Mo Brooks

Mo Brooks

ALABAMA's 5th DISTRICT

Brooks: Washington is Engaged in the Worst Generational Theft in American History

2016/02/10

Washington, D.C. –  Today, Congressman Mo Brooks (AL-05) called on Washington to balance America’s budget before it is too late to prevent a devastating insolvency and bankruptcy.

In an address to the U.S. House, Rep. Brooks observed that House Republicans inherited a $1.3 trillion deficit in 2011 and successfully cut annual deficits every year since winning the House in 2010 (to a still dangerous but much better $439 billion by 2015).[5]  However, newly released data from the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO) projects Fiscal Year 2016’s deficit will worsen by $105 billion (the first deterioration since Republicans won the House in 2010) and that America will blow through the $29 trillion debt mark in a decade, in large part because Congress passed a trillion dollar Omnibus spending bill that adds tens of billions of dollars to FY 2016’s deficit.  Further, Rep. Brooks added, “the CBO warns that, absent correction, America’s debt service costs will increase by $600 billion per year within a decade . . . roughly what America spends on national defense!”[8] 

Brooks stated, “America’s total debt approached $14 trillion when I was elected to Congress in 2010.  We’ve blown through the $19 trillion mark.  Now, the CBO projects America will blow through the $29 trillion debt mark in a decade![9]  For emphasis, Washington is engaged in the worst generational theft in American history.  Washington steals from our children and grandchildren with a callous devil-may-care attitude so that we can, today, live high on the hog even though it forces our children into hardship and poverty!”

Brooks continued, “Mr. Speaker, Americans are rightfully angry at Washington elected officials who care more about special interest campaign contributions than American voters or America’s future.  Will the American people channel their anger in the 2016 elections and elect Washington officials who both understand the threat posed by deficits and debt and have the backbone to fix it?  The answer to that question determines whether America continues as a great nation and world power . . . or declines into the dustbin of history.”

Video of Congressman Brooks’ remarks is available HERE.

Mo Brooks Floor Speech: Trillion Dollar Deficits Threaten America

February 10, 2016

U.S. House Floor

Mr. Speaker, America entrusted Republicans with the House in 2010 and the Senate in 2014.  Democrats lost Congress because their financially irresponsible conduct and trillion dollar deficits threaten America with a debilitating insolvency and bankruptcy.

House Republicans inherited a $1.3 trillion deficit in 2011,[1] cut it to $1.1 trillion in 2012,[2] cut it to $680 billion in 2013,[3] cut it to $485 billion in 2014,[4] and cut it to $439 billion in 2015.[5]  House Republicans did what the American people elected them to do . . . and in each election thereafter we were entrusted with two more years of a House Republican majority. 

Unfortunately, newly released data from the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office reveals America’s financial condition has taken a sharp turn for the worse.

According to the CBO, the first quarter Fiscal Year 2016 deficit deteriorated by $36 billion compared to 2015’s first quarter deficit.[6]  If extrapolated to a full year, America’s FY2016 deficit would be $583 billion . . . that’s $144 billion worse than in FY2015!

Out of control spending was the problem, not taxes.  During the first quarter, tax revenue was UP 4% but spending was UP even more, at 7%![7]  Now, for the first time since I’ve been in Congress, Republican compromises and surrenders to Obama and Democrats have made America’s deficits worse, not better! 

This Congress broke open our kids’ piggy banks, stole money we cannot pay back, and used it to pay for a trillion dollar Omnibus spending bill that adds tens of billions of dollars to 2016’s deficit.  I am proud I voted against the financially irresponsible Omnibus. 

Mr. Speaker, America’s Comptroller General and the CBO repeatedly warn that America’s financial path is [quote] “unsustainable” [end quote] . . . meaning America faces a debilitating insolvency and bankruptcy unless we get our financial house in order.  Further, the CBO warns that, absent correction, America’s debt service costs will increase by $600 billion per year within a decade . . . roughly what America spends on national defense![8]  Which begs the question, “Where will the money come from for an additional annual $600 billion debt service payment come from?”

America’s total debt approached $14 trillion when I was elected to Congress in 2010.  We’ve blown through the $19 trillion mark.  Now, the CBO projects America will blow through the $29 trillion debt mark in a decade![9]  For emphasis, Washington is engaged in the worst generational theft in American history.  Washington steals from our children and grandchildren with a callous devil-may-care attitude so that we can, today, live high on the hog even though it forces our children into hardship and poverty!

