U.S. Rep. Walt Minnick said the nation must tackle budget deficits more aggressively than was proposed in the President's $3.8 trillion budget Monday.
"The size of the deficits, this year and in future years, is truly disturbing," Minnick said. "We need to get spending under control and we need to do it in a bi-partisan way."
Minnick lauded the president's call for a bi-partisan, fiscal commission to make tough budget recommendations. But the commission must have power to do more than just advise, and Congress should be forced to accept or reject the recommendations with an up or down vote.
Minnick has been a vocal proponent of PAYGO rules that helped create America's budget surplus in the late 1990s. But leaders must move more decisively by adopting other budget control such as passing a balanced budget amendment to the Constitution and by giving up earmarks.
Minnick praised proposals to boost investment in education and energy. Renewable energy investment would get $4.7 billion. Loan guarantees to build new nuclear power plants would jump by $36 billion. The president also proposed more robust spending on Pell Grants and other education programs.
"If our nation is to remain strong and competitive, we must have a well-educated work force. Every Idahoan should have access to a college education, or other post-high school training, which leads to higher earning power and better opportunities," Minnick said.