Rep. Brady Introduces CUTS Act of 2011

Congressman Kevin Brady (R-TX) has introduced legislation called the Cut Unsustainable and Top-Heavy Spending (CUTS) Act of 2011. It includes numerous cuts recommended by the President's Fiscal Commission as well as terminations requested by both the Bush and Obama administrations. All told, this bill includes over $40 billion in single-year cuts and $150 billion in deficit reduction over five years. It mirrors the package introduced by Senator Coburn (R-OK) to offset some of the costs of the December tax cut deal. Though Senator Coburn's amendment did not succeed in the last Congress, it has new life in the 112th Congress.

In his press release, Rep. Brady said: 

"Our economy won't grow until businesses and families have some faith that Washington will get their finances in order. I recognize that these are serious savings so I expect serious opposition - but there can be no sacred cows. If someone objects to these cuts then I expect them to substitute another savings of equal or greater value. We simply can't allow these dangerous deficits to continue." 

The CUTS Act calls for a 15 percent cut in White House and Congressional budgets, pay freezes for federal employees for three years, reducing the federal workforce by 10 percent, reducing government expenditures on printing, travel, vehicle fleet, and excess federal property. It also cuts defense spending on procurement, research and development, testing, and evaluation. Further cuts touch the areas of diplomacy, environment, education, energy research, and communications. A full list of the spending cuts and their savings to the budget is available here.

Spending Reductions One-Year Savings (Billions) Five-Year Savings (Billions)
Reduce DoD Procurement by 15 Percent 12 61
Freeze Pay for Federal Employees and DoD Civilians for Three Years 5 20
Require the Sale of Excess Federal Property  N/A 15
Reduce Federal Workforce by 10 Percent 3 13
Reduce Research, Development, Testing & Evaluation at DoD by 10 Percent 7 7
Rescind 5 Percent from DOJ for Wasteful Activities 1 6
Slow the Growth of Foreign Aid  N/A 5
15 Percent Immediate Cut in WH and Congressional Budgets 1 4
Collect Unpaid Taxes from Federal Government Employees 3 3
All Other 12 20
Total 44 154

Note: Numbers rounded to nearest billion.

We strongly applaud this measure to restrain the growth of government spending. Serious proposals like Rep. Brady's are essential to getting our fiscal house in order. We hope this bill will get the consideration it deserves and hopefully will be brought to a vote in the near future.