Friday, April 28, 2023

Oklahoma Congressmen comment on passage of bill to raise debt ceiling in exchange for spending cuts

On Wednesday, all five of Oklahoma's U.S. Representatives voted in favor of the 'Limit, Save, Grow Act', which increases the debt ceiling in exchange for spending cuts.

Read below for comments from Reps. Hern, Brecheen, Lucas, and Cole:

Hern celebrates passage of Limit, Save, Grow; reminds conservatives to stand their ground

WASHINGTON, DC (April 26th) – Republican Study Committee Chairman Kevin Hern (OK-01) released the following statement after the House of Representatives passed the Limit, Save, Grow Act.

“We could not have gotten to this victory today without the hard-working determination of my colleagues on the Republican Study Committee,” said Chairman Hern. “Our membership has taken the debt limit discussion seriously since the very first week of this Congress. Over the last several months, RSC Members offered hundreds of policy ideas, had numerous frank and open conversations about the challenges facing our nation, and remained unified behind the strong conviction to rein in our spending, lower inflation, and begin the process of paying down our debts.”

Chairman Hern continued, “However, we are not finished. This is just the first step – we still have to get this bill through the Senate and on to the President’s desk. I urge my colleagues to stand their ground, fight for the conservative principles in this legislation, and continue the work to get this bill to the finish line. We will not allow the Senate to water down this legislation, because we know that fiscal responsibility is not a partisan concept. Our work is not done until this bill is signed into law.”

After the passage of the Limit, Save, Grow Act, Chairman Hern sent this letter to Members of the Republican Study Committee, calling for Members to stand strong and do the hard work of getting the Limit, Save, Grow Act through the Senate.

Timeline of RSC Action on the Debt Limit:

  1. January 11 – RSC hosted CBO Director Phil Swagel for the first RSC Lunch of the new Congress for a conversation on our nation’s debt crisis. 
  2. January 19 – Chairman Hern wrote a letter to his colleagues on the Debt Limit, asking for submissions of policy proposals to be included in RSC’s framework. [...see page 3]
  3. February 1 – The Steering Committee approved a framework of seven key principles for debt limit negotiations. [...see page 6]
  4. March 1 – CBO Director Phil Swagel joined RSC again to deliver an update on our nation’s debt crisis. He warned that even though we have record high income, our debt is growing due to out-of-control spending. []
  5. March 8 – Chairman Hern released a policy menu of specific proposals, expanding on the seven principles for debt limit negotiations. [...see page 10]
  6. March 8 – RSC conducted a survey of Members, asking which policies should be tied to a debt limit increase. Energy security overwhelmingly won [...see page 18]
  7. March 15 – RSC released the Debt Limit Playbook []
  8. April 12 – Chairman Hern wrote to RSC members calling for the passage of a strong debt limit bill before the end of the April legislative session. []

Congressman Josh Brecheen Votes For The Limit, Save, Grow Act Including $4.8 Trillion in Spending Cuts

Washington, D.C. (April 26th) – Congressman Josh Brecheen voted in favor of The Limit, Save, Grow Act of 2023 (H.R. 2811), which would lift the debt ceiling in exchange for $4.8 trillion in cuts over ten years; one of the largest cuts to federal spending in our nation’s history. The bill passed in a 217-215 vote.

“Today, House Republicans are saying goodbye to the days of raising the debt ceiling without serious cuts to woke, weaponized and wasteful government spending,” said Congressman Josh Brecheen. “This is one of the largest cuts Congress has ever passed because we know we are running out of time to reverse unsustainable deficit spending that is pushing us towards bankruptcy. To secure a future for our children, we must train ourselves to be the Congress that finally cuts waste in government as a habit, not just a one-time event. I now call on the Senate and President Biden to negotiate and turn our nation away from this fiscal cliff and inflation that’s stealing prosperity from our families.”

The Limit, Save, Grow Act of 2023 would unleash American energy independence and repeal radical climate subsidies (H.R.1), impose Clinton-era work requirements on able-bodied adults without children, stop significant federal regulation imposed by unelected bureaucrats (REINS ACT), claw back $50 billion in unspent Covid-19 relief funds, block Biden’s $500 billion student loan bailout, rescind $80 billion in new funding for the IRS, and more.

Lucas Statement on House GOP Plan Addressing Debt Ceiling, Applauds Passage of Limit, Save, Grow Act

Washington, DC (April 26th) – Congressman Frank Lucas (OK-03) released the following statement after the U.S. House of Representatives passed H.R. 2811- the Limit, Save, Grow Act of 2023, a bill to address the debt ceiling and reduce federal spending. Lucas supported the legislation.

