February 25, 2011

Last week Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) made his mark on the House of Representatives when lawmakers did something notably absent in recent years: cut spending.

During the course of the week, lawmakers considered more than 100 amendments for the continuing resolution, working late into the night and cutting $61 billion from current spending levels. Now, as the March 4 deadline approaches for funding the government, all eyes are on Boehner.

In other words, YouTube picked an excellent time to put him in front of the camera to answer your questions. One month after President Obama answer questions from YouTube viewers, it’s now Boehner’s turn to hear what’s on the minds of Americans.

YouTube is gathering questions submitted by video through midnight Sunday. (Or via Twitter by using the hashtag #askthespeaker.) Boehner will answer them on March 1 during a sit-down interview with YouTube’s Steve Grove. Questioners are encouraged to keep their responses to 20 seconds and are welcome to be creative with props, charts and other information. (Heritage has several charts ready for use.)

With so many things to ask, you might have a look at Heritage’s Solutions for America checklist to come up with a question. A few suggestions:

* In the coming weeks and months, Congress will debate a debt limit increase and Republicans will release their budget. How much spending will you attempt to cut?

* What’s the next step the House can take to block key provisions and override regulations for Obamacare?

* Will you make permanent the tax cuts of 2001 and 2003?

* Do you support funding defense at an average of $720 billion per year, when adjusted for inflation, over the next five fiscal years?

* How can the House keep a check on the executive branch by rolling back recent government regulations and restricting bureaucrats’ rulemaking authority?

These are just a few of the questions facing the House over the coming months. Take this opportunity to ask Boehner what’s on your mind.

Once you submit your question to the Speaker, post it in the comments.

Comments (59)

Steven Weiss - February 25, 2011

When is the House leaders going to audit the stimulis and tarp money to see where it went . Then put the criminals in federal prison.????

Nancy Hanahan - February 25, 2011

Mr. Speaker,
Why have our ‘leaders’, Republican and Democrate placed America is this energy crisis, but not allowing us to drill in our own country for years? Also, disallowing the construction of Nuclear Power Plants.
I know, it’s the EPA restrictions. Well, you don’t have to let those restrictions stand. DEFUND THE EPA, drill in our own country and turn the Middle Ease back into a sandbox!
This is shameful.

K Crawmer - February 25, 2011

I’m surprised that the Republicans have allowed the WH and Dems to get away with usurping the laws of this Great Nation. Plus the appointing of these high paid Czars that have not had to be approved by congress on an individual basis. You won in 2010, but we need to see more.

Mark DeChellis - February 25, 2011

When is the number of employees in the Public Sector going to be reduced, to include those in DC? When are the union members in the in the Public Sector going to be required to be as productive at least as those in the Private Sector? Income and benefits are one thing required by unions, but when is productivity included.
When are the Obama appointed Zars going to be discharged? When are our country boarders going to be protected from drug runner and illegals, that are both cause a strain on the Tax Payers? When are we going to have our energy dept. of our Government going to make clean energy like Nuclear Power plants a priority, which would create a lot of good paying domestic jobs? When our we going to aggressive have a oil drilling program in the Gulf, and on the people’s owned land to bring down the trade deficit, and create good paying domestic jobs?? The profit from an aggressive oil and gas program by our goverment on goverment owned land would do much in eliminating our debt deficit.

Darrell Olson - February 25, 2011

Can you read for the whole House excerpts from comments and speeches given by George Washington, Thomas Jefferson,and other founding fathers. That had founded this country, Wrote the Constitution, And incorporated God Almighty into everything. And possibly show them what was intended for this country and what it would take to hold it. Then ask for a vote or commitment from everyone that intends to honor this.and then let the public know who voted and how they voted. Thank You

Barbara J Struble. - February 25, 2011

Speaker Boehner,
Thank you for spending cuts. Keep them coming.
Please lower debt ceiling and impeach Obama for trying to be king/dictator (DOMA) and sending union “troops” to Wisconsin.
Peace,
Barbara

