Sessions: Obama’s budget ‘not serious’

Published 9:30 pm Tuesday, February 15, 2011

President Obama’s budget rollout for the upcoming fiscal year 2012 has many Republicans seeing red, including U.S. Sen. Jeff Sessions, R-Ala.

The proposal that was submitted to Congress on Monday called for $8.7 trillion in new spending and would add $13 trillion to the debt over the next decade.

According to Sessions, ranking member of the Senate Budget Committee, the president’s proposal is “a very unserious response to a very serious situation.”

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The new budget proposal will, in effect, nearly double the size of government since the day President Obama took office.

Flying in the face of warnings from economists and public demand for restraint in government spending, the explosive growth of the government under the Obama Administration will crush private-sector investment, fuel uncertainty for job creators and guarantee a less prosperous future for all Americans, according to critics.

Spending this year under the president’s budget is a record $3.8 trillion (25.3 percent of the GDP), which is the highest since WWII.

The projected price tag for the next 10 years total in the amount of $46 trillion, a number so immense that the majority of Americans experience vertigo at the mere thought of how many zeros follow after the six.

Sessions delivered an opening statement Tuesday at a hearing with OMB Director Jacob Lew to discuss President Obama’s budget. “Yesterday, the president submitted his formal budget to Congress,” Sessions said. “It is the president’s third budget, and the last budget that will cover a full year of his current term in office. It was one of his last chances to put forward a serious proposal to address our growing financial crisis.”

Sessions said, in total, the president’s budget imposes $1.6 trillion in new taxes on families, small businesses and job creators. “The president’s budget would increase spending every single year, doubling the nation’s debt by the end of his term and tripling it by the end of the decade,” Sessions said. “It would also impose $1.6 trillion in new taxes on families and businesses — a further barrier to jobs and growth.”

Sessions quoted Erskine Bowles, the Democrat Chair of the president’s own fiscal commission, as being somewhat dissatisfied with the president’s budget, saying that the proposal goes “nowhere near where they will have to go to resolve our fiscal nightmare.”

Although the budget proposal conjures up feelings of aggravation among Republicans, Sessions made it clear that it was not his goal to condemn the president. “My goal here is not to excoriate the president,” Sessions said. “It is, for me, a point of sadness, not satisfaction, that we’ve seen such a weak response. A historic opportunity was lost.”

Sessions’ main contention is that America needs a decisive leader when it comes to economic decisions.

“Our nation is confronted with a defining challenge. Our financial future hangs in the balance. But, this president has suggested he is waiting for Congress to put forward a serious proposal first. That’s not leadership. Did Winston Churchill say he was waiting for Parliament to come up with a plan to win the war,” Sessions said. “When a nation is faced with any threat—great or small, financial or military — it is the job of the nation’s chief executive to step forward with a clear and decisive plan.”

Sessions said the president also has consistently belittled Republicans for putting forward financially responsible plans.

“Not only has the president failed to lead, his administration has consistently attacked Republicans when they do step up and put forward bold ideas to reduce spending and address our spiraling debt,” Sessions said.