Today Congressman Bob Goodlatte announced the support of 219 bipartisan Members of Congress for H.J.Res 2, a balanced budget Constitutional amendment. This legislation, which Congressman Goodlatte introduced in the opening hours of the 112th Congress, requires that total spending for any fiscal year not exceed total receipts.
Support continues to grow for H.J.Res. 1, a three part balanced budget amendment which Congressman Goodlatte also introduced. H.J.Res 1, which has over 125 cosponsors, would (1) amend the Constitution to require that total spending for any fiscal year not exceed total receipts; (2) require that bills to raise revenues pass each House of Congress by a 3/5 majority; and (3) establish an annual spending cap such that total federal spending could not exceed 1/5 of the economic output of the United States.
"We have a spending addiction in Washington, D.C., and it has proven to be an addiction that Congress cannot control on its own and which is bringing dire consequences," said Rep. Goodlatte. "Today, Washington spends $7 million every minute of every hour of every day and to finance this spending addiction the government must borrow over 40 cents of every dollar spent. This has resulted in our national debt exceeding $14 trillion which is over $45,000 for every man, woman and child in America. It's time for Washington to stop spending money we don't have."
Rep. Goodlatte continued, "I am pleased to announce that a majority of the Members of the House of Representatives are supporting my legislation to create a Constitutional amendment requiring the federal government to balance the budget. This broad bipartisan support shows how committed the House is to restoring fiscal sanity to Washington."
A balanced budget amendment is a commonsense measure that is long overdue. A Constitutional amendment will force Congress to eliminate unnecessary and wasteful spending and make the decisions necessary to balance the budget and eliminate the federal deficit. Currently, forty-nine out of fifty state governments, including Virginia, have a balanced budget requirement.
Rep. Goodlatte said, "Families all across our nation understand what it means to make tough decisions each day about what they can and cannot afford and government officials should be required to exercise similar restraint when spending the hard-earned dollars of our nation's citizens."
Goodlatte continued, "Our federal government must be lean, efficient and responsible with the dollars that our nation's citizens worked so hard to earn. Ultimately, we must make the tough decisions necessary to balance our budget and pass a balanced budget amendment to the U.S. Constitution, helping to assure that future governments live within their means."
Both H.J. Res 1 and H.J. Res 2 have been referred to the House Judiciary Committee on which Congressmen Goodlatte serves as a senior Member.