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CONCURRENT RESOLUTION ON THE BUDGET FOR FISCAL YEAR 2015
(House of Representatives - April 08, 2014)

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[Pages H3023-H3039]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]




        CONCURRENT RESOLUTION ON THE BUDGET FOR FISCAL YEAR 2015


                             General Leave

  Mr. RYAN of Wisconsin. Madam Speaker, I ask unanimous consent that 
all Members may have 5 legislative days in which to revise and extend 
their remarks and include extraneous material on H. Con. Res. 96.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. Is there objection to the request of the 
gentleman from Wisconsin?
  There was no objection.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. Pursuant to House Resolution 544 and rule 
XVIII, the Chair declares the House in the Committee of the Whole House 
on the state of the Union for the consideration of the concurrent 
resolution, H. Con. Res. 96.
  The Chair appoints the gentleman from Washington (Mr. Hastings) to 
preside over the Committee of the Whole.

                              {time}  1521


                     In the Committee of the Whole

  Accordingly, the House resolved itself into the Committee of the 
Whole House on the state of the Union for the consideration of the 
concurrent resolution (H. Con. Res. 96) establishing the budget for the 
United States Government for fiscal year 2015 and setting forth 
appropriate budgetary levels for fiscal years 2016 through 2024, with 
Mr. Hastings of Washington in the chair.
  The Clerk read the title of the bill.
  The CHAIR. Pursuant to the rule, the concurrent resolution is 
considered read the first time.
  General debate shall not exceed 4 hours, with 3 hours confined to the 
congressional budget, equally divided and controlled by the chair and 
ranking minority member of the Committee on the Budget, and 1 hour on 
the subject of economic goals and policies, equally divided and 
controlled by the gentleman from Texas (Mr. Brady) and the gentlewoman 
from New York (Mrs. Maloney), or their designees.
  The gentleman from Wisconsin (Mr. Ryan) and the gentleman from 
Maryland (Mr. Van Hollen) each will control 90 minutes of debate on the 
congressional budget.
  The Chair recognizes the gentleman from Wisconsin.
  Mr. RYAN of Wisconsin. Mr. Chairman, I yield myself such time as I 
may consume.
  Mr. Chairman, I am here to rise in support of H. Con. Res. 96, for 
the fiscal year 2015.
  This is the fourth year we have done this--this being bringing a 
budget to the floor to balance the budget and pay down the national 
debt.
  This is exactly what our economy needs today. We ask the 
Congressional Budget Office to look at this kind of deficit reduction. 
What would it do? Well, it is very clear that it would promote economic 
growth.
  In 2024, economic output would be 1.8 percent higher than it 
otherwise would be. What does that mean? That means by getting our 
fiscal house in order, by balancing our budget, paying off our debt, 
and reducing the deficit, take-home pay for Americans will be $1,100 
higher than it otherwise would be if we don't do something like this. 
That is just part of our budget.
  We also call for more job creation, economic growth policies like tax 
reform, and energy development. All of these things would help get our 
economy back on track.
  I also understand that there is a lot of confusion about what is 
going on in our budget. I would like to spend a few moments sort of 
clarifying and clearing up some of that confusion.
  First, our budget does repeal ObamaCare. Let me say it again. Our 
budget does repeal ObamaCare because we think it is going to do great 
damage to our economy, to our budget, to health care. We don't keep the 
tax hikes in ObamaCare. Instead, we propose revenue neutral 
comprehensive tax reform. Our critics like to claim we are keeping it. 
What we are saying is let's scrap this Tax Code in favor of a better 
Tax Code, including replacing ObamaCare taxes with pro-growth tax 
reform to create jobs, increase take-home pay, and get this economy 
growing.
  Second, we end the raid on Medicare. The dirty little secret that the 
other side won't want to talk about is the fact that they turned 
Medicare into a piggy bank for ObamaCare. They raided $716 billion from 
Medicare to pay for ObamaCare. We say that those savings from Medicare 
need to stay with Medicare to make it more solvent, and if some of 
those savings from Medicare are doing damage to the Medicare provider 
network, like reducing access to things like Medicare Advantage, then 
we have a mechanism in here to make sure that we can fix that, just 
like we did for the SGR, otherwise known as the ``doc fix.''
  We think we need to save and strengthen this program, not only so 
that it is there intact for those in the near retirement, but for 
future generations who are facing a bankrupt program if we don't do 
something to reform it.
  Second, we don't slash the safety net. If anything, we strengthen the 
safety net.
  This administration has made all sorts of promises that it has no way 
of keeping, or it has made all sorts of promises and it is not telling 
us in any way how they are going to keep these promises. It has 
promised major expansions in programs like Medicaid and Pell grants. 
How they plan to pay for it, we have no idea. We refuse to be complicit 
with the demise of these programs.
  We spend $3.5 trillion over the next 10 years on Medicaid. Under our 
budget, program spending will continue to rise by population plus 
inflation. We grow the program each and every year after fiscal year 
2016 onward. We simply slow the growth rate by giving Governors and 
State legislators more flexibility to customize these programs to meet 
the unique needs of their populations instead of cramming down their 
throats some one-size-fits-all Washington-knows-best approach, which 
has been failing the Medicare population in our health care provider 
network.
  This budget spends $600 billion over the next 10 years on food 
stamps. It is a program that has quadrupled since 2002. We propose to 
give Governors more flexibility so that they can customize this program 
to meet the needs of their populations, but not until 2019, until CBO 
says the economy will have recovered by then.
  CBO says that the Pell grant is going bankrupt. It is going to face a 
fiscal shortfall in 2016 and every year thereafter. So instead of 
making all these Pell promises that the government has no way of 
keeping, the budget maintains the current Pell award, $5,730, 
throughout each of the next 10 years and funds it.
  Our budget all told cuts $5.1 trillion in spending over the next 10 
years. We do this by cutting waste, by cutting abuse, by stopping the 
age-old Washington practice of spending money we just don't have, and 
by making much needed reforms to government programs.

