It’s time to hold Congress’ feet to the voters’ fire

Kent Kingsley's picture

Is it fair to indict every congressman with the sins of the institution? Is it fair to expect leadership in an institution that supposedly is made up of leaders from around America? Is it fair to expect our congressman to be different from his peers?

The answer to all three questions is yes.

Last week I wrote about the near record low public opinion ratings of Congress. Just to review, only 13 percent of the country thinks that Congress is doing a good job — 13 percent!

At a time when we need responsible leadership the most, that’s a troubling statistic.

In travelling throughout our district over the last few months, the comment I hear most often from people is, “Kent, I like what you have to say, but politicians all do the same thing: they follow the party line, they don’t fight for real reforms, and they only care about re-election.”

I understand their point of view, and I’ve felt that same frustration. In fact, that’s exactly why I’m running for office: to change the status quo.

It is clear Congress is broken and that they have failed to do their job. February of this year holds the distinction of having the highest single month deficit in the history of America, $229 billion.

That’s right, $229 billion of red ink in one month. A better perspective is this: the federal government in February borrowed 42 cents of every dollar they spent. Incredible!

Ladies and gentleman, if you or I did that at work or at your own business, there would be serious consequences. First we would be fired, and second the bank would cut off any additional credit.

How does Congress react? They just print more money.

Leaders have the responsibility to solve problems and effectively guide with solutions.

Unfortunately that is not the case in Congress. Republicans fight Democrats, the House fights the Senate; and both houses at times fight the Executive Branch.

Who suffers because of this? Not the members of Congress; they are paid whether they do their job or not. It is the citizens and future citizens of this great nation that bear the burden of Congress’ failed leadership.

It’s time that we hold Congress’ feet to the fire. We should tie congressional pay to the budget; when they over-spend, they don’t get paid.

That seems fair to me. Republicans and Democrats would quickly figure a way to cut spending and balance the budget if their salaries depended on it.

There are only 435 voting members in the House of Representatives. It seems to me that in a nation as large as America we could find 435 men and women that can put aside ambition and petty differences in order to do the nation’s business.

Ronald Reagan once said, “It’s amazing what can be accomplished when no one is concerned with who gets the credit.” Isn’t that what you expect from your congressman?

That is what must happen if we have any hope of solving the vexing problems our country faces.

It’s time to put country ahead of party. It’s time to put accomplishment ahead of ambition. It’s time for serious men and women to get about the nation’s business.

It’s time to stop kicking the can down the road, stop pointing fingers, and once and for all, turn our nation’s ship of state back on a path of fiscal responsibility.

It can be done; it must be done. It’s time for leaders and citizens to step forward and make the tough decisions.

Will you be part of the solution and hold Congress’ feet to the fire?

[Kent Kingsley is a Republican candidate for Congress in the Third Congressional District which includes Fayette and Coweta counties. He is a retired U.S. Army Infantry lieutenant colonel, owns a small real estate company in Lamar County and lives in Milner, between Griffin and Barnesville. He is an advocate for the Fair Tax, balanced budgets and federal term limits. His website is]