Mack fields questions from local business leaders
Congressman Connie Mack, FL-14, fielded questions from the business community Monday while attending the Southwest Florida Chamber of Commerce breakfast forum entitled, “Health Care – Bailouts – Stimulus: The Impact on the Growth of Govern-ment on Business in Southwest Florida.”
The event was at the Holiday Inn Fort Myers Town Center. The congressman, who was the guest speaker, gave his views on issues, and spent time answering questions on his take of major issues.
The first question was from Cape Coral business owner Bob Long, president and CEO of Marine Concepts. Coincidently, Mack grew up in Cape Coral and said that Long had given him his first job.
Long, in giving background for his first question, stated that his business is hurting badly in this economy as are many others locally.
“We are preaching to the choir. What else can we do as individuals to make change in this country?” Long asked.
“All of you work for small businesses,” said Mack. “You still know that in traditional times you need to keep working hard, you have to continue and don’t give up. You can’t give up hope. There’s something you can do and everyone in this room can do, whether it is through letters to the editor, whether it is calling my office or other member of congresses offices to communicate on issues.”
He also said to use company letters to encourage communication, something Long said he planned to do.
He also encouraged everyone to call their friends and tell them to write, e-mail and call, too.
“Just about any member of Congress can tell you on any given day how many letters, phone calls and e-mails they received — any day and on what particular issue,” Mack said. “Certainly healthcare has risen to be one of those issues — it is the issue.”
Other questions concerned the Acorn scandal, the auto industry and proposed healthcare reform.
Mack is an outspoken critic of many of President Obama’s recent policies and goals.
“In the last decade we have seen countless assaults on freedom, capitalism and personal liberties from both Democrats and Republicans,” said Mack.
“We’ve seen Congress enact legislation that increases government intervention in the marketplace. We’ve seen Congress enact legislation for trillions of dollars for bailouts of the financial sector and the auto industry. The so-called stimulus plan has so far done nothing to stimulate the economy or create jobs,” he said.
“Now we are seeing Congress debate on what healthcare insurance is best for you and your family. We need to stop turning to the federal government to solve all of our problems.
“We all agree that our nation’s healthcare system is in need of reform,” he continued, noting, though that he does not agree with the current version of President Obama’s plan.
Many Realtors were in the audience and one asked the congressman his view on extending the first-time home buyer tax credit.
“If we really want to see the housing market take off, it shouldn’t be just for first-time home-buyers, there should be a tax incentive for everybody,” Mack said.
That brought applause from the attendees.
Mack also said he believes the economy is making a comeback.
“I’m proud of Southwest Florida, because Southwest Florida … in every major debate I’ve been involved with … our passion has always come through with respect.”