Congressman Jeb Hensarling, Chairman of the House Republican Conference, issued the following statement today after President Obama's speech on deficit reduction. Hensarling served on the National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform created by the White House and was in attendance for the president's speech.
"This was a speech designed to get him through the next election, not to save our country for the next generation. For the first time in two years the president has joined the deficit debate, and what he brings to the table is more job-killing taxes and more rationing of health care.
"The American people deserve a budget plan that takes our nation off the road to decline and onto a path to prosperity. New platitudes and new taxes will not grow our economy or solve the spending-driven debt crisis.
"These record deficits are the symptom -- spending is the disease. The only way to grow our economy and save the American dream for our children and grandchildren is to stop spending money that we don't have.
"In the time since he's taken office, we've experienced the first and second trillion-dollar deficits in American history, and we're on our way to our third. Unemployment is still hovering around 9 percent. Instead of offering a real plan to cut spending, the president's resorting back to raising taxes on job creators, which will discourage job creation, destroy economic growth, and do nothing to get spending under control.
"It will take more than another speech outlining his vision to reverse the direction that President Obama has taken our nation since taking office. For two straight years, the president and congressional Democrats spent money that we don't have at record highs and left the nation in record debt that will have to be paid off by future generations.
"In the face of this spending-driven debt crisis, new platitudes will not compensate for the continued leadership deficit from this administration or restore jobs and grow the economy for the American people."