Before I was elected to serve in Congress, I employed three people at a small business in Pearl, Mississippi. In my office, we had a budget. I had to make daily decisions to live within that budget, including making a monthly payroll.
The federal government is broke. By the White House's own admission, the federal deficit could reach $1.47 trillion for Fiscal Year 2011, borrowing 41 cents of every dollar you send to Washington.
This unhealthy announcement comes after a failed $862 billion stimulus package that the Democrats claimed was designed to keep unemployment under eight percent, a trillion dollar health care overhaul that Nancy Pelosi said would create 400,000 immediate jobs, and an overreach of the financial system that assumes the federal government knows best how local financial firms should invest their assets.
Now -- with nearly 15 million people unemployed -- the Democratic leadership in Washington ignored their responsibility to produce a federal budget. The failure by the majority to sensibly construct a budget resolution threatens job creation, explodes spending and deficits, and intensifies America's debt crisis.
House Republicans understand the importance of balancing their checkbook. We also realize that the federal government's checkbook is your checkbook. This is why we have launched AmericaSpeakingOut.com. This unprecedented initiative asks you -- the taxpayer -- to give your input and help direct the policies being debated in Washington.
Just around the corner, the Democrats have plans to enact the largest tax increase in American history. That's right. On January 1, 2011, every single tax bracket is scheduled to increase. This means if you run a small business and pay 35 percent on your taxes, next year you will pay 39.6 percent. And if you file in the lowest tax bracket, next year you will be subject a 50 percent increase in your tax rate, not to mention the estate tax and the capital gains tax will return to their previous rates.
The President's spokesman recently said, "I don't think there's an economist that believes there's a stimulus to, or a good reason in terms of economic growth to, extend those tax cuts." Ironically, the chairwoman of the President's own Council of Economic Advisers has noted, "In short, tax increases appear to have a very large, sustained, and highly significant negative impact on output...the more intuitive way to express this result is that tax cuts have very large and persistent positive output effects."
It appears that at least one of the President's advisors share the same beliefs as me, Washington must give Americans immediate tax relief.
There is no denying that the economy is still fragile. But the verdict is in on government spending. America cannot borrow, spend and tax our way out of this economic downturn -- plain and simple.
My family has a budget, my small business operated on a budget, and today my congressional office operates below our budget -- voluntarily returning nearly 10 percent of my Members' Representational Allowance. I urge Congress to follow this example by providing taxpayers with a fiscally responsible budget that spends much less, cuts taxes and reduces our national debt.