Greg Hinz of Crain's Chicago Business is reporting that Illinois' newest U.S. Senator, Mark Kirk, will deliver the Republican response to President Barack Obama's weekly radio address tomorrow morning.
The irony here on several levels is rather fascinating, since the seat Kirk holds now was, of course, Obama's, and Obama did everything he could to save Dem nominee Alexi Giannoulias from letting it slip to a Republican, to no avail.
UPDATE: Here's the video of Senator Kirk giving the response to President Obama's weekly radio address:
Here is the full transcript:
“Hello, I’m Senator Mark Kirk of Illinois.
“Last month, the American people sent a clear message to Washington: spend less, borrow less and tax less to put America back to work.
“Unfortunately, too many in Washington want to continue the reckless tax and spend policies of the past. They ignore the warning signs of more debt, taxes and inflation. They embrace wasteful government spending and pork-barrel earmarks. And they think a new massive tax hike on the U.S. economy is exactly what the American people need.
“The current leaders of Congress should not move forward with plans that were just rejected by the American people. These leaders should not raise taxes and risk another recession. Instead, Congress should reduce spending and prevent another tax hike on American taxpayers.
“Americans already pay some of the highest taxes in the world. By raising taxes in order to fuel higher spending, we threaten to restart the recession, pushing millions of Americans out of work.
“Right now, families and small business owners are scratching their heads asking one simple question – what will my tax rate be next month?
“Taxpayers don’t know what their personal income tax rates will be come January 1st.
“Family business employers don’t know what the death tax will be.
“Investors and small businesses don’t know what the capital gains rate will be.
“Their uncertainty hurts our economy. It’s unfair and short-sighted.
“Congress should set its highest priority on preventing the massive tax hike currently scheduled to hit our economy on January 1st.
“Meanwhile, our mounting debts pose a clear and present danger to our future. It’s time to cast aside our partisan differences and work across the aisle to solve this problem.
“Congress should set an example by ending pork-barrel earmarks and cutting its own budget. This week, Senate Democrats rejected a proposal to end wasteful earmark spending. Their decision was disappointing and disconnected from the American people.
“In the weeks ahead, Republicans and Democrats should enact bipartisan solutions to cut federal spending like a presidential line-item veto, a Balanced Budget Amendment to the Constitution and a new procedure to ensure spending reductions actually happen.
“In the 1980s, President Reagan’s bipartisan Grace Commission set the standard for serious oversight by identifying federal spending that would add little to our nation's growth, but much to its debt. Marrying a new Grace Commission with the authority to submit a proposal to Congress for a straight up or down vote would lead to actual spending reductions. This proposal is in my first Senate bill – the Spending Control Act.
“Harvard economic historian Niall Ferguson warned that the decline of a great power is clear when a country pays more to its money lenders than its army. We face that year when interest payments on our debt tops our defense budget as soon as 2016. It’s clear, we need to cut spending to avoid a bankrupt future for our kids and our country.
“I believe that America’s best days still lie ahead of us. If we correct our economic policy by focusing on growth and spending discipline, the sky will once again be the limit for young Americans.
“Spend less, borrow less and tax less to put America back to work. That’s what we heard from the American people last month – and that’s what we should expect from our leaders today.
“May God bless you, your families during this holiday season, and may God bless the United States of America.”
UPDATE x2: It was pointed out to me that VP Joe Biden actually gave the President's weekly address this week, obstensively because Obama was in Afghanistan visiting the troops. I don't know why he still couldn't have done it, but whatever. Here's a link if anyone feels like watching Joe.