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Paying for student loans without targeting small businesses

Both sides of the aisle agree that the student loan interest rate should be kept low during tough economic times and should be extended for another year. The disagreement that played out on the Senate floor earlier this month was over how to pay for the extension. Democrats wanted to pay for the bill by raising taxes on certain small businesses (S- Corporations), while Republicans wanted to use money from a health care slush fund that President Obama had previously used.

Senator Enzi expressed his disappointment towards the Senate majority’s choice to pay for lowered student loan rates by reducing the job opportunities for students once they graduate. Rather than increasing taxes on these small businesses, we should be encouraging them to hire new employees. These are the very businesses we depend upon to turn the labor market around.

Enzi stressed that if the bill had gone through the committee process, where amendments could be considered. Had this occurred a third method of payment could have been found creating a bipartisan bill that would have solved the problem. As it stands now it looks more like “election-year” politics.

Three years since last budget

April 29 marked the third year the U.S. Senate majority has failed to pass a budget. The majority has not even voted for one in two years and continues to make excuses for further delaying making a decision.

“Three years and no budget isn’t just a failure of leadership, it’s embarrassing,” said Enzi. Since 2009 $4.5 trillion has been added to the United States gross debt, causing it to surpass the entire economy at almost $16 trillion. Our debt-per-person is over $49,000 and growing daily. In Greece, a country facing 19 percent budget cuts and daily riots, their debt-per-person is $39,000.

Senator Enzi’s solution to the national debt begins with a penny. By cutting a single penny from every dollar the government spends, a 1% cut, the budget would balance in five years.

Congress’ responsibility to vote against bad rules and regulations

Senator Enzi recently challenged the National Labor Relations Board’s (NLRB) “ambush elections” rule, which will force employees to make the critical decision about whether or not to form a union in as little as 10 days.

His resolution was introduced in compliance with the Congressional Review Act (CRA), in which the Senate or House can introduce a joint resolution of disapproval with the full force of law to stop a federal agency from implementing a recent rule or regulation.

Enzi’s resolution had 44 cosponsors but failed in the Senate in late April. “The constitution says that we are an equal branch of government with the president. We do not serve for the president, we serve with the president, said Enzi. “In this case, one of the administrative branches is overreacting and doing something it should not do and we have to say ‘no.’”

Due to the failure of the NLRB to properly finalize the rule, it was invalidated by the U.S. District Court for D.C. It is believed that the Board will attempt to adopt the rule a second time or appeal the decision, but no announcements have been made.

Page application deadline approaching

The deadline for the Fall semester Page Position applications is June 5. This position is open to 16-17 year olds who are high school juniors.

This opportunity allows young people to gain hands-on experience in Senate operations. For more information please visit www.enzi.senate.gov.

WEST Act

Senator Enzi cosponsored the Western Economic Security Today (WEST) Act, a compilation of eight bills that have passed the House but yet to be considered in the Senate.

The bill would prevent regulation of farm dust, prohibit unnecessary energy taxes, and stop the EPA from moving forwards with its greenhouse gas rules.

The WEST Act will help protect the livelihoods of farmers and ranchers in Wyoming and help to address the miles of red tape targeting small businesses.

Youth farm rules withdrawn

Recently the Department of Labor withdrew its proposed rules and regulations on youth working on family farms.

The rules would have prohibited youth under the age of 18 from being near certain-aged animals without adult supervision or participating in common livestock practices – which would have severely limited participation in 4-H and FFA activities.

“This is a win for agriculture and the traditions of rural America,” Enzi said. “Wyoming ranchers and farmers stood up to Washington’s overreach and their voices were heard.”

Oil and gas exploration in Alaska

This month Senator Enzi announced his support for a bill proposed by Sen. Murkowski (R-AK) to explore, lease, develop and produce oil and gas from the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) in Alaska.

This bill would strengthen our nation’s energy security by helping reduce reliance on foreign oil; create American jobs; and help to combat rising gas prices.

Enzi is confident that drilling can be done in a responsible manner with the utmost care taken to protect the environment.

Connect with Senator Enzi on Facebook

If you haven't already become a "fan" of Senator Enzi's Facebook page, check it out. It is a great way to see more of what is going on in Congress. Click here to view his page.

Wyoming state offices

Senator Enzi's five state offices in Cheyenne, Gillette, Casper, Cody and Jackson offer office hours where Wyoming residents have the opportunity to meet with Senator Enzi’s state representatives in his absence. Click here to find out more.