America's Obligation to the Next Generation
America’s Obligation to the Next Generation
By: Congressman Tim Huelskamp
With $14.3 trillion worth of debt, annual deficits in the trillions, long-term obligations that threaten to bankrupt our nation, and continued threats of downgrade by credit institutions, America has a choice. We can continue to allow reckless and unsustainable borrowing and spending, or we can enact measures that will force Washington to get its habits under control. Only the latter ensures prosperity, freedom, and survival of the American Dream.
If we are to get America on a path to fiscal responsibility, then the time to act is now. Time and time again, the President and Senate leadership talk about getting a large enough debt limit increase to get them through the next election. Mr. President and Senator Reid--this is not about your next election, this is about the next Generation! After all, it is our children and grandchildren who will have to pay off this massive debt. We owe future generations more than just an IOU.
Think about America in terms of a consumer like you or me. When someone has trouble managing their money and faces serious debt, the solution is not to give them another credit card and hope that the problems will fix themselves. No, the solution is to help them figure out the best way they can to spend the money they do have and establish a plan to help them save and invest for the future.
“Cut, Cap, Balance” is just the solution to help Washington solve her spending problems now and discipline her in the future. This began as a pledge – which I signed – earlier this summer, and has turned into legislation that will be introduced and voted on in the House this week. This legislation would give the President the debt limit he requests, but only if three conditions are met: spending is reduced this year, future spending is capped, and a Balanced Budget Amendment is passed.
I am proud to sponsor this legislation in the House, as I believe it will discipline Washington, especially the Balanced Budget Amendment. In a press conference on Friday, President Obama said that he would not support the Balanced Budget Amendment because Washington simply needs to do its job. Unfortunately, President Obama and decades of Washington leaders have proven they can't manage our nation's finances responsibly.
In addition to the Balanced Budget Amendment, this legislation contains immediate spending reductions for this upcoming fiscal year – to the tune of more than $100 billion – and caps on future spending tied to the overall size of the economy. “Cut, Cap, Balance” makes it so the government is not the source of one quarter of every dollar spent, but rather less than 20 cents. This is a balanced level of spending and one that maintains a private sector-based economy - rather than the failed socialist model.
This legislation is not just about changing how much Washington spends, but rather the way it spends and borrows. America’s future – and that of our children and grandchildren – is riding on the decisions that will be made about our finances. Let's hope this debt ceiling debate helps put America on the path to recovery.