Thompson: Washington Must End Its Spending Addiction – “Cold Turkey”

November 18, 2011

Today, I voted to support H. J. Res. 2, a balanced budget amendment to the Constitution of the United States.  During general debate, I delivered the following remarks in support of the resolution.  

Remarks as prepared:

November 18, 2011

It’s no secret, Mr. Speaker - Washington has a spending addiction.

Congress has demonstrated that regardless of which party is in charge, the out-of-control spending just does not stop.  

Each Congress, spending and budget “reforms” are enacted only to be revised or ignored by the next.  

Unfortunate as it is, this body has reliably circumvented any real budget process, even its own rules, in order to fulfill its spending addiction.  

Routine abuses and budget gimmicks such as “emergency” designations are designed to skirt budget enforcement rules and disguise the real level of spending.  

Similar to rampant drug abuse in the 1980’s that led to addiction and violence at epidemic levels, our spending habits have led to a debt crisis that borders on overdose.

Our country needs urgent help, Mr. Speaker.  It’s time for intervention.  

And that why we’re here today, to consider H.J. RES 2, a Balanced Budget Amendment to the Constitution.  

Most importantly, the balanced budget amendment will discourage Congress from circumventing its fiscal responsibilities because a constitutional amendment cannot be revised or ignored.

This measure is the only way to force the hand of Congress toward fiscal responsibility by ensuring that policymakers “Just Say No” to reckless spending.

Many economists and experts agree adoption of such an amendment would begin to address this nation’s looming debt crisis and lay a stronger path to long-term economic growth.  

The American people overwhelmingly back the Balanced Budget Amendment.  That’s exactly why H. J. RES. 2 already has the strong support of a majority my fellow representatives, including 242 bipartisan cosponsors.

Our constituents understand what it means to live within their means and they expect nothing less from the federal government.

No more denial, Mr. Speaker – It’s time for this body to come clean.   It’s time for each member to decide whether or not this country will continue down a reckless path of debt and despair, or quit living beyond our means – cold turkey.

It’s time to rid this chamber of its reckless spending addiction.  It’s time for Congress to “Just Say No” by voting “Yes” on H.J. RES. 2.  

Thank you, Mr. Speaker I yield back.