Chaffetz: 'As the clock clicks closer'

Hatch, Lee, Chaffetz seek balanced budget

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  • Furry1993 Somewhere in Utah, UT
    July 20, 2011 8:36 a.m.

    To One Utah Taxpayer | 4:54 p.m. July 19, 2011

    I agree with the observations you make. One thing is missing, though -- it is also necessary to increase revenue.

  • mine Salt Lake City, UT
    July 19, 2011 6:00 p.m.

    Hmm, seems to me it was the GOP that threw out PAYGO, What happened?

  • One Utah Taxpayer Kearns, UT
    July 19, 2011 4:54 p.m.

    My well read observations:
    1. Raise the debt ceiling...most economists agree from a variety of institutions.
    2. Cut spending substantially over 10 years or more. (US currently borrows $125B each month.)
    3. Do NOT pass a Constitutional Amendment for a balanced budget. Pretty much would guarantee that each recession would be a depression since the gov't could not intervene in any down economy to soften the fall. Each fall would be big. However, require the president submit a balanced budget to Congress since he is the one who creates it.

  • DeltaFoxtrot West Valley, UT
    July 19, 2011 3:27 p.m.

    @carabaoU: A balanced budget amendment won't work. It would cripple the nation's ability to wage war and spur the economy in the future. Debt itself isn't the enemy, a certain percentage of it is actually necessary for things to function, but runaway spending must be put in check. I think an amendment requiring 2/3 majority vote from both houses before any further debt is allowed would be a good step.

    @armyvet48: The stock market won't fall for long before action is taken. These DC weasels are all in the pockets of Wall St... and Wall St. will only put up with their political grandstanding for so long. Notice how the TARP program was moved right on through when the markets were threatened. Be prepared to see something like that happen again.

  • armyvet48 cottonwood heights, Ut
    July 19, 2011 3:11 p.m.

    As Aug 2nd approaches the stock market falls and the price of gold rises. Both signs a fear of the future...all of our financial futures. It is time for BOTH sides to give a little and reach a reasoned compromise. That is what governing is really about...give and take. While both sides argue our 401's fall and the recovery suffers yet another "arrow" to it's heart. We need to not only decrease spending but we need to also raise revenues from all of us, wealthy and not so wealthy. Tax loopholes need to be closed. Corporations need to pay taxes too. No more "special deals" for entities, personal or business, that should be paying their fair share but are not. The government needs more "income" AND to pay out less in spending if we ever are to retire our debt or even move in that direction. Just "balancing the budget" does not really entirely address the subject of paying off our present debt. Come on your job. Actually resolve a probem...don't just delay that action until after yet another election. That is not why all of you are in DC.

  • Rifleman Salt Lake City, Utah
    July 19, 2011 3:04 p.m.

    Re: lost in DC | 11:14 a.m. July 19, 2011
    "why didn't the dems in the senate pass a budget when they had a filibuster-proof majority???"

    It's unfair to bring up a question with an obvious answer but Pagan will tell you that it is because Bush doubled the national debt.

  • carabaoU Moab, UT
    July 19, 2011 2:00 p.m.

    Blaming who is at fault is not working. Proposals have been made. Proposals have passed and failed and vetoed. That's the way the system works. If the system is broken then fix it. A balanced budget amendment is the biggest fix I see that will solve this problem for future generations.

  • DeltaFoxtrot West Valley, UT
    July 19, 2011 1:09 p.m.

    @Truth: B/c Obama spent the time he had a majority forcing Obamacare down our throats instead of solving more pressing issues.

  • WHAT NOW? Saint George, UT
    July 19, 2011 1:03 p.m.

    "slick willy's"

    President Clinton has not been in office since 2000.

    The disparaging reference to President Clinton extends the window of opportunity to mock President Bush at least until 2019.

    When are we going to "cut and cap" corporate welfare?

  • FDRfan Sugar City, ID
    July 19, 2011 12:25 p.m.

    They were too busy reveling in the tax cut for the most wealthy. The threat of losing it has them throwing hissy fits.

  • williary Kearns, UT
    July 19, 2011 12:21 p.m.

    So funny that Republicans want to take shots at Obama and the 111th Congress for not doing enough.

    Go do some research. The 111th Congress tackled health care, equal pay for equal work, financial reform, consumer protection, civil rights, and saving the economy. It was one of the most active terms of Congress as far as passing legilsation as we've seen in decades.

    Now search the 112th Congress, when Republicans grabbed the House and got the Senate below a filibuster proof majority. The 112th Congress is on pace to be one of the least productive in recent memory as measured by votes taken, bills made into laws, nominees approved. By most of those metrics, this crowd is underperforming even the "do-nothing Congress" of 1948, as Harry Truman dubbed it. The hot-temper era of Clinton impeachment in the 1990s saw more bills become law.

