H.J.Res. 2, currently before the House of Representatives, does not include a super-majority requirement to raise taxes. This will amount to an automatic tax hike every year in which the government is unwilling to cut spending. As taxpayers have witnessed over the past few years of unprecedented deficits, lawmakers will oppose austerity when tax hikes are on the table.
Washington must learn to live within its means. A Balanced Budget Amendment should keep the focus on Washington’s overspending problem. Passing a BBA that allows a tax hike by a simple majority, however, will allow lawmakers to balance their budgets on the backs of taxpayers, rather than forcing Congress to rein in spending.
Washington has an overspending problem, not an under-taxing problem. Historically, outlays have averaged about 21 percent of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) while revenues have amounted to about 18 percent of GDP. Due to the Obama Administration and Congressional Democrats’ spending binge, outlays now average almost 25 percent of GDP, and are projected to stay around 23 percent in perpetuity.
Unless tax hikes are taken off the table, reckless lawmakers will increase taxes to pay for these new bloated spending levels, instead of bringing spending in line with revenues.
Any lawmaker concerned about restoring American solvency cannot seriously vote for a BBA that does not include a super-majority requirement for tax increases. To pass a BBA that allows a tax hike by simple majority is to distract from the real problem of government spending, and leave taxpayers to bear the burden of foolhardy federal budgeting.
Taxpayers deserve better.
Americans for Tax Reform WILL RATE a vote against a Balanced Budget Amendment that includes a super-majority requirement for tax increases.