August 21st, 2010
11:42 AM ET
8 years ago

GOP: 'It's time to change direction. It's time to listen'

Washington (CNN) - In this week's Republican internet and radio address, Rep. Charles Djou, R-Hawaii, speaks out about federal spending, the federal government's debt, and the need for fiscal discipline.

“If we keep spending too much, borrowing too much, and taxing too much – if we keep doing the same things, we’re going to get the same dismal results," Djou says. "It’s time to change direction. It’s time to listen [to the American public]."

(Read Djou's full remarks after the jump)

Republican Weekly Address
August 21, 2010
Delivered by Rep. Charles Djou, R-Hawaii

“Aloha. I’m Congressman Charles Djou.

“90 days ago, I earned the privilege of serving the people of Hawaii’s First Congressional District. Of course, it didn’t take me nearly that long to figure out that Washington does a lot more talking than listening – and a lot more spending than saving.

“For every problem facing our nation, the answer from Washington has been to spend and spend, and – if that doesn’t work – spend some more. The current Administration in Washington told us that borrowing and spending billions would create jobs ‘immediately’ and keep unemployment from exceeding eight percent. They were wrong. Instead, we’ve lost millions of jobs and unemployment remains near 10 percent.

“No price tag has been too high for Washington, and now we’re all paying the price. Altogether, we now owe more than $43,000 for each man, woman and child in the United States. That is a frightening number.

“Even more frightening is the fact that the current Administration in Washington intends to use this fiscal crisis to impose job-killing tax hikes on families and small businesses. But we will not fix the deficit until we cut spending and have real economic growth – and we will not have real economic growth if we keep raising taxes on small businesses. According to the non-partisan Joint Tax Committee, Congress’s official tax scorekeeper, half of small business income in America will face higher taxes under the president’s plan.

“If we keep spending too much, borrowing too much, and taxing too much – if we keep doing the same things, we’re going to get the same dismal results. It’s time to change direction. It’s time to listen.

“All throughout this month, Republicans have been meeting with our constituents to hear their concerns. These town hall meetings are part of our America Speaking Out project, which gives Americans a megaphone to make their voices heard and share their solutions for turning things around. To participate in this nationwide effort, all you have to do is log on to, post an idea of your own, or comment and vote on someone else’s. As we speak, thousands of ideas are percolating on America Speaking Out.

“As part of this national conversation, Republicans have proposed better solutions to provide the fiscal discipline economists say is needed to get Americans working again.

“Led by Congressmen Paul Ryan and Jeb Hensarling, Republicans on the House Budget Committee – a panel on which I serve – have identified more than $1.3 trillion in Washington spending we can cut right now. From canceling unspent ‘stimulus’ funds and TARP bailout money to freezing government pay and government hiring, these common-sense proposals recognize that what our economy needs is more private sector jobs, not more public sector programs.

“Of course, this is just a start. Much more needs to be done to make sure Washington has gone on its last spending spree, but these are steps we can take right now to demonstrate to taxpayers at home and allies abroad that America is serious about getting its fiscal house in order.

“When Congress returns in September, Speaker Pelosi should bring our $1.3 trillion in proposed spending cuts to the floor for immediate consideration. Even if the powers-that-be in Washington do not support less government and less spending, they should at least provide those of us who do with a chance to give the American people the common-sense fiscal discipline they are demanding.

“Visit to learn more and have your say. May God bless you and may God bless the United States of America. Aloha and Mahalo.”

Filed under: Charles Djou • GOP • issues • national debt
soundoff (111 Responses)
  1. Darth Vadik, CA

    Matthew 7:15...

    ....Even Jesus warned us about rich people and Republicans...

    August 21, 2010 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
  2. artraveler

    It appears that the Republican Constitution only has the one amendment, the Second, since Bush broke every other one except the one about quartering British troops.

    At least we know their platform-NO,NO,NO, NO, NO!

    If Republicans really cared about America they would have insisted on patying for Bush's War, i.e., the Republican Stimulus Plan. with an income tax surcharge. Still a good idea on incomes over $200,000 starting at 3% and increasing another percent for every $200,000 to a max of 8-10%. Likewise, on business income over $10 million (I think this clears the mom & pops that Republicans are so fond of protecting from the estate tax also).

    August 21, 2010 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  3. Joe

    The Republican'ts either have no shame or no short term memory.

    August 21, 2010 03:04 pm at 3:04 pm |
  4. jay

    Same old plan from the GOP, give the rich a tax break and to hell with everyone else. When they received the Bush tax cuts what did they do, they sent job overseas.

    August 21, 2010 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  5. Bill from GA

    If their plan is to listen to the American people, they will find that we want it all, at no cost. Don't tell us what we want to hear; tell us a workable plan to REALLY fix the mess left from irresponsible government and business activity.

    August 21, 2010 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  6. lforlegend

    Try freezing everybody's salary in congress and other federal jobs and you'll have your own dumb party ripping your heart out. After all, corporate America is fattening your bank accounts.

