Press Release: Currently, the national debt sits at a staggering $18 trillion. Within the next decade, the interest on this debt alone will cost American tax payers over $800 billion a year. Admiral Mike Mullen, former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, recently stated that our skyrocketing debt represents one of the greatest threats to our national security. To fight the growing national debt, U.S. Representative John Ratcliffe (R-Texas) has introduced a bill, H.J. Res 41, A Balanced Budget Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. If enacted, this legislation would amend the U.S. Constitution to require that Congress balance the federal budget each year.
“I was elected to do more than just talk about problems – I was sent to Washington to help solve them,” said Ratcliffe. “It’s time to tackle our out-of-control spending head on, and that’s why I’m grateful to announce that I have introduced my own Balanced Budget Amendment to the Constitution to ensure that the federal government lives within its means.”
The main provisions of Ratcliffe’s bill require that:
- Total spending in any fiscal year not exceed total receipts.
- Caps federal spending at 18% of GDP.
- Requires the president to submit a balanced budget to Congress each year.
- Requires each house of Congress to approve a balanced budget. Pay for members of congress is suspended if this objective is not met.
- Provides mechanisms to enforce this amendment through the judicial system.
“Too often, politicians on both sides of the aisle refuse to make tough decisions, and continue to kick the can down the road,” Ratcliffe added. “If we don’t act now, it’s our children and grandchildren that will be forced to pay the price. The time is now to act to ensure that future generations are given a fair shot at the American dream.”
To find out more about H.J. Res 41, you can visit U.S. Rep. Ratcliffe’s website at ratcliffe.house.gov. U.S. Rep. Ratcliffe represents 18 counties in North and East Texas. He is a member of the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Homeland Security, chairman of the Cybersecurity Subcommittee and member of the House Judiciary Committee.