|Too Much Spending is the Problem; Controlling Spending is the Only Solution
- Our debt crisis is a result of Washington spending money it doesn’t have and leaving the American people—both today and future generations —with the devastating tab.
- Spending is the problem, and controlling Washington’s spending must be the solution.
- Our national debt is nearly $14.3 trillion—higher than any time in American history, and growing—and already equals more than 95 percent of our entire economy.
- We are currently borrowing roughly 40 cents of every dollar we spend, much of it from the Chinese, and sending the bill to our children and grandchildren.
- Every child born today already owes more than $46,000 to our creditors.
- The Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff has named our record-high debt “the single biggest threat to our national security.”
- In order to restore certainty in our economy to bolster job growth and keep America competitive, we need to stop spending money we don’t have.
The Cut Cap and Balance Act will put three spending measures in place to ensure that real spending reforms are met:
Immediate Spending Cuts:
- Since President Obama took office on January 20, 2009, the national debt has increased by $3.7 trillion. To put that in perspective, it took the U.S. from 1776 until 1992 to accumulate the same amount of debt that President Obama accumulated in two and a half years.
- The President is now requesting that Congress raise the debt ceiling. House Republicans are willing to meet his request only if the President agrees to cut up the credit cards. We have hit this point not because the debt ceiling is too low, but because spending is too high.
- The time to act is now. Our debt crisis is a legitimate threat to the future of our children and grandchildren, and extraordinary problems call for extraordinary action. America cannot afford to wait any longer.
Cut Cap and Balance cuts total spending by $111 billion in FY 2012, reducing non-defense discretionary spending below 2008 levels.
Enforceable Spending Caps:
- Spending as a percentage of GDP has averaged around 20 percent since the end of World War II. But spending is now averaging 23 percent of the GDP, bringing us to this debt crisis.
- Current projections indicate that federal spending is set to double. As any family or business can tell you, long-term spending beyond the amount of revenues is economically unsustainable and makes no economic sense.
- The credit rating agency Moody’s has indicated if budget cuts associated with a debt limit increase are not credible and lead to a balance in the ratio of debt to GDP, then they will likely face a downgrade. “To retain a stable outlook, such an agreement should include a deficit trajectory that leads to stabilization and then decline in the ratios of federal government debt to GDP and debt to revenue beginning within the next few years.”
Cut, Cap and Balance puts into place statutory, enforceable caps to ratchet down the amount the government is allowed to spend each year, bringing spending into line with the historic average of 20% of GDP by 2021.
Balancing the Budget:
“We don’t need a constitutional amendment to do our jobs.” — President Obama, July 15, 2011
- This president clearly does. A constitutional mandate to pass a balanced budget every year would legally force (not simply “urge” or “encourage”) the government to only spend what it takes in. American families do what they have to do to live within their means; so too should their representatives in Washington.
- All other options have been exhausted, including the Graham-Rudman-Hollings Act (1985), the Budget Enforcement Act (1990), and the Pay-As-You-Go requirements (2010). Cuts, caps, and “commitments” are important tools to control spending, but they are temporary. What one Congress passes, another Congress (or even the same one) can always undo. A constitutional amendment is permanent.
- Balancing budgets is not an untested idea, as 49 states currently abide by some form of a balanced budget requirement.
Cut, Cap and Balance requires passage of a Balanced Budget Amendment in order to raise the debt limit. It provides that the president can request a debt ceiling increase only if a qualifying BBA passes Congress and is sent to the states for ratification.
Congressman Jack Kingston