Idaho Congressman Mike Simpson today supported passage of H.R. 5652, the Sequester Replacement Reconciliation Act of 2012. It passed in the House of Representatives 218 to 199. The House Budget Committee, of which Simpson is a member, considered and passed this legislation on Monday and sent it to the floor for a vote.
"It is important to remember that the sequester is not intended to be the solution to our debt problem, rather, it is the penalty if Congress fails to act," said Simpson. "This legislation represents the House of Representatives' priorities in cutting spending and reforming some of our most unsuccessful and unpopular mandatory programs, which make up two-thirds of the federal budget."
The legislation is composed of the policy suggestions from six committees about where the size of government can be reduced, including cuts and reform to mandatory programs that are on auto-pilot. The bill:
Closes loopholes and reduces waste, fraud and abuse in the food stamp program, ensuring the program continues to serve those most in need of assistance.
Repeals costly and duplicative provisions in the health care law, reforms Medicaid, and institutes tort reform.
Reforms and fixes portions of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform Act and ends unspent and unneeded remaining TARP funds.
The bill uses these savings and others to replace the planned sequester that is scheduled to come into effect next year.
"We have yet to see a proposal from the Senate or from President Obama on what they would like to do to avoid a painful sequester next January," added Simpson. "I hope Senator Reid and President Obama will put forth their proposals so that both sides can immediately begin debating and agree to a plan to start dealing with the massive $15.6 trillion national debt facing us."
The bill now moves to the U.S. Senate for consideration.