From the office of Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R, ILL)...
WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Congressman Adam Kinzinger (IL-11), last night appeared on "America's Nightly Scoreboard" on Fox Business to discuss the Senate Democrats' failure to produce a budget or to work with House Republicans to save Medicare less than two weeks after the bi-partisan Medicare Trustees produced a report that said Medicare will be exhausted five years earlier than anticipated. Kinzinger also discussed job creation in Illinois.
On whether Senate Democrats plan to address entitlements
The big key is it's been 755 days since Senate Democrats have passed a budget. This is something we're supposed to do every year. We have a responsibility out here, a responsibility to pass a budget.
Look, we have a serious financial crisis in this country. We put forward a plan to deal with it. If you don't agree with it that's fine but put forward an alternative and let's have a debate.
We can't have a discussion about this without the other side saying what their plan is. We're staring a crisis in the face and we have to do something.
On Republican unity over the House Republican budget
I can't speak for everybody, but what I can say is House Republicans, we're basically united in putting this plan forward. If you want Medicare to go away, then just don't do anything because it's going to go away on its own. But we're looking for a way to reform and save it. If you're 55 and over you're on the same plan. If you're younger than that, we're going to look at a way to save it so that you have it in the future.
We're putting forward a plan, but again, this has turned into this cycle that we've had for the last number of years where you just demonize the other side. That's why myself and a group of freshmen came forward to call on the President and frankly all Democrats and Republicans to hit the reset button (See PDF of letter). We do it on foreign policy, let's do it on domestic policy. Hit the reset button, let's have discussions. But we're just back in this circle of vilifying and demonizing and I think Americans are tired of it.
On the belief we can balance the budget without touching entitlements
People send us out to Washington, D.C., not to follow polls, but to lead. And so that's what we're doing. We make tough decisions.
Voting for the Ryan plan is not an easy vote to make, but it's good leadership and it's how we're going to get this country on the path to fiscal solvency again. And, ultimately how we're going to restore people's confidence in the economy and get people to work.
Jobs, jobs, jobs, that's the #1 message, that's what we absolutely have to do and when we're staring a fiscal crisis in the face, you have business owners that are scared to death to invest in the future and we find ourselves in a stalemate.
On Illinois' economy
Out here, we're one piece of this job creation puzzle which is get the government out of the way so the small businesses can create jobs. Illinois has done it wrong. We've raised taxes; we've created a tough regulatory environment.
We have a lot of work to do in Illinois. That's what we're going to continue to do as we go forward, to get that message out to the people of Illinois. Look, they did it in Michigan, they woke up and they said we have to change the way we're doing business, same with New Jersey.
It's happening around the country. Illinois is a little slow behind, but we gained a net of four House seats in 2010, so I think the people of Illinois are really waking up to what we need to do.
On whether jobs left Illinois because of tax increases
Every day we hear about a new big company that's looking at leaving Illinois. Every day.
When I was talking at a town hall meeting I said wouldn't it be nice to for once, hear about a company that's looking to relocate into Illinois. Indiana gets it all the time, they get a lot of new business, South Carolina, Texas, all of these places are getting business because they have a good business environment. Illinois isn't. We can restore that though in Illinois and we will.