Cantor: No more government ‘gimmicks’ on economy

May 28, 2011
By Bernie Becker –  The Hill
Rep. Eric Cantor used the GOP’s weekly address to push his party’s “Cut and Grow” strategy.

Rep. Eric Cantor (R-Va.) continued the rollout of the House GOP economic growth package Saturday, using the party’s weekly address to press the case that Republicans will get government out of the way of job creators.

“For too long, Washington has relied on gimmicks or government-knows-best solutions,” said Cantor, the House majority leader. “No more. Now, more than ever, our nation needs small businesses and entrepreneurs to get people back to work.”

The Virginia Republican’s address comes shortly after his conference unveiled the second part of what they call a “Cut and Grow” strategy, an initiative Cantor has been pushing throughout his almost five months as majority leader.

The economic growth plan features proposals that Republicans have already been pushing for, including reducing top tax rates to 25 percent, passing a trio of pending trade agreements, rolling back government regulations and overhauling the nation’s patent system. 

It is also seen as having little chance at gaining the support of either President Obama or a Senate led by Democrats.

Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), the House minority leader, called the plan “warmed over stew” on Thursday, but House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) responded that the ideas remain strong, even if they aren’t right out of the box.

“Frankly, this administration’s regulators have gone on an ideological offensive against businesses that is costing our country billions of dollars and countless jobs,” Cantor said in the weekly address. “Yet this administration is telling America’s businessmen and women to create more jobs.”

At the same time, Cantor also spoke more broadly about the Republican plan, trying to cast it in historical terms and using Memorial Day to make the case that the U.S. has traditionally preferred restrained government.

“Whether it was the American Revolution, the Industrial Revolution or the Internet Revolution: we are unique in our ability to apply creativity, intellect and leadership to solve any problem,” Cantor said. “Now we face new obstacles as this country finds itself at a crossroads. Before us is a choice about who we want to be as a country.”

“This Memorial Day,” he added, “we are reminded that the true grit of Americans is passed from one generation to the next, so long as government remains limited and opportunity remains unlimited, through free markets and a fair playing field.”

The House’s No. 2 Republican also expressed his condolences to the victims of the tornadoes that have devastated the Midwest recently.

“As we spend time with family this weekend, our thoughts and prayers are with the people of Joplin, Mo., Oklahoma City and other areas of our country that are facing unthinkable circumstances and terribly tragedy,” he said. “Please know that Congress stands ready for a request for funding from President Obama to ensure that resources are available to help these communities rebuild and recover.”

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