Congressman Collins Op-Ed: President Obama’s Budget – Several Days Late And $16 Trillion Short

February 13, 2013 11:00 am

by Nathan · 13 comments

Congressman Doug Collins (R-GA-09) has penned an op-ed piece concerning the President’s (late) budget.  This is 4th straight year President Barack Obama has failed to comply with the law and deliver a budget to Congress on time.  Enjoy.

President Obama’s Budget – Several days late & $16 trillion short 

President Obama has had much to say lately concerning Congress’ inability to address the fiscal challenges facing our nation. “Washington cannot continually operate under a cloud of crisis,” he declared during his Super Bowl Sunday interview. The President went on to say that “we need additional revenue, coupled with smart spending reductions, in order to bring down our deficit.”

But for all his advice, the President has spent much of his time in office contributing to the “cloud of crisis” surrounding the national budget.
Earlier this month, President Obama failed in his legal obligation to deliver a budget to Congress on time. This marks the fourth time in the last five years he has failed to submit a budget on time – a disappointing track record for someone who claims to be concerned with the fiscal crisis.

When the President’s tardy budget finally does make it to Congress, it’s a document that seeks to spend too much, borrow too much, and tax too much. He has never attempted to balance his budget, opting to simply add to the deficit. Not a single member of the House or Senate voted to support President Obama’s budget last year. If members of the President’s own party don’t recognize his budgets as viable plans, it makes one wonder why he bothers submitting them at all.

Of course, rhetoric is much simpler than reality. It’s much easier to talk about budgeting than actually create a workable budget. The President correctly stated that we need spending reductions. We don’t have a revenue problem in this country; we have a spending problem. The federal government is currently spending $1 trillion more than it takes in every year. At that rate, it’s no wonder we are facing a growing national debt of more than $16 trillion.

Washington needs leaders who are willing to actually articulate what cuts need to be made. True leaders must come to the table with meaningful proposals to reform spending as well as federal programs that are driving up public debt.

I joined my House colleagues this month in supporting legislation that requires the President to produce a date by which his proposed budget will balance. The Require a PLAN Act would be triggered when the President sends a budget to Congress that does not balance within the time span of that budget. This proposal would give the American people a meaningful sense of how effective a President’s budget is in improving our nation’s economic outlook.

The next step Congress must take is passage of a federal budget, which it has failed to accomplish in nearly four years. We must also conduct careful oversight of federal spending by observing the normal appropriations process. More than a decade has passed since Congress passed all its appropriations measures in regular order, instead of omnibus measures or continuing resolutions. Members on both sides of the aisle in both chambers of Congress must work together to produce a realistic budget. This budget should provide a roadmap that addresses the serious fiscal challenges facing our nation, eliminate wasteful federal spending, and keep taxes low so the economy can recover. In addition, this budget should outline serious reforms of programs like Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security to ensure their long-term fiscal health.

A Balanced Budget Amendment should also be adopted to hold future Congresses accountable. I have already cosponsored two pieces of legislation proposing a Balanced Budget Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. A Balanced Budget Amendment will be an effective tool in getting our nation’s fiscal house in order by forcing Washington to live within its means. Hard-working taxpayers have to go home every day and balance their books. They watch what they spend and know what they take in, and it’s time that Congress and the President work together to do the same.

Americans keep waiting to see what real solutions will come out of Washington, and this month, they were disappointed yet again. The President’s delay in submitting a fiscally responsible budget to Congress is yet another hindrance to economic recovery. Uncertainties like this one continue to hold businesses back from hiring new workers and entrepreneurs from investing in new projects. If the President is serious about clearing the “cloud of crisis” from the federal budget process, he can start by meeting his obligation to the American people by crafting a balanced budget for the upcoming fiscal year.

Scott65 February 13, 2013 at 5:22 pm

It really bugs me that someone who has so many of his facts wrong would try to demagogue this issue. I agree we have a spending problem…we are not spending enough to get past the liquidity trap we are in, but I’m sure Rep. Collins has no clue what that a liquidity trap entails. Here’s a fact for everyone to chew on…the last 7 times we ran a budget surplus, it was followed by a depression (as defined by unemployment 10% or greater). Also, he should check out that constitution he has in his pocket. It states that appropriation is the power of Congress…not the President. It must be so inconvenient to have to identify the draconian cuts he is pushing (especially since people in his district would send him packing if they knew how they would be impacted). It is much easier, Rep Collins, to scapegoat the poor than to actually know something about that which you speak. “president is bad” crap aint gonna cut it for the GOP anymore. People are pretty much fed up with the lack of specific vision from the GOP. What, Rep Collins, do you favor cutting? Many of us would like to know what you are going to slash to bring us to your budget utopia.

Harry February 13, 2013 at 6:47 pm

Let’s start by cutting 40% from every line item.

KD_fiscal conservative February 13, 2013 at 6:57 pm

“but I’m sure Rep. Collins has no clue what that a liquidity trap entails”

Rest assured Scott, Doug didn’t even write that piece. He likely got a new press secretary (certainly not the one from his campaign…) that wanted to try out his/her wit.

Pretty good job, if you ask me.

Harry February 13, 2013 at 7:02 pm

This “liquidity trap” is a bunch of malarkey. The government runs like a household. Keep going in debt, and sooner or later you default and go bankrupt.

griftdrift February 14, 2013 at 9:23 am

Hasn’t happened in 176 years.

Doug Deal February 24, 2013 at 10:45 am

Yep, and the Titanic is unsinkable.

Doug Deal February 24, 2013 at 10:46 am

Yep, and the Titanic is unsinkable. Especially now that it is sitting on the bottom of the ocean.

John Konop February 13, 2013 at 8:14 pm

This is the catch 22 we need fuel ie investment into infastructure to step up growth. The down side is the debt will either create inflation, devalue U.S. dollars or increase interest rates , any of them not good. If we cut to fast we will end up like Europe in a down slide. And the American public wants their entitlements and has no savings, regardless to party. The wild card is we are still the best place to put your money. And it looks like building will pick up ie jobs……Finally as I travel, I hear from many a mood to buy local….ie jobs….. At the end, the issue has way more moving parts as presented………Btw I am bullish short term……

Harry February 13, 2013 at 9:10 pm

As I said elsewhere, why should young people be motivated to save money, when they know the real yield on their money is negative? From my investment sources, I’m hearing the US is not where they want to put their money – at least not now.

John Konop February 13, 2013 at 9:34 pm

Harry,

The U.S is the place via the lesser of many places not to put your money…..

Harry February 13, 2013 at 9:39 pm

I’ve got a handful of really well heeled clients. With them, the trend is away from the US and into some admittedly rather unlikely places. The US is seen as overpriced and increasingly bureaucratized. It’s all about the best risk/reward in a world of imperfect choices.

John Konop February 14, 2013 at 6:08 am

Harry,
Harry,

I am seeing the opposite, a lot big players in my world are jumping back in. Cheap money, depressed values, technology, energy, housing inventory and best place via others choices is driving it. Construction is starting to pick up, which is a big driver and manufacturing is up for combination of reasons….. ie fuel high, technology…….the cost difference is shrinking between the USA and China, Mexico…….Finally the US oil business is booming and driving a lot of activity…….I do business in all 50 states, so my perspective is on a macro…….

CharlesPrier February 23, 2013 at 11:29 am

It’s obvious that Congressman Collins has joined the category of idiots like Congressman Broun as just another Republican Obama hater that will obstruct any progress in solving the nations problems. He will pay no attention to reason or logic and simply oppose anything to panders to his right wing yoke-fellows. Best just write him off, he will be on no benefit in Washington.

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