>Scott Garrett : Senator Reid’s Plan Full of Too Many False Savings
As a part of my ongoing effort to keep you updated on what’s going on with the debt ceiling debate in Washington, I wanted to take a moment to fill you in on where we stand and what things look like going forward.
Over the past two weeks, House Republicans have passed two bills – the Cut, Cap and Balance Act and the Budget Control Act – to steer our nation away from default and towards fiscal sustainability. Each of these bills are sensible compromises that satisfy President Obama’s request to raise the debt ceiling while fulfilling our commitment to cut spending now, implement caps to bring down spending in the future and pass a balanced budget amendment to the Constitution.
However, Senate Democrats on Friday failed to even bring up the House-passed Budget Control Act for debate, just as they did with the Cut, Cap and Balance Act. Meanwhile, instead of considering one of the solutions passed by the House or negotiating with Republicans to forge a compromise, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has put forth a plan that would give President Obama another blank check to spend American taxpayer dollars. This is merely an extension of the irresponsible practices that led us to the situation we now find ourselves.
While I appreciate Senator Reid’s efforts to actually offer a solution to this crisis, I feel it is not the right prescription to address the root problem of this crisis—Washington’s addiction to spending and borrowing. Not only does it fail to address our spending and debt problem, it won’t even prevent a downgrade of our credit rating. The Reid plan makes false promises of future “savings” of $1 trillion from war spending that is not written into law and no one plans to actually spend. According to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO), even assuming these imaginary war savings, this plan still falls $216 billion short of equal-or-greater spending cuts to a debt ceiling increase. Excluding those phantom war savings, the shortfall skyrockets to nearly $1.5 trillion. Both Senate and House Republicans have made it clear to them that this is unacceptable.
The American people are tired of Washington’s accounting gimmicks and budget smokescreens, they’re tired of out of control spending, and they’re ready for a compromise. House Republicans have now offered two plans that reach a compromise and allow us to get back to the business of creating jobs and reviving our sluggish economy. It is my sincere hope that my colleagues across the aisle recognize this chance and fulfill their duty to their constituents by considering the compromises they have before them.