(Washington, D.C.) – U.S. Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) today applauded the first meeting of President Obama’s National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform and urged the group to move forward and help begin a national conversation on reducing our debt and deficit.
“As families across Washington state look for ways to tighten our belts, leaders in Washington, D.C. need to redouble our efforts to get federal spending under control and reduce our debt and deficit.
“It’s important to remember that under President Clinton we took tough votes to get the deficit under control and by the time he left office our country had record surpluses. Eight years later, after the Bush Administration’s disastrous economic policies including unpaid for tax cuts for the wealthy and two unpaid- for wars, our country is in a much different position.
“Unfortunately, there are no easy answers and no silver bullets to bringing down the debt. But, I do believe it’s time for a serious conversation with the American people about our priorities. I am hopeful that President Obama’s Bipartisan Fiscal Commission will help us have this important national dialogue.
“Under the Bush Administration, Americans were told we could have it all – the truth is that we must decide what investments are the most critical to our economic strength in the future. I believe we have to invest here at home, in our workers, our transportation systems, our country’s innovative research and development, and in our children’s education. I also believe we have to continue our efforts to provide tax relief to middle class families and small businesses. Those are things we know will strengthen our economy and make our country more competitive long-term.
“I also support a pay-as-you-go approach to spending that means we're being responsible today and not burdening our grandchildren with new debt tomorrow. And as a member of the Senate Budget and Appropriations Committees I am looking to cut programs that are ineffective or are no longer needed, reduce waste and re-evaluate the short-sighted Bush tax cuts.
“I look forward to the recommendations of the President’s National Commission. I urge them to move forward quickly and help us all continue a national conversation on reducing our debt and ensuring the long-term strength of our nation.”