More on Budget Spending and Taxes

Apr 9, 2018

Congressman warns of nation’s ‘march toward bankruptcy’

WASHINGTON, DC — At the turn of the century, Americans had reason to be optimistic about the nation’s fiscal outlook. After nearly 40 years of deficits, the federal government finally balanced its budget. In fact, it produced a small surplus. The conservative revolution of 1994, in which Republicans took control of the House of Representatives for the first time in a generation, was producing results. I was proud to be part of that class of ’94. Sadly, what I hoped would be the dawn of a new era of fiscal responsibility soon ended. The discipline that won hard-fought victories evaporated. A “deficits don’t matter” mentality consumed many in Washington. The big spenders reasserted themselves and America resumed its march toward bankruptcy. How far we’ve fallen. In 2001, deficits returned and never left. And recent legislation is making a bad problem worse. The deficit for this year is expected to be $1 trillion. As a result of large and persistent deficits, the debt has quadrupled: from $5.5 trillion in 2000 to $21 trillion today. The debt is now bigger than our economy, and quickly approaching record levels seen only briefly after World War II. Our exploding national debt is not just an economic threat; it’s a national security issue. As Former Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Admiral Michael Mullen once testified, the biggest threat to our national security is America’s rising debt. Our current Secretary of Defense, Marine Corps General James Mattis, has affirmed that principle. In less than 10 years, America is projected to annually spend more just to pay the interest on the debt than it will on national defense. And who are we borrowing money from? Much of it comes from overseas, including adversaries like China. The late, great, William F. Buckley, once defined a conservative as “someone who stands athwart history, yelling Stop, at a time when no one is inclined to do so, or to have much patience with those who so urge it.” As the Washington political class speeds us towards the fiscal cliff, I have tried to be the sort of conservative Mr. Buckley described. I have constantly sounded the alarm about the need to cut wasteful spending, balance the budget, and eliminate the massive debt that is bankrupting our nation. I have consistently voted against increasing the debt limit, have regularly voted for a balanced budget amendment to the Constitution, and over the past 14 years, I am the only member of Congress to vote against every bloated federal budget. Common sense tells us that if you’re in a hole, stop digging. America is in a massive fiscal hole, but Washington just keeps digging. As long as they do, I’ll be yelling Stop! I hope you’ll join me.

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