WASHINGTON - Rep. Scott Franklin (FL-18) today issued the following statement after voting in support of the Fiscal Responsibility Act:
“I came to Congress vowing to cut spending, reduce government bureaucracy, strengthen our military, and make this institution function the way the Constitution intended. I also committed to lead and govern responsibly. The bill we passed tonight was not the bill I wanted, considering the Republican “Limit, Save, Grow Act” we passed several weeks ago didn’t cut enough, in my opinion. But after considering the hand we had to play, listening to the arguments of my Republican colleagues on both sides of the matter, and weighing the consequences of action versus inaction, I determined this was the best deal we can forge at this time.
“Defaulting on our financial obligations is simply not an option. The full faith and credit of the United States must not be jeopardized by failing to make good on our incurred debt. My colleagues and I committed that we would not allow that to happen. However, we were also adamant that we would not continue down the well-worn path of ever-increasing federal debt with no efforts to change our spending habits. That is the insanity that has defined the federal government now for decades – under both Democrat AND Republican Administrations. President Biden and the Democrats repeatedly insisted they would only accept a clean debt ceiling increase with NO modifications to spending. We dragged them to the negotiating table and forced them to accept concessions. While certainly not nearly everything we wanted, it IS a win for the American people. How so? Here are some FACTS on this bill, which:
- Cuts over $2.1 trillion in government spending over the next decade, without cutting Social Security, Medicare, Veterans, or Defense. This is the largest deficit reduction measure in American history.
- Nixes the total FY23 staffing funding request for IRS agents. And we will do the same in FY24.
- Claws back over $28 billion in unobligated Covid funds.
- Slashes $400 million from the CDC “Global Health Fund” that sends taxpayer money to China.
- Reins in Executive Branch overreach by signing into law for the first time a statutory “Administrative Pay-Go,” meaning for every dollar the White House wants to spend via executive action, it must also cut a dollar. This, alone, would have saved the American taxpayers over $1.5 trillion in Biden’s first 2 ½ years.
- Unleashes American energy by streamlining the permitting process – the first reforms to the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) since 1984.
- Expands work requirements for able-bodied individuals without dependents from 49 to 54 in order to receive SNAP benefits. Reduces waivers and closes loopholes often used by states to exempt their citizens from SNAP and TANF work requirements. These measures will save taxpayer dollars, get Americans back to work, and grow the economy.
- Reduces bureaucracy by codifying into law President Trump’s “One Federal Decision Framework.”
- Restarts student loan payments while we wait for results from the pending Supreme Court case that would render Biden’s Student Loan Forgiveness plan unconstitutional. This will save taxpayers $5 billion a month in the meantime.
“And one of the most consequential, yet least talked about provisions:
- Compels Congress to function as the Constitution intended, by imposing a 1% across the board annual spending cut until Congress passes all 12 Appropriations bills each year. Congress hasn’t passed all 12 since 1996.
“As a member of the House Appropriations Committee, I understand that what we DON’T spend money on is just as important as what we do. We have the power to – and we WILL – defund this administration’s spending requests for WOKE agenda items, bloated bureaucracies and rogue government actors who refuse Congress’s right and obligation to provide oversight. Nothing makes bureaucrats sit up and take notice faster than cutting their funding.
“Here’s the reality of where we are: Republicans hold a razor thin majority in the House. We don’t control the Senate. We don’t control the White House. In such a divided government, it is a certainty that any bill of consequence will require negotiation and bipartisan compromise in order to pass. As they say in sports, “take the W when you have it.” I voted to take the best win we can realistically achieve TODAY. And you can rest assured that I’ll be back at it again tomorrow, fighting like hell to make this federal government perform better on behalf of the American people whose interests it represents.”
*Note: The Fiscal Responsibility Act passed by a vote of 314-117.