Terry Kroemer - February 25, 2011

I keep hearing talk about how Social Security needs to be reformed – raise retirement ages, cut benefits, make it means tested…on that I have 3 questions.
1. SS typically pays maybe 30% of a middle class person’s average last few years income; many government pensions pay up to 80% and sometimes 15 years earlier than a SS recipient. Shouldn’t government pensions be reformed prior to even more cuts in SS benefits? I would suggest government pensions pay out something similar to SS.
2. Two persons have same income history; one has saved and lived within his means (only had 3 new cars in his life) and invested a lot of money. Another spent wildly and bought a new car every 2 years and saved nothing. Why should the first one be penalized by “means testing” and the second one get more at the expense of the first?
3. Why does the pension promise to government employees count for so much more than the SS promise to non-government employees? The average government worker contributed less to his big pension than the average SS recipient did to get his SS check.

Ron Brown - February 25, 2011

Shut down the fda and replace it with an agency that has our health in mind rather the the obscene profits of big pharma and the food industry.

Stan Peterson - February 25, 2011

Why do the government union members think that I want my tax dollars used to finance a union, when they allready make more than the private sector does.

Dinah Garrison - February 25, 2011

1) If you decide cuts need to be made in the defense budget, will you remember that if we don’t have defense nothing else matters? There are cuts that can be made by closer checks on how the money is spent, but we also need to spend some money for new materials to get or keep us up with our competitors.
2) Will you please made it very clear to Americans how changes are to be made to SS, Medicare, etc? Many believe that today’s SS recipients might have to go back to work or face large cuts. Everything I have heard says this is quite wrong, but that word gets around.

frida prodan - February 25, 2011

What can this Congress do to stop the implementation of the repeal of DADT? Could you in this time of economic crisis, not fund this law, given the fact that its study wasn’t even done in a timely matter & its results were effectively rushed in, irrationally so?

David Cluelow - February 25, 2011

When are you and congress going to call Obama’s Tzars in front of a committee so they can expain in detail just what their jobs, salaries, and responsiblities are and what authority they have to do these jobs?

Jerry Dunn - February 25, 2011

Mr. Boehner, I am 100% behind you and your cohorts. The Republicans in congress must stand by Governor Walker. Will you? The demise of “collective bargaining” for anything other than wages and benefits is ludicrous. We have ‘em over a barrel. The voters have spoken and now is the time to ‘work’ the mandate!!

Melvin Chapman - February 25, 2011

The fleeing Democrats should be removed from the senate. If they are using legislative credit cards, they should be instantly canceled. The fired Democraps should be replaced with temporary appointments and forced to attend all votes. All absent teachers should be fired until they can substantiate their illness. Protestors that bus in from other areas should be strictly supervised and not allowed to create unlawfull disturbances. Legislators should not be allowed to duck their responsibilities to their constituents and fired!

fran - February 25, 2011

Do you have the fortitude to stand your ground and force the budget cuts needed to save this country? Make no mistake, our president is trying to bring this county to it’s knees.

William Grau - February 25, 2011

Why can’t I ask Speaker Boehner a question without belonging to one of those social sites? Only “the chosen” can ask a question? Maybe one of the few can ask Speaker Boehner about gas prices. Now that they’ve gotten a foot in the door, so to speak, how about getting some drilling started? We’ve got more oil under us than the whole Middle East and we’re not allowed to touch it? What’s wrong with this picture? They’re going to kill us “little people” with gas prices. I put $50 in my car yesterday and it didn’t even fill it up. I’m on a fixed income. How am I going to afford going to the doctor or the drug store? Or shop for food? EVERYTHING is going up because of the gas. Who’s going to do something about it? Drill here! Drill now! We have our own oil. USE IT!!!! Oh, yeah, and make sure at least 75% of it stays here.

George & MaryLou Smith - February 25, 2011

What do you think is going to happen to our economy when the dollar is no longer accepted by the rest of the world?

Janet Carlson - February 25, 2011

Now that the Mideast oil producing countries are in turmoil, when will the United States stop sending money to these countries and begin drilling in our own country?

