Georgia congressman: Dock lawmakers’ pay until budget passed

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How long would you go without a paycheck?

Georgia Republican Rep. Paul Broun expects that most people wouldn’t allow 1,000 days to go by without pay — about how long Congress has gone without passing a budget.

In the spirit of that sentiment, Broun has introduced the “Budget or Bust Act” to hold all lawmaker’s salaries hostage in an escrow account until they approve a budget.

“Let me ask you this, do you think that if my ‘Budget or Bust Act’ was law, do you think that Harry Reid would have gone over 1,000 days and not passed a budget? Absolutely not,” Broun told The Daily Caller.

Broun’s bill would also shut the president out of the budget-making process, so that instead of having the president submit a budget to Congress he would only be implementing it.

“In 1921 the Congress passed the bill that became law that basically says that the president must submit a budget and Congress acts upon it,” Broun explained, offering a brief history lesson on the Budget and Accounting Act of 1921, signed by President Warren G. Harding. (RELATED: Reid: Senate will not pass a budget this year)

“Well, that’s totally abdicating Congress’s duty under the Constitution,” he said. “The Constitution hasn’t been changed. Article 1, Section 7 says that all bills regarding revenue are to be originated in the U.S. House of Representatives, the Senate amends the House bill then once it’s sorted out between the House and the Senate it’s sent to the president to be signed into law or vetoed.”

According to Broun, the executive branch has eroded Congress’s power far too much, and the Georgia Republican hopes his bill is a step toward turning the tide.

“Congress needs to take its rightful place and be the entity in government that sets up the policy that the government follows,” he said.

“The president is not supposed to create law through executive order, the courts are not supposed to create law through fiat, that’s what they’re doing,” said Broun. “The courts actually are supposed to apply the Constitution as the founding fathers intended it and Congress as well as presidents and the courts are supposed to go by the original intent of the Constitution. I believe very firmly in that.”

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Caroline May