House Republican Conference Chairman Jeb Hensarling (R-Texas) made the following remarks today on the floor of the House of Representatives prior to the passage of the revised Budget Control Act of 2011. The legislation will avert a credit default without raising job-killing taxes, cut and cap federal spending, and guarantee a vote on the balanced budget amendment to the Constitution.
“Mr. Speaker, the American people want more jobs and they want less debt. The American people are telling Washington, ‘You’ve got to quit spending money you don’t have. You’ve got to quit borrowing 42 cents on the dollar, much of it from the Chinese, and then sending the bill to our children and grandchildren.’
“Our crisis today is not the debt ceiling, it is our debt, and it is a spending-driven debt. That is why we are here today. Mr. Speaker, I would like to say that this bill solves our problem. It doesn’t. It’s a solid first step. Nobody, nobody on our side of the aisle, wants to increase this debt ceiling. It’s not in our DNA. But we do believe that ultimately, you ought to stay current on your bills, and you’ve got to quit spending money that you don’t have.
“And in this bill—although the sums are very, very small—when we pass this bill, if the president signs it into law, it will be the first time in my lifetime that for two years in a row we have actually cut discretionary spending in Washington D.C. and made a very slight directional change in the right direction. The numbers are small, the directional change is huge.
“But more importantly, Mr. Speaker, the seeds of the ultimate solution are planted in this bill and that is the balanced budget amendment to the Constitution. The American people aren’t looking for a balanced approach, they are looking for a balanced budget, and to have it work it needs to be enshrined in our Constitution. This bill will assure for the first time in fifteen years both the House and the Senate vote on a balanced budget. Those are the seeds of the solution to save this country for the next generation.”