When will action occur to protect our borders from more and more influx of illegals, terrorists, and criminals both on the Mexican border and the Canadian border?

John Lawrey - February 25, 2011

Ok lets see the republicans promised to cut back to spending levels of 2008. If I remember that was around 2.2 trillion dollars. This budget 2011, which is half over, is at 3.2 trillion dollars. So that means they need to cut 1 trillion dollars but they are only offering up 61 Billion dollars in cuts, not even the 100 billion promised earlier. As I see it this makes them liars and I dont want to hear about pro-rating things because half the year is over. Thats just plain BS lies. The 2012 budget is a complete sham (its mostly tax increases plus an extra 503 billion dollars increased spending over 2011). So when are the republicans going to cut spending and if the president does not comply, then shut the government down for 6 months and do not pay back wages for the time shut down. That at least would cut half the budget, which is much simpler. You will find the country will operate just fine without washington DC and the folks in it.

Here is the problem I see. The federal government plans in the obama budget to increase taxes and in fact with obamacare they are increasing taxes by a huge amount (largest tax increase in history) and with the new bill passed in the lame duck session (food safety bill S510) there are also very hefty increases in taxes to support all the increased checks on food producers, including folks who have their own gardens in their own back yards. Now lets add each state and county and city also raising taxes to maintain what they have by similar amounts. At this point add in the huge increase in gas prices coming and you see we have a perfect storm all aimed at the tax payers footing the bill. And I’m not talking about the rich alone, I’m talking about every single tax payer no matter how much you pay. I wont even mention that food price inflation is at nearly 10% or more already this year, but you get the point. So when we need massive cuts now no matter what, why are they only talking about 61 billion dollars in cuts?

From what I see right now if we do not cut the federal budget by 60% minimum. 2011 budget is 3.2 trillion or close to that times 60% is 1.92 trillion dollars. This reduces the 2011 budge to 1.28 trillion dollars. Then we are pretty much toast for the economy by this time next year or sooner. Our currency will be worthless within that time frame. So when will someone finally have the guts to do what is right for this country instead of making compromises that gut our currency? When mister Speaker are you people going to get some guts to cut the spending! If you think we will forget this come next election time, you are sadly mistaken!

john r. heil - February 25, 2011

much has been said about cutting spending within the federal govenrment but not the first word about what cuts are senators and representatives willing to personally make relative to their pay, their perks, their pensions (which is terrible). looks like self interest – time to suck it up and make hard cuts to the individuals who are making the decisions for our country. many people are out of work, what sacrifice has government employees made. congress should not be above the people but should be with the people – time to demonstrate your willingness. hard times – hard decisions.

Phillip Phelps - February 25, 2011

My question to the Speaker is: Has there been any consideration on behalf of the house to pursue impeachment proceedings against our President for not upholding the laws of our country and being derelict in his duties?

Hair on Fire - February 26, 2011

why don’t you act as though the conservative republicans WON with a mandate from the PEOPLE and stop being touchy feely with the left and get on with the important fiscally responsible things that have to be done, with with a ruthless disregard to the liberals whining and adverse dipictions of the media. Our nation is at stake.

Marc Hughes - February 26, 2011

Speaker Boehner, The Federal government has doubled it’s debt in 11 years. Why can you only find 61 billion to cut?

Joseph Cooper - February 26, 2011

Mr. Speaker when I was a young man I remember hearing a lot on news about a House Committee called the “House Committie on Un-Americian Activities” if we do not have one today do you think you might consider starting one?

Mary Polasek - February 26, 2011

I don’t trust Pres. Obama. He is too un-American, he doesn’t uphold the constitution, and he appointed all of those anti-American czars who are subverting our economy and freedom. How do you take away their power? Also reduce the size of our federal government !!!

Fred Campbell - February 26, 2011

Mr. Boehmer:

You have a budgetary “nuclear weapon” in your hands via the “debt ceiling”, are you willing to use it to force spending cuts?

