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Nation’s Oldest Taxpayer Group Says Americans Deserve Better Budget Policy than New Short-Term Continuing Resolution
March 14, 2011
By Douglas Kellogg
(Alexandria, VA) – With the introduction of a new three-week Continuing Resolution (CR), the House of Representatives has for a third time taken action to prevent a government shutdown and reduce spending. But taxpayers deserve better than a series of stopgap measures that fail to defund the disastrous health care law, ruinous greenhouse gas regulations, and wasteful earmarks. That’s the assessment of the 362,000-member National Taxpayers Union (NTU), which today expressed frustration with the inaction of Senate Democratic leaders and President Obama toward passing a long-term plan to pare back unsustainable spending.
NTU Vice President of Government Affairs Andrew Moylan said, “While NTU conditionally supported the two-week CR expiring this Friday as a good-faith measure to allow the Senate to complete its negotiations, that good faith has been squandered by Democratic leadership in the Senate and the White House, who appear to have a strategy of dragging their feet and blaming any lack of progress on House Republicans for political gain. Since the House has already passed short- and long-term CRs, the time has come for conservatives to demand that the Senate immediately complete a blueprint of its own that substantially reduces spending for the rest of the fiscal year.”
During House debate earlier this month over a CR (H.R.1) designed to address government funding until the end of Fiscal Year 2011, NTU supported numerous key “riders” to the legislation that would further trim expenditures and protect taxpayers. These included proposals to defund last year’s health care legislation, to strip as much as $3 billion in funding for an alternate engine on the F-35 fighter, to prevent the EPA from imposing back-door “cap-and-trade” greenhouse gas regulations, and to remove costly “Davis-Bacon” wage requirements on CR-funded projects. Given the exceedingly modest level of overall spending reductions in that bill (about 1.5 percent of total outlays this year), NTU considers these amendments to be absolutely vital elements in any final legislative package.
NTU continues to advocate for sensible reductions that both sides of the aisle could agree upon; for example, testimony that Moylan delivered to the House Oversight Committee last month highlighted a joint report between NTU and the liberal group U.S. PIRG that identified $600 billion in such cuts. “Enough is enough,” Moylan concluded. “While its plan will take but a small step in the right direction, the House has completed its duty to fund the government for the rest of the year. The Senate should take this week to finish the task taxpayers have been demanding: pass a long-term CR that puts a sizeable dent in out-of-control deficit spending.”
The 362,000-member NTU is a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization working for lower taxes, smaller government, and economic freedom at all levels. More information is available at www.ntu.org.