Candice Miller for Congress, Michigan

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My Statement on House-Passed Responsible Federal Spending Measure

by Candice Miller on March 7, 2013

This week House Republicans passed a government funding bill that locks in $85 billion in spending cuts mandated by the sequester with 214 House Republicans voting for the bill and only 14 voting against.  This is a first strong step in reducing government spending and moving toward a balanced budget.  This bill also did some other very important things to protect our military from arbitrary cuts that could hamper their ability to defend our nation and also making certain programs to support our veterans have a similar ability to serve those who have served us all.  Along with the continuing resolution to fund the government for the balance of the year the House passed the Defense Appropriations and Military Construction and Veterans Administration Appropriations Bill.  In recent meetings with members of the Joint Chiefs of Staff our military leaders were asked what was more important, eliminating the sequester cuts or passing an appropriations bill to set new priorities.  The military leaders said passing an appropriations bill because that removes funding from unnecessary programs and moves money to accounts where those dollars are needed.  As a result of the House action no longer would our troops or veterans be held hostage to arbitrary cuts and instead they will be able to fulfill their missions.

 

The bill additionally made major strides in reducing funding for Obamacare.  Much of the long term funding for Obamacare was off limits in this bill because it dealt only with discretionary spending, but we cut where we could.  The House bill cut more than $1 billion that the Obama administration wanted to implement federal health care exchanges mandated by Obamacare and eliminated $360 million funding for the IRS to assist them in implementing tax provisions in Obamacare.  After these cuts were put in the bill the spokesperson for the Ranking Democrat on the House Appropriations Committee said, ““It’s tough for me to say what they’re (the Obama administration) going to do.  I just don’t know what their capability is of shaking the couch cushions to come up with that kind of money.”  Michigan Democrat Gary Peters said, “This is just another attempt by the Republicans to undermine the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) that is the law of the land.”

 

Some have questioned whether those Republicans that voted with Democrats like Nancy Pelosi, Gary Peters and others perhaps did not support our troops or assist in our efforts to eliminate Obamacare.  I leave those of my colleagues to explain their own position.  I will continue to do all I can to make certain our troops have all the support they need to accomplish their mission and that we continue to make progress that will eventually allow us to repeal Obamacare.  The next step will be the budget process where House Republicans will continue to put forward our plan to eliminate Obamacare.

 

With the sequester spending cuts now set in stone for fiscal year 2013, the House will now move toward developing a budget for fiscal year 2014.  Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan has indicated that the budget he will put forward will not only begin to significantly reduce our deficit, but will actually balance within the 10 year budget window.  House Republicans will make the tough choices necessary to meet this goal and we will challenge the Democrats to do likewise.  And because of a bill that I co-sponsored along with my Michigan colleague Dave Camp who chairs the House Ways and Means Committee, we will now force the Democrat Senate to actually pass a budget for the first time in four years or their paychecks will stop.  After so much inaction we simply said “No Budget – No Pay.” This will force the Democrats to finally put their vision on the table and allow the American people to compare that vision with that of House Republicans.  I believe strongly that the American people share our desire for a balanced budget, a growing economy, more jobs, limited government and prosperity.

 

Our budget will not only balance in 10 years it will do several other things.  First it will once again call for the elimination of Obamacare.  It will call for responsible and needed reform of the real drivers of our debt and deficit, federal entitlements.  It will call for pro-growth tax reform which would eliminate tax loopholes for the few which will allow us to lower rates for all.  I am very ready to stand shoulder to shoulder with Paul Ryan as he leads our effort to bring fiscal sanity back to federal government and to work with all of you to carry this important message back to the people of the 10th Congressional district.

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