Opening of the 2014 legislative session – photos (January 8, 2014)
“…We have never before seen a federal government, uh, act in such a way to infringe upon our rights and liberties, upon our privacy, uh, con, big, big data, big government are walking hand in hand to try to do all they can to insert themselves into our daily lives like I’ve never seen before in my lifetime…
Volume 5: The National Security Agency and Fourth amendment Rights [Church Committee]
[NSA][July 1, 1969][….]
MINARET specifically includes communications [co]ncerning individuals or organizations involved in civil disturbances, anti-war movements/demonstrations and [mi]litary deserters involved in anti-war movements.
Book II: Intelligence Activities and the Rights of Americans [Church Committee] [April 26, 1976]
Intelligence agencies have collected vast amounts of information about the intimate details of citizens’ lives and about their participation in legal and peaceful political activities. The targets of intelligence activity have included political adherents of the right and the left, ranging from activists to casual supporters. Investigations have been directed against proponents of racial causes and women’s rights, outspoken apostles of nonviolence and racial harmony; establishment politicians; religious groups; and advocates of new life styles. The widespread targeting of citizens and domestic groups, and the excessive scope of the collection of information, is illustrated by the following examples:
(a) The “Women’s Liberation Movement” was infiltrated by informants who collected material about the movement’s policies, leaders, and individual members….
Some of us are older than others.
On Wednesday afternoon the House Republican Caucus held a press conference in the House Lounge after the opening of the legislative session in Jefferson City. Speaker Timothy Jones (r) addressed prepared remarks to the assembled media and onlookers.
Speaker Timothy Jones (r) (center, at the microphone) and a substantial portion of the House Republican Caucus
in the House Lounge after the end of the first day of session on January 8, 2014.
Speaker Timothy Jones (r): Good afternoon everyone. Good afternoon. Good afternoon. Thank you all for being here. I want to thank all the members of my caucus, uh, for attending as well. Uh, well, welcome to the first day of another legislative session here in the Missouri House. And, as you heard, um, I intend our agenda this year to focus on four major policy areas – growth and opportunity for all Missourians, guaranteeing access to a great education, generating affordable and abundant energy, and guarding and protecting Missouri values that so many Missourians, uh, regardless of political party, hold dear.
Uh, providing growth and opportunity for Missourians means we’ll con, we’ll continue to consider any policy, any positive legislative change that will give our citizens, our workers, our employers the opportunity for new jobs. That, that is, that is our job number one – creating that business climate here in Missouri so jobs, business owners want to come here. Removing barriers, uh, reducing, reducing the role of government in our lives, that as we saw last year, tends to just make economic climates worse across our country. Uh, we’re gonna create a business friendly and job creating environment here with a lower tax burden, reduced regulatory burdens, and ending costly, frivolous litigation.
Uh, our, our priorities are gonna be in tax relief. Missourians need and want lower taxes. We’ve heard that time and time again in all of our districts across the state. Why is that true? Because many Missourians see our bordering states doing exactly that – reducing tax burdens on their citizens, on their family farmers, on their small, uh, small and medium sized businesses. And they’re seeing positive economic growth. I mean, this, these are, these are not politics, these are policy changes. And the states around us that have reduced tax burdens have seen explosive growths, uh, in their budgets, in their revenues, in the jobs they’ve created, in the wages for their workers. And that simply means that we will then have more opportunity to, to increase funding for education and for our, our health care system for those in our Medicaid system.
Uh, Missourians also want us to engage in significant tax credit reform, like the Missouri House did last year, hoping that our colleagues in the Senate take another, uh, good look at what was a very positive step in that direction, uh, ending the Governor’s practice of picking winners and losers through centralized planning. Missourians want tax breaks for all, not just a few chosen few.
Medical malpractice reform. You know, I, as I’ve toured the state I, I’ve heard this time and time again from the health care providers, uh, along the bordering areas, between our states and states like Oklahoma, uh, and Kansas, and Arkansas. We are bleeding jobs in our health care industry because other states are now more welcoming to our health care providers. And that means our patients are being put at risk as well. As, as more and more dollars are spent on legal defense funds and less and less on access to care and, uh, research and development, uh, our entire health care industry, uh, is at serious, serious risk. The State of Kansas upheld nearly the identical law that our Supreme Court, uh, threw out a couple years ago. And if you want to know how we can have reasonable medical malpractice caps here in our state, why those are constitutional, why those are appropriate I would urge everyone to go back and dust of Judge Mary Russell’s dissent and read that. The argument is made there.
Uh, worker freedom. Twenty-four states, nearly half the country have now empowered their workers over old entrenched union bosses and given workers the ultimate freedom to make their own choices. In this day and age I don’t understand why workers can, why, why we can’t trust workers with that choice. They should have that freedom. Why? Because again, many of our bordering states have implemented or have those policies. They’re seeing explosive growth in their economies. The top three things that job creators look at when they are looking, uh, at all the options available to them across the country are a state’s tax policy, regulatory policy, and that’s where your, your labor laws fall, and litigation policy. If you’re not competitive in those three areas they pass you by.
Education reform. We must continue to work towards a public education system that provides an excellent education for all. There is no reason why, uh, we should have some of the best performing schools in the nation and at the same time, a few miles away from some of these highest performing schools, have some of the, the worst schools in the country that have been failing for forty years. The status quo is not what we should continue to want to pursue. We should want to pursue change, positive change so every student, whether they’re in an urban area, suburban area, or a rural area has access to a great quality education. Funding is definitely part of the equation, but you have to have accountability, you have to have choice in order to obtain success.
Uh, generating affordable energy. Our infrastructure is aging. We need to look at investing in an aging infrastructure if we’re gonna continue to enjoy some of the lowest utility rates, uh, in the country. This is a bipartisan issue that I’m looking forward to working on with my colleagues across the aisle to make, to guarantee that the consumers, uh, in our state continue to have abundant affordable energy, but that that energy is available, uh, in the decades to come.
And finally, uh, another issue that has enjoyed great bipartisan support, and that’s guarding and protecting Missouri values. We have never before seen a federal government, uh, act in such a way to infringe upon our rights and liberties, upon our privacy, uh, con, big, big data, big government are walking hand in hand to try to do all they can to insert themselves into our daily lives like I’ve never seen before in my lifetime. And the Missouri House stood up against this type of big government intrusion, successfully last year on, on several accounts. We exposed Governor Nixon’s Department of Revenue for their unlawful practices. We held the Department of Social services accountable and continue to do so, in their closure of records relating to child abuse cases. Uh, we, we also exposed, uh, the Department of Social Services’ attempt to permanently move people to the entitlement state and off of temporary assistance.
You know, Missourians want a hand up, not a hand out. Missourians want to work. We’ve always been an industrious state. And if you go back and, and, and look, uh, in our nation’s history, this is a bipartisan issue. Uh, both John F. Kennedy and Robert F. Kennedy spoke about the value of work, of getting people off, eventually, of that public subsist, subsistence and moving them into the work force. And if we can just implement, uh, smart policies in these areas we will create the opportunity for all Missourians to share in prosperity for all.
So I’ve outlined, uh, the agenda. Uh, it’s gonna be a very vigorous year. It’s gonna be, uh, I, I believe, a positive year for Missouri. Uh, we’re gonna, we’re, we’re gonna be getting to work, uh, nearly immediately and right away.
Speaker Timothy Jones (r).