Most folks across East Alabama have seen on the news lately the non-stop coverage of Washington's latest budget crisis: sequestration.
Just like the last budget crisis roughly 60 days ago, Washington seems no closer to fixing the problem. That problem, I believe, is too much spending.
According to a popular website, usdebtclock.org, the national debt is $16.6 trillion, or about $146,000 of debt per taxpayer.
Currently, the U.S. takes in about $2.49 trillion in Federal tax revenue, but spends about $3.54 trillion. This results in huge budget deficits. And we have carried a trillion dollar deficit every year over the last three years.
President Obama proposed the sequester and it has been widely criticized. But this most recent debate over the sequester, as painful as it is to many folks back home, hides Washington's real spending problem.
I believe long-term solutions to our debt crisis starts with a budget -- a real budget that holds Washington accountable.
Hard working families across East Alabama and the country know what it's like to live on a tight budget.
This spring, the House will pass its third budget in three years. These budgets require some tough decisions and everyone would feel some effects.
Meanwhile, the Senate has not passed a budget in almost four years. That is no way to do the people's business.
March 1st begins President Obama's sequester when $85 billion in indiscriminate cuts will be put in place across the Federal government.
These cuts will be harmful to our military and other programs and could damage our national security. It needs a common sense reform to ensure we aren't hurting our warfighters or their readiness.
However, in the big picture, the $85 billion expected to be cut this year, is roughly the same amount that the U.S. borrows to run the government every twenty eight days.
Spending cuts must be made to get our country back on the right financial track, but these reforms should be thoughtful and responsible.
It is time for Congress and the President to sit down to find real solutions.
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