Theresa Mellins - February 26, 2011

Dear Speaker Boehner:
As Obama has, with AG Holder, decided he will not enforce the DOMA law, why hasn’t the Republication Congress vehemently reacted to this dereliction of presidential duties– as he swore his Oath to uphold the Constitution and enforce all laws, not just the ones he chooses to enforce? Isn’t this an impeachable offense?

Paul Terry Stone - February 26, 2011

Speaker Boehner: If necessary will you let the government shut down to obtain some of the cuts necessary to reduce the deficit?

Paul Monaco - February 26, 2011

I worked in a school district which used funds for supporting over 90% democrats. How is this possible with union funds without them ( NEA & NYSUT) losing tax exempt status?
I vociferously spoke against this,but in a closed shop you had to belong to the union.

Dr. Henry D. Sinopoli - February 26, 2011

What sacrifice will politicians make to help solve the financial problem. Will you recommend reducing salary, forgo yearly increases, eliminate pensions (move to 401K), cut perks, join Social Security, participate in all laws passed for the regular folk. Although cosmetic in the total cost of our debt, it would at least let normal people know politicians do not consider themselves royalty.

Keep in mind – no politician leaves office in worse financial shape than when they were first elected.

Selma Sothern - February 26, 2011

I understand that the Republicans are considering the Dems’ demands to raise the Debt Ceiling. Won’t this give the Dems enough money to fund Obama Healthcare and other programs that Americans don’t want or need, and that the Republicans campaigned against?

Lori Hubble - February 26, 2011

Have you considered a “401k holiday” as a deficit reduction strategy? By that, I mean allowing people to take money out of their 401k funds in 2011 with no tax penalty and at only a 10-15% income tax rate so as to create a one time surge in federal tax revenue?

Warren Miller, CPA - February 26, 2011

Mr. Speaker, do you understand that if the Republicans in the House fail to cut spending by AT LEAST 10% in FY 2012, then in the 2012 election the GOP will go the way of the Whigs? Do you GET that, sir??

Bill Rapp - February 26, 2011

Why don’t we start with a ten percent across the board cut on expense including entitlements and let every one share in the cause? Thats what business used to do rather than lay off people. Once people get used to it their thinking changes and they see it can make a difference

Frank Rezack - February 26, 2011

Mr. Speaker, Why don’t we have someone in government suggest that all elected officials be included in the social security system and government health program rather than the “Princely Health Care and Retirement Plans” they developed for themselves? I would gladly be a supporter of a plan that would be the same as you develop for elected officials. If you were in our health plan/social security plan, you would have it fixed before the current electorate would be up for re-election!~!

SV LARSON - February 26, 2011

Budget cuts will be painful. Across the board cuts might be a way to share the pain and reduce the feeling of unfairness. That’s often what American families have to do. The pain of budget cuts would be incredibly less than the pain of financial failure of the US.

Charles Mulvaney - February 26, 2011

The “Donkey Playbook” strikes again! Make up lies and “stretch the truth” about the GOP’s motives. “You republicans hate the middle class. You hate union workers”, and on and on it goes – year after year, decade after decade. It won’t stop until someone grows a backbone and calls them LIARS!

Dr. Sanford Aranoff - February 26, 2011

We must seriously study alternate scenarios in order to rationally deal with our problems. We neglect this activity at our extreme peril. E.g., America did not discuss a scenario what would happen if the Egyptian people revolted, and so were caught by surprise. The Israelis did discuss this scenario.

With talk about a government shutdown, we must discuss this scenario. We expect the news media, pundits, as well as national leaders to seriously discuss it.

Here are a few thoughts. As soon as the government is shutdown, the states AZ, CA, TX, LA and others will commence drilling for oil and gas, in defiance of government regulations. People will start making good money, and lot of us will have high-paying jobs. The price of gas will drop in half, to $1.50/gallon. Then after the shutdown, the government will not be able to stop the drilling, for these oil people are much tougher than teachers are, and will fight.

