Mar 03 2011 -
Senator Ron Johnson (R-WI) commented today on his commitment to withhold ‘unanimous consent’ for Senate consideration of bills that fail to meet certain criteria. Johnson said:
“This year, we will spend 1.65 trillion dollars that we don’t have. That is a huge amount of money and a huge problem. It is a problem we must start to address. The letter I have signed - initiated by Senator Coburn - is just a very common sense approach to beginning the process of reining in the out of control spending and debt. We need to hold the federal government accountable. Families are not able to spend beyond their means; Washington certainly shouldn’t be able to do so either.
“In my short time here I have already come to the conclusion that the federal government’s budget process is primarily a process of addition. We need to bring subtraction into that equation. That is what Senator Coburn’s letter helps us do – by:
- forcing any new spending to be offset by spending cuts;
- requiring that programs be periodically reviewed and renewed;
- ensuring that the cost of bills is available prior to passage;
- making sure duplicative programs are identified and eliminated; and,
- providing that Congress no longer write laws that infringe upon the rights of the American people.
“I am happy to sign on to this initiative.”
Johnson joins seven other Senators who are declaring their intention to ensure that the Senate consider only bills that are both fiscally responsible and constitutional. The initiative was organized by Senator Tom Coburn (R-OK), and is explained in a ‘Dear Colleague’ letter circulated by Coburn to the members of the Senate. The letter is available here.