The Leader's Ledger

Posted by Jessica Straus on

Good Morning,

With all eyes on the Supreme Court this week, it’s important to remember it’s about jobs and the economy. The Obama Administration’s policies have done nothing to get the economy going or create jobs, and the American people are continuing to lose confidence that the economy can get back on track. In contrast, for the past year and a half, House Republicans have been focused on pro-growth policies that will reduce taxes and harmful regulations and spur economic growth and job creation. This morning, Leader Cantor discussed Republicans’ pro-growth vision for job creation on CNBC, saying: “How do we provide the platform for innovators, for investors, for people who want to go take a risk, to allocate their capital, put it to work in this country? Let's get back to the business of growing. I think that if we all can focus on job creation, creating the environment for a better investment outlook, that's what America does best.”

This Day In History: In 1945, the U.N. Charter was signed. In the wake of the failed League of Nations inability to prevent the outbreak of World War II, 50 nations established the world body as a means of saving “succeeding generations from the scourge of war.” The first U.N. General Assembly opened on January 10, 1946 and since its inception the Nobel Peace Prize has been awarded more than ten times to the U.N., its organizations, and individual U.N. officials.

Birthdays: Jon McHenry, Laura Litvan, Derek Jeter, Chesty Puller, Chad Pennington, Sam Watkins, Michael Vick, Dave Grusin, Pearl S. Buck, Wolfgang Reitherman, and Peter Lorre

Here Are The Top Stories We're Watching:

1. State Of Play: Leader Cantor: House Committed To Repealing ObamaCare, Focusing On Patient Choice. House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) on Tuesday said GOP lawmakers were committed to repealing President Obama’s healthcare law and better controlling health costs if the Supreme Court left any provisions standing in its upcoming ruling. “There's clearly a consensus at least in the House of Representatives that ‘ObamaCare’ was a mistake and that we need to really repeal the law so we can get back to the kind of healthcare outlook most Americans are looking for,” said Cantor on CNBC’s Squawk Box. “What we hope to have happen if the court only strikes down a portion of the law, the House will move to repeal the whole thing and then we will begin to go and put back together a healthcare plan that actually stresses choice on the part of families, the ability to access the kind of healthcare tailored to your own needs,” he added…Cantor said any GOP effort to replace the bill would need to focus on curbing the rise in healthcare costs, which he said Obama neglected to address in his reforms. “The whole discussion on ObamaCare back in ‘09 started with the president indicating that he wanted to do something about bringing down cost and if we brought down cost somehow we could afford more access to more patients,” said Cantor. “Costs became secondary, if not tertiary, and instead what took its place was coverage and now what we have is an unsustainable situation where under this law which we believe is very flawed Washington’s in control of what goes on between patients and doctors.” “When did it ever work for Washington to go in and set costs to provide quality service? You can think of any number of examples, whether it’s IRS, post office or what have you where most Americans would say ‘wait a minute, I think the private sector could do a lot better,’” added Cantor. The Hill

2. Health Care: Governor Deal: ObamaCare Is a Giant Step In The Wrong Direction. The fact of the matter is that ObamaCare is not only a federal power grab but also an unfunded mandate that will cost the taxpayers of Georgia an additional $4.83 billion over the next 10 years. It takes decision-making away from consumers, away from doctors, and away from the state of Georgia and concentrates it in the hands of unelected federal bureaucrats…You sold the program to the American people with a sticker price of $1 trillion. That was a very high number. However, we are now finding out that, fully loaded, with all the bells and whistles, the real price is $2 trillion (for now)…The No. 1 problem we are facing in this country right now is unemployment and the low rate of economic growth that is causing it. In Georgia, we believe the best way to jumpstart job creation is to give businesses the climate of certainty that would allow them to start investing in new plants and hiring new workers. ObamaCare, and its vast catalog of new rules and regulations, does exactly what we don’t need. It makes it impossible for firms to make any reasonable estimate about the costs and the potential profits from investments. Under these circumstances, they simply don’t hire. Real Clear Politics

3. Tax Debate: Chairman Camp: We Must Stop The Tax Hike, Reform Our Tax Code, Put America On Path To Strong Economic Growth. Simply put, the United States is standing at a cliff — a jobs cliff — and the decisions we make now can either create a climate that helps or hinders the job creation we so deeply need. Pushing us ever closer to the edge of that cliff is the reality that the job creators we’re counting on to move our economy forward and virtually every worker in America is facing the prospect of higher taxes starting Jan. 1 due to the scheduled expiration of the low-tax policies originally enacted in 2001 and 2003. That is, unless we act to stop the tax hike…We must take action to boost economic growth and create jobs by preventing massive tax hikes and providing a fairer, simpler tax code that lowers rates and closes special-interest loopholes. That is why I applaud Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) and House Leader Eric Cantor’s (R-Va.) announcement that House Republicans will act before August to prevent job-killing tax increases, clearly state our principles for comprehensive tax reform and lay out an expedited process for Congress to complete comprehensive tax reform next year…Before August, we will also put forth principles for comprehensive tax reform. Those principles are based on the commonsense tax reform policies included in the last two House-passed budgets, which lower taxes for families and job creators to a top rate of 25 percent, eliminate the alternative minimum tax, transition America to a more competitive territorial tax system and keep revenue levels in the historic norm of 18-19 percent of gross domestic product…Taking action now to prevent tax hikes sends a clear, strong message to the markets, to employers and to families that Washington is serious about reforming our tax code and putting us on a path to strong economic growth. The Hill

