As part of his ongoing commitment to ensure that the federal government stops spending more of people's hard-earned tax dollars than it takes in, U.S. Rep. Blaine Luetkemeyer (MO-3) announced just hours after his swearing-in as the new Congressman for Missouri's 3rd District that the first bills he is co-sponsoring in the 113th Congress are two Balanced Budget Amendments to the U.S. Constitution.
The first Balanced Budget Amendment, being sponsored by U.S. Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.), would require that total spending for any fiscal year not exceed total receipts of the federal government. It also would require a three-fifths roll call vote of each chamber to increase the public debt limit; would direct the president to submit a balanced budget to Congress annually; would prohibit any bill to increase revenue from becoming law unless approved by a majority of each chamber by roll call vote; and would authorize waivers of these provisions when a declaration of war is in effect or under other specified circumstances involving military conflict.
"Congress has too often ignored the commonsense idea that you can't spend more money than you collect and that is why I will continue to support a Balanced Budget Amendment to the Constitution," said Luetkemeyer, who also is a member of the Financial Services Committee. "Missouri families and businesses have to balance their budgets -- and so should Washington."
Luetkemeyer is also co-sponsoring a second, more aggressive, pro-growth balanced budget amendment also sponsored by Goodlatte that in addition to requiring federal total outlays to not exceed total federal receipts, requires that total federal outlays not exceed 20 percent of the economic output of the United States unless two-thirds of each House of Congress provides for specific outlays above this amount; requires a three-fifths vote for any increases in the debt limit; requires a three-fifths vote for any tax increase and requires the president to transmit to Congress a balanced federal budget proposal each year.
"Either of these two options would go a long way towards solving our nation's out of control spending problem. By requiring these tough new standards, I believe that we can attack our debt and ensure that the federal government lives within its means," Luetkemeyer said.