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WALORSKI VOTES TO REIGN IN GOVERNMENT, REQUEST ACCOUNTABILITY

August 4, 2013
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  08/05/13 During “Stop Government Abuse Week,” Congresswoman Jackie Walorski supported numerous bills to demand accountability from government agencies, like the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), and reign in overreaching regulations that are hurting our economy. 

“When I talk to Hoosiers at home on the weekends, they want Congress to work on strengthening the American economy instead of adding more red tape and costly laws regulated by bloated agencies,” said Walorski.  “This week the House sent a clear message to our constituents at home that we are listening to your concerns and trimming back government overreach to save taxpayer dollars and create jobs.”

Walorski co-sponsored the Keep the IRS Off Your Health Care Act (H.R. 2009) to prevent the IRS from implementing or enforcing any portion of Obamacare.  In May, Walorski sent a letter to the U.S. Treasury and IRS requesting answers about the politically-motivated targeting of conservative groups, asking for responses to pertinent questions within 30 days.  Two months later, the Treasury finally responded and offered only minimal details and no specific answers to the questions asked due to “pending investigations.”

“Americans do not trust the federal government.  Recent accounts of abuse and corruption from this agency are frightening, and clearly prove that the IRS should not be leading future efforts to implement any components of Obamacare.  Congress will continue demanding genuine accountability from all government agencies until they properly respect and adhere to the law and restore transparency for the public.”

Other Co-Sponsored Bills:

REINS Act (H.R. 367): Introduced by Indiana Congressman Todd Young, this bill requires a vote from Congress before major regulations costing $100 million or more could take effect, ensuring that Americans can hold their elected officials and the Executive branch accountable for overly-burdensome regulations.

STOP IRS Act (H.R. 2565): This bill expands the grounds for termination of employment of an IRS employee.  This includes an IRS employee performing, delaying, or failing to perform any official action (including an audit) for political reasons or for the purpose of extracting personal gain or benefit.

Stop Playing on Citizen’s Cash Act (H.R. 2769): This bill prevents the Internal Revenue Service from holding any conference until the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration submits a report to Congress certifying that the IRS has implemented all the Inspector General’s recommendations for agency conferences.

Government Employee Accountability Act (H.R. 2579): Authorizes all federal agencies to place an employee on “investigative leave” without pay if they determine that the employee’s conduct was serious or flagrant.

Congresswoman Walorski spoke about stopping government abuse on the House floor earlier this week, watch here.

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4 Responses to “ WALORSKI VOTES TO REIGN IN GOVERNMENT, REQUEST ACCOUNTABILITY ”

  1. Thor on August 8, 2013 at 1:34 pm

    Good luck with shooting down drones. You’ll get the commercial ones and small squad support ones easily enough (if you’re a really good shot at long range fast moving targets with a rifle, they won’t get close enough for a BidenBlaster) but government RPA engagement ranges would start with 3 miles of vertical separation.

    With a SAM system, maybe. Jamming would be difficult since they use satellite links. The FAA tends to frown on waving industrial lasers around the sky.

    I agree with your privacy protection concerns.

  2. Andrew on August 6, 2013 at 3:57 am

    Hi Thor,

    Well according to what I just read and what I understand about the Castle Doctrine, I can shoot down any UAV flying over my property. Problem Solved (except that I will have a city address).

    Regarding the Nugent Amendment, the devils in the details — it’s a DUD — it doesn’t accomplish anything. Let me point this out:

    QUOTE [The Nugent Amendment reads as follows:

    None of funds made available by this Act may be used by the National Security Agency to—

    (1) conduct an acquisition pursuant to section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978 for the purpose of targeting a United States person; or

    (2) acquire, monitor, or store the contents (as such term is defined in section 2510(8) of title 18, United States Code) of any electronic communication of a United States person from a provider of electronic communication services to the public pursuant to section 501 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978.

