Reichert Rejects Massive Spending Bill
Congressman Dave Reichert (WA-08) today opposed an $825 billion spending package for which there was little evidence that it would create new jobs. Despite the concerns of many lawmakers, economists, and American citizens, the bill passed the U.S. House of Representatives by a vote of 244-188.
"This is a time for smart, accountable, and targeted investments to get our economy back on track, not more of the same shotgun spending that mortgages our children's futures," said Reichert. "This package excluded key stimulus provisions from bipartisan negotiations with President Obama and was rushed to the House floor without any assurance that its $825 billion price tag would jumpstart our economy or create jobs. Just last week, the nonpartisan Joint Committee on Taxation could not say whether any jobs would be created by this massive spending package. We cannot let calls for swift action overrun common sense, thorough consideration, and healthy debate."
Reichert continued, "Everyone remembers the bailout from last fall, which demonstrated what happens when government rushes to act without real accountability: mistakes were made, and taxpayers were left with a $700 billion tab. I could not in good conscience support this nearly $1 trillion measure for which there was little evidence that it would create new jobs. There were many provisions in this package that I strongly support; but we need an economic stimulus, not just another spending bill.
"Unequivocally, this crisis calls for immediate, bipartisan action - but action that has a proven record of creating jobs and that ensures taxpayer funds are spent wisely. I strongly support proven stimulus measures to address our economic crisis, including extending broad-based tax relief for families and small businesses, opening new markets to trade, and making smart investments in infrastructure improvements."
During consideration of the package in the House Ways & Means Committee last Thursday, Reichert supported several other common-sense proposals to stimulate the economy, ranging from reducing income taxes to prohibiting taxes on unemployment benefits. It was in this same meeting that the nonpartisan Joint Committee on Taxation testified that it could not be determined whether any new jobs would be created by the bill.
Reichert concluded, "After meeting with President Obama yesterday, I'm hopeful that he will work with members on both sides of the aisle to enact proven stimulus measures, and I will continue to support his efforts to bring Democrats and Republicans together to build consensus and craft effective legislation for our economy."