Matthew Sanders: State of the Union? 'It's complicated'

Published: Wednesday, Feb. 13 2013 9:55 a.m. MST

Why? Taxes and spending are what we call fiscal policies, or how the government gathers and spends money. Small businesses will appreciate his acknowledgment that the tax code needs reform.


Each of these proposals deserves a vote in Congress. If you want to vote no, that's your choice. But these proposals deserve a vote.

Why? Rather than threatening to go solo with executive action, he urged Congress to deliberate and vote. That is the appropriate balance of power.


Instead, we will need to help countries like Yemen, Libya and Somalia provide for their own security, and help allies who take the fight to terrorists, as we have in Mali.

Why? A decade of concentrated military and covert action on Al-Qaida and its supporters has diffused its power and influence. Working to build bridges and capabilities with would-be sponsor states is the right step. However, our vigilance must match the terrorists' vindictiveness.


Senators of both parties are working together on tough new laws to prevent anyone from buying guns for resale to criminals. Police chiefs are asking our help to get weapons of war and massive ammunition magazines off our streets, because they are tired of being outgunned.

Why? Rather than pursue executive action, as was proposed at one point, Congress and the Senate should deliberate and vote on any gun measure. Sensible controls on certain types of weapons is warranted to prevent those most likely to commit crimes from obtaining and using them.

Here are a few points in the speech where I would click "Unlike":


Now, most of us agree that a plan to reduce the deficit must be part of our agenda. But let's be clear: deficit reduction alone is not an economic plan.

Why? Deficit reduction includes changes in spending. Currently government taxes, borrows and spends, which is fiscal policy. Every dollar government taxes or borrows takes it out of private sector consumption or crowds out private investment. Reducing government spending and the burden on private pocket books is absolutely an economic plan.


Right now, there's a bill in this Congress that would give every responsible homeowner in America the chance to save $3,000 a year by refinancing at today's rates. Democrats and Republicans have supported it before. What are we waiting for? Take a vote, and send me that bill. Right now, overlapping regulations keep responsible young families from buying their first home. What's holding us back?

Why? Government has inserted itself plenty in the housing market to the detriment of us all. The sub-prime mortgage bubble and crash was a catastrophic confluence of government incursion and irresponsible banking. A new report by NBER definitively ties the Community Reinvestment Act perpetuation from 1977 on by both parties to the housing crash. It is time to let the housing market work itself out.


Tonight, let's declare that in the wealthiest nation on Earth, no one who works full-time should have to live in poverty, and raise the federal minimum wage to $9.00 an hour....So here's an idea that Governor Romney and I actually agreed on last year: let's tie the minimum wage to the cost of living, so that it finally becomes a wage you can live on.

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