Restore Constitutional government, and put the people first
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Published: 17-Jan-2015

EDITOR'S NOTE: Former state Sen. Steve Russell was elected to Oklahoma's Fifth Congressional District seat in November. He was sworn into office in Washington, D.C. early this month. Saturday (January 17) he delivered the Republican weekly radio address. President Franklin D. Roosevelt began the tradition of weekly speeches to Americans via radio, in the 1930s. While that practice lapsed for several decades, President Ronald Reagan, a former radio broadcaster, restored the weekly radio address in 1981. Over time, this became a weekly tradition, with the political party not in the White House preparing a weekly response or speech. Below is the edited text of Russell's comments. A video of Russell's address can be  here seen http://youtu.be/JY2zZkYaW90.

Washington, D.C. – Our new Congress has a great opportunity: to restore Constitutional government and place the American people and their priorities first.

As lawmakers, we must never forget that our government was designed to derive its power from the consent of the people.

Sadly, we’ve seen Washington ignore your concerns about the economy, spending, jobs and making our nation secure.

Republicans and Democrats both care, but we hold different views about the ability of the people to make a bright future or whether the government should stand in your way and define that future for you.

As Americans, we have not lost our capacity for greatness. We can still overcome the odds.

Take the President’s regulations and obstruction of our energy sector: we have seen hard-working Americans innovate and transform our economy only to have the president try and take 
credit for it.

We have seen Americans families work together in their communities to make ends meet paycheck to paycheck even while our volunteer armed forces sacrifice to keep us safe in a dangerous and shifting world.

Despite it all, deep in our hearts, Americans still want America to be great. We still are.

I, like you, refuse to give up on this great country. I'm joined by a wave of colleagues that you sent to Congress who believe the same thing.

We have the resources to transform our economy, the talents to work together to solve our problems, and the grit to lead in a dangerous world that looks to us for hope and stability—an American beacon that still shines when others only provide a dim view of the future.

With your inspiration, this new Congress is hard at work. Here are four things the House has already voted to do:

· Lift the burden on small businesses so they can hire more of our veterans without penalties;

· Repeal ObamaCare’s absurd 30-hour work-week definition so we can get people working again full-time;

· Build the Keystone XL pipeline, with its more than 42,000 American jobs and safe energy for our children's future, friends and allies;

· Force bureaucratic agencies to regulate with more honesty, thrift and transparency.

These measures are only the beginning.

Now President Obama doesn’t agree with our direction, the one that you, the voters, asked us to take, and he has threatened to block your progress. But we challenge him to listen to the people instead of standing in the way of your future.


As we take these steps, we must do it with the guidance and principles that founded our nation. You don’t build a building without a blueprint. You don’t chart your future by taking shortcuts but rather do it with fairness and unity.

That's why the House voted to stop the president’s unilateral action on immigration. It's not about opportunity, it is about the Constitution and being fair to those legal immigrants who follow the law.

On at least 22 separate occasions, the president said he did not have the authority to do what he did, and we are holding him to his word.

Every time the president makes the playing field uneven and unfair, he tramples on the opportunity for all Americans.

We can and will find solutions to immigration and will be happy to do it, but they will be your solutions through the Congress, not unfair executive actions
As we look to the future, let us do it together. We have heard your voice, and now we need your support. Together, we can get it done.

Say a prayer for those protecting us and may God bless this great Republic.

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