Congressman Jim Bridenstine Votes Against Billions in Inappropriate Spending
Washington, DC, September 29, 2016 -- Last night, I voted against the FY17 Continuing Resolution (CR), legislation which denies my constituents representation in determining how their taxpayer money is spent. CRs represent the worst of Washington: a broken process to fund the government, backroom deal making, and refusal for Congress to use the “power over the purse” to reign in the executive branch.
We see this every year: Harry Reid and Senate Democrats filibuster bills to fund the government in regular order. Reid and Obama then threaten to shut down the government unless Republican Leadership gives in to their demands. A short-term CR is passed followed by a trillion-dollar, 2,000-page Omnibus a few months later.
This particular CR does the following:
- Gives a raise to Planned Parenthood
- Spends over $1 billion to combat Zika without any offsetting spending cuts. Instead of new spending, the Obama Administration should use tens of billions available in unspent International Assistance funds.
- New spending for disaster relief in Louisiana, Maryland and West Virginia. Yet, my office confirmed that FEMA will have $1.7 billion in unspent Disaster Relief Fund money which could be used.
- Busts the budget caps for non-defense social welfare programs by $1.5 billion.
- Creates $6 billion in fake “savings” from a budget gimmick called Changes in Mandatory Programs (CHIMPS).
- Fully funds Obamacare despite insurers fleeing the exchanges and jacking up premiums, including an average of 76% in Oklahoma.
The American people have elected Republican majorities in the House and Senate. Yet, zero provisions in the CR achieve conservative policy goals including stopping Obama’s internet handover, the Syrian refugee program, and illegal executive amnesty.
Blogger's note: to their credit, Sen. Jim Inhofe, Sen. James Lankford, Rep. Markwayne Mullin and Rep. Steve Russell joined Bridenstine in voting against this particular CR. Rep. Tom Cole and Rep. Frank Lucas voted in favor.