Economic principles don’t care if you are a family, a business, or a country.  If you borrow more money than you can pay back, you go bankrupt.  Time is running out.  Washington must balance the budget before America’s debt burden spirals out of control . . .  before it is too late to prevent the debilitating insolvency and bankruptcy that awaits us.

Mr. Speaker, Americans are rightfully angry at Washington elected officials who care more about special interest campaign contributions than American voters or America’s future.  Will the American people channel their anger in the 2016 elections and elect Washington officials who both understand the threat posed by deficits and debt and have the backbone to fix it?  The answer to that question determines whether America continues as a great nation and world power . . . or declines into the dustbin of history. 

Mr. Speaker, I can’t speak for anyone else but, as for me, Mo Brooks, from Alabama’s 5th Congressional District, I fight for financial responsibility and prosperity and against an American bankruptcy and economic depression.

 

###

 

[1] Office of Management and Budget.  See Table 1.1—Summary of Receipts, Outlays, and Surpluses or Deficits (-): 1789–2020 at https://www.whitehouse.gov/omb/budget/Historicals/

[2] Ibid.

[3] Ibid.

[4] Ibid.

[5] https://www.cbo.gov/topics/budget

[6] https://www.cbo.gov/publication/51108: ”The federal budget deficit was $212 billion for the first three months of fiscal year 2016, the Congressional Budget Office estimates. That deficit was $36 billion larger than the one recorded during the same period last year. Receipts and outlays were both higher than last year’s amounts, by 4 percent and 7 percent, respectively. If not for shifts in the timing of certain payments (which otherwise would have fallen on a weekend or on New Year’s Day), the deficit for the three-month period would have been $9 billion larger than it was last year.”

[7] Ibid.

[8] https://www.cbo.gov/sites/default/files/114th-congress-2015-2016/reports/51129-2016Outlook.pdf

[9] https://www.cbo.gov/sites/default/files/114th-congress-2015-2016/reports/51129-2016Outlook.pdf


[8] https://www.cbo.gov/sites/default/files/114th-congress-2015-2016/reports/51129-2016Outlook.pdf

[9] https://www.cbo.gov/sites/default/files/114th-congress-2015-2016/reports/51129-2016Outlook.pdf

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Brooks: Washington Should Work For American Workers, Not Against Them

2016/01/07

Washington, D.C. –  A dismal report released this week by the nonpartisan Center for Immigration Studies confirms the wage suppression of low-skilled labor, an effect made worse by the $1.1 trillion omnibus spending bill passed by Congress in December which quadruples available work visas for low-skilled, temporary non-agricultural foreign workers who seek to take job opportunities from American citizens.  This legislation, coupled with President Obama’s proposed rule to illegally bust statutory green card immigration caps, is a brazen display of contempt for struggling American workers who seek jobs that pay enough to support their families. 

Today, Congressman Mo Brooks (AL-05), who voted against the omnibus bill, called on Washington to stop helping foreign workers take scarce jobs from struggling American families.

 
Video of Congressman Brooks’ remarks is available HERE.
 
Mo Brooks Floor Speech on Visas & Work Permits
January 07, 2016
U.S. House Floor

Mr. Speaker, Washington has once again undermined and betrayed struggling American workers who seek jobs that pay enough to support their families.

In December, on less than 72 hours’ notice, Congress and President Obama shoved down the throats of Americans a two thousand page, financially irresponsible, $1.1 trillion Omnibus spending bill that not only risks America’s solvency, it also threatens American jobs for American workers. 

Under old law, 66,000 H-2B foreign worker visas could be issued each year.[i]  Buried deep inside the 2,000-page Omnibus spending bill, on page 701, is an obscure provision without even a heading, that, according to labor expert John Miano, increases available H-2B visas up to 264,000 per year,[ii] effectively quadrupling visas for low-skilled, temporary non-agricultural foreign workers.

Making matters worse, on New Year’s Eve, while America focused on football bowl games and celebrations, President Obama issued a 200-page proposed rule[iii] to illegally bust statutory green card immigration caps[iv] by approving unlimited numbers of work permits for foreigners who don’t have green cards. 

This White House action is yet another brazen display of contempt for immigration statutes, the rule of law, and American workers.  The White House argues importing foreign labor is necessary because of a claimed shortage of American labor. 

