It worked in the ’90s, it can work again. So says Sen. Claire McCaskill. She’s the lead sponsor of one proposal and co-sponsor of two that address deficit spending.
She says provisions that froze spending expired in 2002, and that’s when Congress went on a spending spree, creating new programs, taking earmarking to an artform and putting it all on the credit card.
McCaskill’s amendment would cap discretionary spending until 2014. She’s also backing legislation that would require Congress to find a means to pay for any new spending programs, and create a Fiscal Task Force. The measure to create the task force, which would make legislative recommendations on long-term fiscal policies, was narrowly defeated earlier this week. McCaskill says it was only about a half a dozen votes shy of passage and that she hopes the bill can be discussed again in a more bi-partisan manner.
Congress is expected to take up the Pay-as-you-go measure this week.
McCaskill says both discretionary spending caps and Pay-As-You-Go policies were in place in the ’90s and helped create the budget surpluses … but says they were allowed to expire by President Bush and Republican leadership in Congress.
President Obama echoed that sentiment in his State of the Union address Wednesday, and says he fully supports the legislation and hopes for its passage.