HATCH: SENATE BUDGET MUST TRIM DEFICIT
Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) today expressed his qualified support for the Fiscal Year 2006 Budget Resolution currently before the U.S. Senate, calling it an imperfect balance between funding important programs and reducing spending.
"As with many of my fellow Utahns, I am very concerned about the large and persistent deficits with which our federal government still wrestles," said Hatch. "While this budget resolution does not go as far as I would like to see in reducing the deficit and addressing spending growth, it is probably as strong as we can make it and still get it through the House and Senate."
Hatch noted that the budget resolution would cut the deficit in half within five years. "In relative terms, the deficit is projected to be 1.8 percent of GDP (Gross Domestic Product) by 2008 and just 1.3 percent by 2010," said Hatch. "While still too large, these deficits are certainly more manageable than those of recent years."
Hatch also said that while he would like to see more fiscal responsibility, spending necessities such as the military effort in Iraq make tighter budgets very difficult.
"We need to remember that this Nation is at war, and we still face tremendous challenges in protecting our homeland from further terrorist attacks," said Hatch. "This budget resolution reflects these facts. At the same time, it places a virtual freeze on the growth of other discretionary spending.
"Given the circumstances," said Hatch, "the balances achieved in the budget resolution may well be the best we can do."