As I crisscross the 6th Congressional District, listening to the opinions and suggestions of my constituents, there is one resounding theme: something must be done to significantly reduce the excessive government spending. From Strasburg to Salem and from Madison Heights to Monterey the out-of-control government spending and the lasting effect it is having on our national economy is what concerns folks the most these days. They want to see real reforms made to ensure the federal government is forced to live within its means, just like they have to.
Just a few months ago, with my support, House Republicans took an important step to rein in spending by passing a federal budget that cuts over $5 trillion in government spending over the next decade, reducing the size of the federal government to twenty percent of our economy by 2015.
While the House-passed budget is a significant step in the right direction, we need to be even more ambitious in controlling spending. That's why I supported an amendment that makes additional spending cuts to put the government on track to turn trillion-dollar deficits into a budget surplus within five years.
Immediately cutting government spending through these budget resolutions is certainly important but it is by no means a complete solution to our nation's fiscal problems. It will take real institutional reforms to ensure that any cuts that are made today don't easily disappear tomorrow. That is why I have been a long term advocate of a balanced budget amendment to the U.S. Constitution. In fact, on the first day of this Congress I introduced legislation to create such an amendment and I have worked relentlessly to ensure that a balanced budget amendment was considered by the full House of Representatives.
My balanced budget amendment forces Congress to enact fiscally responsible spending measures and reduces the deficit by requiring that total spending for any fiscal year not exceed total receipts. It will take this kind of action to ensure that the federal government is held accountable and that the money our citizens work so hard to earn is not squandered on wasteful spending and programs.
Washington has overspent for decades. Fixing the problem will require immediate action and years of commitment. I've said time and again, when it comes to cutting government spending everything must be on the table. As your elected official I'm working to reverse the culture of spending that exists in Washington. I've consistently voted for the tightest budgets offered each year, supported legislation that cuts spending immediately and will continue working to pass a balanced budget amendment to our Constitution which puts to practice a spending approach that most of my constituents already live by: if you don't have it, don't spend it.