Noem touts House GOP plan to ‘cut and grow’

Rep. Kristi Noem, R-S.D., joined her fellow House Republicans in promoting a new plan aimed at cutting regulation and taxes in order to promote business growth.

“Small business and innovators lack the confidence to invest in our economy,” Noem told reporters during her regular weekly conference call.

“Taxation, regulation and litigation is not going to create jobs,” she said. “The size and scope of the federal government has exploded with nothing but debt to show for it. We need common-sense, progrowth policies.”

The bill targets free trade, lower taxes and less regulation in series of specific proposals.

• Cut top business and personal tax rates to 25 percent and close loopholes. “Parts of (the tax code) are fundamentally unfair,” Noem said. “It is filled with loopholes and giveaways. Let’s make it flatter, fairer and much more simple.”

• Ratify free trade agreements struck with South Korea, Panama and Colombia.

• Require regulations on business to be approved by Congress before they can be implemented by a government agency.

• Audit existing regulations to determine whether they are onerous for business.

The House Republicans unveiled their plan on the same day the Obama administration announced it will eliminate many regulations it has determined to be an unnecessary hindrance to business.

In addition, Noem joined Sens. Tim Johnson and John Thune in lending support to a cap on direct payments in the 2012 farm bill. However, her support for the idea is softer.

“I think we’re open to looking at that idea,” she said. “There are certainly some areas of reform we need to look at.”

Noem reiterated her support for the so-called “Ryan budget” passed by House Republicans, saying criticism of its Medicare proposal is unfair. President Obama’s health care plan was first to change the government’s health care program for senior citizens, she said.

“His health care legislation fundamentally changed health care as we know it,” she said. “A panel of 15 people will decide what kind of health care and treatment they can receive. The plan that passed on the House floor saves Medicare. This is an opportunity for us to fix it without impacting seniors and an opportunity to fix it without raising taxes.”

And, she said she enjoyed meeting Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu when he visited Capitol Hill this week.

“We are very close allies. We need to support Israel. They are the only democracy in the Middle East,” she said. “It was a very good meeting. I was very thankful to have him come.”

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