Published: August 12, 2012
When working families and communities in Tennessee face problems, they work together to find solutions, and they start fixing. Congress needs a lesson on old-fashioned common sense and problem solving instead of just fighting with each other to score political points.
The national organization, "No Labels," is promoting ideas to make Congress work for people who work for a living. Their motto of, "Stop Fighting, Start Fixing," is the direction our country needs, and this is a group that I look forward to working with if elected to serve the people of the 4th Congressional district.
I support many of the ideas proposed by "No Labels," that focus on common sense solutions. These include ideas such as not giving Congress a paycheck when they can't pass a budget (No Budget, No Pay), and forcing Congress to put American people before their political party.
We've got to do something. Congress is broken right now. It's not the Democrats fault. It's not the Republicans fault. Both parties are to blame. That's why the approval rating of Congress is at one of the lowest that it's ever been, with only 17 percent of Americans approving what Congress is doing.
People across this country are trying to find jobs. Congress isn't focused on solutions or problem solving. They're focused on yelling at each other on TV and running millions of dollars in negative advertising to beat each other down.
Negative ads and fighting with each other doesn't create jobs, and bickering never saved one.
Tennesseans deserve to have a Congress that works for them, not a Congress that brags about how little it has accomplished. We've made great strides in this country, but when our elected officials say that they're proud to be part of a "Do Nothing Congress," we've taken big steps in the wrong direction.
We need leaders who will put partisan politics behind and put working families first. We need leaders who will work together. We worked together with Republicans and Democrats during the four years I served in the Tennessee State Senate to pass a balanced budget. We did it with a Democratic governor. We did it with a Republican governor. Congress has only passed a budget on time a total of four times since 1952. We can do better.
I look forward to sharing specific ideas to make government work for the people again in upcoming columns and while I visit voters in the 4th Congressional district.
Congress should work for the people who work for a living.