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One Very Bad Day for Kaptur - and Ohio

Wednesday was a very bad days for the 9th Congressional District as Rep. Marcy Kaptur again sided with Nancy Pelosi rather than her constituents.

After stating in two public, televised debates that she supported extending the 2001 and 2003 tax cuts for at least some Americans, she cast a vote to adjourn, paving the way for working families and small businesses to be hit with the massive oncoming Obama tax hike. The vote was tied at 209-209 and Speaker Nancy Pelosi cast the tie-breaker for adjournment. Had Rep. Kaptur voted no on the motion to adjourn, the House could have taken up a discussion of this critical subject, as recommended by Minority Leader John Boehner and others.

Now, because Rep. Kaptur wanted to come home to protect her job, families and businesses across Northwest Ohio - and the entire nation - will face continued uncertainty about what next year holds for them in terms of their expenses and tax burden.

This is especially problematic for small businesses, many of whom file their taxes as individuals. As a businessman and job provider, I know that now is the time business owners make their plans for their capital investments for the coming year. Now is the time that companies make sales projections and plan budgets, including making decisions about whether or not to hire more people to help meet their goals.

There isn't a single person or company in the United States who knows what their tax obligation will be in 90 days. If you don't know what you will owe, you won't make decisions about buying items or hiring people. Rep. Kaptur says she's concerned about the thousands of unemployed in her district, but her action in not addressing the coming tax increase proves her words are hollow. Her own inaction is causing unemployment to continue.

Some in Congress have said they'll address the tax cuts in the lame-duck session - after the election. But for almost two entire years, they've been promising to extend the tax cuts to those making under $250,000. But with all that time - and majorities in both the House and the Senate - they have still not acted. What are they waiting for?

Rep. Kaptur needs to be held accountable for failing, once again, to do what is in the best interests of the people she's supposed to represent.

But that's not all.

Senate Bill 3729, authorizing the programs of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration for fiscal years 2011 through 2013, was also up for a vote. With other nations - including those not so friendly to the United States - racing to build space programs, NASA and its operations are matter of national security. This particular bill would not only be the death knell for U.S. manned space travel, but would also hurt NASA Glenn and Plum Brook Station right here in Ohio.

Reps. Dennis Kucinich (D- Ohio CD-10) and Steven LaTourette (R-Ohio CD-14) opposed the Senate version of this bill and asked their fellow Ohio congressional representatives to join them in voting no on S. 2739 and, instead, support the compromise legislation that was proposed by the House Science and Technology Committee.

According to the letter,

"The Senate bill, in contrast, could cause over 250 contractors to lose their jobs and up to 250 civil servants will not be used to their capacity. The State of Ohio cannot afford the loss of these jobs."

The Senate bill was opposed by the Greater Cleveland Partnership, one of the largest private-sector economic development organizations in Northeast Ohio and one of the largest chambers of commerce in the nation; Huron County Economic Development, and Norwalk Mayor Sue Lesch - all of whom contacted members of Congress to express their opposition to the Senate bill.

On Tuesday night, Rep. Kaptur participated in a debate hosted by the Erie County Chamber of Commerce in Sandusky - where the Plum Brook Station is located. During that debate, she bragged about her continuing support of the activities at Plum Brook and the great potential for both expansion and jobs because of her work. She said she was committed to supporting Plum Brook and the community that relied upon it.

But, despite what she said on Tuesday, the very next day Rep. Kaptur voted against the wishes of her constituents by saying 'yes' to S. 2739, which will cut critical funding for Plum Brook and Glenn and move those jobs to Mississippi, Texas and Alabama.

In 1982, when she first ran for office, Rep. Kaptur said, "Ask how my opponent votes, not how many times he comes back to the district to shake hands."

Voters in the 9th Congressional District need to understand that Rep. Kaptur is very good at shaking hands in the district, but her votes in Congress are not good for us, and are directly opposite what we tell her we want her to do, whether it's failed stimulus spending, the health care rationing bill, a job-killing cap-and-trade bill or even Plum Brook Station.

But that's not all.

Despite touting her high position on the House Appropriations Committee in the Monday debate in Toledo, Kaptur was powerless to get her fellow House Democrats to pass EVEN ONE of the 13 standing appropriations bills to fund the federal government. So, as we start a new federal fiscal year today, we do so with no budget for the coming year.

No wonder Kaptur and her Democratic colleagues in the Congress have no idea how to live on a budget - they can't even put a budget together!

So when Kaptur cast that vote to adjourn on Wednesday, she was again turning her back on her fiscal responsibility as a member of Congress. She is quick to find ways to sidestep the spending rules of the House when it comes to securing earmarks for her campaign contributors, but when it comes to actually following the regular budget process and meeting her assigned responsibilities, she proved again on Wednesday that she is incapable of even meeting a minimum performance standard.

It is time for her to go.