    Really want to hit Obama and the Democrats for not getting enough done with their majority? Facts are facts.

  • ER in EUR Belgrade, Serbia
    July 19, 2011 12:10 p.m.


    Please tell me. What are you talking about? What law, reg or statute do you follow that I do not? The internet is a great place where you can say anything you want and then disappear.

  • TRUTH Salt Lake City, UT
    July 19, 2011 12:04 p.m.

    And where is Matheson in all this tax talk......why is Chaffetz the only Utah congressman involved in the debt crisis......or is it because Matheson only knows how to spend money without a budget!

    Obama had 2 years to propose a budget...why did he wait until he had no control over the congress to all of a sudden take an interest.....he should work more and play less golf and cut down on the smoke breaks~

  • DeltaFoxtrot West Valley, UT
    July 19, 2011 11:43 a.m.

    $144 billion in cuts isn't going to be enough. It's not even a 10% cut. We really need to cut about $900 billion, but I'd settle for 500. Nobody wants to make that hard choice and really focus on cutting spending.

    Well DC, the time has come to wake up and face the reality your citizens have been living in for the past 3 years. None of us wanted to stop going out to eat, drop cable TV, buy a used car instead of a new one, shop at Ross or TJ Maxx instead of Penny's... but guess what, WE HAVE. Why? Because it was necessary to save ourselves.

    The Federal Government is going to have to do the same thing in order to save itself. Anything less than MAJOR cuts is a meaningless gesture.

  • lost in DC West Jordan, UT
    July 19, 2011 11:14 a.m.


    why didn't the dems in the senate pass a budget when they had a filibuster-proof majority???

    You can't blame cloture and filibusters for that dem failure.

  • one old man Ogden, UT
    July 19, 2011 10:51 a.m.

    The only thing more dangerous to America than Hatch and Lee is Chafetz.

  • williary Kearns, UT
    July 19, 2011 9:48 a.m.

    Here's all you need to know about Republicans in this debate.

    Last week Eric Cantor said that just getting Republicans to vote to increase the debt ceiling was a huge concession his party had to make. Thus, that was the only concession Republicans were at liberty to make, while Democrats must come the other 99% of the way to a deal.

    Apparently things have changed quickly. Those Republicans, including Mr. Cantor, voted 7 times during George W. Bush's adminstration to raise the debt ceiling. Without a single peep, without demands of debt reduction, without demands for Medicare/Medicaid cuts, without demands of protecting ridiculous tax breaks for the wealthiest Americans. President Bush said raise the ceiling, Republicans said where do I sign.

    Credibility is not something these Republicans have on their side at the moment.

  • Ok Salt Lake City, Utah
    July 19, 2011 9:21 a.m.

    Don't sweat the small stuff. These idiot's who represent us will not allow the government to default. They will raise the bar, as they have always done, just before the bell rings.

  • bluejean Farmington, UT
    July 19, 2011 8:35 a.m.

    Everytime our elected leaders decide to do anything my taxes go up. Washington should continue rendering themselves paralyzed on this issue. If the debt ceiling is not raised by August 2, it will be the first truly bipartisan effort in limiting Washington's out of control, long term spending spree. Keep fighting! Do nothing!

  • CHS 85 Sandy, UT
    July 19, 2011 8:10 a.m.

    @Mary E Petty

    I am a government employee. What "laws, rules and regulations" do I not have to follow that the rest of the "American People" have to follow? Please enlighten me.

  • lost in DC West Jordan, UT
    July 19, 2011 8:08 a.m.


    ALL of slick willy's budgets from 1995 forward originated in a repub controlled house. So if credit is due for reducing the deficit, it should go to the repubs (who went astray under bush)

    And please stop perpetuating a lie.

    Despite the repub's best efforts during slick's administration, the budget was NEVER in balance and there was NEVER a surplus. Gross federal debt INCREASED every year during slick's administration. SS receipts were more than SS expenditures, so the government borrowed from SS to meet it's shortfall.

    The closest we came was about $23-26 billion deficit, met with excess SS funds.

    the last tinme gross federal debt actually decreased was 1969.

  • FDRfan Sugar City, ID
    July 19, 2011 7:55 a.m.

    What is new about this idea? Decouple the balanced budget plan with the don't raise taxes on the wealthy pledge and its worth considering. But Clinton did not need the amendment to balance the budget. He had a surplus.

  • Mary E Petty Sandy, UT
    July 19, 2011 7:55 a.m.

    What is good for the goose is good for the gander. Whatever plan is implemented must include making Congress, the President and all governmental employees and military subject to the same laws, rules and regulations imposed on the American People. We are all on the same ship; there is no first class or third class; we all get a life jacket and a life boat on the Good Ship America.

  • lost in DC West Jordan, UT
    July 19, 2011 7:43 a.m.

    The article starts with a falsehood.

