ST. GEORGE – More than 400 people crowded into the Dixie State University Gardner Center in St. George Saturday to attend the Washington County Republican Party’s annual Lincoln Day Breakfast.
The atmosphere was festive as attendees enjoyed a Valentine’s Day catered breakfast, uplifting music and continuous reports of good news from various government representatives.
Gov. Gary Herbert
“The state of our state is exceptional,” Gov. Gary Herbert said. “There’s no other way to describe it. We are doing very well.”
Herbert said the spirit of collaboration and communication make Utah exceptional. Utah is an emerging example of that city on the hill Ronald Reagan referred to, he said.
Sen. Orrin Hatch
“The Senate has been taken over by Republicans,” Sen. Orrin Hatch said, receiving a long round of applause.
During his address, Hatch pointed out that, under Democrat control of the Senate for the last two years, not one bill was passed. Democrats wouldn’t bring bills up for debate because they were afraid Republicans might have amendments, Hatch said.
“In one solid year last year, we had 15 amendments that were voted on,” Hatch said. “In the first month of this year, we’ve had between 42 and 60 amendments that were voted on, and we’ve passed four major bills, and we are moving ahead in a regular order and giving the Democrats all the time they need to bring up their amendments and make their points and have debate.”
There is a difference between the two parties, Hatch said, and the Republicans are running the senate the way it should be run.
Sen. Mike Lee
Sen. Mike Lee pointed out that the country is dealing with a lot of federal government overreach. The focus in Washington, D.C., right now is lifting the weight off the shoulders of the American people, he said.
“Government is now involved in every aspect of your life,” Lee said. “It regulates everything, from how many gallons of water your toilet flushes to how many milligrams of riboflavin are in your Cheerios.”
In the last six years, the reach of the federal government has expanded and exploded, and it’s got to be turned around, Lee said. The nation’s higher education system is one victim of undue federal intrusion, he said.
“Congress hasn’t passed a budget within six years,” Lee said. “We need to get a budget passed this year, and it needs to bring us to a point of balance within a reasonable period of time that can be reckoned within single digits of years.”
If we don’t move in that direction now, he said, it’s going to be a lot harder down the road.
Lee asked his listeners to stand with him in expecting a balanced federal budget and a government that honors the Constitution.
“Don’t settle for mediocrity,” Lee said. “It’s time to expect more. It’s time to expect freedom.”
Rep. Chris Stewart
Rep. Chris Stewart pointed out the importance of adhering to the Constitution the way the nation’s founders intended. He read from Article I of the Constitution:
All legislative Powers herein shall be vested in a Congress of the United States, which shall consist of a Senate and a House of Representatives.
“I used to say we are in a fight for the heart and soul this country. I no longer think that’s true,” Stewart said. “I think we are in a fight for the heart and soul of Western civilization.”
Stewart praised the military men and women who are currently in that fight for freedom.
Attorney General Sean Reyes
Utah Attorney General Sean Reyes said the attorney general’s office is working on a bill that would create a white collar crime registry, providing public information about fraudulent investors so the average citizen can be informed before making large investments. The registry will be set up similar to the system that tracks registered sex offenders. This will provide an effective way for citizens to know who they are investing with and to have some protection.
The Keystone Pipeline
“The Keystone Pipeline passed with 62 votes,” Hatch said. “But I think President Obama will veto it. I’m praying that he won’t. It will be very vindictive if he does, but I think he will.”
There will not be enough votes to override a veto, he said.
The Keystone Pipeline will create 42,000 jobs and lead to energy independence and national security, Stewart said. President Obama’s own administration has said there are no significant environmental impacts.
Regarding President Obama’s executive order on immigration, Hatch pointed out that even though Democrats know it was wrong, not one Democrat was willing to take a stand against it.
The fight over executive amnesty is not a fight over immigration; it’s a fight over our Constitution, Stewart said.
“It is so important that we have this fight and that we win this fight, because it is a constitutional issue that is at play here,” he said.
The House of Representatives has defunded executive amnesty.
Utah and Texas entered into litigation against President Obama’s immigration policy, with 25 other states joining, as well.
“This is not about policy,” Reyes said. “Its about the rule of law about procedure, and we have to send a message that no one in this country is above the law, even the President of the United States.”
More than half the country, red states and blue states, have joined together to fight the policy, Reyes said.
Brief closing remarks were made by Sen. Evan Vickers, Rep. Brad Last and Washington County Commissioner Victor Iverson before this year’s annual Lincoln Day Breakfast came to a close.
- Hatch calls for defunding immigration executive action
- Rep. Stewart urges President to sign Pipeline Act into law
- Hatch lauds passage of Keystone XL Pipeline Act
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