When I was younger and just becoming political aware, I was against the idea of a Balanced Budget Amendment to the US Constitution. After all, congress can balance the budget when they need to….or so I thought.
Since then, I have come to realize that congress has acted irresponsibly during my entire adulthood. It can not be trusted to balance the budget. It has not the skill. It has not the wisdom. It has not the will. Bottom line: Congress is filled with Assholes beholden to public choice economic effects.
As Americans, we should not continue to reply upon a broken system to get the results we want after decades of failure.
It is time for a Balanced Budget Amendment to the US Constitution.
Here is the outlines of a possible version from Orrin Hatch:
- Its mandates that total budgetary outlays for any fiscal year not exceed total revenues unless you have a two thirds vote to overturn it.
- It caps federal spending at 20% of GDP.
- It requires the President to submit a balanced budget to Congress every fiscal year.
- It prohibits revenue raising measures (like increasing taxes) that are not approved by two thirds of both the House and Senate.
- Provisions can be waived if there is a formal declaration of war or if the US is engaged in a military conflict constituting a threat to national security or if two thirds of both the House and the Senate approve.
The above works for me.
The time is now for this sort of thing!
Come on Tea-Partyers, make this happen!!! Demand pledges from candidates for this any other related measures!!!
Some time ago, these were my variants:
1. Requiring a Super-Majority of (three-fifths (60%) for both houses for spending above 90% of previous year.
2. Majority vote only required for spending to continue at 90% of previous year level or below.
3. Defining spending as all net payments moving from the treasury to other hands
4. If congress fails to pass a budget, the Executive will reduce spending to 90% level, equally across the board.
We know from Public Choice Theory that representatives respond to incentives and are therefore not driven to server the public good, but instead to maximize there own benefits. Rent-seeking by special interest has caused spending to go out of control. The system as developed over time does not server the nation well. Left to there own devices, congress will continue negative practices. This amendment is a financial control.
Spending and Taxing Consideration Amendment
Require all that Legislation, involving spending or taxing to be considered by both houses for at least four days before it passage (or else be invalid).
This will deter special interests from inserting special provisions in the dead of night (public choice).
Allows a special veto whereby the president can separate-out and reduce a spending amount up to and including zero. Congress has normal veto override power over this veto type.
Update: I think the override vote on a spending veto will instead be required to be a public rollcall vote, if a vote is held.
We know from Public Choice Theory that representatives respond to incentives and are therefore not driven to serve the public good, but instead to maximize there own benefits. Rent-seeking by special interest has caused spending to go out of control. This is a control on the spending. Also, a line-item veto can not be legislated into existence.