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House Leadership Gives Grassroots Time to Push "Cut, Cap and Balance"

by Brandon Greife / /

Just give us some time. That has been NTU’s simple plea toHouse leadership as we, along with other members of the “Cut, Cap and Balance”coalition, attempt to spread the word about a Balanced Budget Amendment (BBA)to the Constitution. It now appears that House leadership is willing to give itto us.

With Washington on a collision course with the debt ceiling,there is no better, or more appropriate, time to enact lasting structuralreforms to prevent a debt crisis. Chief among those reforms is a BBA that willprotect taxpayers from the threat of Washington’s spending habits. Washingtonhas run deficits 50 out of the last 54 years – a trend that must come to an endif we want to stave off default.

The enormity of the problems made conservative activistswary of House leadership’s seeming intent to give only passing consideration toa Balanced Budget Amendment. As NTU’s Andrew Moylan wrote in a recent op-ed,

“After last week’s hasty markup of abalanced budget amendment proposal in the House Judiciary Committee, thechatter on Capitol Hill is that Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) and House MajorityLeader Eric Cantor (R-VA) are pushing for a quick vote before the grass rootshas a chance to speak up. This is a disappointing, deliberate effort toundermine the proposal.

Scheduling such a vote anytime in the nextfew weeks would be a sure sign that House leaders are ignoring the millions offiscal conservatives that helped elect the Republican majority.”

To their credit, it appears House leadership have heeded thewarning and are willing to give the grassroots time to activate before a BBAcomes to the floor. “House Republicans have made clear that we will not agreeto raise the debt limit without real spending cuts and biding budget processreforms to ensure that we don’t continue to max out the credit card,” MajorityLeader Eric Cantor said in a statement.“One option to ensure that we begin to get our fiscal house in order is abalanced budget amendment to the Constitution, and I expect to schedule such ameasure during the week of July 25th.”

Speaker of the House John Boehner has also joined the choruspushing for not just spending cuts, but lasting reforms such as a BBA. Today,Speaker Boehner said that any proposal to raise the debt limit must includespending cuts that “exceed the amount of the debt limit hike” and reforms that “restrictWashington’s ability to spend in the future.”

We have been given a month before a BBA vote, time whichwill allow the growing “Cut, Cap and Balance” coalition time to gain momentumas we work towards our three step approach of immediate and substantialspending cuts, an enforceable statutory spending cap, and a strong BalancedBudget Amendment. This comprehensive plan will not only stave off the threat ofa debt crisis in the short-term, but will permanently ensure that we neveragain face the crushing deficit burdens of the past few years.

The fight is far from over. It is now up to us, as membersof the grassroots, to make this next month worthwhile. So as we near a vote weencourage you to do two things:

1.      Call your Congressmen and Senators TODAY andencourage themto support all of the tenets of the Cut, Cap and Balance plan as a condition ofany increase in the debt limit. As Senator Jim DeMint (R-SC) says, “If theyfeel the heat, they will see the light.” You can reach any member of Congressby calling the Capitol switchboard at 202-224-3121.  To find your Congressmen, click here and enteryour zip code at the top right of the screen.

2.      Sign the Cut, Cap and Balance pledge andspread the word on Facebook and Twitter. You can sign it at http://www.CutCapBalancePledge.com

Republican leadership, including Speaker of the House John Boehnerand Leader Cantor have given us time to gather support for a BBA. Let’s proveto them we deserve it.