4. Small Biz: Slow Growth Sill Forcing Small Businesses To Close Up Shop Or Struggle Just To Get By. The recession technically ended in June 2009, according to The National Bureau of Economic Research, but don't tell that to Ohio business owners who have either closed up shop or continue to struggle with its lingering effects. A sluggish recovery from the economic downturn hasn't exactly inspired much bullishness among business owners, as evidenced by the Nation Federation of Independent Business Index of Small Business Optimism, which dropped a tenth-of-a-point last month to 94.4. That number is "historically low and consistent with the subpar performance of GDP and employment growth," according to the federation…Martin said consumer confidence, or the lack thereof, is the biggest impediment to improving the economy for businesses across all industries. "That's going to come from the lending institutions freeing up money so you can borrow money if you want to buy a house, expand your business or move into a new facility," Martin said. "If you've got $10 million in the bank and you want to borrow $5 million, they'll talk to you, otherwise they've just knee-jerked so much the other way that they're risk-averse." Ohio and the nation won't "turn the corner" on the economy until the home building industry and the job market start to perk up, Hall said. The job market hasn't fared well as of late because many business remain hesitant to hire new staffers until they know the status of President Obama's health care law, currently under review by the U.S. Supreme Court. "That health care bill has been a disincentive to hire because businesses don't know how these health care costs are going to play out," Hall said. "If you're an employer, you're kind of trepidatious about hiring somebody when it's not clear what health coverage is going to be and how it's going to cost you," he said. Hispanic Business

5. Energy Focus: High Energy Prices Continue To Hinder Small Businesses. Energy is a major cost in a substantial share of small businesses. One in 10 small business owners claim that energy is their single greatest cost, greater than wages and salaries, materials and supplies, etc. Another 25 percent claim energy is one of the two or three largest business costs they have. “Small businesses deal with a host of burdens every day, including the high cost of gasoline,” said Chairman Walsh. “This increased cost of doing business is either absorbed by the company - diverting resources away from investment and expansion - or passed along to cash-strapped consumers who have already tightened their belts and cut back.”… James Zuber, Owner of Jc3 Trucking, Inc. in Newton, IL said, "Over the past few years, the trucking industry has been laboring under a steadily increasing amount of regulations from the Department of Transportation, the Environmental Protection Agency, and other agencies. While there is certainly a need for sensible regulation, trucking – especially small business trucking – has been assaulted by a barrage of unnecessary and costly regulation which, when coupled with the rising cost of fuel, are certain to force some small business truckers to park their vehicles. Unfortunately, the answer for many in government to the challenge fuel prices present to truckers is more regulation – instead of common-sense actions like expanding access to American energy.” Small Business Committee

6. Keeping Tabs: The JOBS Act Created A Positive Environment For Economic Growth. Everyone can be an entrepreneur, and thanks to the passage of the JOBS Act, everyone can be an investor. The JOBS Act is a good step in creating a nonpartisan, positive agenda for economic growth, so it’s worth giving a close look at how this bill passed. The short answer is: Washington listened to the entrepreneurs and small businesses of this country. Key parts of the bill didn’t come from lobbyists, established companies, or other usual suspects. Instead, a core provision on “crowdfunding” was first drafted in 2009 by one entrepreneur, who posted the idea on a blog…Crowdfunding may sound odd, but is it any stranger than the existence of Wikipedia, which just a few years ago would have seemed impossible? The Internet allows collaboration and growth at a previously unimaginable scale, enabling small ideas to become world changing ones. Crowdfunding draws on the same large-scale collaboration that Wikipedia does, and routes it to small businesses, the growth engine for our economy. Regulatory barriers were created with good intentions: protecting investors against fraud. But they have also limited the full potential of crowdfunding…The JOBS Act, rightly, didn’t do away with these legal protections entirely. Instead, Congress instructed the Securities and Exchange Commission to adapt them to today’s technological reality. As the SEC moves to define how they’re going to enforce the JOBS Act, they are seeking public comments online – a great example of government encouraging participation in processes that are usually not open to the public… I’m bullish on the ability of what the JOBS Act’s crowdfunding provisions will do for our economy, if it’s implemented well. I’ve been an entrepreneur my whole career; it’s what drew me to Silicon Valley from Canada, and I’ve seen firsthand how the Internet is empowering anyone to be an entrepreneur. Thanks to the Internet, anyone can grow from a start-up in a garage to be the next big thing. Forbes

7. The Road Ahead: House To Vote On Contempt Resolution Thursday. The House plans to vote Thursday on a resolution that would hold Attorney General Eric Holder in contempt for failing to produce documents in the “Fast and Furious” gun-running investigation. A spokeswoman for Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) confirmed on Monday that the vote is scheduled for Thursday. Republicans have said the vote could be postponed if Holder complies with subpoenas issued by the Oversight and Government Reform Committee, but President Obama has invoked executive privilege to shield Holder from releasing them. The oversight committee, led by Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.), voted along party lines last week to recommend a contempt citation. The Hill

Off The Beaten Path:

Two Great-Grandmothers Skydive To Raise Money For Food Pantry

Loch Ness Monster Used To Debunk Evolution In Louisiana School

King James Gives Wedding Couple ‘Money Shot’


GOP Health Care Reforms