Blaine's Bulletin- The Path to Prosperity

I am always impressed when I’m back home every weekend in the 9th District by how engaged people are when it comes to the state of the federal budget.

I am always impressed when I’m back home every weekend in the 9th District by how engaged people are when it comes to the state of the federal budget. It comes as no surprise to me, though, because I understand that you want to know exactly how your hard-earned dollars are being used by the government. As you can imagine, the process of writing a budget is complex, and the recent passage of the House Republican Path to Prosperity led many of you to ask me specifically what’s in this bold budget plan.

Simply put, the House Republican budget would set federal budget policies for Fiscal Year 2013 and project spending, revenues and deficits over a 10-year budget window between Fiscal Years 2013 and 2022.  The budget sets the total limits of spending, revenue and debt for specific years and outlines programmatic assumptions to achieve those levels. The budget does not provide funding and does not impose binding policies for agencies or programs, which is done through the appropriations process.

The resolution would provide $1.028 trillion in discretionary budget authority in Fiscal Year 2013, the same amount as called for in our last House-approved budget plan.  The budget also includes instructions for six committees, including the one I serve on, Financial Services, to come up with additional spending cuts to replace the first year of the automatic cuts to national defense that will be triggered under last year’s Budget Control Act.  In addition, this budget repeals the president’s health-care law and puts Medicare on a sustainable path for future generations to come, without making changes to the program for seniors at or near retirement age.  As a percentage of Gross Domestic Product, spending would decrease from 23.4 percent (according to the Congressional Budget Office) in Fiscal Year 2012 to 22.2 percent in Fiscal Year 2013 under this budget resolution. Most importantly, over ten years, the budget would reduce spending by $5.3 trillion compared to the president’s budget.

As we approach the deadline for taxes this month, I also thought you should know that our budget reforms the broken tax code to make it simpler, fairer, and more competitive. The House budget plan tax reform creates two tax brackets of 10 percent and 25 percent for individuals instead of the current six tax brackets, and sets the corporate tax rate at 25 percent. As of April 1st the United States is now home to the highest corporate tax rate in the industrialized world. I believe that Congress must address the long-term economic issues facing our nation, which is why I favor fundamental tax reform and believe the House budget plan goes a long way to make our nation’s tax code flatter and simpler.

This budget would put the federal budget on path to balance; prevent deep and indiscriminate cuts to defense; and protect and strengthen Medicare for current retirees and future generations. Since the president and liberals in the Senate have refused to take responsibility for avoiding the debt-fueled crisis our nation faces, we are advancing a plan of action that will help lift our crushing burden of debt and spur job creation and economic opportunity while strengthening health and retirement security.

Many of you also understand the relationship between our budget and health care. While I’m hopeful the Supreme Court will rule that Obamacare is unconstitutional, we are moving forward with repealing this misguided law in our budget right now. 

This budget passed by the House of Representatives makes the tough choices that Americans are demanding and this administration is ignoring. It is my earnest hope that the Senate puts aside partisan politics and, for the first time in more than three years, passes the responsible and much-needed budget plan that hard-working American families have been demanding.