(House of Representatives - November 28, 1995)

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[Pages H13707-H13708]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office []


  The SPEAKER pro tempore. Under a previous order of the House, the 
gentleman from Hawaii [Mr. Abercrombie] is recognized for 5 minutes.
  Mr. ABERCROMBIE. Mr. Speaker, I am going to begin a series of, I do 
not know if they can be called lectures, tonight; this is by way of 
introduction; but certainly a series of observations on what is 
ostensibly taking place tonight, which is presumably the first meeting 
with respect to balancing the budget.
  Mr. Speaker, I have been on the floor here previously indicating to 
you and to my colleagues and to the American people that the budget 
that has been presented to us is not going to be a balanced budget, 
certainly not a balanced budget in the sense that most Americans 
understand it to be. This is because we are going to have a category 
called off-budget spending.
  Now the average person and the average household who has to deal with 
their budget does not begin to accept this kind of terminology, and the 
fact is that Speaker Gingrich has indicated over and over again that he 
wants to have a balanced budget in 7 years, and he wants honest 
numbers. Well, I am perfectly willing to deal with that situation. I 
would like to approach it from a different perspective, and I will be 
discussing that in the days to come as well as to what that might be as 
an alternative.
  But what is before us now very frankly is not honest numbers, not 
honest numbers as people understand them. I hope that we will be able 
to get a much broader discussion under way throughout the Nation as to 
what constitutes this balanced budget. If the Speaker wants to have 
honest numbers, then I think he needs to come down here on the floor 
and indicate that he is going to take money from the Social Security 
Trust Fund in order to do this balancing. That is where it is going to 
come from.
  I will use the figures of the Congressional Budget Office. This is 
not something that I am going to be making up because it suits me. 
There has been an insistence that the Congressional Budget Office 
figures be used.
  Now, I will indicate to you, Mr. Speaker, that the Congressional 
Budget Office will confirm that in order for the budget, as presented 
by the majority, to be balanced that it must take from the Social 
Security Trust Fund upward of $636 billion plus interest, so that in 
the year 2002, 7 years from now, when the majority is saying that the 
budget will be balanced, those of you who expect to be able to draw on 
Social Security will find that there will be a gigantic IOU for almost 
$1 trillion.

  Now I am only one person so far, but I believe, if you have the truth 
on your side, that it will out. Dozens and dozens and dozens of Members 
can come down on this floor and say they are going to balance the 
budget in 7 years, and I will maintain that unless they can explain how 
they are going to pay the almost $1 trillion that they have taken from 
Social Security to pay for it, they cannot do it.
  You need only look at the budget document itself and it will show 
every year a deficit. The budget document of the House indicates that 
starting this year there will be a deficit, and each year that deficit 
has to be accounted for.
  No. 4; this is from the conference report of the 104th Congress, 
first session, concurrent resolution in the budget proposal for that 
year, 1996, presented in June of this year. The fourth sequence, 
deficits. For the purpose of the enforcement of this resolution the 
amount of the deficits are as follows: Fiscal year 1996, $245 billion, 
listing on up to the year 2002, $108 billion.
  How is it possible for the Speaker or anyone else presenting the 
budget formula for the press, for the American people, to say that the 
budget is going to be balanced if by the conference report itself there 
is a $108 billion deficit? Very simple. You take $115 billion from 
Social Security, from the trust fund, and wonder of wonders, you come 
up with a $10 billion surplus.
  In the days to come, Mr. Speaker, I am going to be examining what 
this is all about and what it means.
  Now the average family, when they are being told that the budget is 
going to be balanced in 7 years and told that that is a good thing for 
the United States, has no idea that Social Security is being attacked, 
and as I have indicated, Mr. Speaker, and I appreciate 

[[Page H 13708]]
this opportunity to make this introduction, in the days to come I will 
detail for you and for my colleagues and the American public how there 
is no balanced budget, how we are raiding the Social Security Trust 
Fund to mask the deficit that will actually exist in 2002.