The choice facing voters in 2012

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Apologists would say it was ambitious to think we could put the train in reverse and back it off the cliff in such a short time. But there can be no one who would say it is acceptable or excusable to drive the train even further into the abyss.

And yet, that is precisely where the Obama Administration has led the American people. Whether it is through sheer ineptitude or calculated design, the result is the same.

No objective measurement can demonstrate the president’s policies have improved the lives of Americans or made our nation stronger. Never before have voters faced so stark a contrast and so critical a decision point.

On every single issue, staying the course will serve only to accelerate the fall into the deep chasm, taking with it the hopes, livelihood and security of this nation and its citizens.

Fiscal policy


Since 2009, our national debt has swollen by almost $6 trillion to an incomprehensible $16 trillion. The Obama Administration is borrowing $4 billion. Every. Single. Day. With every billion borrowed, we drive down the value of our dollar, saddle our children with insurmountable debt and raise the specter of fiscal collapse. But how does the administration address this madness? With even greater insanity -- named “QE3” -- where we print money in order to buy our own debt. Even median family income has decreased by 2.6% to 4% -- so much for the middle class.

Defense

If Sequestration is allowed to indiscriminately gut our military across-the-board, we will be left with the smallest ground force since 1940, the smallest Navy since 1915, and the smallest Air Force in its history. At a time of increasing tension on multiple fronts, and almost daily threats from Iran to annihilate Israel, it is irresponsible to allow our military to shrink and the defense of our nation to be left vulnerable. Above all, it is shameful that we would leave the brave men and women who volunteer to protect us without the necessary resources to protect themselves.

Medicare

The 2012 Medicare Trustees reports estimates Medicare in its entirety will be insolvent in just twelve years. However, even the Trustees admit the actual date might be even sooner. Yet the response from this administration through its Affordable Care Act is to slash Medicare by a further $716 billion, including $308 billion from Medicare Advantage, and reducing payments to doctors, hospitals and skilled nursing facilities.

Healthcare

Advancing the crushing steamroller that is Obamacare will lead to higher taxes (including 20 new taxes), force companies to drop care for their employees leaving more uninsured and increase premiums. Personal healthcare decisions will be determined by the 15-member unelected Independent Payment Advisory Board which will necessarily restrict and ration care, particularly for seniors, in order to enforce price controls.

Business and employment

According to the most recent study by the World Bank on the ease of doing business, the United States ranks 13th – lower than Saudi Arabia and Armenia – on ease of starting a business, and 72nd on paying taxes, behind even Bulgaria and Mongolia. The United States currently has the highest corporate tax rate on the planet, and this administration wants to increase tax rates on small business owners who file as S-corporations. Crushing taxes and strangling regulations are choking the life out of our economy, dropping America from first to seventh in global competitiveness.

Some will say the government must try “new ideas” in order to get our nation back on track. But these “new ideas” are nothing more than a repeat of failed liberal progressive policies, which have never succeeded anywhere they’ve been tried.

Throughout this nation’s history, our greatest prosperity has come when our citizens had unfettered freedom to innovate, build and expand, and our government focused on its most important role – that of ensuring the safety and security of its citizens.

The choice for voters in 2012 is simple: Constitutional republic or socialist, egalitarian welfare nanny-state. Take heed America. Our children and grandchildren will read about your decision…or be told by their future masters.

West is a member of the House Armed Services Committee and the House Small Business Committee.