09.21.15

Senator David Perdue Calls on Washington to Listen to the American People’s Priorities

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator David Perdue (R-GA), a member of the Senate Budget Committee, today called on Washington to put conservative principles into action and work through the full appropriations process, which responsibly reflects the priorities of the American people.

Click here to watch the video or click the image below. 

Senator David Perdue Calls on Washington to Listen to the American People’s Priorities

Transcript:

"I rise today to talk about why I am here, and really why all of us are here.

We are here to represent the people of our great states. We are here to do the people’s business and to be good stewards of taxpayer dollars.

We have just finished an ongoing debate about how Congress can direct and guide the foreign policy of the United States. In doing so, we have seen the dangerous consequences of partisan politics right here on the Senate floor and how that can affect this process.

Just last week, 42 of my Democratic colleagues supported President Obama’s dangerous nuclear deal with Iran, while still having serious concerns about its global ramifications. Now, we must refocus our attention on solving our fiscal crisis and tackling our skyrocketing national debt.

State governments across the country set both funding levels and clear priorities for their states each year based on the needs of their people and their local communities. Washington has been distracted from this for far too long.

Balancing the budget and efficiently allocating resources is what Washington has not done well for the last several years. Too many people here are preoccupied by politics of the day, when getting our fiscal house in order should always be the top priority.

In other words, Washington has stopped listening to the American people.

Well, I am indeed listening. The American people told us what they wanted in November of last year when I was elected, and Georgians tell me repeatedly even now what they want.

They want less government. They want less spending. They want us to push back against President Obama’s out-of-control spending and executive overreaches that are failing the working men and women of America. The bottom line is, they want us to deal with this debt crisis.

Earlier this year, the Senate Budget Committee took a great first step by passing a balanced budget for the first time since 2001. This budget outlined our conservative principles and spending limits. This budget spends $7 trillion dollars less than the President’s budget over the next 10 years.

What it doesn’t do is reduce the debt today or deal with the over $100 trillion dollars of future unfunded liabilities coming at us like a freight train.

It does balance in 10 years, which is quite an achievement given what we had to work with, but more can and must be done right now!

So, I’m going to continue my focus on cutting wasteful spending and reducing federal expenditures with the goal of developing a long-term plan to pay down this out-of-control, massive $18 trillion dollars of federal debt.

In the last six years, we spent $21 and a half trillion dollars funding our federal government. That’s so large it’s hard to comprehend. What I can understand is of that $21 trillion dollars, $8 trillion was borrowed. We simply cannot continue going down this road.

While one side wants tax increases, the other side wants spending cuts. In my experience, neither alone will solve the equation in its entirety. Growing our economy is the only real solution.

Again, the budget is just the first step. We must put our conservative principles into action and work through the regular appropriations process to determine how we responsibly allocate federal funds.

The Senate Appropriations Committee has put forward 12 appropriations bills that adhere to the Republican Budget, and that reflect the priorities of the American people.

Overall, these bills are under the Budget Control Act caps that were put in place by Congress in 2011 to control spending. More importantly, they better prioritize taxpayer dollars to meet the goals of the American people.

For example, these appropriations bills decrease spending on Obamacare and increase spending for border security. They end the EPA’s ‘Waters of the U.S. rule’ and stop the Obama Administration’s onerous greenhouse gas regulations.

They also prohibit the NLRB from changing the rules of the game – like the ambush elections rule and changing the joint-employer relationship – in order to prevent negative impacts to American workers and businesses. They subject the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the CFPB, to Congressional oversight and eliminate hundreds of duplicative programs that have outlived their original mission. The list goes on and on…

The fiscal year ends on September 30th – that’s only a few days from now. We must move forward and debate these 12 appropriations bills that reflect Georgia values and fulfill the promises we made to represent the American people.

While we have already seen our Democratic colleagues block such debate on these important bills, I hope we can immediately restart this critical process and return to regular order.

Certainly, a full and robust debate on all of these bills is necessary to ensure that our federal government continues to function without overspending.

Now, I can tell you there are some things I would like to change in these bills, but that ought to be debated in the open and not blocked by more partisan gridlock.

I hope that the Majority Leader will continue to bring these bills to the floor and I hope that the objections of my Democratic colleagues will finally end and let’s get to an open and honest debate.

Georgians sent me to the Senate to fight for them and that’s what I intend to do. This just a start.  

I will not, and I cannot, stand by while Senate Democrats continue to block the Senate from doing the people’s work as they did every day when they were in charge."