U.S. Rep. Elton Gallegly (R-Ventura and Santa Barbara Counties) today voted for the Cut Cap and Balance Act, which would require the federal government to live within its means.
"I have been saying since the economic crisis began that it is not only an economic problem but a national security problem," Gallegly said. "The national debt is part of that crisis as it takes money out of the private sector that could be used to create jobs; it puts us at the mercy of our creditors, including China and Saudi Arabia; and it detracts us from focusing on those who would cause Americans harm."
Admiral Mike Mullins, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, agrees, Gallegly noted. "The single-biggest threat to our national security is our debt," Mullins said.
"While we had a debt problem before President Obama took office, it has exploded under his watch because of trillions of dollars of failed stimulus and other unaffordable and unwise programs," Gallegly said. "Since President Obama took office, the national debt has increased by $3.7 trillion. It took the United States from 1776 until 1992 to accumulate the same amount of debt that President Obama accumulated in 2½ years.
"Our national debt is nearly $14.3 trillion -- higher than any time in American history -- and already equals more than 95 percent of our entire economy."
The Cut Cap and Balance Act:
* Cuts total spending by $111 billion in FY 2012, reducing non-defense discretionary spending below 2008 levels;
* Puts into place statutory, enforceable caps to ratchet down the amount the government is allowed to spend each year, bringing spending into line with the historic average of 20% of GDP by 2021; and
* Requires passage of a Balanced Budget Amendment in order to raise the debt limit. It provides that the president can request a debt ceiling increase only if a qualifying BBA passes Congress and is sent to the states for ratification.
"We are currently borrowing roughly 40 cents of every dollar we spend and sending the bill to our children and grandchildren. Every child born today already owes more than $46,000 to our creditors," Gallegly said. "We need to stop spending money we do not have and we need to stop now."