‘Republicans have tried to work with Democrats by offering amendments that reflect the views of most Americans’
WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell made the following remarks on the Senate floor Wednesday regarding the budget:
“Throughout this debate, Republicans have shown that this budget spends too much, taxes too much, and borrows too much. At a time when many are struggling just to get by, Democrats in Congress want to enact the largest tax increase in history, including a new national energy tax that could cost every American household up to $3,100 dollars per year. They want to double the national debt in five years and nearly triple it in 10. And they want to increase non-defense spending so much that the government would have to hire up to 250,000 bureaucrats just to get the money out the door.
“This isn’t the type of job creation Americans have been hoping for. And this wasn’t the budget Americans wanted. Rather, they are demanding that Republicans and Democrats work together to craft a budget that lets them keep their hard-earned wages, spends their tax dollars wisely, and doesn’t saddle their children and grandchildren with mountains of debt. Republicans have tried to work with Democrats to pass such a budget by offering amendments that reflect the views of most Americans. And soon, we’ll sponsor a series of amendments to prevent tax increases on individuals, families, and businesses.
“The Junior Senator from Texas, for example, has an amendment that would make it significantly harder to raise taxes on small businesses. The President has noted repeatedly that small businesses are at the heart of the American economy, are responsible for half of all private sector jobs, and have created roughly 70 percent of all new jobs in the past decade.
“Republicans will also propose an amendment by the Junior Senator from Nevada, which would make it significantly harder to raise taxes on couples making less than $250,000.
“Americans are worried about tax hikes. They’re also worried about the colossal amount of debt this budget would leave to our children. This budget proposes to borrow an equivalent amount of money in the next five years to all of the money the government has borrowed from 1789 to January 20, 2009. So the Senior Senator from New Hampshire sponsored an amendment to require a super-majority to adopt any budget resolution that would more than double the entire public debt accumulated from 1789 to January 20, 2009. Democrats rejected it.
“In other efforts to control debt and curb Federal spending, Republicans will introduce a number of additional amendments, including:
• Another amendment from the Senior Senator from New Hampshire that would take the first step toward the creation of a bipartisan task force to confront the nation’s long-term deficits.
• An amendment from the Senior Senator from South Carolina that would help to ensure Social Security remains a self-sustaining, solvent program.
• An amendment from the Senior Senator from Idaho that would take the Democrat spending levels and try to ensure that spending does not exceed those levels.
• And Republicans will sponsor further amendments that would correct many of the other problems with this budget.
“Additionally, Republicans have resisted efforts to fast-track major policy changes through Reconciliation. The Junior Senator from Nebraska has offered an amendment that would prohibit the use of this rule in connection with a national energy tax. Some Democrats have said they do not support using Reconciliation for this legislation. We will insist on having a vote on the Johanns amendment.
“These Republican proposals should have the support of Senators from both sides of the aisle. We should all want to cut the massive taxing, borrowing, and spending in this budget. The budget debate is always one of the most clarifying weeks of the year. Rarely do the American people get to see the differences between the two parties as clearly as they do during this debate. Rarely has the difference been so stark.”