REP. BUDDY CARTER: If Joe & Co. Can’t Do Their Jobs, They Shouldn’t Get Paid

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Medical professionals take an oath to “Do No Harm.” Elected officials need to do the same. 

Following passage of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017, our economy saw exponential growth and Americans everywhere saw their standard of living rise. Under President Biden, 71% of families have been forced to cut back on goods, wages are failing to keep up with the highest inflation rate in 40 years, and Americans are feeling record-low optimism in our nation’s economic future. 

There is a direct correlation between Washington Democrats’ runaway spending and the high prices you’re paying at gas pumps and grocery stores.

Instead of cutting back, like the American people have been forced to do, congressional Democrats have doubled down on excessive spending, even coming up with $700 billion more taxpayer dollars back in August to pay for the Inflation “Reduction” Act. Just twenty months of one-party Democrat rule added $4.8 trillion to our ten-year deficit and increased federal spending $10 trillion above projectionsThe American Rescue Plan alone contributed as much as four points to our inflation crisis.

The federal government does not operate in a vacuum. It is time for transparency and accountability. When we discuss budget failures, the conversation typically revolves around Congress, and rightly so. We have the power of the purse and it’s our responsibility to deliver an on-time, balanced budget. While it is crucial that we follow through on our constitutionally directed duty, the president is responsible for kicking off the budget process, a responsibility President Biden been particularly lackadaisical towards. 

The Fiscal Year 2023 Presidential Budget was the longest delayed in history by over a month. Kickstarting an already broken process on shaky ground makes it impossible for Congress to meet its own budget deadlines, which in this case contributed to us passing yet another Continuing Resolution in lieu of a legitimate FY23 budget. 

Congress needs to get its fiscal House in order and that begins with the executive branch delivering a timely budget proposal. That is why I introduced the Presidential Accountability for Yearly Submission of The United States Budget (PAYSTUB) Act and Presidential Budget Accountability Act, which together would temporarily block payments of politically-appointed employee salaries and funding for presidential travel if the executive branch misses its February deadline to submit a budget proposal until it is submitted as required by law.

If you don’t do the job, you don’t get paid – it’s that simple. American workers, especially small business owners, understand this principle; it’s time the president did, too. 

These bills are important, but more must be done to secure our nation and grandchildren’s, financial futures. Even if every budget deadline were followed exactly as directed by law, our regulatory environment makes progress and fiscal responsibility exceptionally difficult. 

I represent Georgia’s First Congressional District, which includes the Port of Savannah. We just completed a harbor-deepening project, expanding the port from 42 feet to 47 feet so it could accommodate higher capacity cargo ships. That project took 26 years. More than two decades to deepen a single harbor, while China has started and completed entire ports throughout Asia and Africa. 

Regulations should not bog down our economy for an entire generation. 

We cannot balance the federal budget with our current anti-business, anti-growth regulatory environment. Promoting increased growth through policies that encourage entrepreneurship and private investment in American infrastructure is paramount to our economy, debt, national security, and future generation’s prosperity.   

There are hundreds of House Republicans who just campaigned on, and won on, a message of fiscal responsibility. In our Commitment to America, we pledged to build an economy that’s strong and a government that’s accountable. We cannot achieve those goals without getting serious about our national debt.  

It’s time we deliver on that commitment. 

That means ending trillion-dollar spending packages, which just a few years ago were unheard of. That means passing an on-time budget with an eye towards balancing. That means rolling back regulations that hamstring innovation. 

It’s time to Do No Harm.  


Rep. Earl L. “Buddy” Carter represents Georgia’s First Congressional District. He is a pharmacist and sits on the House Budget Committee and Energy and Commerce Committee.

The views and opinions expressed in this commentary are those of the author and do not reflect the official position of the Daily Caller.