    August 21, 2010 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  7. u2canfail

    There is an answer. Instead of saying NO, learn to compromise.

    You could have input, but if it is NOT YOUR WAY, it is a bad idea. This country was founded with a 2 party system so we would get better laws, spending, programs and rules. Try it.

    August 21, 2010 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  8. Former Republican - Now Independent

    Actually it would behoove the GOP to start listening to its members, rather than telling them what to believe. It's leaders should start embracing candidates with different ideas and views – not impose litmus tests of "Are you a REAL Republican?" or "Do believe in this, that and the other thing?"

    The Nazi Party used a similar "purity" issue in the '30s.

    August 21, 2010 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  9. republicans hate america

    no I will not vote GOP they give money to the rich.

    August 21, 2010 03:13 pm at 3:13 pm |
  10. wcnea567

    Government has to spend to stimulate the economy when the economy is bad. But it has to save when the economy is good so it has the money to spend when economy turns bad. Tax cut for the rich is not saving but is the worst spending any government can make. That why Clinton's saving disappeared in no time at all and government has to restart borrowing all over again. If republicans want to change its best to start changing by eliminating any tax cut and tax break for the rich. America is deep in debt and almost all of it was created by republican presidents starting from president Reagan. We are still paying interest on the money Reagan borrowed so long ago.

    August 21, 2010 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  11. Donna from Colorado Springs

    The only direction the GOP wants to go is backwards to the days of Reagan and both Bushs! They long for the old days of wild and drunken spending like sailors on leave and blaming the Democrats for all of the countries problems! They intend on catering to the wants and needs of the rich and screwing the middle class as well as the rest of the country. They will find another area of the world to accuse of terrorism so they can start another war. They will slash programs and benefits for people who depend on them in the name of cutting taxes and shrinking the size of government. Does any of this sound familiar? Sounds totally Republican to me!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    August 21, 2010 03:20 pm at 3:20 pm |
  12. rdepontb

    NO ONE is for exhorbitant taxes. The French Revolution, the American Revolution...there are many examples in history showing where that leads.

    There are also numerous examples where a government has fallen apart because it could not support itself nor carry out the services expected of its citizens. Such is the case the US is facing-teachers, first responders, health professionals, and many other facets of our communities are suffering from lack of adequate resources. Who loses, in both the short and long runs? The people who make up the very fabric of our nation. This includes our technicians, our auto and other manufacturing industries, our mom and pop markets, our small and medium size business owners and operators.

    Are US citizens paying "too much" in taxes? Compared to our European allies, not at all. The tax structures differ widely among all countries, so it is difficult to compare. The financial infrastructures also differ across countries; in France, for example, the typical house "mortgage" runs only 7 or 8 years, not 30 as in the US. The French also pay nearly double in fuel taxes comapred to the US; but we pay different types of usage fees, sales taxes, license tag fees and insurance fees. Given the resources enjoyed by, for example, French vs US citizens, which would say they paid "too much" in taxes? For what services, for what quality of life, for what health care, for what social safety nets?

    I'm deeply sorry, Rep Djou-your position is understandable in your hyper-politicized Republican Party. I guess. Don't forget that you are an American first, not a "Party" member spouting party lines. Further, I agree with the posters above who suggest a closer study of history, sir.

    August 21, 2010 03:28 pm at 3:28 pm |
  13. 4merRepubCT

    Let's try this – let the Bush tax cuts for the wealthiest % expire – THEN, turn around and get that money into the economy in the form of very-low interest loans to the small businesses that actually create local jobs and drive local economies.

    August 21, 2010 03:29 pm at 3:29 pm |
  14. NC Ex-Pub

    ....and it is time to adjust the Constitution to our prejudices; it is time to do away with all government regulations; it is time to turn all power over to BIG business; it is time to keep tax cuts for the RICH; it is time to do away with all government programs including Medicare and Social Security; and it is time to force all White Americans to have at least ten guns.
    The GOP Platform!

    August 21, 2010 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
  15. Ignorance of the people

    If you read or if you listen at all, you should know that your country has:

    Been raped by insurance, banks, wall street, ponzi schemes, big oil, mining etc).

    All the money they have taken from taxpayers is either in off shore tax shelters or is used to make bets in the market place to increase wealth without producing anything.

    Your local economies destroyed, no homes no jobs, using 401Ks for every day living if you have not lost them already.

    The world for the average Joe is bleak. Out of work, no job, losing home and no health care.

    Why has this happened? the answer is because the Great United states of America has bee RAPED by big business. Note that the supreme court has sold the rights of the US to the Corporate world where they can buy what they want as allowed by the 5 Republican or right leaning Judges.

    RAPE, it need to be flushed out. The symptoms are, victims usually do not report it, they are generally severely damaged (Mentally and Physically) don't heal to quickly or want to talk about it.

    In the Rape of the USA, those that have been hurt, financially, physically and without jobs, will not recover fast. It will take years and most dreams will be lost. There will be no wealth to pass on to the next generations as it has been used to keep what they have today.

