Over the course of my first two years in Congress, I have heard from tens of thousands of constituents. Throughout these conversations, a singular theme has emerged: There is a deficit of trust in our government. People are concerned that those in power have needlessly put our Nation at risk and that the federal government has infringed upon our rights.
Just last month, Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp notified the public that the Obama Administration’s Department of Homeland Security conducted (ultimately unsuccessful) cyber-attacks against Georgia’s election systems. Regrettably, this action fits in with the Obama Administration’s pattern of focusing on ideologically-driven domestic issues, scorning our constitutional rights, and ignoring our national defense.
Over the past two years alone, we have seen the Obama Administration make a series of decisions that have made our country less safe. President Obama prioritized attaining more funding for his failed domestic programs over providing for our Nation’s military when he chose to veto legislation that authorized funding for the Department of Defense. Further, we have seen the Obama Administration look the other way when senior officials mishandled sensitive and classified information. No one – including former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton – should be above the law, especially those who put our national security at risk.
Instead of prioritizing the safety of the American people, the Obama Administration’s Environmental Protection Agency issued overly burdensome rules and regulations – such as the Waters of the United States (WOTUS) Rule – which expanded the federal government’s regulatory reach and undermined the rights of private citizens.
The Obama Administration’s State Department spent years negotiating a nuclear deal with Iran that serves to embolden and enrich the largest State Sponsor of Terrorism instead of solidifying our alliances and preventing our adversaries from increasing their capabilities. The Russian government has been conducting cyberattacks against the United States for years, but the Obama Administration only responded with sanctions in the eleventh hour of his Presidency.
By neglecting our national security and ignoring the Constitution, the Obama Administration has broken the trust between the American people and their government. I place my trust in the citizens of Georgia, and last November they exercised their constitutional rights and voted for a new and better direction for our Nation. In the coming weeks, our federal government will experience a peaceful transition of power and there will be an opportunity to rebuild the trust that has been eroded.
I look forward to working with the incoming Trump Administration to ensure that the federal government focuses on strengthening our national defense and providing opportunities for Americans and no longer encroaches on the rights of our citizens and states.
The Honorable Jody Hice represents Georgia’s 10th District in the U.S. House of Representatives. He is a member of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee