Federal government has spending problem

Now the bare-fisted battle for money begins: President Donald Trump is recommending a $4.1 trillion federal budget. There is something in it — or, rather, not in it — to anger just about every member of Congress.

Both senators and House of Representatives members from Minnesota and Iowa already are on record with their criticisms. Some of the cuts, such as proposed cuts to Medicaid, are generic. Others are parochial, involving government programs that affect specific regions.

Beyond any doubt, the budget Congress eventually will adopt will be strikingly different than the one Trump has proposed.

But we simply must reduce federal spending. It is not an option.

The federal government has a terrible spending problem. To pay for it, it imposes high taxes that hurt American businesses and the American people, taking away from them the ability to make their own decisions and plan for their futures. Yet despite the greedy hand of the tax collectors, the government spends even more than it takes in, by borrowing recklessly, so much so that the national debt now stands at $20 trillion. The government pays $250 billion annually for interest on that debt. What a massive waste. Some of the interest payments to go foreign competitors, like China.

The government not only needs to start living within its means (matching expenditures to revenues), it needs to lower taxes and lower the debt. That means it has to do a much better job prioritizing spending.

It’s time for Congress to declare war on its own desire to relentlessly spend. Our lawmakers, with support from President Trump, should stand together and unite around the promise of financial sanity, whether every citizen likes it or not.

— New Ulm Journal