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Public Statements

Proposing a Balanced Budget Amendment to the Constitution

Floor Speech

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Date:
Location: Washington, DC

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Mr. GENE GREEN of Texas. Mr. Speaker, I oppose this balanced budget amendment. It's not because I support reckless spending, deficit spending, or believe that we don't have a fiscal problem in this country. I oppose this balanced budget amendment because I believe it is a heavy handed approach, which has the potential to harm Social Security and Medicare recipients and will hamstring our Nation's ability to respond to natural disasters, terrorist attacks, and acts of war.

We balanced our budget in the 1990s without a balanced budget amendment to our Constitution and we can do it again. Balancing our budget is good policy, I am even open to the idea of a carefully crafted amendment that will not threaten Social Security and Medicare recipients and not endanger our future national security and emergency preparedness. The proposal before us today does none of this and is just bad policy.

It is true that our Nation's debt has gotten too big and it is projected to expand even more if nothing is done to curtail it. For this reason, I support immediate measures to reduce our debt to a level that is both manageable and sustainable, which will put our country on a path to economic stability and prosperity. I oppose this proposal, but look forward to working with my colleagues, Democrat and Republican, to find better ways to address our fiscal challenges.

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