[[Page H3024]]

  Our critics call this draconian. Look at it this way. On the current 
path, we are set to spend $48 trillion of hardworking taxpayer dollars 
or borrow it from the next generation--$48 trillion over the next 10 
years. Under this path, we will spend $43 trillion.
  By contrast, under the current path, Federal Government spending is 
slated to rise by 5.2 percent on average for the next decade. Under 
this budget, it will rise by 3.5 percent over the next decade. Hardly 
draconian.
  Mr. Chairman, there is nothing compassionate about making promises 
that the government cannot keep. When that bill comes due, it is going 
to hurt the vulnerable, the first and the worst, and the voiceless. 
This is why we need to get spending under control.
  Let me show you what we are proposing in a nutshell. The red shows 
you our national debt. Our national debt is on course to hit 
catastrophic levels. Our national debt is going to hit these 
catastrophic levels which guarantee that the next generation of 
Americans inherit a bleak future, a lower standard of living, a burden 
of debt that they cannot have a high standard of living with.
  We in our generation have to make tough choices. We have got to face 
up to this issue. What we are saying here with this budget is, the 
sooner we get on top of our fiscal problems, the better off everybody 
is going to be.

                              {time}  1530

  We are saying, if we get ahead of these problems now, we can phase in 
reforms, such as Medicare reforms that don't even affect people in or 
near retirement. The sooner we tackle these fiscal problems, the better 
off everybody is going to be, the faster the economy grows, and the 
more we can guarantee that the next generation inherits a debt-free 
future.
  We have never given the next generation a diminished future in this 
country before. That is the great legacy of this Nation, work hard and 
make tough choices, so that the next generation can be better off. We 
know, without a shadow of a doubt, that that is not going to be the 
case.
  According to the Congressional Budget Office, we know that, in a 
couple of years, the debt starts taking back off, and we are back to $1 
trillion deficits. Our tax revenues are at an alltime high this year. 
The problem is that spending is outpacing that. The sooner we can get 
our fiscal house in order, the sooner we can create jobs and get 
economic growth.
  The sooner we can bring solvency to our safety net, to our social 
contract, the more that people can depend on these programs, and the 
sooner we can bring these reforms to get our spending in line with our 
revenues, the faster we can pay off this debt.
  Just like a family, a government that lives beyond its means today 
necessarily has to live below its means tomorrow. We want to make right 
by the next generation. We want to grow this economy.
  We want to create jobs and increase take-home pay, and we want to get 
people to work. That is what this budget is designed to do, and that is 
why I am proud to bring this balanced budget to the floor.
  I reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. VAN HOLLEN. Mr. Chairman, I yield myself such time as I may 
consume.
  We are looking forward to the debate on the budget over the next 
couple of days. Chairman Ryan mentioned that the critics of this budget 
call it draconian. I would just point out to the gentleman that the 
Republican chairman of the House Appropriations Committee just referred 
to the budget that is before this House as draconian.
  Now, the chairman and I do agree on one thing, which is that these 
budgets that we bring before this Congress reflect our different 
visions of America. They reflect the choices that we make. They show 
what we care about, and they show what we care less about. They are 
fundamentally different blueprints for the future of this country.
  The President has presented a budget that will boost job growth, 
sharpen Americans' competitive edge, and expand opportunity in the 
United States of America. Now, we have before us the congressional 
Republican budget, and of all of the Republican budgets that we have 
seen on the floor of this House since 2010, this one is the worst for 
America.
  Many will argue, Mr. Chairman, that we should not be taking this 
budget seriously because, after all, we have a short-term bipartisan 
agreement and that the Senate would never pass this budget, but I urge 
the country to take it seriously because what it tells America is what 
our Republican colleagues would do to the country if they had the power 
to do it.
  If they could impose their will, this is the budget that they would 
impose, so we need to look hard at the consequences. What does it mean 
for America? What choices does the budget before us make for our 
country?
  At its core, it rigs the rules of the game for very wealthy and very 
