Fiscal Year 2015: Finishing Strong
September 17, 2015
The Congressional Budget Office estimates that the federal government will spend $7 trillion more than it will receive in taxes over the next 10 years. By 2025, it will spend more on national debt interest payments than it will for national defense. High debt levels will continue to plague the economy, putting a damper on growth and crowding out other necessary federal expenditures.
In the long term, Congress needs to drive down federal spending to a balanced budget while maintaining a strong national defense and without raising taxes. While Congress cannot solve everything at once, it should seize the opportunities it will have during the remainder of 2015 to cap and cut spending, move to budget balance, and take steps toward tax reform that will allow free markets to grow the economy.
- Begin the tough work of balancing the budget.
- Enact and enforce spending caps.
- Adopt a full-year Continuing Resolution (CR) for non-defense expenditures.
- Reform highway funding.
- Reform and simplify the tax code.
The basic principles guiding these actions, should Congress chose to take them, are based on the basic principles of fiscal stewardship that guides every responsible individual's private financial decisions:
- Set a budget and stick to it.
- Live within your means.
- Reward hard work, don't punish it.
Congress has set the federal government budget on a dangerous trajectory and must take corrective action now. Taxpayers pay enormous amounts of money to the government, and the government borrows additional huge amounts of money. The government uses the taxes that it collects and the money that it borrows to pay for excessive spending, including spending for ever-expanding entitlement programs. As America's national debt skyrockets, so does the interest the government must pay on that borrowed amount. Americans can no longer afford and should no longer tolerate the government\'s excessive spending and astronomical debt.
Source: Paul Winfree et al., "Blueprint for Congressional Fiscal Action in the Remainder of 2015," Heritage Foundation, September 2, 2015.
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