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Published August 10, 2011, 07:25 PM

Berg Takes Some Heat at GF Town Hall; Sticks to No New Tax Pledge

Representative Rick Berg says he will not budge on his stance of no new taxes. Berg took some heat at a town meeting in Grand Forks from some people who feel they may face benefit cuts in light of his work in Washington.

By: David Schwab, WDAZ

Representative Rick Berg says he will not budge on his stance of no new taxes.

Berg took some heat at a town meeting in Grand Forks from some people who feel they may face benefit cuts in light of his work in Washington.

Berg says he aims to keep his promise to not raise taxes. That didn't play out well at a town hall meeting Wednesday morning for some who feel that will hurt their cause.

"I would be glad to pay more money in taxes to make sure that my daughter has fair, equitable access to health care," Kristin Garaas-Johnson said at the meeting.

Berg, who is also running as a republican candidate for the U.S. Senate next year, says with the unstable economy, now is not the time for a tax hike.

"The number one thing we need to do in this country is to create jobs. And we can not tax the job creators and hope that they're going to put more capital into their companies and creating jobs," Berg said.

Berg did have the support from some small business owners attending the meeting.

"There are so many taxes that we pay that are unknown to the majority of the people. It's absolutely amazing that we think that they can tax us further and that we will stay in business," Cindy Schreiber-Beck said.

Local democrats told Berg his no new tax pledge he has made in Washington will only cause more gridlock between the two parties. Berg says he will stick to what he knows.

"The only way we solve this problem, this deficit problem is to encourage economic growth like we have done in North Dakota," Berg said.

Berg says he will now work to get a "yes" vote on a balanced budget amendment by the end of the year.

He voted "yes" on the bill that increased the federal government's debt ceiling and cut nearly $1 trillion in spending over ten years. Berg says he voted in favor of the deal to secure a vote on a balance budget amendment to the Constitution before the end of the year.

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