    "With only two weeks until the federal government enters financial default on Aug. 2"

    the government need not enter financial default. Every two weeks they get money from my paycheck, as they do from most people's paychecks. Pay the interest due on the debt first, before spending on anything else, and there will be no default on the debt.

    The federal government is due to take in $200 billion in taxes in August. that's enough to service the current debt; pay the military, social security (BO is just fear mongering when he says SS checks may not go out), medicare, and medicaid; and still have $39 billion left over.

    just like anyone who actually runs on a budget, instead of spending on anything and everything they can to buy votes, the BO misadminsitration would then have to prioritize where that remaining $39 billion went.

  • DonO Draper, UT
    July 19, 2011 7:22 a.m.

    I continue to wonder how members of Congress...Chaffetz included...are going to share the pain. If Social Security and Medicare/Medicaid payments stop will they forfeit their government-provided salaries and health care? Will Congressional retirees who draw their retirement and benefits from the Federal treasury be affected? I tire of the soapbox rhetoric. If Congress had to share the pain with the rest of us they'd find a solution to this mess in no time.

  • Everest American Fork, UT
    July 19, 2011 7:21 a.m.

    The supposedly mature senior senator Orrin Hatch is now in full pander mode, working tirelessly for the support of the tea party while he stands alongside the unbending and eventually irrelevant Lee and Chaffetz. The problem is that what is needed now is actually what Hatch should be perfect for- a genuine statesman who will risk political defeat in order to find a compromise. Hatch could sign on to Coburn's bill and cut the deficit by 10 trillion. But Hatch won't do that because he is scared of closing tax loopholes. Please, Senator Hatch, show us why we should keep an experienced legislator in Washington. Show us how to get things done. No more political games.

  • fanUVU Orem, UT
    July 19, 2011 6:42 a.m.

    I marvel that the DesNews continues to pander to Chaffetz. True, he is a leading voice in the battle but even the DesNews must recognize that Chaffetz is all about Chaffetz, first and foremost, and has been since his football days at BYU.

  • toosmartforyou Farmington, UT
    July 19, 2011 6:26 a.m.

    The major mistake the Founding Fathers made when establishing te government was to give the purse strings to the US Congress.

  • IdahoStranger NEWDALE, ID
    July 19, 2011 6:10 a.m.

    The government has overused its credit card and now it can't make the payment without borrowing more money so the solution is to use the credit card some more?

    A large and ever increasing item in the budget is interest payments and now they want to further increase this item?

    Just as there were those in the pre-existence who favored saving all souls by forcing them to do good, so today there are those who favor helping all mankind by forcing all to have charity. Forcefully taking from those who have and giving to those who do not or will not will not result in security for anyone.

    There are simply some things that government should not be doing and we are busily engaged in doing just that. There is no solution until we return to limited government.

    Do we really think that raising the national debt will solve anything? Anyone who votes to raise the debt limit should be voted out at the next election because they do not understand the basic principles of good government. We cannot survive if they remain in office.

    Tell your reps to vote NO and cut up the credit card!

  • JustGordon Cottonwood Heights, UT
    July 19, 2011 4:28 a.m.

    Reliance on Utah's finest to "save the day" in Washington for all the American people, laughable. Chaffetz has neither the political savvy nor the brains to be an agent for reasonable change and compromise. The solution is both a cut in spending and an increase in taxes/elimination of tax loopholes for corporations/the rich. Trickle down economics and tax cuts for the rich have done nothing to increase available jobs only line the pockets of corporations/the rich with more money. Our Utah trio will want to resolve this issue by cutting the benefits of those who can least afford it, the aged, the poor and the sick. After all in Utah we have a long tradition of doing just that on the state level.

  • DN Subscriber Cottonwood Heights, UT
    July 18, 2011 10:51 p.m.

    Pay now, or pay later! It will be painful in any case.

    If we don't raise the debt ceiling our credit will be badly hurt, causing an immediate interest rate increase for government borrowing and for private loans (mortgages, cars, credit cards, etc). That is unaffordable.

    If we increase the debt limit and still fail to live within our means, our debt will continue to skyrocket and that too will kick in huge increases in interest rates. That is unaffordable.

    The ONLY solution is to stop the spending. Spending must be cut from 2011 and 2012 budgets equal to the amount of any debt ceiling increase.

    Any other "solution" is smoke and mirrors and pretending that future Congresses and Presidents will be more prudent than the incumbents (a very low bar indeed!).

    So far, we have an actual plan from Rep. Ryan, another from Sen. Coburn, but nothing but rhetoric and threats and scare tactics from Obama and his party.

    Time is running out, and the only solution is to stop the spending!

    Balanced Budget Amendments are meaningless and unenforcable, sheer political posturing and will do nothing. Only cutting spending will end the problem.

    Do it! Now!