Passage of $39.5 Billion in Savings Now Heads to the House of Representatives

WASHINGTON — Americans for Tax Reform (ATR) President Grover Norquist today praised the Senate’s action to limit the growth of federal spending. The Senate passed the Deficit Reduction Omnibus Reconciliation Act (DRORA) by a vote of 52-47.

DRORA will save taxpayers $39.5 billion over the next five years. The federal government will spend $2.6 trillion in fiscal year 2006 and the reconciliation package savings represents just 0.30 percent of total spending. Yet, while the savings are small in the context of the entire federal budget, the savings are needed in areas where spending has been continually increasing by more than 10 percent per year since 2001 – entitlement spending.

“Today, the Senate took the first and long overdue step toward restoring spending discipline in Washington,” said taxpayer advocate Grover Norquist. “After years of neglect, the Senate’s action today clearly demonstrates that Congress can reduce federal spending. I look forward to working with members to find additional savings in the future.”

Since 2000, total federal spending has increased $683 billion from $1.7 trillion to $2.4 trillion. This 38 percent increase in spending over five years has outpaced the nation’s economic growth by 6.7 percent. As a result, the average American taxpayer continues to work longer each year to pay for the costs of government rather than their families. Today’s action begins the process to reverse this by reigning in entitlement spending, the fastest growing component of the federal budget.

“Now that the Senate has passed these savings, I urge the House of Representatives to move quickly to complete this process,” continued Norquist. “American taxpayers have waited far too long for Congress to implement some fiscal discipline and action is needed sooner rather than later. This way we can start working on next year’s savings which should be even bigger than this year’s package.”