Pence: Americans 'feel trapped' under bad policies just like Chilean miners

Indiana Rep. Mike Pence (R) compared the state of the U.S. economy under the Obama administration to the ordeal of the 33 Chilean miners trapped for 69 days beneath the surface. 

“This week, the world rejoiced as 33 miners emerged safely from months of dark captivity in a deep Chilean mine,” Pence said in the weekly Republican address. “Today, many Americans feel trapped under the weight of historic spending and government mandates."

The House GOP Conference chairman reiterated familiar complaints about the 9.6 percent unemployment rate, the effectiveness of the stimulus program and the size of the national debt.

“This administration suggests that our choice is between the failed economic policies of the present and the failed economic policies of the past, but there is a better way,” Pence said.

He cited the party’s “pledge to America,” the major policy blueprint it rolled out last month at a hardware store in Virginia. The document, Pence said, “calls on Congress to immediately cut spending back to pre-‘stimulus’, pre-bailout levels, to refund unspent ‘stimulus’ funds and to preserve and promote the kind of tax relief that will create American jobs.”

Pence said the Bush-era tax cuts, which are set to expire in January, should be extended.

“The American people should not have to wait one more day for Congress to act to prevent one of the largest tax increases in American history from taking effect,” he said. “Speaker Nancy Pelosi should call Congress back into session immediately and allow an up-or-down vote on preserving all current tax rates.”

The House is currently not scheduled to return to Washington until mid-November.

A change in the tax rate could prevent job growth, Pence argued.

“No American should see a tax increase in January, and Republicans are determined to oppose any effort to raise taxes on any American in this difficult economy,” he said.