Dec 03 2012
This week in Washington, Congressional leaders and the President continued to negotiate a solution to avert the looming “fiscal cliff” set to take effect January 1, 2013. As you may know, the so-called fiscal cliff is a combination of mandatory federal spending cuts and caps, and increases in tax rates for all Americans. As the conversations regarding this critical issue continue in Washington, I will stand up for a plan that assists our nation’s small businesses to grow and create more jobs.
On Wednesday, I was pleased to meet with the Texas Association of Business President, Bill Hammond, to discuss the various proposals that are being debated regarding the fiscal cliff and their impact on the business community in Texas. During our meeting, we agreed that any package passed by Congress must prioritize job creation and economic growth. We both understand that our nation’s small businesses, which drive job creation, will be negatively affected by an increase in tax rates.
House Republicans have brought forth a responsible, balanced plan to avoid the fiscal cliff and to prevent the projected 710,000 jobs from being lost as a result of President Obama’s proposal. In a sharp contrast to our approach, Democrats in Congress continue to advocate for job-restraining tax increases that will not solve our nation’s debt crisis. I strongly believe that job creation should be a bipartisan issue, and I will continue to urge my colleagues to join me in supporting policies that will get our economy back on track.
STEM Jobs Act
On Friday, the House passed the STEM Jobs Act (H.R. 6429), legislation sponsored by Congressman Lamar Smith (TX-21). The STEM Jobs Act would eliminate the diversity visa program and reallocate up to 55,000 visas to the most highly qualified foreign graduates of American universities with advanced degrees in science, technology, engineering, and math.
The STEM Jobs Act makes our nation’s immigration system smarter while stimulating job growth and strengthening global competiveness by allow the U.S. to retain more foreign graduates of our universities. Boosting our nation’s access to top talent and sources of creativity will provide an opportunity for more innovative ideas to be made in America and more job opportunities to be created. I am encouraged that the House passed this common-sense legislation, and remain committed to policies that will help reenergize our economy and create a brighter future for our nation.
Ralph Hall Tribute
On Tuesday, I was delighted to join several of my colleagues on the House floor in recognizing my dear friend from Rockwall, Congressman Ralph Hall (TX-04). As he cast his votes on Tuesday night, Congressman Hall became the oldest known Member of Congress to vote in the House of Representatives. I was honored to be a part of the special tribute to him on Tuesday evening, and commend him for his dedicated service to the people of Texas and our nation.
North Texans Visiting DC
On Wednesday, I was pleased to meet with the North Texas Crime Commission and to take them on a night tour of the United States Capitol. During our tour, we discussed the importance of proper security and law enforcement for North Texans. I was delighted to spend time with the group during their annual trip to our nation’s capital, and value the opportunity to hear about their contributions to our community. To learn more about the North Texas Crime Commission, visit http://www.ntcrimecomm.org/
Congressman Pete Sessions with the North Texas Crime Commission
On Friday, I was delighted to welcome the eighth grade class of West Dallas Community School to Washington and to accompany them on a White House tour. Every winter, the school brings their eighth grade class to visit D.C. as a part of their American History studies. I’m pleased that I was able to be a part of their visit and enjoyed discussing the significance of our nation’s history with them.
Congressman Pete Sessions with students from West Dallas Community School
Holiday Mail for Heroes
During the holiday season, it is always important to remember those who are serving our nation. On Wednesday, the Red Cross hosted a “Holiday For Heroes” event at the US Capitol to allow Members of Congress and our staffs to have the opportunity to send holiday cards to our troops. I was delighted to have the opportunity to express my gratitude to those who have selflessly sacrificed for American prosperity and security. If you are interested in learning more about the program and how to get involved, visit http://www.redcross.org/support/get-involved/holiday-mail-for-heroes.
Congressman Sessions signing holiday cards for troops