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September 25th, 2010

Can You Afford The Status Quo?

By Senator Paul McKinley

Good leaders learn from their mistakes while others just continue to repeat them.

Governor Culver is repeating his.

Culver said this week that if voters give him another term – he wants to continue the status quo and stay the course with his current economic policies.

Staying the course means following the same path of the last four years that has given us unacceptably high unemployment, the most debt and four biggest budgets in state history and an upcoming $1 billion dollar budget deficit. Iowa cannot afford for that to continue and likely neither can your family’s budget.

You might have seen some of Culver’s recent advertisements on your television saying he’s made mistakes but he’ll do better in the future if given the opportunity. Yet his proposals suggest otherwise.

They show he and the Culver Democrats are out of new ideas for growing Iowa’s economy and creating jobs and we’ll only be saddled with more of the same – four more years of expensive disappointment.

On the issue of jobs and the economy, the two parties have vastly different approaches.

As we have seen the last four years, Culver and his party members in the Legislature believe the best way to move forward is to let government pick winners and losers. They want to create large pots of taxpayer dollars like Culver’s failed I-JOBS program, create a small elite board to dole it out, while also systematically working to undermine Iowa’s job climate by raising property taxes, pushing the detrimental labor boss agenda and eliminating federal deductibility. It’s only a smaller version of what President Obama and the Democratic Congress has tried at a federal level and that too has been proven to be wasteful, ineffective and inefficient.

Where has that agenda gotten us? Iowa Workforce Development announced on Tuesday that Iowa’s unemployment rate continues to creep higher. We now have 114,200 unemployed Iowans – an increase of 900 from the previous month. A year ago we had 104,900 out-of-work Iowans. Our state lost 222 manufacturing plants in 2009 and two-thirds of our counties lost population because of a lack of job opportunities.

What Senate Republicans are proposing is a recommitment to the principles that have built this state and nation into the envy of all the world. We recognize that government does not create jobs (though it sure can kill them) – it’s the private sector, small businesses, employers and entrepreneurs that will create jobs. We believe it’s time to empower the individual – not the government.

Small businesses and employers need confidence and certainty – they need to feel comfortable that government is not going to rock the boat by raising taxes, imposing new mandates and radically altering the labor-management balance. Iowa’s families and job creators need real and broad-based property tax relief and responsible government budgets that do not get bigger at the expense of the family budget.

It’s time to unleash the entrepreneurial spirit and ingenuity of the private sector to again lead the economic revitalization of Iowa. Our state is dotted with businesses and employers who have grown into the life-blood and bedrock of their communities and it is time to again make Iowa a state that is open to growth, expansion and relocation.

What Iowa offers is unmatched and unsurpassed. Our people are hardworking, compassionate and truly interested in building a better Iowa for their children, grandchildren and future generations of Iowans. They deserve a government whose leaders also reflect that special belief that tomorrow will be better than today.

A bigger, more powerful government is not the answer – that is the status quo and we cannot afford for that to be repeated. It’s time to learn from the mistakes of the last four years – and instead work to empower all Iowans to build better lives for their families and those in their communities.

Photo by Dave Davidson

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The Iowa Republican

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