After years of government overspending by both parties, America is perilously close to bankruptcy as a nation. The federal deficit threatens job creation today, and the futures of our children and grandchildren. In recent years, Congress went on a spending binge: trillions of dollars spent on bailouts, stimulus packages and massive new government programs. We are left with an unemployment situation worse than when the spending began, and a bill that can only be paid with higher taxes on families on small businesses.
It's time to stop the credit card spending and reverse course. It's time to make difficult decisions, and establish a framework for responsible budgeting. In doing so, we'll remove barriers to economic growth and help create new, family-wage jobs.
From day one, I have worked to keep my pledge to stop the overspending. My first vote as a Member of Congress was to cut my own office budget, along with the budgets for every other congressional office. The $35 million we saved taxpayers didn't eliminate the deficit overnight, but it was a start.
In my first month, I also co-sponsored a U.S. Constitutional Amendment that would require Congress not spend more than it receives in revenues each year. If families can carefully establish budgets that they must live within, why shouldn't government? I've also spearheaded a bill that will cut the salaries of Members of Congress, the President and Vice President by 10%. I believe as elected leaders we need to do our share to reduce the debt.
Reducing the federal deficit will take hard work and leadership. Some popular programs will get less money than expected. Some projects will be scaled down and put on hold and political attacks will be made against those making the tough decisions.
But Americans are aware that we cannot stay on the path of overspending and achieve economic recovery. Our country's fiscal crisis is one of the greatest challenges facing our nation today, but we can overcome it if we put a stop to the overspending and force the federal government to live within its means. Once we do, we will be much closer to sustained economic recovery and new jobs.