April 25, 2023

Arrington Testifies Before Rules Committee on Limit, Save, Grow Act of 2023

Today, House Budget Committee Chairman Jodey Arrington (R-TX)  testified before the House Rules Committee after filing H.R. 2811, the "Limit, Save, Grow Act," which is the House Republican plan to responsibly address the debt ceiling.

Chairman Arrington's remarks as prepared for delivery:

Chairman Cole, Ranking Member McGovern, Members of the Rules Committee. Thank you for the opportunity to testify before you today on the Republicans’ responsible debt ceiling legislation.

Nobody can look at our balance sheet or CBO’s outlook and not shudder at the rapid deterioration of our nation’s fiscal health.

As Chairman of the House Budget Committee, I cannot stress enough to the American people what a financial mess we are in.

  • Our unprecedented, almost incomprehensible, $31+ trillion national debt has eclipsed the size of our entire economy – the largest in the world – at over 120% gross debt to GDP. This is the highest level of indebtedness in American history. 
  • Over the next decade, according to CBO, our annual deficits will double, our interest payments will triple, and for every dollar we borrow, 50 cents will go just to paying interest on this debt.
  • In fact, we are so far in the red now that by 2025, we will spend more on interest than all of national defense.
Our national debt is unsustainable, but not unfixable. If we don’t change course – and soon – we won’t just be trying to stave off a recession. We will be facing a full-blown sovereign debt crisis that would threaten not only our economy and national security, but our way of life and America’s leadership in the world.  

This legislation is a first step toward getting our fiscal house in order and a good faith effort to bring the President to the negotiating table. This proposal will reduce deficit spending and save taxpayers $4.5 trillion over ten years – $1 trillion over the next year.

This legislation would require Washington to do what every American has been forced to do as a result of record inflation and rising interest rates: tighten our belts and change our spending habits.

First, it limits federal spending by reining-in and right-sizing the federal bureaucracy. This proposal will bring FY24 discretionary spending levels to where they were just four short months ago. Going forward, it will cap the discretionary budget at 1% annual growth over the next ten years, putting a damper on our current inflationary firestorm and reducing wasteful Washington spending by over $3T.

Second, it saves taxpayer dollars by reversing some of the Democrats’ reckless spending:

Reclaiming tens of billions unspent COVID funds.

Defunding the President’s army of 87,000 IRS agents.

Repealing the “Green New Deal” special interest tax breaks for the largest Green Energy corporations.

And, rescinding President Biden’s unconstitutional student loan bailout.

Third, this proposal will grow the economy by returning to pro-growth, pro-work, pro-energy policies, unleashing American prosperity once again.

It stops the assault on US energy production and restores American energy dominance.

Our proposal will prevent trapping a whole new generation in a cycle of poverty and government dependence by restoring Clinton-era, common-sense work requirements for able-bodied adults.

It’s time to get America back to work and let the tide of prosperity lift all boats.

This bill will also combat Biden’s unprecedented barrage of regulations – a major drag on our economic recovery, an unbearable burden on our small businesses, and lower wages and higher cost of goods for working families.

The Biden Administration’s regulatory costs have exceeded $350 billion in just two years and are on pace to double the regulations of the Obama White House in both economic and compliance burden, and eight times that of all four years of the Trump Administration.

Lastly, Republicans recognize that it is responsible to raise the debt ceiling, but it would be irresponsible to do so without meaningful fiscal reforms. In fact, it would be nothing short of negligence.

Let me be clear: we will pay our creditors and protect the good faith and credit of the United States, but we will not give a blank check to any party or politician to bankrupt the country.

Republicans have put forth a plan worthy of the people we serve. Now, we must put aside political small-mindedness and rise to meet the enormous challenges facing our great nation…before it’s too late.

If we fail to meet this moment, we risk being the first generation in history to leave our children with a weaker America, fewer opportunities, and a lower standard of living.

Thank you, Chairman Cole. I look forward to answering any questions.