DALLAS – Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison did not hold back in her criticism of the federal government and what she views as unchecked regulation and a growing set of burdens placed on businesses in a keynote this morning at TIA 2011. After getting on her soapbox for Texas — pointing out that the state has no income tax and a lighter touch on regulation — she went on the offensive, laying down a series of pointed criticisms at the federal government and President Barack Obama’s administration.
Rising labor costs, the difficulty in hiring skilled works and new regulations are all “conspiring” against industries like telecommunications and hindering their ability to compete against companies based in countries with more loose regulatory environments, she said. “Some of our U.S. leaders just don’t like business. That is unfortunately the case,” she said. Most regulation, she said, is nothing more than a “gratuitous power grab by the federal government.” And net neutrality, which she strongly opposes, is being pushed by progressives who want to “vilify successful companies for being too big.” Hutchison called for tax system reform, including a lower corporate tax rate and a permanent tax credit for research and development, to incentivize innovation and spur growth. She also asked for the industry’s support for a bill she’s working on that will make more spectrum available, which is always a crowd pleaser at industry events like this. “We just can’t let government get in the way,” Hutchison said as she concluded her time on stage. Finally, she assured the audience that she and her colleagues on her side of the aisle “will try to stop everything that is standing in the way.”