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Protecting the Financial Solvency of the United States

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC

Mrs. BLACKBURN. Mr. Speaker, I want to begin my remarks with a couple of comments about the budget process. I think my colleagues could be a little bit confused on this.

I will remind my colleagues that it is this body that every single year meets our statutory duty and our constitutional duty to bring forward a budget that funds the operations of the United States of America. We do not miss our deadlines, and this year, we did it. I know that the White House did their Sweet 16 bracket before they did their budget, but we were still pleased to see that they were willing to participate in that process, and we were pleased that our friends in the Senate, for the first time in 5 years, decided they would enter into the budget process.

We were very disappointed, quite frankly, when they said they would not move to the conference table with us until we agreed to a tax increase. That is what they want--an agreement to a tax increase in this kind of economy and with about 8 percent unemployment and with 20 million Americans either un- or underemployed? They want more taxes--more control over people's lives? We were not willing to do that.

We are continuing to stand and fight for the American people--for responsible government, for getting this budget balanced within the next decade, and for getting this country back on the road to fiscal health.

I will also remind my colleagues that one of the things we continue to hear from this White House and this administration is that they want a government shutdown. Now, they try to blame us--we realize that--but I've got to tell you that I've got a titanium backbone. Let them blame. Let them talk. It's fine. They want a government shutdown. For my colleagues, I would direct their attention to the Congressional Research Service for the summary of what happens in a government shutdown.

For the interest of my colleagues, Mr. Speaker, I will just walk through some of these points.

One of the reasons they want it is that the President wants control of the checkbook. Right now, the U.S. House of Representatives has that control, and we want to keep it. We don't want a government shutdown. We want to keep the government open and keep cutting it. We want to keep the government open so we can delay, defund, repeal, and replace ObamaCare. This budget process of going into a shutdown gives control to the administrative branch.

There is another little tidbit when you read this circular, and it directs you to the 2011 revision of Circular No. A-11. OMB's current instructions would have agency heads use the Department of Justice opinions. I can tell you the American people and a Republican-led House do not want Eric Holder and Barack Obama making the determination of who and what will be open in this Federal Government, what will be funded and what agencies are going to be working. We don't want to give them that responsibility. I know they want that. I know they're trying to get a government shutdown, but I have to tell you that that is not what we want.

What we are for, as I said, is of making certain that we protect the future and the financial solvency of this great Nation. One of the reasons we have worked so diligently on a budget for this body is that we know the cost and the impact that ObamaCare is going to have on the Nation's fiscal health, and we are very concerned about it. We see what is happening in our communities.

I just want to reference some of the correspondence and conversations I am having with my constituents in Tennessee.

Yesterday, I spoke with a gentleman who went to a check cashing store, borrowed $400, started a retail business, now has 45 employees in five locations--a great business. What he is looking at is he can't expand. He can't hire anybody else. He is having to deal with all of the hoops that really weigh this business down, and it is because of ObamaCare.

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