There are many challenges facing our country this July 4th and I want to make sure the American Dream is available for generations to come.
The July 4th holiday brings out the best of America. Americans come together to honor the signing of the Declaration of Independence in 1776, pay tribute to the stars and stripes and reflect on the values our nation represents.
As we celebrate Independence Day, I think about the sacrifices my family made, the accomplishments this country has allowed people like me to achieve and the need to keep fighting to ensure future generations can achieve their dream.
As an immigrant who came here legally as a young girl, I’ve been able to put myself through school, have a career, raise a family and now serve my community in the House of Representatives as one of the first Korean American women to serve.
I am living my American dream and am proud to be an American every day. My story is the story of so many Americans who worked hard to achieve their dream and are paying it forward across U.S. communities. However, I fear the promise of America is harder to reach for my children and grandchildren – and yours.
Independence Day celebrations this year face a backdrop of nationwide economic, energy and security crises that impact every American and cannot be ignored. Unfortunately, the Biden administration continues to shift blame for these issues and actively promote policies that would make them worse.
As neighbors come together, families are hurting from the rising prices of everything from the food for their backyard barbecues to the fuel in their cars. According to the American Farm Bureau Federation, the cost of an average 4th of July cookout will be 17% higher compared to one year ago due to supply chain disruptions and ongoing inflation.
While Americans face the highest inflation in 40 years, and over half of Americans are living paycheck to paycheck, officials in the Biden administration have called inflation transitory and upper class problems.
At this time last year, the White House boasted about potential $0.16 savings on a cookout. To make matters worse, the Biden administration’s $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief package – of which only 9 percent provided COVID-19 relief – has shown to have stoked inflation, according to the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco. The Biden administration’s solution to problems appears to be to throw money at them. President Biden and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi don’t seem to understand that our country is facing a problem with supply, not demand.
Gas prices are also around $5 a gallon on average across the country and over $1 higher in California communities I represent. The pain at the pump is real for all Americans and are even more evident as families prepare for Fourth of July weekend travel.
The Biden administration calls these high gas prices “Putin’s price hike” even though gas prices were on the rise before Putin invaded Ukraine.
The administration has also repeatedly put the blame on oil companies and has called to suspend the federal gas tax at $0.18 per gallon, all while actively ending leases that would help expand energy production, lower costs and reduce emissions. Unfortunately, the administration is seeking out energy resources from authoritarian regimes and the oil cartel OPEC which would make us dependent on their energy supplies.
Additionally, communities face heightened public safety concerns and a worsening crisis at our Southern border. Over 150,000 migrants have illegally entered our border every month for the past 15 months, and last month alone we saw 239,416 crossings – the most on record. The border crisis endangers our communities, threatens our border patrol and CBP officers on the front lines, undermines legal immigrants who have been waiting their turn for years, and emboldens criminal organizations exploiting migrants for human and drug smuggling operations.
The Biden administration’s policies are contributing to this crisis. The president took 94 executive actions on immigration in his first 100 days in office, halted border wall and border technology projects that had been paid for, and is ending successful policies such as Migrant Protection Protocols, known as “Remain in Mexico,” and Title 42 that helped limit illegal crossings and border patrol prevent overcrowding of facilities.
Continued American independence requires strong, safe and prosperous communities. The American people are sick of the blame game, and urgent problems require urgent action. The Biden administration needs to come to the table to acknowledge and address the crises created under their watch, so we can improve the lives of the American people and get our country back on track.
Despite these challenges, I remain hopeful for our nation’s future. Why? Because I and so many other proud Americans have been able to live our American dream. This July 4th, let us all commit to restoring it. The dream can remain alive, but we have to fight for it.
Opinion by U.S. Rep. Young Kim (R-CA) for FOX News.