Rep Allen West – Weekly Wrap Up, Legislative Update and Weekly Highlights 1/23/12

Dear Patriot,

Greetings to our constituents, fellow Floridians, and all Americans.

It has been a week of surprises in the GOP primary with John Huntsman and Rick Perry dropping out, a final count in Iowa giving the caucus victory to Rick Santorum, and a blowout win for former Speaker Newt Gingrich in the Palmetto State.

Speaker Gingrich’s victory is a testimony to two factors: debates matter, and people are looking for someone who will fight, both the establishment and the liberal elite media.

We all know Speaker Gingrich is quite at home on a debate stage and he truly showed that this past week. However, even in the light of character attacks, the two confrontations with reporters Juan Williams and John King elevated the Speaker to a different level.

We have had three very different candidates win the first three primary contests of this season. Quite perplexing. It is now on to Florida. Florida will be a true indicator because of its size and varying demographics, from the panhandle to the Florida Keys.

Can Speaker Gingrich maintain this new-found momentum? Can Governor Romney recapture his focus? Will Senator Santorum find a niche in Florida and remain relevant? Buckle up, it’s gonna be a bumpy ride. One thing is for certain, at least our GOP candidates are being fairly vetted and answering hard questions.

As far as the Oval Office, this has been one heck of a week. How many of you know President Obama cancelled the largest-ever joint military exercise with Israel? This exercise was to focus on THAAD (Terminal High Altitude Area Defense), which is a fancy way of saying missile defense. This cancellation came just two days before we found out President Obama had sent a secret communiqué to Iran’s supreme leader requesting talks.

Of course, there are those who say, so what? Well, the so what is that we cancelled the missile defense exercise because we did not want to “offend” Iran. Consider the message it sends to a nation run by theocrats and a mad man whose belligerence knows no bounds.  This comes as we have been considering releasing Afghan Taliban leaders to show good faith to the Taliban in order to begin negotiations. But then again, Vice-President Joe Biden stated we are not at war with the Taliban.

A critical part of our national security, as well as our economy and job creation, is energy independence. President Obama surrendered this week to the State Department to declare the Keystone XL project is not now in the national interest. A project studied over three years needs more time to be studied? I suppose this is what you get from a President who has a history of voting “present” most of his short political career.

America  needs the Keystone XL project now, especially when we here in South Florida are watching China place oil rigs capable of drilling just 45 miles off our coast. This issue is far from over.

On Friday we hit the magic “three year number” for the Obama Administration. By the President’s own words, he stated that if he had not turned things around in three years, he would be a one-term President. However, now he is asking America to give him four more years to fundamentally change America.

I hope Americans ask some fundamental questions before making that decision:

• What was the National debt three years ago?
• What was America’s global competitiveness standing?
• How many more Americans are on the poverty rolls and on food stamps in the last three years?
• What have our deficits been the last three years?
• What was the average price for gasoline three years ago?
• What was the average price for health insurance premiums three years ago?
• What was the price of a gallon of milk or a carton of eggs three years ago?
• How many Americans have lost their jobs or careers in the last three years?

Hardworking American taxpayers and families are losing their economic freedom and individual sovereignty, which is the unmitigated truth.

Tomorrow, President Obama will deliver his State of the Union address.  It is not too late for the President to work with the House of Representatives and develop a plan of action which will restore this great Republic and promote equality of opportunity, not equality of achievement.

Steadfast and Loyal,

Legislative Update:

The House of Representatives had only one day of legislative activity this past week, on Wednesday. The House passed the “Motion of Disapproval” for the President’s requested $1.2 trillion increase to the nation’s debt ceiling. I voted to support the Disapproval of the request to increase the debt.

Highlights of the Week:

– Tuesday, 17 January, flew back to Washington, D.C. and met with Deerfield Beach Mayor Peggy Noland, participated in the House Armed Services Committee Panel on Business Challenges within the Defense Industry, opened up the Second Session of 112th Congress.

– Wednesday, 18 January, participated in a classified House Armed Services Committee members-only briefing on Iranian security and economic developments, participated in a House GOP Freshmen press conference on 1,000 days without a budget.

– Thursday, 19 to Saturday, 21 January, attended the House of Representatives GOP Strategy and Issues Conference in Baltimore, MD.

– Sunday, 22 January, addressed the Galt Ocean Mile L’Hermitage Speakers Club and flew back to Washington, D.C.

– Monday, 23 January, conducted a Black Conservatives Forum on Capitol Hill, see the video of the Forum here.  Spoke at the March for Life Rally.  

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