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Issue Position: National Debt/Deficit Spending/Earmarks

Issue Position

Location: Unknown

Our current Congress just finished the fiscal year ending Sept. 30th, with a $1.42 trillion deficit. That is trillion with a "t." I take issue with the fact that Zack Space voted for an unbalanced budget that put an additional $1.42 trillion dollars toward our national debt. This amounts to over a threefold increase in just one year. Federal deficit spending is siphoning capital out of the private sector at an unsustainable rate that will increase costs, lower private sector investment and, at best, resulting in a stagnant economy with little or no job growth.

Federal debt compared to the economy, Gross Domestic Product (GDP), is expected to be 61% this year, 70% by 2013, 85% by 2018 and a whopping 98% by 2020 and still growing. At this rate interest costs will amount to $800 billion and the Heritage Foundation's analysis estimate it could surpass $1 trillion by 2019. To put that into perspective after adjusting for inflation, total Federal spending in 1970 was lower than what the costs will be to service our exploding debt in the very near future.

Congress just raised the debt ceiling from $12 trillion to over $14 trillion and with the current spending levels our nation's total debt will increase by more than $16 trillion by 2020 for a total debt of over $30 trillion. This unprecedented level of debt resulting from reckless and unsustainable spending will exceed the capacity for global capital markets to continue financing our debt which will trigger a global financial crisis that will increase interest rates and inflation significantly and serious negative economic implications.

The problem is spending not lack of revenues. To illustrate this point historical Federal spending is approximately 20.7% of the GDP. According to the Congressional Budget Office, CBO, adjusted baseline by 2020 spending will surge to 25.9% of GDP, while revenues estimated to be 17.6% of GDP, creating a deficit of 8.3%.

Not to address this skyrocketing levels of debt by controlling spending our children and grandchildren will be saddled with a burden that will lower their standard of living and erode their quality of life.

Being a member of Congress is about making tough decisions and prioritizing and I am ready to make the tough decisions necessary for the long-term benefit of this nation. We need to grow our economy with public policies that incentivize the private sector to be innovative and invest capital to create jobs by cutting taxes, suspending the capital gains tax and regulatory relief.

A stronger economy will provide additional revenues without raising taxes and also ease the burden on taxpayers for the costs of providing safety net programs. On the spending side I will fight to limit the growth of overall spending and cut programs that are not necessary.

I will support initiatives to eliminate wasteful spending and reform the budgeting process. An essential reform to help cut wasteful spending is to curtail a process commonly called "earmarks." Earmarking is a corrupting process because it essentially gives individual lawmakers the ability to funnel dollars to various entities without a structured competitive process that is transparent and thoroughly debated in the legislative process. All too often earmarks are for political gain and not for the benefit of taxpayers. The current earmarking process has little or no government oversight or accountability. I will oppose omnibus spending bills that are loaded up with earmarks that are not fully vented in the legislative process under the light of day.

I will support legislation to curtail the practice of earmarks and establish an appropriation process that awards grants to projects through an established framework which is transparent and accountable, meets establish criteria, competitively bid and as proper oversight throughout.

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