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C4L to Congress: Hold the line on defense spending

Campaign for Liberty has joined a collation of fiscally conservative organizations on a letter to the House Budget Committee Chairman Tom Price and Senate Committee Chairman Mike Enzi requesting that the final House-Senate budget conference contain the language in the Senate bill allowing any Representative or Senator to raise a "point of order" against any legislation that increases Overseas Contingency Operation (OCO) spending.  Hard as it is to believe, there are some in Congress you are not satisfied with the $58 billion in OCO (or “global war on terrorism”) funding provided in the official budget.

The point of order allows any member to object to a bill providing an increase in OCO spending, thus forcing the Congressional leadership to either reform the spending increase or make every member vote on whether to suspend the budget rules in order to further increase the Pentagon's OCO slush fund.

A copy of the letter to Chairman Price is available here and the letter to Chairman Enzi is available here, and the text of both letters is reprinted below. Campaign for Liberty continues to work for Real Cuts, Right Now.

 

 On behalf of the undersigned organizations and our combined memberships, we urge you to draft a fiscal year (FY) 2016 Budget Resolution that maintains the budget caps and savings promised to taxpayers under the Budget Control Act (BCA) of 2011.

Recent news articles point to an effort by some to get Congress to break the caps set for Pentagon spending. But to be clear, BCA spending levels for FY16 – in both defense and non-defense discretionary spending – actually exceed the levels enacted for FY15. The President’s proposal to jettison the caps and increase Pentagon spending by roughly $35 billion more than the approximately half trillion dollars set by the BCA is fiscally irresponsible and unnecessary.

Although some have maligned the BCA, its budget caps have effectively curbed excessive spending. Any effort to modify it must be done in a way that keeps promises made to taxpayers. Fiscal discipline is needed across the federal government and that includes defense spending.
We also understand there is pressure to make an end-run around the BCA caps by increasing the already generous $51 billion requested for the emergency Overseas Contingency Operations (OCO) account. As you know, OCO has already gained a reputation as a slush fund as more and more base budget items are being funded through this “off budget” account. We urge you to resist these efforts and to scrutinize the Administration’s use of OCO.
Much of the recent press on the Pentagon budget revolves around the specter of the return of across-the-board sequestration cuts supposedly wreaking havoc on defense planning. The simple fact is that, if the budget hews to the spending levels set out in the BCA, there are no “meat axe” across-the-board-cuts, just responsible budgeting.
Again, we urge you to keep promises the President and Congress made to taxpayers and draft the fiscal year 2016 Budget Resolution to meet the Budget Control Act requirements.
For further information, please contact Wendy Jordan at Wendytaxpayer.net, or (202)-546-8500 x. 114.
Sincerely,
Americans for Tax Reform
Campaign for Liberty
Coalition to Reduce Spending
Council for Citizens Against Government Waste
National Taxpayers Union
Niskanen Center
R Street Institute
Taxpayers for Common Sense
Taxpayers Protection Alliance

 


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