Congressman 'GT' On The Record
“As your voice and representation in Washington, D.C., my decision making process is guided by a basic tenant: Principled leadership comes from a duty to God, to country, and to every resident of the Fifteenth Congressional District of Pennsylvania.” —Glenn ‘GT’ Thompson
JOBS: Putting America Back to Work
When first elected to Congress, I successfully led the fight to stop the tolling of Interstate 80, which has over 300 miles in Pennsylvania, with over 150 miles of roadway in what is now Pennsylvania's 15th Congressional District. Tolling had little to do with long-term transportation solutions or addressing the Commonwealth's fiscal challenges. Rather, it was an attempt to tax citizens in one portion of Pennsylvania to bail out failed policies in other regions. By putting an end to the tolling scheme, jobs were saved. This prevented a major obstacle that would have hurt our economy and the expansion of jobs in our region.
Small businesses are the backbone of our national economy. Small businesses have generated over 65% of the job growth for close to two decades and account for half of the total business income earned in the country.
Even President Obama's own Small Business Administration has suggested that small businesses still face inexcusable regulatory burdens, especially when compared to larger businesses.
Regulation for the sake of regulation only hampers job creation. I have worked tirelessly to confront ineffective and unnecessary regulations and will continue to work on behalf of entrepreneurs, so they may have an environment that promotes growth and family sustaining jobs.
Job growth depends upon:
A Qualified & Trained Workforce - As co-chairman of the bipartisan Career & Technical Education Caucus, I have led the effort to increase access to training programs to fill strategic needs in America's workforce for in-demand occupations.
Affordable Energy - As co-chairman of the bipartisan Natural Gas Caucus, I have worked with colleagues from both parties to highlight the importance of a reliable and affordable energy source for manufacturing. Without affordable energy many manufacturers would not be able to operate domestically and as we have seen in the past, jobs will move overseas. Affordable energy helps employment and ensures that working families will not be burdened with costly bills during cold winters.
Comprehensive Tax Reform - American families are struggling and our complicated tax system places working families at a disadvantage. We deserve a simpler tax code that promotes job growth, increased wages and fewer hours filling out annual tax forms. We need to keep more money in the pockets of working families and job creators, while making sure that opportunity is abundant for everyone.
Congressman GT Thompson is a leader on jobs and job training. His legislative leadership expands access to job training and education needed to secure greater opportunity. He champions youth engagement and preparing young people for success in life and careers.
—Cheryl M. Johnson
Executive Director, Private Industry Council of the Central Corridor
FISCAL POLICY: "You Can't Spend What You Don't Have"
Our nation is more than $20 trillion in the red and we cannot afford to leave our children and grandchildren with a legacy of debt. I have constantly reminded Washington that the citizens of the 15th District of Pennsylvania are fed up. We have a moral obligation to ensure that future generations are not saddled with the burden of debt, which will keep them from opportunity and the ability to recognize their dreams. We did not get in this position overnight, it was a failure of leadership from Washington, and it will not be fixed immediately.
However, in January 2014, we reached a significant milestone by restoring a responsible path to fiscal policy when I worked alongside of my colleagues to reduce discretionary spending to pre-2008 levels. While this is a good start, we must continue towards further eliminating wasteful spending, increasing government efficiency, and ensuring the promises made to our seniors and veterans can continue for generations to come.
ENERGY SECURITY: Fueling America with Efficiency, Homegrown Natural Resources & Research
Unfortunately, for decades Washington has stood in the way of a viable domestic energy policy. Affordable energy is a key to our national security, job growth and domestic food supply. For too long, we have overlooked the ingenuity of the American people and our vast abundance of natural resources right here at home.
As chairman of the House Agriculture Subcommittee on Energy, Conservation and Forestry and through my service on the House Natural Resources Committee, I have been able to promote a three tiered approach to moving our great country to an energy secure future.
Promotion of Greater Efficiency - We must improve efficiency through power generation, transmission, transportation, industrial manufacturing and building design. Investment in 21st Century technologies can lead to overall savings in the long-term, while the entrepreneurial nature of the American people will lead to innovation and advancement into the future.
Utilization of Home Grown Resources - A diverse portfolio, driven by market demand will assure that we have the ability to utilize domestic energy sources with sound environmental stewardship. Traditional and emerging energy sources will ensure a prosperous economy while viable technologies are developed. Our economy will prosper and American families will benefit from utilizing our resources.
Investment in Research - America has always been known for our innovation and discovery. Our search for the next energy source must be resolute. However, we must avoid adopting inefficient alternatives that require heavy government subsidies to be commercially viable.
"I appreciate Congressman GT's passion for promoting domestic energy production, which extends from his understanding that affordable energy is something that helps his neighbors and the majority of us out there living paycheck to paycheck."
—Pastor Clyde Mighells, Centre County
STRENGTHENING SOCIAL SECURITY & MEDICARE: Securing Retirement Investment & the Long Term Healthcare of American Workers
Payroll contributions allow American workers to invest in their future through the Social Security and Medicare programs. While many rely upon these investments to meet their needs into retirement, unfortunately both programs continue to experience financial pressures, which jeopardize the ability for individuals to fully benefit from the promises that have been made to them.
While the long-term solvency of these programs must be addressed, we must ensure that seniors and beneficiaries are protected. I oppose efforts to reduce benefits for those already enrolled in Medicare and receiving Social Security.
For those who are younger and not close to retirement, we must realize that the Social Security Trust Fund becomes insolvent in 2038 and the Medicare Hospital Fund by 2024. This means these programs will be taking in fewer contributions than then benefits they are obligated to pay out and as a result, levels of care and benefits would be reduced. This is unacceptable. In Congress I will continue to work with both Democrats and Republicans to ensure that Social Security and Medicare are preserved for future generations.