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July 26, 2007

A Real Competitiveness Bill

Today’s Downsizer-Dispatch . . .
Last week the House passed 11 bills and 235 pages of legislation. The Senate passed just two bills, but they totaled 365 pages, including H.R. 2272, the “America COMPETES Act.”

A title like that suggests Congress will finally allow Americans to compete in the global economy. But, as one might expect, the bill turned out to be 288 pages of grant programs that take your money to give to somebody else. How can businesses compete if the government, not you the consumer, decides where your money goes?

A real competitiveness bill would cut taxes, simplify the tax laws, and repeal burdensome regulations that hurt small business and drives corporations overseas. It would also allow businesses, families, and local communities to find ways to improve education without rules or other “help” from the federal government. Individuals are the best problem-solvers, and voluntary agreements are more efficient than laws and taxes. To improve America’s economic competitiveness, we must Downsize DC.

The Read the Bills Act would mean bills like H.R. 2272 would never see the light of day. The RTBA requires that each bill, and every amendment, must be read in its entirety before a quorum in both the House and Senate, with no exceptions. Congress won’t have time to pass lengthy bills like H.R. 2272. With RTBA we would see legislative triage, where Congress will pass only the most urgent bills that have the most support. It simply won’t have time for pet projects or long, complicated bills. The federal government’s laws, agencies, and programs will be downsized to a level that Congress can manage. The RTBA is an important key to downsizing the federal government, which means it could unlock American competitiveness and prosperity.

Please tell your Representative and Senators to introduce and pass the Read the Bills Act here.

If you are not familiar with the Read the Bills Act, you may learn about it here.

And if you would like to add your blog or website to the Read the Bills Act Coalition, we will link to it at our blog. You can learn more about joining the Coalition here.

We have one new member of the Coalition this week:

Fuglyville

Finally, we have provided complete list of the bills Congress passed last week. We tell you their length and provide links to roll call votes. The list can be found below my signature.

Thank you for being a DC Downsizer.

James Wilson
Assistant to the President
DownsizeDC.org, Inc.

The following are the bills the House and Senate passed last week. The bills were passed by voice vote except where indicated. For roll call votes, you can click the link to see how individual members of Congress voted. Page numbers of bills are based on the pdf display of the latest version from the Government Printing Office.

HOUSE

H.R. 2547 – FDIC Enforcement Enhancement Act – 7 pages

H.R. 1980 – Housing Assistance Council Authorization Act (Passed 350-49) – 3 pages

H.R. 1982 – Rural Housing and Economic Development Improvement Act (Passed 350-49) – 3 pages

H.R. 2570 – To designate the facility of the United States Postal Service located at 301 Boardwalk Drive in Fort Collins, Colorado, as the “Dr. Karl E. Carson Post Office Building” – 2 pages

H.R. 2293 – To require the Secretary of State to submit to Congress a report on efforts to bring to justice the Palestinian terrorists who killed John Branchizio, Mark Parson, and John Marin Linde – 8 pages

S. 966 – Department of State Crisis Response Act of 2007 – 2 pages

H.R. 781 – To redesignate Lock and Dam No. 5 of the McClellan-Kerr Arkansas River Navigation System near Redfield, Arkansas, authorized by the Rivers and Harbors Act approved July 24, 1946, as the “Colonel Charles D. Maynard Lock and Dam” – 4 pages

H.R. 799 – Appalachian Regional Development Act Amendments of 2007  (Passed 332-70) – 16 pages

H.R. 980 – Public Safety Employer-Employee Cooperation Act  (Passed 314-97) – 18 pages

H.R. 2641 – Energy & Water Appropriations Act, 2008  (Passed 312-112)  – 42 pages

H.R. 3043 – Labor, Health & Human Services, Education Appropriations Act, 2008 (Passed 276-140
 – 130 pages

SENATE

H.R. 2272 – 21st Century Competitiveness Act – 288 pages

H.R. 2269 – Higher Education Access Act: (Passed 78 -18) – 77 pages

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