Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Small Business Scores During 110th Congress' First 100 Hours; Politico.com Debuts Today

Last Friday marked the end of the House Democratic leadership's 100-hour agenda. Within just two and-a-half weeks, the do-something 110th Congress passed all eight of its top priorities:

1] We will start by cleaning up Congress, ending the link between lobbyists and legislation. H.Res. 6, Title II, "Adopting the Rules of the House of Representatives for the One Hundred Tenth Congress." Passed 430-1, Jan. 4th, 2007

GoodBiz113's stance: Now that Corporate America's direct link to lawmakers has been broken, the federal-contracting playing field should finally begin to level for small businesses. We've noticed that, since last Nov. 7, some prime contractors and federally funded agencies and institutions are now being more transparent and inclusive in their supplier-diversity and subcontracting practices.

2] We will commit to pay-as-you-go, no new deficit spending. H.Res. 6, Title IV, "Adopting the Rules of the House of Representatives for the One Hundred Tenth Congress." Passed 280-152, Jan. 5th, 2007

GoodBiz113's stance: This is a long-overdue, win-win-win for everyone. [How many of us -- as families, individuals, small-biz owners, entrepreneurs, etc. -- could continually budget our lives and businesses in the red?]

3] We will make our nation safer by implementing the recommendations of the independent, bipartisan 9/11 Commission. H.R. 1, "Implementing the 9/11 Commission Recommendations Act of 2007." Passed 299-128, Jan. 9th, 2007

GoodBiz113's stance: Again, a win-win-win for everyone -- blue, red and "purple" alike.

4] We will make our economy fairer, and start by raising the minimum wage. We will not pass a pay raise for Congress until there is an increase in the minimum wage. H.R. 2, "Fair Minimum Wage Act of 2007." Passed 315-116, Jan. 10th, 2007

GoodBiz113's stance: Decently paid employees are happier employees. In the long run, that has a positive "trickle-up effect" on business owners' bottom lines.

5] We will promote stem cell research to offer real hope to the millions of American families who suffer from devastating diseases. H.R. 3, "Stem Cell Research Enhancement Act." Passed 253-174, Jan. 11th, 2007

GoodBiz113's stance: It's a healthy move for everybody. Thank you, Michael J. Fox, for thoughtfully, generously and courageously promoting stem cell research -- even in the face of unthinkably mean-spirited ridicule.

6] We will make health care more affordable for all Americans, and we will begin by fixing the Medicare prescription drug program, putting seniors first by negotiating lower drug prices. H.R. 4, "Medicare Prescription Drug Price Negotiation Act." Passed 255-170, Jan. 12th, 2007

GoodBiz113's stance: Healthy employees are more productive employees. Lower drug prices will help seniors stay healthy -- and, perhaps, free up some consumer dollars to spend.

7] We will broaden college opportunity, and we will begin by cutting interest rates for student loans in half. H.R. 5, "College Student Relief Act of 2007." Passed 356-71, Jan. 17th, 2007

GoodBiz113's stance: Well-educated students means well-educated professionals propelling our growing communities, technologies, businesses, schools, hospitals, not-for-profit groups, public agencies, etc. The more educated our citizenry is, the better it is for everyone.

8] We will energize America by achieving energy independence, and we will begin by rolling back the multi-billion dollar subsidies for Big Oil. H.R. 6, "Creating Long-Term Energy Alternatives for the Nation Act." Passed 264-163, Jan. 18th, 2007

GoodBiz113's stance: Aside from the fact that Big Oil should never have had subsidies in the first place [!], this move will help grow businesses that are committed to developing efficient and affordable alternative energy technologies [e.g., hybrid, solar, wind, biofuels, ethanol, hydrogen] AND reduce our deadly dependence on foreign oil.

Next up: tax reform. When U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi was asked about taxes on ''Face the Nation,'' she replied that any tax increase would be limited to the wealthy. Taking back ''tax cuts for those making over a certain amount of money -- $500,000 a year -- might be more important to the American people than ignoring the educational and health needs of America's children,'' said Pelosi.

''We're not going to start with repealing tax cuts, but they certainly are not off the table for people making over half a million dollars a year," Pelosi noted. "It's an option; it's not a first resort.''

The Politico/Politico.com Debuts Today
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Happy policy-wonking!

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