Rep. Joe Baca

Congressman Joe Baca
Posted: 09/04/2011 07:13:45 PM PDT

America’s workers have always stood as the backbone of our great nation. On this Labor Day, it is worthwhile that all Americans take the time to honor our workers and reflect on their continued contributions to the betterment of society. It is also a time for Congress to renew our commitment to strengthening America’s workforce and expanding economic opportunity by creating new jobs here at home.

Right now, creating jobs and strengthening our economy should be the No. 1 priority for all of us. While we have seen some positive developments on employment statistics in recent months, there are still far too many families struggling to get by without a regular paycheck. This problem is especially tangible here in the Inland Empire, with San Bernardino County experiencing an unemployment rate of 14 percent.

Unfortunately, my Republican colleagues in Congress seem oblivious to the plight of so many working families. Instead of exploring new opportunities to create jobs, they have advanced a legislative agenda that undermines the well-being of American workers, creates massive job losses, and continues to protect unnecessary tax breaks for the wealthiest few, Big Oil, and corporations that ship jobs overseas.

This Congress, the Republican leadership of the House of Representatives has yet to pass a single bill designed to create jobs here in America. Instead, they have voted to end Medicare as we know it and passed a bill to repeal the health care reform law, which has been estimated to create anywhere from 2.5 million to 4 million jobs over the next decade – including over 52,000 jobs here in California. And to top it off, the Republican-passed “Ryan” budget eliminates $207 billion in federal Medicaid assistance to states over the next five years, estimated to result in 2.1 million private sector job losses.

With Congress returning to Washington later this week, Republicans appear set to continue their assault on working families. Their initial agenda for the remainder of 2011 includes legislation to:

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