Republican Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul announced on Wednesday that he plans to introduce a bill that would balance the budget within five years.
The chairman of the Federal Spending Oversight and Emergency Management Subcommittee for the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, says the bill will cut spending across the board while implementing entitlement and welfare reform.
Paul, who has consistently supported tax cuts as well as spending cuts, says his bill will “bring our fiscal house in order.”
Noting that Congress passed a budget last year that failed to balance and added “hundreds of billions of dollars” to the debt, the recent spending bill is “even worse.”
Paul says Congress does not appear to have any plans to craft a budget for 2019. However, according to current Senate rules, if leadership of the budget committees does not introduce a budget, a senator can.
“No more trillion-dollar deficits,” he said. “No more adding to the $21 trillion debt that burdens our country and our children and our grandchildren. Adding to this massive debt isn’t what I signed up for, and it isn’t what people voted for.”
In February, Paul was critical of the $1.3 trillion spending bill, voting against the bill and holding a hearing to discuss wasteful government spending.
“How can Congress do proper oversight of spending when we throw everything into one giant trillion-dollar bill?” Paul asked in February. “Congress is supposed to take a close look at 12 appropriations bills funding specific areas of government and debate and amend them.”
The Government Shutdown Prevention Act (S. 2339), a bill introduced by Paul earlier in the year, encouraged Congress to properly consider and debate any new legislation involving federal government spending.
Paul said Republicans need to keep their word to the voters by reigning in spending and shrinking the deficit.
“For me it wasn’t just campaign talk,” he concluded. “I’m going to do it, and I’m going to force a vote on the floor of the U.S. Senate, and we’ll see who actually really does believe in balancing the budget.”