Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Senator Udall co-sponsors federal balanced budget amendment

Tuesday, Sen. Mark Udall announced that he will co-sponsor a bipartisan Constitutional amendment directing Congress to balance the federal budget each year. Udall joined Republican Senator Richard Shelby of Alabama and others in introducing the common-sense Balanced Budget Amendment that will help pay down the nation's debt and restore fiscal responsibility in Washington. Udall becomes the first Democratic senator in many years to join Republican senators in cosponsoring balanced budget amendment legislation.

The resolution:

 States that federal spending cannot exceed revenue;

 Limits the total expenditures of the government to 20 percent of gross national product (GNP) of the previous year;

 Would not apply when the United States is engaged in a war declared by Congress;

 Allows a simple three-fifths vote of each house of Congress to suspend the balanced budget requirements for a given year.

"American families have to balance their own checkbooks - and, especially in these hard times, they're wondering why their federal government doesn't have to do the same," Udall said. "In fact, the United States has balanced its budget only five times in the last 50 years. Meanwhile, we've racked up a record debt that threatens our future economic leadership. We need to take action now to turn our fiscal situation around."

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