E-Newsletter: Week of March 1, 2010
I. Marchant cosponsors Spending Limit Amendment
I have joined as a cosponsor of the Spending Limit Amendment (authored by Reps. Hensarling (R-TX), Pence (R-IN), and Campbell (R-CA)) which would amend the U.S. Constitution, limiting spending to one-fifth of GDP (the historical spending average since World War II). Although the legislation does not state what programs to restrain or by how much to maintain the historical average of 20%, it does provide a Constitutional imperative for controlling overall spending. The importance of this Constitutional Amendment cannot be underscored. Currently, federal spending is at 24.7% of our GDP with long-terms projecting that number to rise to 40% as baby boomers begin to retire and entitlement programs grow. If you’d like to know more about this legislation you can access the following links below.
Text of the Legislation: http://mikepence.house.gov/images/stories/hensar_156_xml_3-1-10.pdf
Short Summary: http://mikepence.house.gov/images/stories/sla_one-page_final.pdf
Long Summary: http://www.gop.gov/resources/library/documents/misc/SLA-3-2-10-web.pdf
II. Marchant introduces E-Verify Loan Origination Act
On Wednesday, March 3rd, I introduced a new bill, H.R. 4744 E-Verify Loan Origination Act, which requires as a condition for purchase of a home mortgage loan by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac, and insurance of a home mortgage loan under the National Housing Act, that the borrower be verified under the E-Verify program. This is a companion to a bill I introduced last month, H.R. 4587 Mortgage E-Verify Act, which requires as a condition for modification of a home mortgage loan held by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac or insured under the National Housing Act, that the borrower be verified under the E-Verify program. Fundamentally, the federal government should not be subsidizing housing purchases for illegal immigrants.
III. This week’s votes on the floor, hearings, and markups
Each week I get the opportunity to represent you in Congress by: 1) voting on legislation that comes to the House floor; and 2) participating in committee hearings and markups for the Committee on Financial Services.
Key House Floor Votes
On Thursday, March 4th, I opposed H.R. 2847 Non-Stimulus 2.0. The bill, which passed with 35 Democrats joining all but 6 Republicans in opposition, concerned me on a number of levels. The bill’s text was released roughly 6 hours before we were to vote on it. Rather than passing a bill with permanent, meaningful tax relief, this bill includes a net tax increase of $14.3 billion. It also includes $31.3 billion in timing tax shift gimmicks (used to comply with PAYGO), forcing companies to pay their taxes earlier than they had anticipated. Add to that another $50 billion in deficit spending, and it is easy to see how unstimulating this bill is.
Committee on Financial Services
Financial Services Markup
On Wednesday, March 3rd, the full Committee held a markup entitled “Views and Estimates of the Committee on Financial Services on Matters to be Set Forth in the Concurrent Resolution on the Budget for Fiscal Year 2011.” This annual markup allows the Committee to submit its view of the budget to the Budget Committee on all matters under its jurisdiction.
IV. Recommended reading
The Quants: How a New Breed of Math Whizzes Conquered Wall Street and Nearly Destroyed It by Scott Patterson is the story of four math whizzes who used complex mathematical formulas done by computers only – not traditional financial analysis (which includes a human element) – to make billions. Rather than relying on instincts and tried and true practices, they relied entirely on computers to make judgments on billions of dollars in transactions, which worked…until it didn’t, leading to a financial disaster that shook the foundations of Wall Street and our economy. For men so confident that they had worked the system to their advantage, it’s interesting to read about the doubt that creeps in when they begin to reap the whirlwind they had sown.
V. Great Quotes in History
“We are taxing ourselves into economic exhaustion and stagnation, crushing our ability and incentive to save, invest and produce. This must stop.”
-Ronald Reagan, 40th President of the United States
“We have a system that increasingly taxes work and subsidizes nonwork.”
-Milton Friedman, author of There’s No Such Thing as a Free Lunch
“Liberals seem to assume that, if you don't believe in their particular political solutions, then you don't really care about the people that they claim to want to help.”
-Thomas Sowell, author of The Vision of the Anointed: Self-Congratulation as a Basis for Social Policy
I am honored to represent the 24th District of Texas, and appreciate your interest in my e-newsletter. Please contact my District or DC office with any further questions you may have or visit my website at www.marchant.house.gov. You can also become my Facebook friend here or follow me on Twitter at http://twitter.com/RepKenMarchant.