U.S. Senators Johnny Isakson, R-Ga., and Saxby Chambliss, R-Ga., today voted in favor of two amendments to H.R.325, the No Budget, No Pay Act, aimed at cutting spending in exchange for raising the debt limit and ending haphazard last-minute budget deals that threaten our economy.
Specifically, Isakson and Chambliss voted in favor of and co-sponsored the Dollar-for-Dollar Deficit Reduction Act and the End Government Shutdowns Act, which were both introduced by Sen. Rob Portman, R-Ohio, and offered as amendments to H.R.325. Unfortunately, the amendments were tabled by votes of 54 to 44 and 52 to 46, respectively.
"It is critically important that we get our nation's fiscal house in order and make meaningful spending cuts so we do not continue to mortgage our children's and grandchildren's futures," said Isakson. "The American people are extremely frustrated with Congress and President Obama's routine of kicking the can down the road and then ramming through haphazard deals at the eleventh hour to avert a government shutdown or fiscal cliff. I am proud to co-sponsor and vote in favor of these amendments today because they are thoughtful solutions that will help lead us to a path of fiscal sanity and avoid political "showdowns' that damage our economy."
"Many of us have long argued that Congress must make the hard choices to address this issue immediately, and that includes meaningful spending cuts," said Chambliss. "Today's amendments would have helped rein in our out-of-control debt and deficit, and I am disappointed that they did not have the support necessary for passage."
The Dollar-for-Dollar Deficit Reduction Act, S.43, promotes spending reform by preventing Congress from raising the debt limit unless legislation also cuts commensurate spending over the next decade. The entire amount would have to be offset within federal programs, allowing the interest savings on the national debt to provide additional savings above the debt limit increase amount.
The End Government Shutdowns Act, S.29, seeks to prevent last-minute budget deals that fail to address our out-of-control spending, and also seeks to end the threat to cut off essential federal government services. The End Government Shutdowns Act creates an automatic continuing resolution (CR) for any regular appropriations bill, lessening the chance of last-minute, budget-busting bills being forced through against the threat of a government shutdown.
Isakson and Chambliss also co-sponsored and voted for S.46, the Ensuring the Full Faith and Credit of the United States and Protecting America's Soldiers and Seniors Act, which was offered as an amendment by Sen. Toomey, R-Penn., to H.R.325 today. This amendment was tabled by a vote of 53 to 45. The bill provides that if the U.S. government reaches its statutory debt limit, three items will be given priority over all other obligations: principal and interest payments on the debt; Social Security payments; pay for active duty armed service members.