Idaho Congressman Mike Simpson supported passage of H.R. 444, the Require a PLAN Act, today. H.R. 444 requires the President to submit a supplemental budget proposal by April 1, 2013 in the event that the President's initial 2014 budget submission does not achieve balance. It would require that the President's supplemental budget identify how he would achieve a balanced budget, include policies that will be implemented to attain this goal, and offer an explanation of those policies. The bill passed the House with a final vote of 253-167.
"In Idaho, we know how to live on a budget. Families do it. Our Governor and State Legislators do it. The Federal Government needs to do the same," said Congressman Simpson. "Congress is willing to make the difficult decisions in order to balance the budget, but the President needs to make similar decisions - he needs to produce a PLAN to get our economy back on track."
The Budget and Accounting Act of 1921 requires the President to submit a budget each year on the first Monday in February. Despite this legal obligation, the President has failed to submit a timely budget four out of the last five years. The first and last timely budget submission occurred on February 1, 2010. Moreover, with respect to the FY 2014 budget, the President acknowledged on January 11, 2013 that he would not submit his budget as required by law and failed to identify a date for submission.
"America realizes we can't borrow our way out of this situation," Simpson said, "House Republicans have already passed legislation this year that would require the House and the Senate to pass their budgets on time, with the penalty of failure being withholding the pay of the Members in each body. This policy is heavily supported by the American people and is now law. The President should also be held accountable."
When President Obama's then Budget Director, and current Treasury Secretary nominee Jack Lew testified before the House Budget Committee on the FY12 Budget, Congressman Simpson asked him similar questions about when the President's budget plan would achieve balance. Lew admits that the President's budget never balances. Watch the video clip here.