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Require Presidential Leadership and No Deficit Act

Floor Speech

Location: Unknown


Mr. MESSER. Madam Chairman, I rise today in support of the Require a PLAN Act because the American people deserve to know when or whether the budget proposed by the President would achieve balance and what policies are being pursued to require the Federal Government to live within its means.

My amendment today is based on a very simple principle--that each hardworking American taxpayer deserves to know how much the deficit costs them every year. To achieve this goal, the amendment very simply will require the supplemental unified budget called for in the underlying bill to include the cost per taxpayer of the annual deficit for each year that budget is projected in deficit. This requirement would be a powerful reminder to the President and Congress that our decisions have real world consequences for hardworking taxpayers.

We've all heard the question asked, how much is a trillion dollars? It's very difficult to quantify. It's very difficult to bring it into a real world context. What this bill will do is allow us to do that for taxpayers.

Our constituents might be surprised by what they learn. According to the Internal Revenue Service, there were about 145 million tax-paying Americans last year. With a trillion-dollar budget deficit that we've had in recent years, that would calculate out to about $6,896 per year per taxpayer to cover our existing deficit. The total tab for the past 4 years of $1 trillion each year would be about $27,500 a year. Back in the Sixth District of Indiana where I come from, that is a lot of money. I think we owe it to the taxpayers to let them know what we're doing here in Washington.

I reserve the balance of my time.


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