Washington on notice: A Trib exclusive from House Speaker John Boehner
Together, President Obama and his Democrat majority in the Senate hold the lion's share of power in Washington. They have the capacity — right now — to solve the spending problem that is chasing good jobs overseas and causing so much anxiety about our future. They can stop a debt crisis.
A budget is a logical place to start. Passing a budget is one of the most basic responsibilities of governing. But the Senate has failed to fulfill this responsibility for nearly four years. In that time, our debt has risen to the point that it now exceeds the size of our entire economy.
This year has been shaping up to be no different. The president's second inaugural address made barely any mention of our economy or our spending problem. The word “debt” was never used. His budget, due Monday, will be at least one month late. In addition, he and his allies in the Senate are making familiar demands for more tax increases that will hurt small businesses and destroy more jobs.
Meanwhile, outside the Beltway, families are stretching every last penny to live by a budget. Many are paying more and more for groceries, gasoline and other everyday items while their incomes are flat or falling, thanks to the president's misguided policies. Taking more in taxes and putting off tough choices would just pinch Americans even further.
The economy shouldn't be an afterthought — it should drive everything we do. That's why Republicans will press the Democrats' majority to act on solutions that bring jobs home and get our economy moving again. To that end, we recently passed legislation forcing Senate Democrats to live up to their legal responsibility to pass a budget. If they can't pass a budget, they don't deserve to have their salaries paid out from the tax dollars of families who balance their checkbooks.
No budget, no pay — it's that simple.
In the House, we have passed a budget every year since Americans entrusted Republicans with the majority.
These budgets have set out solutions for everything from fixing our burdensome tax code and preserving our entitlement programs to reining in red tape and unlocking our domestic energy resources.
Indeed, a responsible budget involves much more than making numbers line up right; it's a chance to forge for our children a true path to prosperity. Economic growth is the single most important element of any solution to our spending problem.
The No Budget, No Pay Act shouldn't have been necessary. Our debt is growing by billions of dollars a day with no relief in sight. We should be getting ahead of these challenges, not making ourselves address them. I come back to a lesson I learned running a small business — failing to plan is planning to fail.
We should heed that wisdom. Now that Senate Democrats have been forced to do a budget, they ought to do it right. Taxpayers who trust us with their money deserve no less. On their behalf, my appeal to Senate Democrats is this — pass a balanced budget.
Pass a budget that addresses the out-of-control spending that is driving our debt. Every day that goes by without one is another day we are failing to solve our spending problem and putting our economy at unnecessary risk. If we can't get this done, we shouldn't be paid.
Republicans are ready to do our part. We will work with anyone on solutions that balance our budget and help create jobs. We will work with anyone committed to protecting and strengthening critical programs like Medicare and Social Security.
We welcome ideas for combating poverty and expanding opportunity to all Americans. Too much is at stake for the Democrat majority in Washington to waste this opportunity.
It's their call.
John Boehner, R-Ohio, is the speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Pittsburgh council confirms new public safety chief, budget director
- Trial in PPS teacher discrimination lawsuit scheduled for November
- Steelers hoping that youth movement breathes life into team
- Pirates expect high prices in trade market
- Peduto says city dropped UPMC lawsuit to help nonprofit payment talks
- Steelers notebook: Team hasn’t called on Keisel, Harrison yet
- Police: Westmoreland women stole thousands to pay for dog show hobby
- McCandless OKs land development plan for potential Wal-Mart
- 2 killed in East Huntingdon crash
- Unseasonably cold temperature sets Western Pa. record
- Pittsburgh Brewing tries to reconnect with region, return to glory days