U.S. Rep. Ron Kind today commended President Obama for presenting a budget to Congress that takes honest, pragmatic steps to ensure economic growth and competitiveness while at the same time, finding ways to reduce the deficit.
"The President's budget responsibly focuses on reducing our deficits while making room for the investments that will guarantee the success of our country. His proposal centers on what is most important right now -- creating good paying jobs and ensuring America's economic competitiveness and getting us on a path to fiscal sustainability. It's a good start but more needs to be done.
"To be serious about deficit reduction, we must continue to move forward on health care reform -- the largest and fastest growing area of spending. We must change the way we pay for health care to get costs under control. Fortunately, by working with our health care providers in western Wisconsin, there are tools in place under health care reform that will put us on the right path. We need to keep moving toward a health care system that provides better care at a better cost. Studies show that one third of health care dollars, close to $800 billion each year, is spent on ineffective tests and procedures that do not help the patient. We should start addressing these unnecessary costs by changing Medicare's volume-based payments to value-based payments, exactly what our providers in western Wisconsin have been advocating.
"We must also continue to lay a foundation for growth -- making smart investments that keep our economy growing and support economic competitiveness, to ensure America remains the most innovative, creative country in the world. Investments in education and innovation will not only create the jobs of the future but will ensure that every American is prepared with the skills they need to succeed and every business can compete in a 21st century economy. These investments will guarantee that we out-innovate, out-educate, and out-build our global competitors.