House Republicans today unveiled "A Pledge to America", the "governing agenda" they plan to pursue if they regain control of the House of Representatives. And it calls for some changes that won't win them friends at the White House:
Permanently extend all the Bush tax cuts, including those on the wealthy.
Cancel all unspent stimulus money. As of today, about $258 billion of the $814 billion stimulus is unspent.
Repeal the Obama health care bill, replacing it with Republican proposals, including limits on malpractice lawsuits.
Block Obama's plan to move detainees at Guantanamo Bay to the United States.
"We call on the leadership of the 111th Congress to bring these reforms and policies to an immediate vote," they write in the plan unveiled today in Sterling, Va., "and ask all citizens of our nation -- men and women of good will and good heart -- who share in our beliefs, to join with us today."
The pledge is an effort to do what the Republicans did when they won the House in 1994 with the "Contract With America," offer a specific plan of action for a GOP Congress.
Minority Leader John Boehner, R-Ohio, opened the event with an admission: "Listen, when Republicans were in charge of Congress, we made our fair share of mistakes."
The pledge includes five broad categories, including jobs, government reform, spending, national security and health care. Under each category, there are four or five specific proposals and actual bills, many of which already have been introduced.
The forty-five page document includes more photographs than specifics on spending cuts. The minority leader was less than specific when asked where the cuts needed to balance the budget and reduce the deficit would be made.
"We've got to cut spending and we need more economic growth in America that puts more Americans back to work, caring for themselves and caring for their families and you can't have real economic growth in America if you insist on raising taxes on the American people," Rep. Boehner said.
In regards to an extension of Bush tax cuts, Boehner made clear he and the republicans wanted the extension to be permanent. He would not say if the republicans were open to a one or two year extension. There was also no mention of controlling social security or Medicare, eleminating any federal departments. There was not even a promise to eliminate the "earmarks" or pork barrel spending.
The Minority Leader made clear the agenda set forth today is not a party platform designed to "include everything under the sun," but rather, a first step.