Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Sen. Udall calls again for presidential line-item veto

Tuesday, Mark Udall repeated his longstanding call for a presidential line-item veto during a news conference about the need for more tools to cut wasteful and unnecessary spending by the federal government. He joined a bipartisan group of senators, including John McCain (R-AZ) and Tom Carper (D-DE), in calling for swift passage of the Reduce Unnecessary Spending Act. Udall believes the line-item veto is one critical way Congress and the President can help rein in the federal budget - along with earmark reform, pay-as-you-go budgeting, and a balanced budget amendment.

"If ever there were a time in our history to reassure Americans that Congress understands the need for integrity in how it spends the taxpayers' dollars, it's now. To do that effectively, we need greater transparency so that we - and the American people - can see where we can make strategic cuts and restore fiscal discipline here in Washington," Udall said. "A legislative line-item veto is one essential tool that can help us get there."

Udall has backed a line-item veto for many years. In 2005 in the U.S. House, he introduced the Stimulating Leadership in Cutting Expenditures (SLICE) Act. And in 2006, he worked with Congressman Paul Ryan (R-WI) on similar legislation, which eventually passed the House but not the Senate. Udall continued his leadership on the line-item veto when he was elected to the Senate, co-sponsoring in 2009 both the Budget Enforcement Legislative Tool (BELT) Act with Carper and the Congressional Accountability and Line-Item Veto Act, with former Senator Russ Feingold (D-WI).

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