WASHINGTON, D.C.—U.S. Sens. Johnny Isakson, R-Ga., and Saxby Chambliss, R-Ga., voted Wednesday for a constitutional amendment requiring Congress to balance the federal budget, a measure aimed at reducing the nation’s debt and reining in federal spending.
The vote comes as a result of the Aug. 2, 2011, compromise to raise the nation’s debt limit that included a mandate that the House and Senate vote on a balanced budget amendment by the end of the year.
S.J.Res.10, which Isakson and Chambliss both co-sponsored, failed in the Senate today by a vote of 47 to 53, with both senators voting in favor of the measure. The bill was introduced by Senator Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, earlier this year.
“Facts are stubborn, and there are three facts that hold true in our country’s current fiscal situation: The federal government is spending too much, promising too much and borrowing too much,” said Isakson. “I support a balanced budget amendment because it forces Congress to just say ‘no’ to spending too much, and it forces the Congress to recognize that we can only promise that which we can afford.”
“The current and projected imbalance between government spending and revenues is unsustainable. Washington has an obligation to say ‘enough is enough,’” said Chambliss. “We must stop spending money we don’t have and stop playing politics with America’s future. This legislation will force Congress and the administration to put our nation on a path toward fiscal sustainability.”
Currently, 48 states have some form of a balanced budget requirement. By law, the state of Georgia must operate under a balanced budget.
Isakson and Chambliss also co-sponsored a similar proposal, S.J.Res.3, which was introduced by Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, and Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, in January of this year.