Similarly, House Speaker Paul Ryan claims increasing foreign worker visas [quote] “help[s] small businesses who cannot find labor when there’s a surge in demand for their labor like seafood processing, or tourism.” [end quote][v]  This claimed labor shortage is unsupported by jobs or wage data and is political bunk!        

Per federal labor statistics, 57 percent of Americans without a high school diploma had NO job in 2015’s second quarter.[vi]  That bears repeating.  57 percent of Americans without a high school diploma had NO job in 2015’s second quarter.  That’s a lot of Americans who would love to have those jobs President Obama and Congress denied Americans and gave to foreigners.

Economics 101 explains that wages rise if there is a labor shortage and fall if there is a labor surplus.  According to Census Bureau data from 2007 to 2014,[vii] wages for security guards went DOWN 6.1%.  For cooks: DOWN 4.4%!  For janitors:  DOWN 1.2%!  For ushers, lobby attendants, and ticket takers: DOWN 7.1%!  For hotel, motel, and resort desk clerks:  DOWN 7%!  The list of falling wages for low income American workers goes on and on.

This falling wage data is compelling evidence that there is no shortage of American labor and, to the contrary, that there is an oversupply of American labor that demands cutting foreign labor, not expanding it!

Mr. Speaker, while these surges in foreign worker visas and foreign labor work permits is a huge victory for special interests that profit from suppressed wages, it is a debilitating loss for struggling American families. 

Unemployed and underpaid Americans desperate for a good-paying job have every right to be angry at a federal government that takes American jobs from American citizens and gives them to foreigners.  Americans have every right to be angry at Washington elected officials who care more about special interest campaign contributions than American voters who elected us. 

I hope these Americans will remember their anger during 2016’s primary and general elections.  That is the way to force Washington to represent us!

Mr. Speaker, I can’t speak for anyone else but, as for me, Mo Brooks, from Alabama’s 5th Congressional District, I fight for the economic interests of American citizens and against policies that undermine the struggling American voters who sent us here.

That’s part of the reason why I voted against December’s financially irresponsible Omnibus spending bill . . . and am proud of it!

###

[i] “Currently, Congress has set the H-2B cap at 66,000 per fiscal year, with 33,000 for workers who begin employment in the first half of the fiscal year (October 1 - March 31) and 33,000 for workers who begin employment in the second half of the fiscal year (April 1 - September 30). Any unused numbers from the first half of the fiscal year will be available for employers seeking to hire H-2B workers during the second half of the fiscal year. However, unused H-2B numbers from one fiscal year do not carry over into the next.”  United States Citizenship and Immigration Services, Cap Count for H-2B Nonimmigrants, http://www.uscis.gov/working-united-states/temporary-workers/cap-count-h-2b-nonimmigrants.

[ii] Center for Immigration Studies, John Miano, “The American Public Keeps Getting ‘Sold Out’,” Dec. 21, 2015, http://www.cis.org/miano/american-public-keeps-getting-sold-out.

[iii] Federal Register, “Retention of EB-1, EB-2, and EB-3 Immigrant Workers and Program Improvements Affecting High-Skilled Nonimmigrant Workers,” Proposed Rule by the Homeland Security Department, Dec. 31, 2015, https://www.federalregister.gov/articles/2015/12/31/2015-32666/retention-of-eb-1-eb-2-and-eb-3-immigrant-workers-and-program-improvements-affecting-high-skilled.

[iv] News Release, Sen. Jeff Sessions, “Chairman Sessions Issues Statement on New Obama Executive Action to Shred Immigration Caps,” Jan. 4, 2016, http://www.sessions.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/2016/1/chairman-sessions-issues-statement-on-new-obama-executive-action-to-shred-immigration-caps.

[v] Breitbart.com, Julia Hahn, “Paul Ryan’s Christmas Warning: American Companies Will Shut Down Without More Foreign Workers,” http://www.breitbart.com/big-government/2015/12/23/paul-ryans-christmas-warning-american-companies-will-shut-without-foreign-workers/.

[vi] Center for Immigration Studies, The Employment Situation of Immigrants and Natives in the Second Quarter of 2015, Oct. 2015, Table 2, http://cis.org/Employment-Situation-Immigrants-Natives-Second-Quarter-2015.

[vii] Center for Immigration Studies, “No Evidence of Labor Shortage in H-2B Occupations,” http://www.cis.org/a/no-evidence-labor-shortage-h-2b-occupations.

