05.31.2010 0

Democrats Need to Put a Stop to the Government’s Spending Spree

  • On: 06/24/2010 22:50:35
  • In: Fiscal Responsibility
  • By Rebekah Rast

    While the Republican Study Committee (RSC) is working to balance our nation’s budget, Obama and the Democrats in Congress are ensuring our nation plunges further into debt.

    As Democrats are worried about elections in the months ahead, they don’t want to see a budget that would officially note big deficits. So, their answer? Don’t create a budget.

    As America faces unprecedented debt and an economy as rocky as the one in the 1930s, it is a bad idea to not create a budget that would begin to dig the nation out of the deep hole it is in.

    “Families across the country have been forced to put restrictions on their spending and Congress needs to make the federal government do the same,” says Americans for Limited Government (ALG) President Bill Wilson. “We cannot continue down the same road we are on. It is the responsibility of the Democrats in Congress to create a sound budget and get it passed.”

    As Republicans are asking Democrats where their budget is, old comments made to Republicans are beginning to surface. In 2006, when Republicans held the majority in both the House of Representatives and Senate, a final budget passed in the House, but the Senate could not agree. Seeing this as an opportunity to blast the Republicans, some Democrats comments are now coming back to haunt them — especially since the House has always at least passed its version of a budget — unlike what we are seeing in the House now.

    Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-MD), who was the House minority whip in 2006, said Republicans who failed to pass a final budget weren’t meeting “the most basic responsibility of governing.

    Rep. Hoyer wasn’t the only one who is now eating his words. Budget Committee Chairman John Spratt (D-SC) also lashed out at Republicans at that time saying, “If you can’t budget, you can’t govern.”

    Now that the tables have turned and Democrats rule the House, Senate and the White House and still can’t get a budget through either Chamber, maybe Rep. Spratt’s comment is correct. If you can’t budget, you can’t govern.

    With time running out for the Democrats to pass a budget, the rest of the country wonders what 2011 spending will look like. Many American families are under piles of debt themselves; it is not at all comforting to know that without a sound budget, federal government spending could continue at the rate that it is.

    Even the budget requested by Obama is alarming. If enacted, based on numbers by the Congressional Budget Office (CBO), the federal government would record deficits of $1.5 trillion in 2010 and $1.3 trillion in 2011.

    The report also found that under Obama’s budget, the debt held by the public would grow from $7.5 trillion at the end of 2009 to $20.3 trillion at the end of 2020. That is not the direction our nation should go.

    What seems to be headed in the right direction is the budget plan introduced by the RSC. The RSC budget plan (H.Con.Res. 281) would achieve surpluses in 2019 and 2020. It also proposes $6.4 trillion less debt than Obama’s budget.

    “Republicans have presented concrete solutions for breaking Washington’s addiction to debt,” RSC Chairman Tom Price (R-GA) was quoted as saying in a press release. “The RSC has a budget proposal to achieve a surplus in 2019 without raising taxes. Under President Obama’s vision, the annual deficit that year would still be more than $1 trillion, even as Americans face a much bigger tax burden.”

    With many Democrats facing opposition in the polls in this year’s elections, they know the America people do not want to see a budget that will produce more debt. In the three and a half years since Pelosi became Speaker in 2007, the nation’s debt has climbed by $4 trillion dollars to more than $13 trillion.

    To complicate things even more, the Democrats in Congress and Obama may have more to worry about then the need to produce a budget.

    In a new poll released by the Wall Street Journal and NBC News, more Americans than ever before are less confident in Obama’s ability to lead the country and are concerned about the state of our nation.

    The poll also found that, “Sixty-two percent of adults in the survey feel the country is on the wrong track, the highest level since before the 2008 election.” And also only one-third of the poll takers think that the U.S. economy will improve throughout the next year.

    As for Obama, and Congress, of which “57% of voters would prefer to elect a new person to Congress than re-elect their local representatives,” according to the poll, both face tough challenges ahead, and a budget might be just what they need. But Rep. Hoyer doesn’t plan to make it happen.

    “It isn’t possible to debate and pass a realistic, long-term budget until we’ve considered the bipartisan commission’s deficit-reduction plan, which is expected in December,” Rep. Hoyer said during a discussion of the national deficit.

    So in other words, because the national debt is such a hot, sensitive topic, they don’t want to tackle it.

    In response to Rep. Hoyer’s comments, Chairman Price issued his own thoughts on the matter. “Leader Hoyer said Democrats will not even attempt to pass a budget resolution because they are waiting until after the elections for a presidential commission to tell them what to do,” he said in a press release. “So the Democrats’ excuse for not doing their job is that they have passed the buck to someone else. Last time I checked, the American people elected a Congress, not a commission.”

    It is time for the Democrats to buckle down and put a cap on the federal government’s shopping spree. If no restrictions are in place for spending, things will only get worse — that’s not something they should be willing to risk in an election year.

    Rebekah Rast is a contributing editor to ALG News Bureau.

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