    Realize one thing today. The USA has been raped, the money is gone and you need to work for the next fifty years to get back to where the world was before it tanked. Then the rapists will be back for more.

    The Republicans want to take all of your entitlements (medicare, medicaid, insurance, social security) you enjoy today and privatize them all and give them to the free market, where you will have to pay more for what you get today and recieve even less. They can cut you from programs if the money is not there and even deny you service.

    Again you will be raped.

    This needs to stop and have some compassion to your fellow citizens.

    It is a reason to listen and read about the issues. don't let all of the destraction issues get into the message as they are destructive to your society.


    August 21, 2010 03:44 pm at 3:44 pm |
  16. Jim

    Their idea of changing direction is going back to Trickle down economics and getting rid of all government regulations. THAT IS WHAT GOT US INTO THIS MESS! I pray that my fellow Americans do not have such short term memories as this dope thinks we do.

    August 21, 2010 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  17. D. Bunker

    When the GOBPbaggers ADMIT that deregulation and tax cuts for the ultra-rich are proven FAILURES and APOLOGIZE for the harms they've caused the poor and middle class, only then can sane and rational Americans safely assume that party has "changed direction." Anything less is just more lies and propaganda.

    August 21, 2010 03:47 pm at 3:47 pm |
  18. JIlli

    Taxing too much? Taxes are lower than they have been in 40 years for 95% of this country.

    Are you speaking for the something for nothing crowd Mr. Djou – you know, the folks that started 2 wars without funding them, those that instituted a horrendously expensive medicare drug plan without funding it, and the ones that gave the upper 2% tax cuts without funding them? Those folks? You know, the party responsible for trillions in future debt? Yes, the republican party – the nations "fiscal conservatives" whose economic ideology nearly lead to our financial collapse.

    Why would we listen to a word you have to say?

    August 21, 2010 03:48 pm at 3:48 pm |
  19. Seattle Sue

    Lower taxes is all the Republicans think of. Did the Bush tax cuts wear out, as far as I know they are still in effect. Why is our economy, employment so bad with these tax cuts still in effect? We started losing jobs in January of 2007 and we are still losing jobs. Why is this happening with these tax cuts still law?

    August 21, 2010 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  20. Voter in Crisis

    It is time to CUT SPENDING.
    It is time to CUT the SIZE of government.
    It is time to bail out the tax-PAY-ers.
    it is time for TERM LIMITS.

    August 21, 2010 04:06 pm at 4:06 pm |
  21. Voter in Crisis

    1) Abolish the 16th Amendment,
    2) Return all SS funds to those that contributed them with interest,
    3) Repeal the 17th Amendment,
    4) Repeal all H1-B and similar programs,
    5) Prohibit immigration from hostile nations,
    6) Tax ALL imported good and services at a rate commensurate to any trade imbalance.

    August 21, 2010 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
  22. Mr. Bill

    Neither political party has the support of a majority of Americans. Republicans need to stop talking in broad terms and talk about solutions in detail. If you stop the spending, where do you cut?

    This is an election year, and unfortunately Congress is not addressing the problems that exist in this country. And I admit we do have problems. But until we can get both parties to sit down together and become less political, we will never solve those problems. It is always easier to address our anger at one individual (in this case, the president) rather that at the 435 members of Congress who are responsible for the mess we are in, and the only ones that can fix the problems. The president does not vote on any legislation. Only your elected representatives do that.

    The Republicans seem intent on not fixing problems caused by the last administration because that would cause them to admit that mistakes were made. It is easy to say it is now Obama’s problem. And if they help solve the current problems, then they just might be helping Obama get re-elected in 2012. Why would they do that?

    August 21, 2010 04:11 pm at 4:11 pm |
  23. valwayne

    9.5% UNEMPLOYMENT, UNEMPLOYMENT claims have shot through the roof 4 weeks in a row, the Economy is teetering on going back into recession. What are Obama and the Democrats doing about it? Well Obama has gone to the Vinyaaaard to be with his rich elite friends for a 10 day vacation. He did spend a day with the lower classes down on the Gulf Coast. That must have made his skin crawl. Obama and the Democrats have complete contempt for the American people. In Nov we have to end the economic failure and arrogance by showing the Left Wing Elites that they are not our rulers! They work for us! We need to fire every Democrat on the ballot, and balance our Government!!!

    August 21, 2010 04:16 pm at 4:16 pm |
  24. harold

    Oh Wow!.. Thats all there is to it in the USA?.. Just halve spending...and lower taxes of course... The lower taxes part of his statement is designed to get elected for the Republicans.. just like ole GW Bush taught the Republicans during his 8 years in office.. What a fraud .. for the Republican party who last balanced the budget in 1930.. see balanced budget 1930 and bonus marhcers 1932...

    August 21, 2010 04:17 pm at 4:17 pm |
  25. g

    give the rich tax cuts so they can invest in communist china, the rich wish middle class would just go away , don,t need them anymore,with all the cheap, slave labour around the world

    August 21, 2010 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
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