    At a quick glance, this may look like the Amash ammendment. Both say stuff about how no funds can be used for certain forms of surveillance. But the specifics are very important here. There's been an awful lot of confusion over the past couple of months of revelations between two different programs and which laws they come under. As described above, much of the concern with the vast collection of data is about Section 215 under the Patriot Act. The separate concerns, about the PRISM program, fall under Section 702 of FISA. It looks like the Nugent amendment may be pulling funding from that, but it's not. It just says that it wouldn't allow funds to be used for Section 702 if it's "targeting a US person." But Section 702 already forbids the targeting of US persons and while there are some questions as to how well the NSA follows this limitation, so far there's been no real evidence that 702 is used to target US persons. So, this is just restating the status quo, and doing absolutely nothing to fix the gross reinterpretation of Section 215. ] (http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20130723/01361323896/dueling-house-amendments-over-cutting-nsa-surveillance-funding-one-is-red-herring-to-trick-congress.shtml)

    This is what bothers me. The constant misdirection that is coming from Washington. We get thrown the IRS, which has always been the favorite to irk most people, and people get riled up about that and forget this one. This happens way too often in most cases. If you have a problem in a local area, you highlight something further away and it takes the focus off. Same here.

    Rather than defunding anything, what needs to be done is a clear line drawn in the sand. Presently that is up to interpretation when the need arises. Yes the constitution is clear on many things, but the Patriot Act (among others) has caused too many “what if’s” and exceptions to creep in. I think a clear spelling out regarding data protection is long in order.

  3. Thor on August 5, 2013 at 2:54 pm

    Hi Andrew,

    Great reply. I agree that we have walked too far down the trail of surrendering rights for dubious safety.

    I was on a telecom with the Walorski office prior to this vote talking about why she voted against the Amash amendment and for the Nugent amendment. As a member of the HASC she outlined briefings that identified how the program, used against others, identified and hindered threats to America. Then went on to talk about how the Nugent amendment would help to ensure that these capabilities would not target citizens in this country…who were not chatting with terrorists. The outcome of those amendments is still open to debate.

    I work with a number of people in the UAV/UAS/RPA community…the issue is not with the platform even though this gets folks spun up. This issue is with the sensor ball and the willingness to misuse the data. A sensor ball on a Predator is no different than one on a Sheriffs helicopter. A program that can scan the e-mail of fuzzy furiners (Caddy Shack reference)can just as easily be misused to inappropriately scan the e-mails of residents.

    What we need are protections for citizens (just follow the Constitution!)that allow us to use the tools we have to track down those who will or have attacked us.

    Amash is submitting a Liberty Law (if memory serves), I’ll wait to see what’s in it and then how Jackie votes. What he submitted last time was questionably constitutional.

    In the mean time I will keep my explosive chemical mixture of a low humidity and trust but verify.

  4. Andrew on August 4, 2013 at 10:35 pm

    If there was ever an elephant in the room, this is it.

    Recently there was a debate about the NSA privacy and two bills were introduced. One effectively put down the ability of the NSA to do unreasonable search (by side-stepoping FISA which was put in expressly to stop this kind of business!) which she voted against — and the other which she did vote for. At the end of the day that other legislation is powerless if you examine it at its very core.

    I know that in the case of the Amash Amendment there might be some concern about the ability of the NSA to perform their job in a reasonable manner, however brute force methods like holding records indefinitely so that later they may be referenced is a very dangerous way of doing that.

    Its a dangerous trend to start playing with the checks and balances that the founding fathers very wisely built into the governmental structure we have. Both the Bush administration and the Obama administration to a larger degree have done this. I realize that laws like the Patriot Act needed to address certain problems — and many of those are still among us, but there needs to be some sense about how things are done that way, rather than always running to extremes. Moderation is the key here. Because that moderation seems to be lacking in nearly any and all political debates these days, it is even more important that some degree of oversight be present.

    Ms. Wolarski — why not do something really effective in your time in Washington and do something that is going to guarantee future generations the same constitutional protections that we have in our lives and all of the former generations have been accustomed to?

    Terrorism has a goal that is to derail society to bring it down to their level — Why are we playing into this? Why not go after the Elephant in the room which is this governmental overreach into the lives of the great majority of Americans who have no hostile intentions at all?

    I for one will not surrender those rights afforded by the constitution just to show that I am not a threat. If I do, the terrorists have already won.

    I hope future reports about accomplishments in Washington will be more reflective of these kinds of changes. I for one am getting rather bored of reading of gestures that favor the party line rather than the needs of the constituency. We need to focus on the core issues and stop going on snipe hunts that at the end of the day are not going to change anything.