 
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Contact Information

1230 Longworth HOB
Washington, DC 20515
Phone 202-225-4801
Fax 202-225-4392
brooks.house.gov

On November 6, 2012, Congressman Mo Brooks (R-AL) was re-elected as the Representative for Alabama’s 5th Congressional District. He proudly represents the people of North Alabama and serves on three important committees:  Armed Services, Science, Space, and Technology, and Foreign Affairs.

As a sophomore member, Congressman Brooks is highly active and engaged in representing the interests of the 5th District. Brooks supports America’s missile defense technologies; he introduced successful legislation in 2011 and 2012 that blocked the White House from sharing classified missile technologies with Russia, and was adapted into the National Defense Authorization Act in FY2012. Rep. Brooks is also a vocal opponent of sequestration, voting against the Budget Control Act and called upon Administration officials to account for the consequences of sequestration in a HASC Strategic Forces Subcommittee hearing on April 18, 2012.

During his first year on the Hill, Brooks founded and became co-chairman of the Army Aviation Caucus, a forum in which Members of Congress, staff, and Army leadership raise awareness for Army Aviation and seek to affect legislative priorities. The Caucus now includes more than 50 members and is one of the most active caucuses on Capitol Hill.

Growing up in North Alabama, Mo Brooks’ parents taught him early on that study and hard work were expected and required. They also taught him the importance of honesty, and to never be shy about speaking up and fighting for important principles. Brooks was born in 1954 in Charleston, South Carolina, and moved in 1963 to Huntsville, Alabama. Rep. Brooks’ father, Jack Brooks, retired from Redstone Arsenal’s Metrology Center. Brooks’ mother, Betty Brooks, taught economics and government for over 20 years at Lee High School. They still live in Madison County.

Rep. Brooks graduated from Grissom High School in 1972 (where he was all-city in baseball and an active member on two state championship debate teams). He graduated from Duke University in three years with a double major in political science and economics, with highest honors in economics. In 1978, he graduated from the University of Alabama Law School.

After graduation, Rep. Brooks worked as a prosecutor in the Tuscaloosa District Attorney’s office, where he built a solid “tough-on-crime” reputation. While there, he obtained guilty verdicts in every one of the 20-plus jury trials he prosecuted. He also organized and managed the grand jury.

Rep. Brooks left the Tuscaloosa District Attorney’s office in 1980 to return to Huntsville as a law clerk for presiding Circuit Court Judge John David Snodgrass. In 1982, Brooks was elected to the Alabama House of Representatives and became one of 11 Republican legislators (out of 140 total) and the only elected Republican legislator north of Birmingham.

Brooks was reelected to the Alabama House in 1983, 1986, and 1990. While in the legislature, he was elected Republican House Caucus Chairman three times and was ranked number one (out of 140 legislators) by the Alabama Taxpayers’ Defense Fund in the fight to protect family incomes from higher taxes. He was also ranked in the top 20 percent by Alabama Alliance of Business & Industry on pro-jobs, tort reform, and free enterprise issues and was recognized as one of the legislature’s most effective legislators by Alabama Magazine.

In 1991, Brooks was appointed Madison County District Attorney. In 1996, he ran for the Madison County Commission and unseated an eight-year incumbent Republican. He was reelected to the Commission in 2000, 2004, and 2008. During every year except when he was serving as a prosecutor or court clerk, Brooks held a second job in private practice. In 1995-1996, he was appointed Special Assistant Attorney General for then Attorney General Jeff Sessions and, from 1996-2002, was appointed Special Assistant Attorney General for then Attorney General Bill Pryor.

In 1976, Mo Brooks married Martha Jenkins of Toledo; they met at Duke University. Martha graduated from the University of Alabama with an accounting degree. She later retired as a certified public accountant and obtained a math and education major from the University of Alabama in Huntsville in 2005. She taught math at Whitesburg Middle School. Mo and Martha are the proud parents of four children and grandparents of four grandchildren. Rep. Brooks was first elected to the U.S. House of Representatives on November 2, 2010.


Serving With

Bradley Byrne

ALABAMA's 1st DISTRICT

Martha Roby

ALABAMA's 2nd DISTRICT

Mike Rogers

ALABAMA's 3rd DISTRICT

Robert Aderholt

ALABAMA's 4th DISTRICT

Gary Palmer

ALABAMA's 6th DISTRICT

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