Before the trip began we mapped out three primary goals: 1) to see and meet with our American troops, and thank them for their bravery and sacrifice; 2) to assess the security situation in Iraq; and 3) to give our support to Iraq's national unity government.
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I talked to a lot of employers who just are, are fearful of what's coming next out of Washington. It's all the spending, it's all the debt. It's their national energy tax, they want to call it cap and trade - more mandates, higher costs, more taxes. Their healthcare bill - more mandates, higher costs, higher taxes.
I started out mopping floors, waiting tables, and tending bar at my dad's tavern. I put myself through school working odd jobs and night shifts. I poured my heart and soul into a small business. And when I saw how out-of-touch Washington had become with the core values of this great nation, I put my name forward and ran for office.
Well, as a former small businessperson - I understand what's going on, I think in the business community. And businesspeople around the country are looking at all the spending and all the debt. They're looking at all the policies coming out of this Congress and this administration the last two years, and they - it's created all this uncertainty.
It's pretty clear that over the last three months the economy has paused. And it's also pretty clear the American people are still demanding and asking the question, 'Where are the jobs?' And the reason we don't have new jobs is because of the job-killing agenda pursued by President Obama and his allies in the Congress.