ABC News’ John R. Parkinson (@JRPabcDC) reports:
Since sweeping into the majority last fall, House Republicans have maintained that the 112th Congress will be a “Cut and Grow” Congress. First cut spending, then the economy will grow.
To date, the fiercest battles of the young Congress have been over cutting spending – first through a continuing resolution to fund the government through the end of the year, then with the FY2012 budget, and finally in the current debate over increasing the statutory debt ceiling.
Thursday, House Speaker John Boehner and Republicans will begin to shift their focus to Part II of the “Cut and Grow” Congress when they unveil a growth agenda, called “The Plan for America’s Job Creators.”
According to Republicans, the plan is designed “to foster innovation and investment, tackle our debt, and help business owners create jobs without raising taxes on working families and small businesses.”
House Majority Leader Eric Cantor told reporters earlier this week that the growth agenda will “further define the choice that the electorate will have in the upcoming November 2012 elections.”
“Essentially, the choice is going to be more taxes and more government [from Democrats], versus more growth and more jobs [from Republicans],” Cantor, R-Va., said. “We believe the way you get more revenues is to promote growth, and that is why we have continued to say that this growth agenda will be very focused on what we can do to increase economic activity, which has the result of increasing revenues.”
Cantor would not preview many details of the agenda, but revealed that part of it would include tax reform.
“A lot of you in this room have talked a lot about revenues and the need for revenue. I'm always asked the question, ‘don't you think that part of the discussion should be about increasing revenues here when we are dealing with the deficit?’ I would say that we are not opposed to revenues. We are just opposed to tax increases,” Cantor said. “A piece of this agenda will be about tax reform. It will be about making sure that we are competitive so that we can continue to attract entrepreneurs and investment from abroad as well as generate more here domestically.”
“The growth agenda is consistent with what we have been doing in committees, whether it has been on the EPA front, the FCC front, or the Energy and Commerce Committee,” he added. “It is a continuation of our Pledge to America in which we said we are going to be focusing on the economy and jobs.”
At the Thursday morning news conference, Boehner will be joined by members of the House Republican Leadership team, the committee chairmen of Ways & Means (Rep. Dave Camp), Energy & Commerce (Rep. Fred Upton), and Judiciary (Rep. Lamar Smith) and four freshman Republicans – Reps. Vicky Hartzler, Reid Ribble, Scott Rigell and Marlin Stutzman.