Mike Needham

During a committee hearing last week, Congressman Mike Pompeo (R-KS) said he wants natural gas to succeed, but the “NAT GAS Act is the latest example of a systemic problem in Congress whereby we pick winners and losers in the energy markets” and called it “wrong for the future of our country.”

If America is to be prosperous, increased domestic energy production is necessary. At the same time, as conservatives, we must stand on principle and ensure we do not resort to big-government tactics to achieve our goals.

When it comes to America’s rising debt and the need to cut spending, the direction is much clearer. However, it is once again incumbent upon conservatives – and any American who is concerned with the future of this country – to stand on principle and force Members of Congress to take bold action.

In the coming months, America will reach its statutory debt ceiling and be prohibited from borrowing more money. A request to raise the debt ceiling by another $2 trillion should serve as an alarm bell; and the increasingly dire situation – see S&P’s warning – demands lawmakers in Washington take bold action.

There is good news and bad news on this front.

The good news is that lawmakers on both sides of the aisle appear to agree we cannot simply raise the debt ceiling without taking some additional action – spending cuts or reforms or both. The bad news is that many, including some of the more established elements in the Republican Party, are downplaying their ability to achieve significant reductions and reforms in exchange for raising the debt ceiling.

Negotiating with yourself, especially in public, is a poor strategy that frequently leads to embarrassing outcomes. Politics aside, our country cannot afford an embarrassing outcome when the stakes are this high. Rhetoric and timidity do not spawn American prosperity; yet, that is precisely what some are advocating.

Mike Needham

Mike Needham is the Chief Executive Officer of Heritage Action for America, a grassroots advocacy organization dedicated to advancing legislation that promotes freedom, opportunity and prosperity for all Americans.