[Congressional Record Volume 158, Number 159 (Tuesday, December 11, 2012)]
[House]
[Page H6683]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]




                            THE FISCAL CLIFF

  The SPEAKER pro tempore. The Chair recognizes the gentleman from 
Georgia (Mr. Austin Scott) for 5 minutes.
  Mr. AUSTIN SCOTT of Georgia. Mr. Speaker, ladies and gentlemen of 
America, every day that I'm on the floor, I can't help but be reminded 
that facts are a stubborn thing, and I simply want to talk to you about 
the facts today. You see, the President and the Democratic leadership 
spent the last 4 years blaming George Bush for driving our economy into 
the ditch. Now, as President Obama drives our economy towards the 
fiscal cliff, I'd like to share with you some remarks, remind you, 
remarks that he made during his Fiscal Responsibility Summit held on 
February 23, 2009, at the White House.
  The President said:

       We cannot and will not sustain deficits like these without 
     end. Contrary to the prevailing wisdom in Washington these 
     past few years, we cannot simply spend as we please and defer 
     the consequences to the next budget, the next administration, 
     or the next generation. We're paying the price for this 
     budget right now.

  He continued:

       In 2008 alone, we paid $250 billion in interest on our 
     debt--1 in every 10 taxpayer dollars. That is more than three 
     times what we spent on education that year, more than seven 
     times what we spent on VA health care. So if we confront this 
     crisis without also confronting the deficits that helped 
     cause it, we risk sinking into another crisis down the road 
     as our interest payments rise and our obligations come due. 
     Confidence in our economy erodes, and our children and 
     grandchildren are unable to pursue their dreams because 
     they're saddled with our debts.
       That's why today, I'm pledging to cut the deficit we 
     inherited by half by the end of my first term in office. Now, 
     this will not be easy. It will require us to make difficult 
     decisions and face challenges we've long neglected. But I 
     refuse to leave our children with a debt they cannot repay. 
     That means taking responsibility for it right now, in this 
     administration, for getting our spending under control.

  Now, let's do the math, Mr. Speaker. The deficit that the President 
is talking about is this 1.4, the $1.4 trillion deficit that he's 
talking about. Now, according to his own proposal, if he gets all of 
the tax increases that he has asked for, and I want to make this clear, 
his revenue estimate right here assumes that he gets the tax increases 
that they're asking for.

                              {time}  1220

  You still have a $900 billion deficit, ladies and gentlemen. He 
promised it wouldn't be any bigger than $700 billion. That means that 
the President owes the American taxpayer $200 billion in cuts, not over 
the course of 10 years, but over this year right now, the fiscal year 
2013 that we're in.
  Mr. Speaker, the President made a pledge to cut spending not to the 
Republican Members of Congress. He doesn't even speak to us, if you 
want to know the truth of the matter. He made a pledge to cut spending 
to the citizens of the United States of America so that our children 
and grandchildren would be able to pursue their dreams instead of being 
saddled with our debts.
  Mr. Speaker, a pledge from the President of the United States to the 
citizens of this country should mean something. Instead, his plan in 
his budget, assuming his tax increases, leaves our children and 
grandchildren with a debt of more than $21 trillion. That, ladies and 
gentlemen, is something that we simply cannot allow him to do to our 
country and to our children.

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