Today, the Budget Control Act passed in the House of Representatives by a vote of 218 to 210. The two-step approach makes spending cuts larger than the debt ceiling increase, implements spending caps to restrain future spending, imposes no new taxes on anyone, and guarantees House and Senate passage of a balanced budget amendment before any additional debt limit increase.
"Today marks day one of changing the way Washington works," Nunnelee said. "For the first time in American history, Congress is coupling an increase in the debt ceiling with an increase in spending cuts. Families in North Mississippi, and across our country, are sitting down at the kitchen table and making difficult decisions about how to spend their money. They have every reason to expect our federal government to do the same. The Budget Control Act is a common-sense solution that implements permanent spending controls, and changes our broken political system."
"The President keeps calling for a "balanced approach,' but what we truly need is a balanced budget. The American people have had enough, and it's time to hold Washington accountable. Tonight, the House sat down at the table and passed a solution that will help solve our debt crisis. I urge Senator Reid to join us at the table," Nunnelee concluded.
"Small business owners know they will go out of business if they spend more than they take in, and expect the government to operate by the same common-sense principle. Washington has a spending problem, not a revenue problem. We at NFIB thank Congressman Nunnelee for helping make the cuts necessary to start us on a path to get our fiscal house in order without raising taxes on America's job-creators." -- Dan Danner, President and CEO, National Federation of Independent Business.
The Budget Control Act of 2011 contains:
CUTS THAT EXCEED THE DEBT HIKE: cuts and caps discretionary spending immediately, saving $917 billion over 10 years -- with $22 billion in deficit reduction in FY 2012, according to CBO. Provides for a debt limit increase of $900 billion, however, only $400 billion will be available immediately and the entire amount will be subject to a vote of disapproval by the House.
CAPS TO CONTROL FUTURE SPENDING: spending caps establish clear limits on future discretionary spending; failure to remain below these caps will trigger automatic across-the-board cuts. Any attempt to change the caps will also now be subject to a point of order, requiring 60 votes in the Senate to overcome.
BALANCED BUDGET AMENDMENT: guarantees passage of a Balanced Budget Amendment for an additional debt limit increase.
ENTITLEMENT REFORMS & SAVINGS: creates a 12-member Joint Committee of Congress that is charged with reporting legislation -- by November 23, 2011 -- to reduce the deficit by at least $1.8 trillion over 10 years; each House would be required to vote up-or-down on the proposal, which would be filibuster-proof in the Senate. If the proposal is enacted, then the President could request an additional debt limit increase. Allows for a vote of disapproval on the President's debt limit increase requests after the cuts package is enacted
NO TAX HIKES