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US Rep. Martha Roby promotes her Balanced Budget Amendment

By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter

Tuesday, August 8, 2017, US Representative Martha Roby (R-Montgomery) says we need a Balanced Budget Amendment, and has written one herself.

Congresswoman Roby wrote to constituents and supporters, “Friends, with the end of the fiscal year approaching on September 30, Congress will soon begin finalizing appropriations Legislation to fund government operations. I’m proud of the work the House Appropriations Committee has done to approve Legislation to properly fund critical programs, while cutting wasteful spending and bending the Federal Budget curve down for a change.”

Congresswoman Roby said, “However, seeing our conservative measures survive negotiations with the Senate has proven to be quite a challenge in recent years. It can be a frustrating process to say the least, partly because those who favor more government spending have every incentive to delay, drag their feet, and hold out on responsible agreements. I believe it is time to change that, and one remedy I favor is amending the US Constitution to require our government to balance its budget.”

Rep. Roby continued, “That’s why I’ve introduced H.J. Res. 114, Legislation to amend the Constitution that, if passed and ratified, would require Congress and the President to enact a balanced budget every year.” “Some say a balanced budget amendment to the Constitution like mine is unrealistic. I understand the skepticism. After all, the Constitution has only been successfully amended 17 times beyond the original ten in the Bill of Rights. It is a difficult process, just as it should be. However, I say what’s truly unrealistic is the notion that we could maintain this great country as we know it by continuing to spend more than we take in. Instead of a political incentive for politicians to spend irresponsibly, we need a constitutional requirement against it.”

Roby concluded, “American families balance their budgets, just like businesses balance theirs. Most state and local governments have to balance their budgets as well. It is past time for Congress and the President to be constitutionally required to balance our budget.”

The Congresswoman also congratulated her longtime Chief of Staff Stephen Boyd for his confirmation to a powerful position in the US Justice Department as Assistant Attorney General of the United States.  Rep. Roby said, “Stephen served as my top adviser in the House for six years before joining Attorney General Jeff Sessions at the Department of Justice and accepting a nomination from President Trump to serve as Assistant Attorney General for Legislative Affairs. He is exactly the kind of person our country needs to serve in such a position of great influence. In Stephen, Attorney General Jeff Sessions has an experienced, rock-solid adviser and Congress has a principled, trustworthy conduit to the Department of Justice.  I join Stephen’s wife, Brecke and his parents, Ron and Floranne in celebrating this special achievement.”

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In January, both US Senator Richard Shelby (R-Alabama) and US Representative Bradley Byrne (R-Montrose) introduced their own balanced budget resolutions.

In a statement, Shelby said, “The idea behind a balanced budget amendment is simple: The Federal government should be required to do what hardworking Americans do every day – balance a budget.”

Sen. Shelby said then, “A $19 trillion debt is simply unsustainable and will place a heavy burden on our children and grandchildren if we do not take steps to reverse this irresponsible course. I’m pleased to once again introduce this common sense policy that would reduce wasteful government spending, restore confidence in our economy, and foster job growth.”

The Congress is expected to raise the debt ceiling again when they return from their August recess.

Today the US debt is nineteen trillion nine hundred and seventy one billion dollars.  The National Budget Deficit is $677 billion.

Congresswoman Martha Roby represents Alabama’s Second Congressional District.

Brandon Moseley is a former reporter at the Alabama Political Reporter.

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