Fiscal Responsibility

A Call to Sacrifice for Future Generations of Americans

I totally agree with the Republican Platform (written for the 2016 election and upheld in 2020) regarding the importance of reducing the federal debt. I can’t say it any better than they do. And yet, as Republicans held the presidency and both chambers of Congress from 2016-18, deficit spending continued at a greater rate than during the Obama Administration. The Republican platform states, “A strong economy is one key to debt reduction, but spending restraint is a necessary component that must be vigorously pursued.” That spending restraint was never implemented.

Great boasts were made about how good the economy was doing, but the recipe for bringing about that “great economy” was a very simply one:  Lower taxes but keep the spending going.  It does not take a professional economist to know that following that recipe will bring about a “great economy” (fatter wallets) for the short term but was a huge gamble for the long term; a gamble we lost in a big-time way when Covid-19 hit.   That is why I do not believe in fiscal gambling but am a true fiscal conservative, operating under the simple premise that the current budget in spending should only be equal to the current projected revenue.  This contrasts with knowingly budgeting more spending than projected revenue hoping the present deficits will be made up for in future years through more tax revenue being brought in as individual Americans financially prosper.  The latter may sound good on paper but as is the case with any gambling, it does not consider unforeseen events.  

I will be honest with you and tell you that if the conservative fiscal policy I advocate for is implemented, it will most likely result in significant financial sacrifices being made by us and possibly for a long period of time.  However, I believe that the alternative is to postpone the inevitable and compound the economic suffering that will be faced by future generations of Americans.  In other words, we must be willing to “take the bad tasting medicine now” in hopes that our children and their children will have the same opportunities that have been afforded to us. 

In order to balance the budget so that not only one side of the economic spectrum takes a direct hit, I will support a plan that utilizes a balanced approach.  Ideally, I support prioritizing cutting federal government spending as the Republicans do in their platform as to what is the constitutional role of the federal government.   Those budget items which are not a part of the constitutional role of the government should be the first to go.   However, if agreement cannot be reached, I am not opposed to across-the-board percentage-based spending cuts.  At the same time, in order to bring in more revenue, if there is a way to cut deductions and close loopholes for both corporations and high-income earners, I will support that also.

As you contemplate which direction to go, I will remind all of us of the words of Jesus, “Take care, and be on your guard against all covetousness, for one’s life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions” (Luke 12:15).  As a follower of Jesus, I believe He sacrificed His life that we may gain ours and thus we must be willing to do likewise.  The good news is that on the 3rd day, He rose from the dead.  If enough Americans are willing to sacrifice for others, I believe in due time, our nation will rise from economic despair also.    

Doug Bell for US Congress - Alabama's 3rd Distrcit
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