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Public Statements

Proposing a Balanced Budget Amendment to the Constitution

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC


Mr. SCALISE. I thank the gentleman from Virginia for yielding me this time to speak about this important issue. I really want to thank him for bringing this to the floor because this is one of those rare bipartisan pieces of legislation that Congress brings forward that is so critical to the future of our country. You know, a balanced budget amendment is an idea that is long overdue.

If you look at where we are right now, some of the biggest challenges facing our country come from the fact that Washington continues to spend money it doesn't have. This Nation just passed the $15 trillion threshold in debt. Just in the last 2 1/2 years since President Obama has been in office, another $5 trillion, mountains of debt that have been added to the backs of our children and grandchildren. It is irresponsible to keep dumping this debt onto future generations. It hurts America's ability to grow, it holds America's promise back, and it has got to stop.

If you look at what is important about this debate, a balanced budget amendment will finally bring permanent accountability and force Washington to start living within its means, to tell Washington you can't keep spending money you don't have. And yet you listen to this debate and there are Republicans and Democrats supporting this concept that's long overdue to require a balanced Federal budget; but, of course, there are opponents as well. If you listen to what some of the opponents have been saying, they call it reckless. Forty-nine States do this, families all across the country balance their budget, and they call it reckless to live within our means.

What I would finally say in conclusion is that we have got to put these reins on Washington spending. We've got to give this promise to the next generation. Stop playing politics. Let's pass this amendment.


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