Let us look at another situation. The government will be unable to issue orders to the military. Therefore, the military will simply sit there, and do nothing except defend themselves. Self-defense does not require permission from the central government. Now imagine some bad guys setting off an explosive killing some of our soldiers. We then will respond in self-defense, wiping out the entire neighborhood. The Russians taught the pirates this lesson, and so the pirates do not bother Russians.

Our situation is similar to the decade preceding the adoption of the Constitution. The situation then was unacceptable, and so the leaders of the states met and created the Constitution. We need to repeat this. Article V of the Constitution gives the states the right to meet to amend the Constitution without waiting for Congress. Our situation is untenable, and we cannot wait until 2012. During the shutdown, the states should meet in accordance with Article V.

We need to be rational. See the new book, “Rational Thinking, Government Policies, Science, and Living”. Rational thinking starts with clearly stated principles, continues with logical deductions, and then examines empirical evidence to possibly modify the principles.

Dennis Ryan - February 26, 2011

Why arn’t the Repubicans pointing out to the plubic, enery day, on every sound bite, that the coming inflation (they can see it) is caused by the spending and printing of the dollar to suport that spending. Do it now because the Democrates will blame you in 6 months.

Philip Scalvini - February 26, 2011

For years the United States has been building Neuclear Power Plants to supply power for US Navy warships and aircraft carriers. A Nuclear Power Plants of the size that powers a Nuclear Aircraft Carrier wouls be large enough to power a medium size city. The design is standardized, free up permitting and they could be in production quickly. No major changes in the power distribution system would be required and standardized manufacturing lines could be built which would lower the cost of the units. Each one of these would reduce our foreign oil requirement by 100,000 barrells of oil a day? With oil prices skyrocketing there will never be a better time to propose this.

Avonna Vinje - February 26, 2011

Freeze and cut spending, including that of all Senators that fly around the US and world at our expense. Stay home and attend to business. (Senator McCain who ran on protecting our borders and hasn’t done a thing on that, but seems to go overseas enough.)

Robert Wedge - February 26, 2011

Mr. Speaker,
If you educate Americans on the evils of progressivism, expose the corrupt progressive media for what they are, and illustrate conservative/founding principles as THE solution to save the country, you will win over the reasonable majority. What is your plan to articulate this? God Bless you and may God Bless Amrica!

Robert L. Brown - February 26, 2011

When are we going to return to “Zero-Based” budgeting??? Base-line budgeting assumes that last year the budget was perfect, just adjust for inflation and population growth and that will fix everything???

ROBERT J. ISELIN - February 26, 2011

Speaker Boehner: When are YOU & CONGRESS GOING TO START PROCEEDING TO IMPEACH PRESIDENT ONAMA & I HOPE IT ASAP TO STOP DESTROYING OUR USA & STAND WITH ISRAEL & STOP DIVING ISRAEL & CITY OF JERUSALEM & READ THE BIBLE ABOUT STANDING WITH ISRAEL & BE BLESS OR DIVIDE ISRAEL & BE CURSED & BRING JUDGEMENTS ON USA & DEFEAT OBAMA ASAP & GET HIM OUT OF OFFICE & ALL HIS ASSOCIATES & FIRE ALL HIS ZARS & SAVE AMERICA ASAP NOW THANKS RJI???

C.Grundmann - February 26, 2011

When will the law change that says we tax payers have to pay for pensions and healthcare for Congress men & women who have been voted out of office? Cutting that expense would certainly reduce our national debt.

William Gehling - February 27, 2011

Mr. Speaker:
Why are nuclear and hydropower not included as clean and/or renewable forms of energy? We have two small proposed hydro projects on already-existing dams here, and the electric cooperative cannot qualify the projects for low-interest loans necessary to move the projects forward. Unfortunately, our representative (Peter DeFazio) is an EPA supporter, so we cannot get him to help qualify hydro as clean energy. Unfortunately, then, the projects simply “sit on the drawing board.”

