In Reaction to Today's Announcement of an Agreement from the Budget Conference Committee

“Despite a great deal of patient negotiations, the agreement reached by Representative Paul Ryan and Senator Patty Murray leaves a lot of unanswered questions for taxpayers – and several answered ones that are discouraging. It busts the reasonable spending caps enacted just two years ago – proving that once again, Congress cannot abide by even basic fiscal restraints. To make matters worse, the deal relies on additional revenue streams to underwrite this profligate exercise. Whether these are called ‘fees’ or ‘taxes’ makes little difference to those who will be forced to pay them. The fact is, the deal takes more money out of the wallets of the American people and sends it to Washington to fund Congress’s insatiable desire to spend more.

"Despite some attempts at slowing the growth of mandatory spending, the committee passed up a chance for a fundamental change of direction from the path to fiscal ruin. Instead, it chose to take a few temporary detours.

"Barely two years after Congress agreed in bipartisan fashion to build a foundation of fiscal responsibility, budget policymakers propose to start chipping away at it. They’ll say this is an exaggeration; that the American people won’t care about the difference between $967 billion in discretionary spending and the new level of just over $1 trillion set by the deal. But taxpayers know the difference is much more than $33 billion – it’s the difference between keeping a promise and breaking it, between maintaining modest credibility on spending restraint and having even less.

"Lawmakers should look carefully at the details of this plan before they leap to vote on it."