“America’s national debt today exceeds $31.7 trillion. More than $6 trillion of that debt was accrued within the last two years under the reckless spending of President Biden and Washington Democrats- the highest level of deficit spending in the history of our country. Simply put, our national debt is unsustainable and a symptom of Washington’s fiscal irresponsibility- but it’s not unfixable. Congress- and the Biden Administration and future administrations- has the ability to enact sensible reforms to programs and return fiscal responsibility to our country’s budget,” said Congressman Lucas. “House Republicans’ Limit, Save, Grow Act is a responsible act that reins-in and limits future federal spending, saves taxpayer dollars, and is a good faith effort to bring President Biden to the negotiating table. 

“Republicans and Democrats alike understand we should never put the nation’s full faith and credit at risk and allow the United States to default on our debt. The failure to right-size federal spending and lift the debt ceiling would be recklessly irresponsible and would cause serious and unnecessary economic harm to our country, Social Security recipients, and veterans. Addressing the debt ceiling will require finding common ground. House Republicans have put forth a plan representative of the people we serve. Now Washington must act to cut wasteful spending, lift the debt ceiling, and return our fiscal house to order.”

The Limit, Save, Grow Act would suspend the debt ceiling through either March 31, 2024 or a $1.5 trillion increase from the current $31.4 trillion ceiling - whichever comes first. The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) finds the bill would save $4.8 trillion through FY 2033, with about $4.3 trillion of policy savings and $545 billion of interest savings. 

The Limit, Save, Grow Act would return total discretionary spending to the Fiscal Year (FY) 2022 level in FY 2024 and cap annual growth at 1 percent for a decade thereafter; rescind unspent COVID relief funds; repeal most of the Inflation Reduction Act's (IRA) energy and climate tax credit expansions; rescind the IRA's increased Internal Revenue Service (IRS) funding; make changes to and improve energy, regulatory, and permitting policies; reform work requirements in several federal safety net programs; and prevent implementation of President Biden's student debt cancellation and Income-Driven Repayment (IDR) expansion.

According to the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, a nonpartisan, non-profit organization committed to educating the public on issues with significant fiscal policy impact, while returning to 2022 levels would mean an 8 percent cut relative to this year, that reduction follows a 9 percent increase last year and a total increase of 37 percent since 2017. Returning spending to FY 2022 levels next year would leave 2024 spending:

  • $215 billion above what President Obama proposed for 2024 in his final budget.
  • $125 billion above what President Trump proposed for 2024 in his final budget.
  • 25 percent, or $300 billion, above 2017 levels.

Cole Votes To Advance Limit, Save, Grow Act

Washington, D.C. (April 26, 2023) – Congressman Tom Cole (OK-04) released the following statement after voting in support of House passage of H.R. 2811, the Limit, Save, Grow Act of 2023.

“In the last two years due to the reckless and out-of-control spending policies of President Joe Biden and congressional Democrats, more than $6 trillion has been added to the national debt,” said Cole. “House Republicans have made clear that President Biden must negotiate a responsible increase to the debt limit that is coupled with commonsense reforms. Unfortunately, President Biden continues to stonewall his opponents and put his head in the sand. In the absence of presidential leadership, House Republicans have voted to take the first step in the negotiation process, and I hope President Biden will soon come to the table to find a compromise that is agreeable to all sides.

While managing the rule for the consideration of the legislation, Cole made extensive remarks. Video is available here and transcript is below.

Madam Speaker, earlier this year, the United States government hit our statutory debt limit of $31.3 trillion. That is an astonishing number. It is over one hundred and twenty percent of our annual gross domestic product.

This level of spending is simply unsustainable. And the American people know it. Three out of four Americans support taking action on the national debt. They know that if we do nothing and keep moving forward as we have been doing, the result will be leaving a huge burden for our children and grandchildren. A pile of debt, a weak economy, and a broken currency.

Now, you would think that given this staggering reality, President Biden and congressional Democrats would acknowledge the need to do something to address this problem.  You would think that they would be open to doing what we have done many times in the past: to couple needed fiscal reforms with an agreement to lift the debt ceiling. You’d even think that President Biden, who himself personally negotiated several debt ceiling increases over the years, would be willing to sit down with us and talk.

But instead, we have heard none of this. No, we will not negotiate with you. No, we will not talk about the federal budget. No, we won’t look at commonsense reforms. No, no, no.

Instead, President Biden and Congressional Democrats insist it is their way or the highway. No reforms, no changes to Federal spending, not even clawing back unspent pandemic relief funds that are no longer necessary.

With the passage of the Limit, Save, Grow Act, the House will stand with the American people, who desperately want us to fix our national debt problem. And that fix starts here, with today’s bill.


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