Thanks to those of you who both attended Townhalls while your members of Congress were home and shared what’s being said, what’s going on, and how you're involved.
From everything to small business owners forced to lay off employees because of increasing energy costs and attack ads against members of Congress willing to stand up to the EPA’s unilateral regulation of greenhouse gases – we heard a wide range of important issues.
One of the common concerns was over raising gas prices – an issue we will continue to weigh in on in the days ahead. At the U.S. Chamber, we recognize that increasing domestic drilling is one of the easiest and quickest fixes to this impending crisis. Urge your members of Congress to stop the de facto drilling moratorium and do more to increase access to domestic resources.
To hear more about what our allies across the country are hearing, read the full responses below.
From my conversations with contractors, non-profit organizations, city, county and state officials, everyone is worried about current issues in the economy and understand there needs to be something done to curb the national debt. The price of fuel has already caused loss of disposable income. This in turn means that they are going to focus on essentials of life, food, roof over their head, which has taken a major hit in value, getting to and from work. …We have neglected our infrastructure for so long that it now cost millions more to correct the neglect and short sightedness on our roads and designs for the future transportation needs. Taking steps to rehabilitate distressed properties should continue. It prevents loss of property values for other properties and it puts people to work who in turn pay taxes instead of drawing on taxes for the unemployed. I believe these renovations should require them to incorporate better energy efficiency, which in turn will reduce our needs for foreign oil and safeguard our environment into the future and allow our lower income person(s) to have affordable housing. Every time the cost of fuel goes up, I loose in profit. I have already had to let 3 persons go or reduce their hours. This will likely continue unless the housing and building industry turns around.
- Greg, Cambridge, MN
Something needs to be done about the ridiculous fuel prices! The hard working common person cannot afford the impending $5.00 per gallon price and its repercussions! We need our government to step in to stop the price hike or our country will no longer flourish as we know it now. I personally am strapped financially and this puts a major burden on my finances. I need to go to work... but can't afford the fuel! A vicious cycle... Help! – Laurie, Pennsburg, PA
Anyone who votes to NOT raise the debt limit and to put this nation in default will jeopardize my entire life-savings, my stocks and bonds and everything I have worked like a dog for all my life. That could change Obama's slow recovery directly into a great depression with 30% unemployment and a great deal of suffering for a generation. I could NEVER forgive anyone who did that. – Richard, Denver, CO
Fred Upton is my representative and, because of his chairmanship of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, he is being bombarded in print, radio and TV for "gutting the Clean Air Act." College students are going house-to-house with petitions that enable signers to indicate their disapproval of Fred supporting "dirty air" legislation. And Fred usually finds protesters awaiting his arrival at publicized public meetings. I attended five meetings in the last three days where Fred was present. He handled himself very well, responding to questions. He seems to be getting used to having a target on his chest. Unfortunately, I did not take my camera to any of these sessions. One meeting was hosted by the Kalamazoo Chamber and featured Fred along with one of your energy experts, Karen Harbert.
– John, West Scotts, MI
[My Congressman]praised unions, bashed efforts in Columbus, Ohio to reduce public union bargaining powers and said unions work in the public and private sectors. – Tim, New Carlisle, OH
Senator Tom Cole (Oklahoma) held a town meeting in Moore, OK. He gave us an update on what's going on in DC. Various citizens asked questions regarding the economy, gas prices, Real Estate, Veterans' care, our growing national debt among other items. He was very informative and pledged to keep fighting for better days for our great nation. – Victor, Oklahoma City