Today, Americans for Tax Reform and its Center for Fiscal Accountability sent a letter to the House of Representatives urging members to support the rules package when it comes up for a vote tomorrow. The package address the underlying procedural framework that makes spending restraint difficult in Congress; it replaces the "Paygo" sham with a "Cutgo" procedure and requires waiting periods for bills before they can come to the floor for a vote. From our letter:

We write to encourage support of the proposed House Rules package, which includes many important tools for restraining government growth and cutting spending. Currently, procedural norms represent a lasting bias for bigger government and increased spending – the proposed rules package for the 112th Congress signals a critical first step in implementing lasting spending reform and promoting fiscal responsibility as the new status quo.

Firstly, the rules will address the budgeting recklessness of the past majority by allowing the Budget Committee Chairman to set the spending levels for the current fiscal year. Absent a budget proposal for Fiscal Year 2011, this ensures the new Congress will not be beholden to the profligacy of the past majority, and can work from a more responsible baseline for future budgets.

The new rules will also reform some of the budgeting dishonesty that has been employed in the past to mask the actual cost of legislation. Previously, bills would be written to push spending outside the scoring window, providing a false fiscal note for legislation with a hefty price tag. The rules proposed by House Republicans not only expand the budget window to reveal the true fiscal impact of bills, they would implement a point of order against any bill that raises mandatory spending by over $5 billion over the course of a 40 year period.

Click here to read the letter in its entirety.