Congressman Spencer Bachus (AL-6) said it is time to "quit fiddling around" on spending and entitlement reforms during the appearance of Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke at a House Financial Services Committee hearing today.
Chairman Bernanke delivered a report to the committee on monetary policy and the state of the U.S. economy. Congressman Bachus is Chairman Emeritus of the Committee.
Bachus noted that he has discussed the economic benefits of structural entitlement reform at many previous hearings with Chairman Bernanke. During his questioning, Bachus expressed disappointment that recent deficit-related deals have failed to decisively address the mounting pressure that mandatory spending programs are placing on the budget and national debt.
"Chairman Bernanke has told us to focus on long-term structural changes to our mandatory spending programs, most of all our entitlements, and that ought to be our focus. It will have a long-term beneficial effect and it will not retard economic recovery. To the President and Congress, I say quit fiddling around, get to work, and let's come up with these structural changes," said Congressman Bachus.
Entitlement programs like Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid and payments on the national debt are on a course to eventually consume all federal spending, according to the Congressional Budget Office. Congressman Bachus said while the attention of Congress and the nation this week is on the sequester, a long-term solution to putting the U.S. on a path to a balanced budget must include meaningful entitlement reform.