Lynn Jenkins shouldn't expect a quiet first session in Congress.

Lynn Jenkins shouldn't expect a quiet first session in Congress.
That's because Jenkins, R-Kan., was named to the House Financial Services Committee, an assignment that she said was unusual for a first-year member of Congress.
"It's a top-tier committee," Jenkins said. "Appropriations, Ways and Means and Financial Services are the most sought-after committees, and generally they go to members with the most seniority.
"Certainly there's a unique circumstance in my case. I've spent my entire life in finance. I'm a CPA by profession, I was the Kansas State Treasurer and there was certainly a case to be made to place me on the financial services committee, and they did."
Jenkins said she expected her committee to work on the further additions to the bailout package, along with oversight for Government Sponsored Enterprises like Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.
One item the committee didn't deal with was the economic stimulus package, Jenkins said, one of which she said she wasn't in favor.
"I think most leading economists tell us that what will stimulate the economy immediately is tax relief," Jenkins said. "When you can get money in Kansans' pockets tomorrow, they will grow our way out of this mess."
Jenkins said one suggestion was to cut the payroll tax in half, letting employers keep half and employees keep the other half.
"That way taxpayers can decide how best to stimulate the economy as opposed to giving more money to the federal government, borrowing close to $1 trillion and then asking the Washington insiders here to decide what projects to spend their money on," Jenkins said.
Those projects are a sore spot with Jenkins — from the $50 million tabbed for the National Endowment of the Arts to $400 million for national treasurers. She said taxpayers should decide to stimulate the economy by making their own purchases in their own communities, rather than have it earmarked at the federal level.
"That's not to say I'm a Libertarian," Jenkins said.
Jenkins said the federal government should spend on national protection and infrastructure, like roads and transportation to help businesses.
"I just don't believe that the federal government has a license on how to best spend taxpayers' money," Jenkins said. "I would just as soon the good people of Kansas decide how best to spend their money."
Jenkins said she would also like to stop the culture of excessive borrowing. She said part of the country's problems stemmed from too much borrowed money at the personal, local government and at the federal level.
"So I'm really not sure how borrowing another trillion is going to help us find our way out of this," Jenkins said.
The biggest issue on the table this session, she said, was the bailout, or "tarp", which will likely see some parts go through the financial services committee. But Jenkins said she was dismayed when the recent $350 allocation of the bill went straight to the floor without spending time in committee.
"I've opposed the bill," Jenkins said. "I thought the first $350 billion wasn't well-spent, and I don't believe this second $350 billion is in our best interests either. It will continue to be part of our discussions.
"I'm kind of a free-market girl," Jenkins said. "Certainly there is a place for stimulus, a place for lending a hand. But just throwing money at institutions with no real accountability or transparency is the wrong way to do it. It's one of the reasons we're in this mess."