Senate Takes First Step Toward Fixing Our Debt
Moments ago, the Senate passed the Inflation Reduction Act. The following is a statement from Maya MacGuineas, president of the Committee for a Responsible Budget:
The Inflation Reduction Act will be the largest deficit reduction law in over a decade, assuming it is ultimately signed into law. This legislation represents an important first step toward fixing our debt and helping the Federal Reserve fight inflation.
The Inflation Reduction Act will reduce near and long-term deficits while still enacting a number of policies related to energy, climate, health care, and the tax code. To those concerned with the nation’s fiscal situation, it is a major victory. It is a model for how we can get multiple things done responsibly without punting on the payfors.
It has been so long since we had a significant deficit reduction package that 60 percent of our federal lawmakers have never experienced one. This package is important not only for the savings it generates, but for the example it sets that when something is worth doing, it is worth paying for, and that deficit reduction should not just be an empty talking point but an actual commitment.
Senator Manchin especially deserves credit and praise for steering this legislation from a budget-busting monstrosity to this fiscally responsible and economically important package. I cannot think of the last time a bill started as a reckless and unpaid-for blueprint and through the negotiating process did a 180 to become something that would actually strengthen our balance sheet.
With $24 trillion in debt and a dangerous dependency on borrowing, there is more work to be done, but this bill is an important step in the right direction – the first in a very long time. America cannot be a strong nation when our fiscal foundation is weak. Going forward, policymakers should make a commitment to pay for their policies and make sure deficit reduction becomes a priority rather than a punt. They most certainly should not undo this good work by returning to the norm of borrowing for their priorities and asking our kids and grandkids to foot the bill.
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