Congressman Steven Palazzo (MS-04) issued the following statement today regarding America's national debt crisis:
"Ronald Reagan once referred to our nation as a Shining City on a Hill, a beacon of light to the world. But if something is not done, that light could be masked by a darkening cloud of debt. In order to prevent that, the federal government needs to do what every Mississippi family has to do when times are tough -- tighten its belt and make hard choices.
"Yet, over the past two months, I've gotten to see first-hand the determination with which some in Washington refuse to acknowledge economic realities. Last month, the President released his FY2012 budget, which among other things, will double our debt in just ten years. Currently, every taxpayer owes, on average, $127,500 worth of our national debt. According to Census Bureau data, median family income fell by 4.2 percent from 2007 to 2011 while the federal government's budget grew by 36 percent. Our national debt is $14 trillion -- a record high. By comparison, our national GDP is $14.26 trillion. Think about that -- if the U.S. was a small business, it would owe almost as much as it produces.
"We are taking steps to cut government spending and remove the barriers to job creation. Conservatives in the House have already passed a spending bill that cuts $100 billion from the President's budget. That is just the beginning.
"The debt crisis was decades in the making, and we cannot bring it under control overnight. Later this year, we will reach the current $14.3 trillion limit. At that point, we will face a stark choice: either raise the limit or default on America's debts. While I believe that America must pay its bills, we cannot raise the debt limit without first addressing the spending crisis and putting our fiscal house back in order.