How to Cut Federal Spending w/ Debt Ceiling, Budgets, Continuing Resolutions, Amendments
America spends roughly $30,000 per person per year, which is more than what virtually any other country on Earth spends.
This money is not only pulled out of production, but then it’s largely used to suppress it further via regulation and indoctrination.
We should obviously cut federal spending, but the question is… how can we be more successful in doing so?
If they were higher than we’d be a more fiscally conservative country again.
But as a matter of political strategy, Republicans shouldn’t support any bill that increases spending.
When we have the presidency, senate, and house we should cut spending, but if it’s a divided government then we should at worst compromise by holding-the-line on spending (ideally in real terms).
Any Republican that votes to increase spending (as a percentage of GDP) should be primaried and definitely not reelected to the Senate GOP leadership for the 20th consecutive year.
But if Republicans and Democrats can’t agree on a budget then won’t we get a government shutdown?
Because they can pass a Continuing Resolution. A CR can last a day or it can last the whole year. The beauty of a CR is it maintains the same levels of spending as the previous year. Fantastic!
Other countries don’t have government shutdowns precisely because their CR’s are automatic.
“In nearly every other country f the government were to fail to pass a budget by the deadline agencies would just continue working with last year’s budget.” — Vox
If Democrats, therefore, want Republicans to agree to a new budget then not only should it not increase spending, but it should be substantively better than its predecessor.
And if a bill comes forth that doesn’t include at least 72 hours for debate then as a matter of principle, Republican Senators should hold a vote-a-roma until the appointed hour (the longest was 16 hours in 2013).
Next, comes the debt ceiling.
Republicans shouldn’t vote to increase the debt ceiling unless it includes spending cuts.
As Steve Moore said…
“The experience of the last 40 years shows definitively that the only time fiscal conservatives have secured major spending reform concessions from Democrats was as a condition for raising the debt ceiling. These are “come-to-Jesus moments” for fiscal discipline.”
As was the case in 1990, 1996, and 2011, Republicans agreed to increase the debt ceiling in exchange for spending cuts, which unfortunately due to large exemptions in the 2011 negotiation was only successful in holding the line on spending (as a percentage of GDP).
“You know when we were in the majority for those 8 years (2010–2018) you know how much discretionary spending went up? Not $1.” — Speaker McCarthy
And to dispel Democratic propaganda, not raising the ceiling doesn’t mean we’ll default on our debt or that people won’t get Social Security. It simply means the government can’t spend more than the $5 trillion it takes in so obviously those things that are most essential and popular (i.e. the things Democrats are most likely to fearmonger on) will get funded first.
Finally, in addition to voting against raising spending and utilizing the debt ceiling… what are some structural changes we can make to the budgeting process that would make future spending increases more difficult to pass?
First, I recommend the Read the Bills Act. This is where every legislator would have to sign an affidavit swearing to have read the bill they’re about to vote on.
Second, I recommend budget sequestration without the large exemptions of the Budget Control Act of 2011, i.e. no “war funding” exception.
Third, the chief executive should have the power to fire virtually anyone in the executive branch again and federal employees should be paid hourly. This would make costs more transparent and lower, which if there’s another government shutdown it’d save us money because we wouldn’t have to pay for federal employees who aren’t on the clock.
Fourth, we should make Continuing Resolutions automatic. As the leftwing Center on Budget and Policy Priorities stated, “By freezing funding at last year’s levels, an automatic CR would strengthen the hand of those who want to shrink the size of government.” Beautiful!
Finally, we should implement a Balanced Budget Amendment because the above changes can be overridden by a majority vote whereas if we had a BBA they’d need 3/5ths.
In the end, if the GOP adopted this political philosophy and endorsed these structural reforms then over time our federal government would spend much less, and therefore the states, localities, and the American people could spend much more.
After all, Lady Liberty needs a new pair of shoes.