Mary Lou Pasto - February 27, 2011

Why don’t we get rid of Medicare and open it up to private insurance? Medicare sucks and causes a lot of people a lot of pain. We could solve our debt problem by cutting one program.

carolyn olson - February 27, 2011

I have Democrat friends who seem to think that the last Republican to have any heart for the poor was Jack Kemp. What can Republlicans do to make their case, prove to the “world” that the poor are as much or more a part of our compassion as the Dems?

paul simon - February 27, 2011

Please do something to start oil drilling in the upper west and central USA…I read we have more proven reserves in S. Dakota, Montana, and Wyoming than all the middle east…Can you get it done????? Paul Simon

Candy Pender - February 27, 2011

Mr. Speaker,
With all the damage that Obama is doing to the country with his liberal policies, is there anything that can be done once he is out of office to undo this damage? It is really scary…..we don’t know all that is going on behind closed doors.

Bill Gervasio - February 27, 2011

What is being planned to change America from borrow and spend to save and produce? For example, the tax code allows a deduction for interest on a HELOC but taxes interest earned on money being saved. F.A. Hayek and the properous America of the 19th century would call this crazy. It incentivizes debt and consumption.

pk - February 27, 2011

when is speaker boehner going to discuss
thedacare.org and hospital competition ?

George Pease - February 28, 2011

Dear Mr. Speaker:
First off I want to congratulate your efforts as Speaker of the House. Finally, someone we can really trust. I think most Americans would like to see an end to this run-away train of debt that is being financed by China. Please, we have to stop the madness. Bring our debt down to 2006 levels and lets get rid of these government run programs that are eating up our tax dollars. Same for waste in government spending. I’d like to see the government get out of runing a business and now is the time to sell the postal service to the private sector. Same for Amtrack and any other venture the government is in. They have proven that they are not capable of running a profitable business without raising taxes. Lets make sure all our stimuless dollars are accounted for and not wasted on some bizzare pet projects that are a total waste of our money. I am strongly opposed to cutting social security benefits as we have put our hard earned dollars into this program for years and the politicians have borrowed and spent our money without ever returning the debt. They should be held accountable.

Ronald French - February 28, 2011

Mr. Speaker,
For what decent reason would you not stand with the people and cut the budget $61B (better yet $100B) now. Isn’t that what we ask for this past November????

Respectfully

Henry Fischer - February 28, 2011

Mr. Speaker, the federal government needs to reduce its spending to match projected revenue, like most other states. We can’t continue to spend more money than we have. We need to stop running federal deficits now.

John K Daugherty - February 28, 2011

You need to defund the EPA, FCC, dept. of Education, and th BATFE, just for starters. All of these are circumventing Congress, enacting unconstitutional rules, and giving the taxpayers no voice. This appears dictatorial to me, what do you think? I’m sure there are many others, what others do you think of?

gary smothers - March 1, 2011

sir. you have been in office during many changes in leadership. with that in mind why should we the people
believe that change is on the horizon since you and your
counterparts created this mess to begin with. i believe that the only true cure for americas problems is to expell all career politicans from government and put in place a system where donations regardless of source are forbidden and those in office cannot succeed themselves more than one. Also eliminate retirement and medical benefits for congress and the senate since if you were means tested as you propose for social security and medicare we would discover that millionaires come to the workers to fund such entitlements.

larry calahan - March 2, 2011

Mr Speaker, why is this so hard? As a citizen,we have to live within our income. Why can the government not do as we do, start by a cut of every line item by 10%. Not just one, but all of them! How can anyone grouse if it is fair and across the board! There’s a lot of items I’d see completely gone but 10% would appear to be a good and fair start. Cut them all now. This can’t go on!

Daniel McGrew - March 10, 2011

Mr. Speaker: How about no funding for EPA, Education Dept., Dept. of Energy, Administration’s Czars, limit spending for flying AirForce 1 around the county for political fund raisers, office expenditures for aides in both houses and the executive branch. These are just for starters. More to come. Oh yes, one more. No funding for workers in Michelle’s garden. What a waste.

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