Two Republican U.S. Senators – Rick Scott of Florida and Cynthia Lummis of Wyoming – wrote jointly on FoxNews.com Friday (May 21) that the U.S. national debt has reached a staggering $30 trillion, so they are in the Senate co-sponsored a bill to reduce the national debt, hoping that conservative red states will take the lead in helping to reduce it.
A translation of Senators Scott and Loomis’ article follows.
With our nation’s debt approaching a staggering $30 trillion, one would think that President Biden would take a serious look at our spending and find ways to reduce it. Instead, in the more than 100 days of Biden’s presidency, he has proposed more than $6 trillion in new spending proposals.
Even more troubling is Biden’s refusal to answer the basic question we and many Americans have been asking, “Joe, how are you going to pay for all of this?”
We know that Biden can’t solve his huge spending problem with tax increases, but that won’t stop him from trying. His proposed tax increase would be more damaging to our economy than paying off a huge debt. Clearly, something has to change.
It is the responsibility of all of us to reduce the national debt.
State and local leaders with fiscally conservative policies nationwide face difficult choices every time they accept federal funding in the form of grants. Do they want to accept grants that their states don’t necessarily need or want? Examples include ObamaCare’s Medicaid expansion program, or additional unemployment benefits that allow people to stay home and get more money than they would if they went to work.
Or do they have to turn down the money? But the result would be that the money would go to liberal governors, who would gladly accept American taxpayer money to pay for their states’ excessive spending.
Usually, if conservative red states act responsibly, such as Wyoming’s recent refusal to accept additional unemployment benefits, then blue states, such as Massachusetts, New York or California, will receive the money.
That shouldn’t be the case.
As a former governor and former state treasurer general, we know what it takes to balance a budget. You can be responsible with taxpayer dollars, pay down the debt and keep more money in the pockets of hard-working Americans.
We should know this. We do in our states.
As part of our commitment to Florida and Wyoming, and to the American taxpayer as a whole, we have just introduced a bill that we hope will make a difference.
Our bill, the Pay Down the Debt Act, would prevent the transfer to another state of any federal grant funds that have been rejected by a fiscally responsible state. Instead, our bill would require that these funds be used to reduce our national debt.
Every American should be concerned about the national debt and the impact of unchecked spending in Washington on their families, such as the rising prices of everyday goods. A Gallup poll in March found that 78 percent of respondents were worried about the national debt and the federal deficit, and 87 percent of Americans were concerned about rising prices for everyday items such as diapers, gasoline and groceries.
We don’t disagree with every federal grant. But we know what happens when your tax dollars come back to the states through Washington. Bureaucracies attach restrictions and requirements that aren’t always the best way to spend taxpayer dollars. We want to make sure that every taxpayer dollar gets the best return on investment for the American people.
At the end of the day, even if President Biden doesn’t take our national debt seriously, we know that American families and your state legislators and governors often do.
It’s time for Congress to let conservative states do what Washington politicians won’t do: say no to federal grants and use it to pay off the debt we owe.
If our bill passes, state leaders will know they have the right to reject federal waste and will act aggressively to ease the burden of the national debt on American taxpayers.
Fiscally conservative citizens and elected officials must do everything in their power to reverse the direction of our deficit and debt spending. The future of our children and grandchildren will depend on our actions now.
This bill is a real step towards getting spending under control and reducing the debt. For every dollar saved today because of this bill, we can pay back a dollar less tomorrow.