"I Believe"

As you know, I’m running for United States Congress to fill the seat Congressman Barrett will be vacating to run for Governor.  We launched our campaign back in April, and since that time have had the pleasure of meeting with thousands of voters throughout South Carolina’s Third Congressional District.
Recently, a federal judge ruled that the “I Believe” license plate (an optional plate that featured a cross) was “unconstitutional.” Now I’m not a lawyer, but I am a proud American with a deep respect for the Constitution of the United States, and I BELIEVE this ruling was entirely incorrect. The 1st Amendment of the United States Constitution clearly states “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.”  This license plate is optional, so there is no establishment of religion.  But if that wasn’t enough, South Carolina actually already offers an optional plate for non-believers.
This debate over the “I Believe” license plate is reflective of what’s going on in Washington today.  Too many politicians have simply lost touch with the people who sent them to represent their beliefs.  That’s why today, I’m announcing the launch of my “I Believe” series. A conversation to you the voters on exactly what I BELIEVE in.  As President Reagan said, we need leaders who avoid “pale pastels but use bold colors”, leaders who won’t tip-toe around the issues, but will proudly stand up for what they believe in! 
So let’s start this conversation with a topic that’s on everyone’s mind, health care.
I believe in free-market solutions to lower costs and improve access to health care. I do NOT believe in giving the government control over your personal health decisions, or rationing care for any segment of the population.  By eliminating state barriers to improve competition, extending the tax benefits for those with employer provided coverage to individuals to purchase insurance on their own, passing tort reform, and allowing individuals to form associations to bargain for lower premiums, we can lower costs and improve access to health care.  This approach does NOT increase the size of the government, nor does it contribute to run away spending in Washington.
I believe in transparency throughout the legislative process.  Many of the health care bills that went through legislative committees were not actual pieces of legislation, but rather guidelines for how a bill might look.  The bill that passed the United States House of Representatives, and the crucial procedural vote in the US Senate, were passed late in the evening on a Saturday.  I don’t believe that United States Congress should be conducting business and passing major legislation in the dark of night on a Saturday evening, when most Americans are focused on other things. I believe in transparency, and that means an elected official should never be worried about conducting business out in the open, and in the clear view of the American people.
When I go to Washington, I will FIGHT AGAINST SOCIALISM in all of its forms. And let there be no mistake, this health care bill is socialist.

What do you believe? What are your concerns? E-mail me at [email protected] with the issues you would like me to address in our “I Believe” series.

God Bless,

P.S.  I Hope you have a blessed Thanksgiving with family and friends.  And don’t forget that this coming weekend is Tax-Free 2nd Amendment weekend in South Carolina!!  I was proud to co-sponsor the first piece of legislation establishing the tax-free 2nd Amendment weekend, and am a currently co-sponsoring legislation to make the the provision permanent.

Rep. Jeff Duncan is Chairman of the South Carolina House Agriculture, Natural Resources, and Environmental Affairs Committee. He is a life-time member of the NRA, and holds an A+ rating from the South Carolina Club for Growth. He is currently running for United States Congress in South Carolina’s Third Congressional District. www.JeffDuncan.com