As the Senate debates a balanced budget amendment this week, it’s important to note that not all balanced budget amendment proposals are created equal. The version that I have joined all 47 of my Senate Republican colleagues in supporting includes three elements I believe are key to truly handcuffing out-of-control politicians: a two-thirds supermajority to raise taxes, a three-fifths supermajority to increase the debt limit and a cap on all federal spending at 18 percent of gross domestic product. The proposal put forth by Senator Mark Udall (D-CO) contains no cap on spending, no taxpayer protections and no strict mechanisms to ensure that the amendment is actually followed. Unfortunately, if ratified, this proposal would simply be another ineffective, disingenuous Washington move that would make it easier to raise taxes and still allow for more spending.
The idea of not spending more money than we have is common sense for working families and small businesses. We need to bring that common sense to Washington, and we need a strong balanced budget amendment that is truly worthy of being added to our Constitution. This week, the Senate must seize the moment by passing a real balanced budget amendment.
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