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Public Statements

Proposing a Balanced Budget Amendment to the Constitution

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC


Mr. COSTA. I rise in support of the bipartisan balanced budget amendment. I want to thank my colleagues, Congressman Goodlatte and others, who have worked on this effort, and really urge my colleagues that this is the time that we need to come together to act on behalf of the better interest of our Nation.

Clearly, a majority of the citizens I represent in the San Joaquin Valley agree that Washington needs to get its fiscal house in order.

We all want a balanced budget, but too few are willing to make an agreement that will move us toward that goal. That's why the passage of the constitutional amendment requiring the Federal Government to live within its means is an important step. But it is only a step.

To balance our budget, Members of both parties still have to come together to set priorities and, yes, make compromises and shared sacrifices to produce fair, balanced budgets each year. And never has the need been ever so clear.

Our national debt recently surpassed the GDP for the first time since World War II. Each American's share of the debt is now greater than their average salary. Congress could have acted sooner, but we haven't; and we can no longer afford to wait.

The bipartisan passage of this balanced budget amendment is an important and necessary step toward a sound fiscal future, and as a cosponsor, we should pass this measure. But we also should reach a larger agreement with the supercommittee that's fair and balanced on entitlement reform and revenues. If we do so, we will begin to restore the confidence by the American public that we can work together to get our economy back on track and create the jobs that all Americans want.


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