U.S. Congressman Mike Pence represents Indiana's 6th district. He was elected House Republican Conference Chairman by his colleagues in 2008. Frequently named by political commentators as a potential 2012 Republican presidential candidate, he delivered the following address on a growth agenda for the U.S. economy earlier today to the Detroit Economic Club. The speech has been distributed by the House Republican Conference.
In the speech, Pence argues:
- We need to restore American exceptionalism by rejecting Keynsian stimulus spending and restoring free market economics.
- We should enact a constitutional amendment that caps federal spending at 20 percent of GDP.
- We should end the Federal Reserve's dual mandate - price stability and full employment - and return it to its original purpose of price stability only.
- We need to recognize that simplicity and certainty in the tax code are related to positive growth and institute a flat tax that eliminates most loopholes, exemptions, and deductions.
- America needs an "all-of-the-above" energy policy that involves conservation, alternative fuels, and more nuclear power.
- Any new regulation that will have an economic impact of $100 million or more should be subjected to an extensive review and subject to re-certification every ten years - instead of being eternally on the books, as is the case now.
- We need to reject protectionism and broker more free trade agreements that get more of the world "buying American."
- We need to understand as a nation that, ultimately, our economic strength is driven by our public virtue, which in turn is rooted in our culture, families, and faith.
Thank you, L. Brooks Patterson, for that kind introduction and heartfelt thanks to Beth Chappell and all the members of the Detroit Economic Club for hosting me. For 75 years, the Detroit Economic Club has been a premier venue for leaders interested in saying something significant about our economy and I am genuinely grateful to be able to join the ranks of those who had the privilege to “say it here.”
And it's great to be in Detroit- home to Motown, the Lions (you know who this Colts fan was cheering for on Thanksgiving!) and the "Car Capital of the World.”
My father ran a chain of gas stations so, like most Americans, I have had a life long love affair with the automobile. Try to imagine America without the Ford Mustang, the Chevrolet Corvette, or the Dodge Charger.
Being from Indiana, I am especially proud of the role that Hoosiers have played and continue to play in this unique American industry. And it all started here in Detroit. America owes a debt to the ingenuity and entrepreneurism of this great city. You helped define the character of a nation.
But Detroit and America have seen better days and I come to this storied podium to say after years of runaway federal spending, borrowing and bailouts by both political parties, that there is a better way, a way we can renew American exceptionalism by returning to the principles and practices that built this great city and this great country and can build it again.
We live in no ordinary times. Our economy is struggling in the city and on the farm. Unemployment is at a heartbreaking 9.6 percent nationally and nearly 13 percent in Michigan. Nearly 42 million Americans on food stamps. A housing crisis and dismal GDP growth.
And it seems that those in authority have no idea what to do about it. Some in the administration call it the “new normal.” (like we haven’t heard that before) In the 70’s they called it a national “malaise.”
With more than 15 million people still looking for work, President Obama and Democrats in Congress have tried to borrow and spend the country back to prosperity resulting in trillion dollar plus annual deficits and a nearly $14 trillion national debt. To this runaway federal spending they added a government takeover of health care, attempted a national energy tax and approved one bailout after another.