By Bob Goodlatte
Thomas Jefferson once wrote: "To preserve [the] independence [of the people,] we must not let our rulers load us with perpetual debt. We must make our election between economy and liberty, or profusion and servitude." Today our national debt exceeds a staggering $15 trillion. That is equal to $49,000 for every man, woman and child in this country, meaning that the amount of debt for everyone in the U.S. now exceeds the median family income. We simply cannot allow this spending spree to continue.
This week, with my support, the House of Representatives took an important step to rein in the out of control government spending by passing a long term federal budget plan that makes serious reforms and is a great start to solving our fiscal crisis. The House budget resolution cuts over $5 trillion in government spending over the next ten years and reduces deficits by over $3 trillion compared to President Obama's budget. These critical spending cuts will reduce the size of the federal government to twenty percent of our economy by 2015.
The House-passed budget also makes important and necessary reforms to our broken tax code. By lowering tax rates, closing loopholes and putting hardworking taxpayers ahead of special interests, the tax code will be fairer and simpler for our families and small businesses. This is how we will grow our economy.
Additionally, the House-passed budget repeals and defunds Obamacare, the government takeover of our health care system. Finally, the House-passed budget saves and strengthens entitlement programs, such as Medicare and Social Security, for future generations, while not changing benefits for those 55 and older.
While the House budget is a significant step in the right direction, I believe we need to be even more ambitious about controlling spending. That is why I also supported an amendment that builds upon the good work of the House Budget Committee, making additional spending cuts to put the government on track to turn trillion-dollar deficits into a budget surplus within five years. While this alternative proposal is bold, it will take these kinds of measures to solve our nation's fiscal crisis.
Washington has overspent for decades. Fixing the problem will require immediate action and years of commitment. The Congress -- both the House and Senate -- have a responsibility to put together a sustainable budget and stick to it. The House-passed budget is a great start that puts the federal budget on a path toward balance and pays off the national debt over time but we must do more to steadfastly hold the line on government spending. I remain committed to making the tough but necessary decisions to immediately cut government spending and ultimately balance the budget, which will ensure a more prosperous future for America.