Republican lawmakers have introduced a bill that would claw back $15 billion in appropriated spending, following the lead of President Donald Trump, who submitted a rescission request earlier this month.
“Yes, a $15 billion spending reduction is a drop in the bucket compared to a $15 trillion debt,” Sen. Mike Lee, R-Utah, said in a statement provided to The Daily Signal.
“But we have to start cutting spending somewhere,” Lee said of the bill introduced Friday. “Because if we don’t, if we continue to allow federal government spending to grow faster than the economy as a whole, at some point, economic reality will force us to do so in a much more painful manner later.”
The bill would claw back expired funding from the Children’s Health Insurance Program, or CHIP, among other federal programs.
“The president’s plan follows one guiding principle: Money that is sitting in federal agencies and not being spent should be returned to taxpayers,” Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney said in an op-ed May 22 in The Washington Post.
Trump identified cuts in planned spending and sent them to Congress on May 8.
To start the rescission process, a president must send a request or requests to Congress. Once he does so, the lawmakers have 45 in-session days to act.
Sen. John Kennedy, R-La., told The Daily Signal that Congress’ acting on the rescission package shows that it’s serious about being fiscally responsible.
“Washington has long been spending tax dollars like a bunch of drunken sailors, with zero regard for the debt we are loading onto future generations,” Kennedy said. “This bill is a small step, but a good start towards restoring a little fiscal sanity to the swamp.”
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