America Needs A Federal Balanced Budget Amendment

A federal balanced budget amendment came up for a vote in the US House of Representatives on November 18. This was a pivotal moment in Congress as we look at the status of government today and the fact that if America doesn’t start living within its means we will lose the economic fabric that has made our country great. It is a scary thought and one that should provoke thorough debate as our county continues to spiral down the path of fiscal insolvency.

The United States government spends more than it takes in and the bottom line is we have a spending problem. Our addiction to big government spending has cost us jobs especially when one considers the costly regulations coming from Washington that do more harm than good. And while we hear Democrats call for more government spending as a means to create jobs, we have to remember that it has not worked before, it won’t work now and Americans should not be fooled again.

As New Hampshire’s families weigh spending decisions every day, they know they must have a balanced family budget. If our families ran their households the way that the Federal government runs their budget, the effects would be clear. Their bills wouldn’t have been paid, their house would be foreclosed upon, their car would be repossessed, and they would be out on the street.

Granite State businesses must also weigh spending decisions every day. They must meet payroll, pay their taxes, and deliver a quality product if they want return business. If they don’t then payroll is missed, jobs are lost, and their company goes under.

As a country, we can’t stand in the way of real fiscal reform. The dream of a safe and healthy retirement seems to be farther away for everyone. Without a balanced budget amendment, families across America could see losses in everything they have worked so hard to build, from retirement savings to home values to their own job and maybe even to the safety and security of their own family.

A balanced budget amendment is a guarantee that forces government to make the tough decisions now rather than lay mountains of debt on future generations.  In fact, forty-nine of the fifty states in our country have some of balanced budget requirement, but not the United States Government. As Americans, Granite Staters, fathers and mothers, we owe it to current and future generations to live within our means and keep the American dream alive.

Although it was 23 votes shy of the supermajority needed to clear the House, Congressman Guinta and Congressman Bass should be applauded for voting in favor of the Balanced Budget Amendment. They should keep pushing for passage because it’s right for New Hampshire and America.

John E. Lyons, Jr. is the owner of Lyons Law Offices in Portsmouth, Chairman of the State Board of Education, and past Chairman of the Board of the Portsmouth Chamber of Commerce.

Author: John E. Lyons, Jr.

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  • David Pittelli

    All we have to do is refuse to raise the debt ceiling. This would mean that total indebtedness would not rise, that the budget would be balanced even including interest on the existing debt. It would also necessarily mean that the President would have the power of sequestration, which Presidents had until Nixon. This would be better than the line-item veto.