National debt spikes to $31 trillion, but we can stop it before it nears the abyss
Our national debt has for the first time surpassed $31 trillion with no signs of slowing down thanks to reckless spending by both sides of the aisle. President Barack Obama warned us in 2008 of the dangers of a runaway national debt. But if this were truly an issue that Democrats cared about, you would no doubt see riots and demonstrations in the streets. Alas, Democrats are not concerned with spending apart from when they find use for it as a bad faith talking point. And Republicans? They are not much better. At least their new Commitment to America pays lip service to getting the national debt under control, but recent history tells us they are just as liable for the mess we are in.
Both parties should heed the 2010 warning of the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Admiral Michael Mullen that “the most significant threat to our national security is our debt.” Whether it be broken Republican promises or Democrat spending sprees, Americans are tired of the Washington status quo. The federal government still has the opportunity to reverse its trajectory before the debt spirals out of control, but the time to act is now.
Americans live with the consequences of Washington’s inability to get its fiscal house in order daily as prices surge and inflation is at a 40-year high. The negative effects of such reckless spending are compounded by rising interest rates. This ultimately burdens hardworking American families and businesses with higher prices and a weaker dollar.
Apart from the 2013 Tea Party spending cuts, since the turn of the century, the federal government has chosen to ignore the simplest principle regarding debt: don’t spend more money than you receive. One would think that our nation’s elected officials would understand this rule; however, it is clear that members of Congress, on both sides of the aisle, are ignoring basic economics and continue to drive our country into the abyss with unchecked spending.
When Barack Obama entered the presidency, the national debt was $10.6 trillion. On Inauguration Day in 2017, the debt was hovering just under $20 trillion at $19.9 trillion. Now, five years later, almost at the halfway point of the Biden administration’s first term, the nation’s debt has reached a new all-time high of $31 trillion.
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With each new administration comes new spending priorities, but there is no longer fiscal accountability between parties within our political system. The Republican Party used to be the party of fiscal responsibility, but in recent decades the Grand Old Party has looked the other way, refusing to hold those who propose egregious spending packages, forcing the American taxpayer to foot the bill, accountable. How have we reached this point? The answer is simple, the U.S. has an addiction to debt.
Frivolous spending will continue until Americans hold their elected officials accountable for their actions. I’ve been a part of the grassroots movement for my entire career. I came to Washington, D.C., because I care about spending. I was here in the Tea Party years when we brought the Washington establishment to the table for cuts, and we made progress by forcing them to eliminate earmarks and other discretionary spending items out of the federal budget. Sadly, in recent years Democrats have brought back much of the careless spending with minimal pushback from Republicans.
It is time Congress prioritizes the American taxpayer and ensure that their hard-earned tax dollars are being spent wisely, in ways that will bolster our nation’s economic growth and in ways that will help reduce the size of the government.
Inflation consistently ranks as the most pressing concern for voters today. The grassroots are energized to take on spending. Republicans, with a new majority come January, should take note and make clear that unchecked federal spending is no longer acceptable. It is not too late to reverse the course of dangerous spending decisions, but the time to act is now.