Rep. Allen West: Congressional Recess Must End

Thursday, 11 Aug 2011 05:08 AM

By Hiram Reisner

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Rep. Allen West says although the House has completed considerable budget work, both congressional legislative bodies need to heed House Majority Leader Eric Cantor’s words and cut their summer recess short. The Florida freshman Republican also said a good spending-cut start would be to eliminate duplicative legislative programs.
“When you look at the fact that we passed seven appropriations bills out of 12 in the House of Representatives, but the Senate has not taken action on any of those appropriations bills, and by the time we would have come back, it would be 7 September, which pushes us up to a new fiscal year, and what you’re going to end up hearing once again is continuing resolutions and omnibus,” West said.

“And we’re looking at a Senate that has not passed a budget in about 829 days, but I think that we need to go back up as the House of Representatives to continue to do the work that we’re supposed to do and complete the appropriations bills,” he said.

Fox News host Greta Van Susteren asked since the House has completed a majority of its appropriations agenda, shouldn’t the onus be placed on the Senate to return first.

 “Both of us need to get back up there,” West said. “Look, earlier this year, the GAO put out a report that said there were about $200 billion to $300 billion of duplicative programs in Washington, D.C. — that’s a great start for us.”

“When I was an officer in the military, we had what was called ‘Def Con 1’ — defense condition one,” the former U.S. Army lieutenant colonel said. “That means all leaves and all passes were canceled and it was all hands on deck — and I think that we’re at that point in time right now.

“We’ve got work to do — and I don’t think that this is the time for me to sit back and point fingers at the Senate,” West continued. “But America right now needs leadership, and I would say that America is like a rudderless ship at sea in a very tumultuous storm and we’re headed toward the rocks and no one’s at the helm. And I think that someone needs to step up and show some leadership in this country.”

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