Congressman Brian Fitzpatrick updated members of the Lower Bucks County business community Thursday morning.
The congressman covered a variety of topics, including the economy, tax reform, national security, term limits, the opioid epidemic, discourse in our country and recent gun violence.
Fitzpatrick, a Republican, addressed the members of the Lower Bucks County Chamber of Commerce during their Keynote Breakfast at the Livengrin Foundation in Bensalem.
Before the group of business leaders, Fitzpatrick said America’s 35 percent tax rate on corporations in the highest in the world “by a mile” and needs to be lowered to 22 or 23 percent to spur growth. He said he viewed economic growth with three points – a balanced federal budget, tax reform and regulatory reform. In addition, Fitzpatrick stated he believed the 1.5 percent gross domestic product growth has to increase to 3 to 4 percent yearly to sustain federal spending.
The congressman, a certified public accountant, stated any executive order that is determined by the Office of Management and Budget that is estimated to have more than $100 million in impact to the economy should have to come before congress. Fitzpatrick explained that the executive branch has grown in power and needs to be balanced back to the legislative branch.
“The [House of Representatives] should be making those regulatory decisions, Fitzpatrick said. “We are the ones closest to people who those regulations affect.”
Former FBI agent Fitzpatrick spoke about his experience fighting political corruption during his law enforcement career. He cited his introduction of the Citizen Legislature Anti-Corruption Reform (CLEAN) Act that would require single-issues legislation, cut down on Gerrymandering by appointing an independent, non-partisan commissions to handle the process, add term limits for Congress and open primary elections for Independents and unaffiliated voters.
“Term limits are the most important thing,” Fitzpatrick said.
In the past, Fitzpatrick has cited his FBI experience as showing him the longer politicians remain in power, the higher the chance they become corrupt.
Fitzpatrick said National Security and Cyber Security are major issues the government needs to concentrate their focus on.
The congressman also touched on the opioid epidemic that has hit the Eighth Congressional District hard. The issue was especially relevant due to the Livengrin Foundation’s work with those suffering from addiction. He said more money has to be put towards prevention and treatment because those dollars would save additional money that would be spent in public safety and health care.
“I feel like we’re losing an entire generation,” he said.
Fitzpatrick answered a few questions and responded to one on recent gun violence. He said in the wake of the Las Vegas mass shooting that he was working with her peers on drafting a bill on instruments that modify legal weapons into firearms currently banned by federal law.
Since the campaign, Fitzpatrick, who has labeled himself an “independent voice,” has talked about the political division that has divided everyday Americans. He cited his affiliation with the bi-partisan Problem Solvers Caucus that has offered plans for numerous issues, including a plan to stabilize the health care system. He explained the Problem Solvers Caucus has 46 members that are equally split between the two parties.
“No one party has a monopoly on good ideas,” he said.
“We need to change the way we talk to one another from the kitchen table all the way up to the White House.”