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GUEST COLUMN: Fiscal sanity needs to start today

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By Brett Guthrie

Fiscal sanity needs to start today. Americans around the country have been forced to make tough decisions. It is time we do the same in Congress.

 After hearing President Obama’s speeches last week, I was hopeful that his words would be met with significant actions.

 However, only days after these remarks, the president released his budget based on more spending, more taxes and more borrowing.

 During his tenure, the president has signed appropriations bills and a ‘stimulus’ bill that have increased non-defense discretionary spending 84 percent. And although it is a good first step, the president’s proposed future spending freeze only accounts for 13 percent of the total budget.

 I support adopting strict budget caps that limit federal spending on an annual basis and are enforceable by the president.  These caps were included in the Republicans’ budget alternative last year and will hopefully be a solution the majority in Congress will consider. Without these caps, the federal budget deficit will continue to spin out of control.

The president’s proposed budget boosts the deficit to a record $1.6 trillion this year and doubles the national debt in 5 years. The interest alone on the federal debt is expected to be nearly 6 trillion dollars over the next decade.

We cannot spend our way out of this recession. Americans need jobs and Congress needs to work with job creators for our economy to grow and give stability to millions.

I am also concerned about the amount of tax increases being proposed and the affect it will have on job growth. Next year alone, taxes will increase by over $400 billion. If you are a business in this environment, looking at the possibility of your taxes increasing – capital gains taxes, health care taxes, and energy taxes – with all those unknowns, it would be virtually impossible to expand and hire new employees.

 The president’s proposed budget is just the beginning of this process and there is plenty of time for the majority in the House to act upon the concerns of the American people. I am ready to work with them to bring fiscal responsibility to Washington.