Editor's note: Gabriela Saucedo Mercer is responding to a question from the Star: Question: What is your economic plan to ensure the U.S. does not end up where Europe is today?    

Saucedo Mercer responds:

Europe's economy is crumbling. Years of deficit government spending has left European countries in financial chaos.

Yet we are blindly following a similar path. For every $3 the feds are currently taxing and spending, they're borrowing and spending another $2 - while deferring the bill to our children.

It's outrageous.

But Congressman Grijalva is eagerly promoting this folly - and wants to spend even more!

Trickle-down government is not the solution to our economic problems. We're no better off after unfathomable spending on "stimulus" and after adding around $6 TRILLION to our debt in four years.

The reason is simple: Government does not create wealth. It just transfers money. And it's increasingly obvious that it does a terrible job of picking winners and losers.

Government overspending drains money from the private sector and private sector money is the lifeblood of job creation. Squeezing life from the economy to make it grow is like the dark-age practice of bleeding a sick patient back to health.

We're told employment is rebounding. But employment numbers are easily manipulated. Defining millions of unemployed as "no longer looking" is all it takes.

We've heard for years that recovery is "just around the corner."

We're being lied to. We must change course.

Some simple proposals:

• Eliminate regulations if they inhibit job growth without clear and compelling benefit. We have armies of federal bureaucrats who cannot produce prosperity. Worse than producing nothing, they create obstacles for entrepreneurs, who are the only hope, as they always have been, of getting and keeping our economy strong.

• Promote domestic energy production. It's a path to millions of jobs and billions saved at the pump and the thermostat - a godsend to every family.

• Stop penalizing success and realize that forcibly "spreading the wealth" is Marxist, not American. You end up perpetuating poverty instead. Why would anyone risk their assets to create jobs when there's significant risk of failure for business startups, and certainty of Grijalva and his "progressive" pals confiscating profits from the successful? Most folks learn from history. This incumbent wants to repeat its mistakes. Grijalva is even on record as advocating a wealth tax, unprecedented in this country but common in authoritarian regimes throughout history.

If we're to prosper again, we need better leadership. A good step forward would be new representation in Arizona Congressional District 3. I ask for your vote, by mail or on Nov. 6.

Gabriela Saucedo Mercer is the Republican candidate in District 3, which includes the south and west sides of Tucson plus much of Southwestern Arizona.