continues to abuse its power and put special interests first while hard-working Americans are left to foot the bill."



Cantor said the House will use the last week of July -- as the House heads toward its August recess -- to further address government abuses during a "Stop Government Abuse Week." The effort is being spearheaded by Cantor, of Virginia, and House Republican Study Committee Chairman Steve Scalise of Louisiana. 

One of the major fights will likely concern healthcare, and a mandate that the IRS assess taxes on people who do not obtain insurance.

Related: House to Launch 'Stop Government Abuse Week'

"A few weeks ago, the White House announced it would delay the employer mandate under Obamacare," said Cantor. "The evidence is clear, this law is threatening job growth and turning full-time jobs into part-time jobs. On top of the negative economic and health consequences of Obamacare, the law requires an unholy union between the IRS and your protected health information."

The IRS' recent record of abuses, including targeting of conservative organizations and overspending when it comes to training conferences and travel point to an agency that should be kept away from private health information, Cantor said.

House Republicans have been talking tough about the IRS for months, and in June, the House Appropriations Committee rolled out a proposal that would cut $3.2 billion — roughly 24 percent of the agency’s fiscal 2014 budget, at the same time President Barack Obama s proposing a $1 billion increase for the agency.

Related: House Republicans Push for IRS Cuts

"Recently all of us have been finding out more about the IRS, its activities, and its databases," said Cantor. "The doctor’s office is the last place anyone would want to find the IRS. Your health care information is private and should remain so."

House Republicans also plan, for the last week of July, to work on measures to "cut government waste by passing legislation that prevents Washington bureaucrats from recklessly spending your tax dollars," Cantor said in Saturday's speech. "We will ensure senior government officials accused of serious offenses and unethical conduct won’t be paid while under investigation; we will put an end to lavish conferences and employee retreats by requiring online disclosures and prior approval by senior officials; and we will stop the excessive granting of hefty bonuses to government employees."

Cantor also promised that House Republicans will use the week heading into the recess to restore faith in the economy.

"Intrusive government regulations continue to hurt job growth and make your paycheck smaller," said Cantor.

Congress will also consider the REINS Act, which requires congressional approval for federal regulations that cost over $100 million that threaten to "impact and add costs to our businesses and working families," said Cantor.

Finally, Cantor said House Republicans plan to move forward legislation that guarantees a citizen's right to record conversations with federal regulators, and an act requiring government agencies to adopt customer service standards.

"How a government employee interacts with you the taxpayer must be considered when it comes time to evaluate how well they do their job," Cantor said.

He called on Americans to help with getting the bills passed.

"Please visit CoSponsor.gov to learn more about these reforms and voice your opinion by becoming a citizen co-sponsor of any or all of these bills," he said. "You can also go to Twitter and support these measures by tweeting #StopGovtAbuse."


Cantor said the legislations should receive bipartisan support, not just the backing of Republicans, " because these are not just reforms we want, these are reforms our nation needs. Enacting these reforms is one step towards rebuilding the trust in our government and faith in our economy."


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