Dr. Benishek: “End of Year Partisan Gamesmanship Hurts America”

WASHINGTON, DC:  Congressman Dan Benishek (MI-01) today cosponsored the “Government Shutdown Prevention Act” (H.R. 3583), a bill aimed at preventing federal government shutdowns and reducing federal spending in the event Congress fails to pass a budget.

“The fact that we are facing a government shutdown for the sixth time in 12 months is compelling evidence the Congress I joined in January is dysfunctional.  Sadly, Washington partisanship and rancor continues to keep Congress from doing the people’s business,” said Benishek, a freshman representative from Iron River.

The “Government Shutdown Prevention Act” would stipulate that if a budget does not pass the House and Senate prior to the end of a fiscal year, an automatic spending plan would be enacted with an across-the-board 1 percent reduction on all discretionary spending.

“Time and time again, Congress has demonstrated it is unable to fulfill its Constitutional responsibility of managing America’s tax dollars.  The sad fact is, Congress has passed spending bills on time only four times in the last 59 years,” added Benishek.

H.R. 3583 would motivate future Congresses to actually pass a budget, by enforcing additional reductions of 1 percent every three months during the fiscal year until a long-term budget is adopted. 

“While short term resolutions might be the politically easy thing to do, I believe the American people deserve more from their federal government.  I am not a budget expert, but I know, as do people in Northern Michigan, that short term spending bills and continuous threats of shutdowns, is no way to run a government,” said Benishek.  

House Budget Chairman, Paul Ryan (WI-01), also praised H.R. 3583, stating, “When Washington can be honest about the true size and scope of our fiscal problems, only then can we engage in a much-needed debate over the nation’s fiscal future and what kind of country we want to hand down to our kids and grandkids.”

Dr. Benishek has represented Michigan’s First Congressional District since being sworn into office on January 5, 2011, 344 days ago.  H.R. 3583 currently has 15 cosponsors, including Reps. Paul Ryan (WI-01), Reid Ribble (WI-08) and Jeb Hensarling (TX-05).

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To read H.R. 3583, click here.

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