Rep. Blaine Luetkemeyer
Rep. Blaine Luetkemeyer
By U.S. Rep. Blaine Luetkemeyer
R-Missouri

“The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.” (Martin Luther King, Jr., 1963)

While the circumstances we face today are much different than 1963, Dr. King’s words still ring true. Over the last year, our nation has endured more than our fair share of adversity. We have experienced a once in a lifetime pandemic that has claimed American lives, caused unemployment rates to reach Great Depression levels, kept students out of school and shuttered businesses.

We have seen political unrest in the forms of violent protests in cities throughout the country and attacks on the men and women in law enforcement who risk their lives daily to protect our communities. And most recently, the horrific scenes in the United States Capitol. There is no doubt these are times of challenge and controversy. Now we must decide where we go from here.

If you look at the recent actions of the House of Representatives, it’s clear some of my colleagues remain intent on divisiveness and chaos. Recently, the House voted on a nonbinding resolution about the 25th Amendment. Resolutions like this have no way of becoming law. In fact, they’re not designed to become law. When passed, they do not get sent to the Senate nor do they change anything.

It is simply a public statement.

This particular statement was designed to remind the public of recent events with the hope of scoring political points. After that, we voted on another round of impeachment. While the FBI and intelligence community are still conducting their investigations and new evidence is coming to light every day, the speaker rushed articles through the House, skipping months of committee processes and review.

There is no benefit to this. Regardless of the House’s actions, we will have a new president and administration this week, long before the Senate finishes its trial, if they have one at all. At a time of challenge and controversy, the speaker chose more chaos and political unrest over the greater good.

My priorities for the coming year include doing everything in my power to get all Missourians healthy and our economy fully open. Missouri has already done a great job of rolling out the vaccine and another phase is set to begin soon. This should be the final piece of the puzzle in allowing everyone to go back to regular life without fear.

My new position as the leading Republican on the House Small Business Committee has given me a larger platform to do even more to help our businesses be successful – not just stay afloat. Congress re-upped the Paycheck Protection Program in the latest COVID relief package and I am pleased to report the Small Business Administration started accepting applications this week. For any business owners who would like to apply for either a first or second round PPP loan, please visit sba.gov.

It is no secret I favor smaller government with less regulations, but with the new administration will come a new regulatory regime that will most certainly seek to increase government control. We will see proposals to increase taxes on small businesses and socially motivated restrictions on financial institutions that will increase the cost, and in some cases completely eliminate, banking services which slows down economic growth.

My job and the job of my committee will be to push back on every regulation and action that threatens our ability to create jobs, pay employees, and succeed. Our economic freedom is what sets us apart from the rest of the world and it must be maintained.

Unfortunately, 2021 has picked up where 2020 left off. There are plenty of reasons to be frustrated. But America is resilient. We have overcome every challenge that has been in our way and come out stronger on the other side. This year will be no different. Brighter days are ahead, and it starts right now.