Open Letter to the Senate: Oppose Efforts to Retreat on Spending Restraint


On behalf of the undersigned organizations, representing millions of Americans, we strongly urge all Senators to oppose Senator Cotton’s amendments #456, #826, and #1007 to H.R. 2810, the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2018.

This short-sighted amendment would eliminate the 2011 Budget Control Act’s (BCA) sequester mechanism for discretionary spending, rendering the spending caps unenforceable and reneging on Congress’ promise to deliver $1 trillion in deficit reduction by 2021.

Though an imperfect legislative solution to our growing fiscal woes, the BCA has nonetheless been an essential check on the congressional impulse to overspend. The BCA has generated significant savings for taxpayers, established a lower budget baseline, and forced much-needed waste reduction and prioritization of programmatic needs across federal agencies.

The annual Defense authorization act is an improper vehicle to unwind the BCA. Any discussion of repealing or changing the caps ought to be done in the context of other significant reforms that would generate real savings for taxpayers – both now AND in the future.

As the BCA has successfully demonstrated, even modest spending reductions now will positively affect our fiscal outlook for years to come, particularly on the mandatory spending side of the ledger. Repealing the BCA in the absence of a comprehensive plan to restrain our out-of-control spending, coincidentally within days of our national debt reaching new record-highs, would represent yet another failure of Congress to exercise the fiscal restraint that our economy urgently requires.


Brandon Arnold, Executive Vice President, National Taxpayers Union

Wm. Brent Gardner, Chief Government Affairs Officer, Americans for Prosperity

Norm Singleton, President, Campaign for Liberty

Andrew F. Quinlan, President, Center for Freedom & Prosperity

Jonathan Bydlak, President, Coalition to Reduce Spending

Dan Caldwell, Director of Policy, Concerned Veterans for America

Tom Schatz, President, Council for Citizens Against Government Waste

Richard A. Viguerie, Chairman, ConservativeHQ

Edward King, President, Defense Priorities Initiative

Nathan Nascimento, Vice President of Policy, Freedom Partners Chamber of Commerce

Adam Brandon, President, FreedomWorks

David Barnes, Policy Director, Generation Opportunity

Heather R. Higgins, President and CEO, Independent Women's Voice

Jorge Lima, Executive Director, The Libre Initiative

Steve Ellis, Vice President, Taxpayers for Common Sense

David Williams, President, Taxpayers Protection Alliance