Hensarling Comments At GOP Pledge Rollout News Conference
Congressman Jeb Hensarling is the second ranking Republican on the House Budget Committee, the top Republican on the House Financial Services Subcommittee on Financial Institutions and Consumer Credit, and a member of the National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform.
The second plan [in] the Republicans’ pledge to America is a plan to stop, stop out of control spending and actually reduce the size of our government.
We want to put, today, our government on a path to a balanced budget and actually begin to pay off the national debt. Today we can act immediately to reduce spending by cancelling unspent stimulus funds. The American people know that after three million of their countrymen have lost their jobs, the only thing the stimulus has stimulated is the national debt.
We can cut government spending to pre-stimulus, pre-bailout levels saving immediately 100 billion dollars. You can not spend, bail-out, and tax your way into economic prosperity.
We will establish a hard cap on new discretionary spending; now think about it, we would go from the first House without a budget to a House with a binding budget under our pledge. And we would actually cut Congress’ budget at a time when families are having to cut back, small businesses are having to cut back, why not Congress?
If you’re going to lead, you need to lead by example. In every single week, we go to the House floor under the Democratic rule and have a vote to increase spending. Under this pledge, weekly we will have a vote to cut spending. To reduce the size of government, Republicans pledge to end TARP once and for all. No more 700 billion bailout, revolving bailout funds for the administration. End government control of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, which will prove to be the mother of all bailouts to the American taxpayer and the root cause of the economic crisis – totally ignored by the President and the Congress.
We propose to impose a federal net hiring freeze on all non-security employees. Federal payrolls should not increase and cause small business payrolls to decrease. We will root out government waste and sunset actually sunset outdated and duplicated programs. The closest thing to eternal life on earth should not be a federal program.
We will reform the budget process, one that actually focuses on the long-term, one that focuses on the next generation not the next election. The practice of borrowing almost forty cents on the dollar, much of it from the Chinese, sending the bill to our children and grandchildren is not just unsustainable, it is unconscionable – with this pledge Republicans will save the American dream as it drowns in a sea of red-ink. We will make it bigger and brighter for the next generation, we will not allow the torch of liberty to be mortgaged; it will be handed off to the next generation.
Hensarling spokesman George Rasley noted that, “Participating in this event was a real honor for Jeb. I think he was invited in recognition of his leadership in developing many of the bills that are incorporated in the GOP Pledge to America; ending TARP, caps on discretionary spending, ending the taxpayer bailout of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and reforming the budget process to focus on the long term are all in bills he has sponsored or worked to develop.”