U.S. Senator Deb Fischer (R-Neb.) announced Tuesday that she is cosponsoring legislation to constitutionally require the federal government to rein in spending and pass a balanced budget. The Balanced Budget Amendment (BBA), S.J. Res. 10, would legally require the president to transmit to Congress a balanced budget that limits future spending to 18 percent of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) – the historic average for government spending; Congress would then be required to pass a balanced budget with similar spending restrictions.
“Nebraskans know – and have told me consistently – that the only way to avoid a European-style fiscal crisis is to cut out-of-control government spending,” said Fischer. “It’s what I was sent to Washington to do.”
“A Balanced Budget Amendment is the only way that Congress and the president will finally set critical national priorities and fund them appropriately. Families across Nebraska have been sitting around kitchen tables and making hard decisions; it’s time for Washington to do the same. A Balanced Budget Amendment will force the federal government to reduce the deficit, enact responsible spending policies, protect the money of hardworking taxpayers, and generate real economic growth,” said Fischer.
Since the 1930s, balanced budget amendments have been introduced in Congress and in 1997, the BBA failed by just one vote in the United States Senate. According to a CNN poll, three-quarters of Americans favor a Balanced Budget Amendment. The National Conference of State Legislatures has found that 49 states – including Nebraska – are required to balance their spending with their receipts.