Labor Day represents far more than the end of summer and the beginning of football season. It is an opportunity for us to thank all of the hard-working Americans who have made our country great. Without these workers the potential of the United States could never have been realized, and we owe them an enormous debt of gratitude. Many of our greatest leaders came from humble working class backgrounds. They, along with countless others, truly built this country. I am proud of my working class roots and always stop on Labor Day to reflect on the many generations before me who made possible the life we now enjoy.

The American worker does not seek glory or public acclaim. He or she quietly performs a job to feed and clothe their family and provide a home. They ask for nothing except an opportunity to earn their own way and make a better life for their children.

Sadly, recent decades have been very difficult for working families. Job security has virtually disappeared and entire industries have been exported overseas. I oppose sending American jobs overseas. I also oppose ever-increasing government red tape which has nearly destroyed several key industries vital to our area, such as coal mining, manufacturing, and energy production. The last thing we need is for government to interfere and make things worse.

Recent economic struggles have created difficulties for everyone. Our nation has experienced the most difficult economy since the Great Depression in the 1930s. Many good hard-working people are struggling to make ends meet. This is especially true for those who are currently jobless or under-employed. We must change this situation.

Convincing the federal government to allow better use of coal in energy production would greatly help our area. Not only would we have more affordable energy for individual households, but the entire economy would benefit as well. Recent technological advances will also allow us to responsibly tap into reserves of natural gas and petroleum that were previously beyond our reach. We must aggressively pursue these opportunities. Many thousands of good-paying Ohio jobs will result. Conversely, the federal government’s shameful and inexplicable treatment of the American Centrifuge project in Piketon is a perfect example of what government should not do. The role of government is to facilitate the success of businesses and workers. It is not to act as a barrier.

I will continue to be a champion for the hardworking people of southern Ohio at every opportunity and in any way I can. I will also seek to use our natural resources and infrastructure to the best advantage, especially our river and rail assets. I will stack the hard-working people of southern Ohio against any in the world. Our work ethic is second to none. Given the chance, we can do anything. I will fight everyday for that chance.

It is my hope that by working together, we will have a stronger economy and an even better community, state, and nation next year. I know it can be done and will not forget it is the American worker who makes it possible. God bless the workers of southern Ohio and God bless America.


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