Date: Nov 12, 2013
Chairman Darrell Issa with WG's President and CEO, Tom Nassif

On Monday, attendees at WG’s Annual Meeting PAC Luncheon in Honolulu heard U.S. Representative Darrell Issa (R-CA) deliver remarks and answer audience questions about several initiatives he has taken on as the Chairman of the House Government and Oversight Committee.  Issa spoke of the failures of government and how failure is not unique to any particular administration.  He cited the issues surrounding Hurricane Katrina and the multitude of issues the current administration is facing ranging from Benghazi and the IRS Scandal to the failures associated with the launch of the Affordable Care Act.  

Issa also spoke about immigration reform and guest worker legislation for agriculture. He explained that Ag has a unique problem in that it is forced to use a business model based on a broken set of rules provided by the government, referring to the dysfunctional guest worker program, but the industry is still expected to obey the law even though it’s poorly administered.

He also referenced Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy’s recent comments that an immigration reform vote will not take place this year, saying that the time for a real discussion on what to do with the 11 million people already in this country is needed and necessary.  He told the audience that there is a middle ground on this issue and even though the word “compromise” is now a dirty word in Congress, the debate needs to happen.  Issa also spoke about his own immigration bill that he says addresses the needs of agriculture in addition to answering questions from the audience on several other topics including GMOs, the Obama Administration’s response to the attacks on Benghazi, Iran, and the future of the Republican Party.

Representative Issa was first elected to Congress in 2000 and represents California’s 49th district, which includes much of south Orange County and coastal San Diego County.  As House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman, he has led tough oversight investigations on many issues, including the targeting of conservative nonprofits by the IRS, the questionable use of stimulus funds for “green jobs,” the “Fast-and-Furious” program in which federal agents provided illegal guns to Mexican drug cartels, and the Benghazi attack that ended with the death of America’s ambassador to Libya and three other Americans.

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