Today Senator Jim DeMint (R-SC) announced he will block any effort to raise the ceiling on the debt limit unless the Senate passes a Balanced Budget Amendment. I applaud Senator DeMint for taking this bold and decisive stand. This is the kind of leadership our country needs at this critical time. Go Senator DeMint!
Most states are required to balance their budgets. The requirement to balance the budget makes heroes and statesmen out of our politicians. Just look at the heroic actions of Governors Scott Walker of Wisconsin, Chris Christie of New Jersey and John Kasich of Ohio. Those men are taking on the powerful special interests in their states and are winning in their efforts to rein-in spending and balance their budgets.
That the United States government is not required to balance its budget is why we have a $14 trillion national debt, a current budget deficit of $1.3 trillion and a projected budget deficit next year of $1.6 trillion. That is why we are adding $4 billion to our national debt every day. That is also why we have unfunded liabilities for Social Security and Medicare exceeding $100 trillion.
Although my preference is to vote against an increase in the debt limit and to make sufficient spending cuts now to prevent a default, I acknowledge this Congress will never agree to take such prudent action. The Democrats in Congress and some Republicans will not cut funding for their favored special interests unless they are compelled to do so by law. That is why the Balanced Budget Amendment is so important.
I also am concerned that the states may not ratify the Balanced Budget Amendment because many states will be looking to the federal government to bail them out. And, it may take many months or years for the states to ratify. That is why I would like to see immediate spending cuts and restraints now as well as passage of the Balanced Budget Amendment before we agree to raise the ceiling on the debt limit.
Nevertheless, right now, Senator DeMint’s proposal is the best opportunity we will have to pass a Balanced Budget Amendment. A Balanced Budget Amendment will force our career politicians to spend within our means and will help pull our country back from the edge of economic ruin. It will also bring about a smaller federal government. Less government means more freedom for all Americans. And, that is what America is all about. Go Senator DeMint!
Marc A. Scaringi is a candidate for the Republican nomination to the United States Senate in 2012