Ron Paul: “While I applaud the spirit of the Cut, Cap, and Balance Act (CCB) and appreciate how it has shaped the debate to include a permanent solution to our deficit crisis, I could not support the legislation as it was presented today.
Though I broke with many of my friends in Congress by voting against the House CCB plan, I was the first Presidential Candidate to sign the Cut, Cap, and Balance Pledge, as I believed in its call for ‘substantial’ spending cuts, hard caps, and a Balanced Budget Amendment.
These difficult times require that presidential candidates be willing to lead on this issue by standing against runaway spending and promoting real changes to ensure future prosperity.
If elected President, I will veto any spending bill that contributes to an unbalanced budget, and I will balance the budget in the first year of my term. I will also fight for and sign an iron clad Balanced Budget Amendment to the United States Constitution.
I have never voted to raise the federal debt limit, and I have no doubt that we face financial collapse and ruin if we continue to grow our debt. We need to make major spending cuts now, in this budget, and we can no longer afford to allow more deficit spending based on promises of future cuts.
The CCB act would add $2.4 trillion of new debt to our gargantuan $14.4 trillion debt. CCB would also only cut $111 billion from this year’s budget, allowing a deficit of nearly $1.5 trillion. This is far from the Pledge’s call for ‘substantial’ cuts. And, CCB locks us into current levels of overseas welfare, which will continue to endanger America’s security by forcing us to subsidize other wealthy nations.
For decades, politicians have promised future restraint in exchange for hikes in the debt limit. Each time, it’s said that if we act immediately to avoid a crisis, we will give the matter proper debate at the next vote. But, time and again, politicians reveal themselves to be untrustworthy. Promises of cuts remain unfulfilled, and we soon find ourselves once more in a crisis that we are told can only be addressed by upholding the status quo yet again.
Many of my friends have made the case that, despite this bill’s shortcomings, CCB should be supported in order to pass a Balanced Budget Amendment. CCB, unfortunately, does not guarantee a Balanced Budget Amendment will ever pass. It would still have to be ratified by the States, a process that could take years and perhaps even fail.
If we want a Balanced Budget Amendment to be the silver bullet against Big Government that many hope it will be, it must be iron clad. The CCB Balanced Budget Amendment removed the two-thirds threshold requirement to exceed spending caps, which would be too easy for politicians to violate.
Though I voted against today’s House version of Cut, Cap, and Balance, I continue to support the Pledge’s goals, and I remain committed to working on behalf of the American people to drastically reduce spending and implement fundamental changes that will reform government and restore our nation’s prosperity.”