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Public Statements

America's Financial Crisis

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC

America's Financial Crisis -- (House of Representatives - February 04, 2009)


Mr. SCALISE. I thank the gentleman from Missouri for yielding. I thank the gentleman from Ohio for yielding.

What we have been talking about is a discussion we have been having here on this floor for the last few weeks. I am very encouraged that so many people across this country have started to really look at this bill closely and to recognize that, in fact, the bill that has been moving through the legislature here in Congress in the last few weeks is not, in fact, a stimulus bill. It is a massive spending bill, a bill that really will not do much to help get the economy started.

The Congressional Budget Office reports, of course, show that very little of this money will go into the economy, but what it will do is add a massive additional national debt to a debt that is already over $11 trillion. We are already hearing that this bill is already approaching $900 billion. Some reports show over $1 trillion. In addition, the budget that is going to be presented in just a few weeks by President Obama is expected to be $1 trillion out of balance.

All of this money that would be added to the national debt could add over 25 percent in 1 year to the total national debt of this country, whether or not it would actually provide stimulus to the economy. Most reports show it would not create any jobs. What it would do is increase inflation, devalue the dollar and put a tremendous burden on our children and grandchildren. I think that is why it is so important that we have worked so hard to come up with an alternative plan, a better way to solve this problem. That is, to go and look at tax cuts that will actually help middle-class families and small businesses that will create the jobs, not government spending, which in many cases has been spent on programs that have failed in the past and that create more government jobs. We need to be creating jobs in the private sector, and that is what I think is so encouraging.

As we have been presenting these alternatives, I think people across the country have seen and have realized that this is a much better way. It is so important after the failed bailouts of the last year that we get this right, and that is why it is important that we have been talking about this as people are seeing it. I think they are realizing some of the same things that we saw in that bipartisan vote last week when not only all Republicans voted ``no'' but when, in fact, nearly a dozen Democrats also could not even stomach some of the spending by their own leadership and said ``no'' as well, because there is a better way.

I appreciate the fact that you have been highlighting this, as have other Members, to show that there are better ways to solve this problem for the American people and to show how the American people have, I think, galvanized and have said the same thing. Big government spending in Washington is not going to solve this problem. Let's let middle-class families who are out there tightening their belts already in States that are trying to balance their own budgets show the better way as opposed to the failed old approaches of liberal, big government spending.

So I think the fact that we need to look out for our children and grandchildren is an extra highlight and why it is so important that we get this right and that we solve this problem the correct way. That is what this alternative plan does.


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