#100Biz100Days: Connecting With the American Worker

Congressman Mike Fitzpatrick serves Pennsylvania’s 8th Congressional District in the House of Representatives. He serves as the Vice Chairman of the House Financial Services Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations.

Each summer, I visit 100 businesses in 100 days across my district in Pennsylvania to get a firsthand look at our local economy. Meeting with the workers and small business owners that power our economy provides me with critical insight to better represent them in our nation’s capital. It also is an opportunity to talk with moms and dads, Little League coaches and local volunteers about the challenges and successes in their communities.

While times are tough for working families, the economy continues to sputter, and workforce participation is at a 30-year low under this Administration, there is reason for optimism. American manufacturing – including small businesses in my district and across the nation – are poised to help drive our nation out of the Great Recession and into the second American Century. In fact, through a recent survey of local manufacturers, commissioned through my office, I found that over 60% of respondents agreed that their company “intends to hire within the next six months.” And more than 70% say they are “optimistic about [their] future success.”

From bakeries in Perkasie expanding to meet the demand of local customers, to the medical device manufacturer in Doylestown breaking down walls to increase production, everywhere I turned, it wasn’t hard to see the unique sense of optimism that defines our nation.

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And, while there is good news, there are certainly things to be done on Capitol Hill to ensure the success of the workers and workplaces driving our prosperity. Things like:

  • Investing in the American worker by modernizing our job training programs and closing the ‘skills gap’ that’s hurting our economy
  • Saying ‘Yes!’ to an all-of-the-above American energy strategy that lowers prices at the pump and allows manufacturers to grow
  • Reforming our broken tax code and burdensome regulatory environment to increase certainty and promote investment here in the U.S.

House Republicans have taken bold action to address the issues facing families and small businesses and passed over 40 jobs bills – many in bipartisan fashion – that are currently awaiting action in the Senate. Now more than ever, Americans need solutions that empower, not politics as usual.

The workers and business owners I’ve talked to across Bucks and Montgomery counties this summer during my 100 Businesses in 100 Days tour have, once again, given me a fresh perspective on the challenges facing our communities. As their Representative in Congress, it is critical that I take their voice to the nation’s capital and work toward the goals on which we all can agree.

— Congressman Mike Fitzpatrick (R-PA)

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