U.S. Congressmen John Barrow (GA-12) and Henry Cuellar (TX-28) today introduced a Balanced Budget Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, H.J. Res 4. Under this amendment, the President of the United States must submit, and Congress must pass, an annual budget that is balanced. Currently, 49 states have some form of a balanced budget requirement.
"For decades, the federal government has written checks it can't cover," said Congressman Barrow, Co-Chair for Administration of the fiscally conservative Blue Dog Coalition. "We've reached a point where our debt is unsustainable, and unless we act now to get our finances in order, future generations will be forced to pay for this out of control spending. Our bill requires the federal government to operate just like folks in Georgia -- spending only what we can afford and balancing our budgets, it's that simple."
"As a family man, I believe we have a responsibility to our children and our grandchildren to find a practical, commonsense solution to the deficit and debt. This will take members from both sides of the aisle working together in good faith to tackle our budget problems and reduce the deficit, which will put us on the road to paying off our national debt," said Congressman Cuellar, member of the fiscally conservative Blue Dog Coalition.
With an annual balanced budget, the federal government would prohibit spending for a fiscal year from exceeding total revenue for that year unless Congress, by a three-fifths roll call vote of the House and Senate, authorizes the specific excesses.