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Honorable Mark Sanford

Representing the 1st District of South Carolina

There are not that many times you see the gavel passed in the House Chamber, but today was one of those days.

Oct 29, 2015
Blog Post

There are not that many times you see the gavel passed in the House Chamber, but today was one of those days. In that regard, I wish Speaker Ryan well and offer the very best of farewells to outgoing Speaker John Boehner.

I completely understand the concerns of many who I have spoken to at home with regard to their fear of “more of the same.” It’s obviously a concern of mine as well, but in this I think we need to give Paul Ryan a chance. At an absolute minimum, there will be new leadership elections next November with the new Congress, and if he hasn’t done what he said he would do with regard to reform and focus, there will be a chance for change.

In the meantime, he said two very important things today in his acceptance speech. One, he reiterated his commitment to so-called “regular order.” In short form, this means letting ideas work their way through the committee process. This gives regular rank-and-file Members a much greater voice in enacting legislation. One of people’s gravest concerns with the way that things have worked in Washington has been in the lack of transparency. Few can have faith in a process that they can’t see because the Founding Father’s very idea of checks and balances was built on the precept that government didn’t know what’s best for individuals. Rather than laws and deals being handed down from on high, there was in inherent distrust of individual motive built into the system of checks and balances. Regular order will move us back toward more debate and discussion of ideas, and less reliance on leadership’s backroom deals…Ryan’s committed to it, and I applaud his commitment.

The second thing that he said was the word debt. It was at the tail end of his acceptance speech but important for the way that he pledged to work on it. I again applaud what he said here. It is the reason I ran for Congress. If we don’t get this issue right in the near term, none of the other issues confronting our country are going to matter a whole lot.

So, we’ll see what comes next, but in the meantime, I look forward to working to do something about government spending and working to raise the standing of taxpayer’s voice in Washington with Paul Ryan and so many other Members who want to do the same. In that vein, I took a picture from the House floor of a bit of the history unfolding today, and I thought you might like to take a look.