powerful special interests at the expense of everybody else in the 
country and at the expense of other priorities in the country.
  For example, if you are a multimillionaire, under this budget, you 
will have your top tax rate cut by one-third, all the way from 39 
percent, where it is today, down to 25 percent. That is an average tax 
break for millionaires of $200,000. That is great for people who are 
well off.
  What does this budget do to the rest of this country? It guts vital 
investments in our children's future, it squeezes the middle class, and 
it violates important commitments to our seniors.
  Now, let's step back because the chairman mentioned the economic 
benefits of this budget. The reality is that our economic competitors 
around the world will eat our lunch if we pass this Republican budget. 
It provides for perverse tax incentives that ship American jobs 
overseas while shortchanging investments in jobs right here at home.
  As we will see over the next couple of days, it guts important 
investments that historically have helped power our economy, and the 
nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office tells us that, in the next 
couple of years, this is going to slow down economic growth, that it is 
going to slow down job growth. One estimate puts the job loss at 3 
million jobs.
  At a time when we need to be modernizing our national 
infrastructure--the backbone of our economy--this budget slashes the 
transportation budget by $52 billion in this year alone, stopping new 
projects, throwing construction workers off the job.
  It will condemn the United States to a potholed road of economic 
decline, and it refuses to include one thing that the Congressional 
Budget Office says will help boost our economy right now, which is to 
pass bipartisan comprehensive immigration reform.
  Mr. Chairman, as this budget provides these windfall tax breaks for 
the folks at the very top, let's see what it does to others in our 
country.
  We all depend on our kids getting a good education. It is good for 
families. It is good for the country. The saddest part about this 
budget is that it casts a dark shadow over the American Dream, and it 
violates the fundamental promise that every hardworking American should 
have a fair shot at success.
  At a time when we should be investing more in education in the United 
States, all told, if you look at early education--K-12--and college 
education, this budget cuts it by $370 billion below current services. 
That has devastating impacts on everything from Head Start to Early 
Head Start to K-12 to college.
  Let me just mention one of the things it does to college student 
loans. It starts charging college students' interest while they are 
still in college, before they have gotten out and gotten a job. That 
saves $40 billion in this budget--actually, a little more than that--in 
the same budget that provides huge tax breaks to the wealthiest in this 
country.
  So much for wanting to address the lack of upward mobility in 
America; rung by rung, this budget knocks out the steps of that ladder 
of opportunity. If you are to the manor born, you are going to be just 
fine under this budget, but for everybody else, tough luck and worse.
  Let's look at seniors as our next example. Those on Medicare will 
immediately pay more if they have high prescription drug costs, right? 
The chairman mentioned that the Democratic budget cut Medicare and 
turned it into something else.
  The reality is that the savings that were achieved in Medicare by 
ending

[[Page H3025]]

some of the overpayments in the Democratic budget were recycled to 
strengthen key parts of Medicare, including to close what has been 
called the prescription drug doughnut hole.
  The Republican budget here reopens the prescription drug doughnut 
hole. If you are a senior with high prescription drug costs, it is 
$1,200 more per year, on average, as a result of this budget.
  Seniors who have been able to get preventative health services 
without having to put down copayments will no longer get those 
screenings, and now, they will be at risk of not getting the treatment 
and care when they need it.
  On top of all of that, it ends the Medicare guarantee by creating a 
voucher program. For seniors who decide to stay in the traditional 
Medicare program, they will see their premiums hiked by 50 percent when 
that goes into effect. They can stay, but they will have to pay big 
time to stay. That is not the Medicare guarantee.
  Middle class families--I mentioned that this budget cuts the top tax 
rate for millionaires from 39 percent to 25 percent. That is a 30 
percent tax cut, but it says it is going to do that in a deficit-
neutral manner, so it is simple math, Mr. Chairman.
  If you are going to do that, you are going to squeeze middle class 
taxpayers. In fact, this budget pretends that Chairman Camp and the 
exercise he went through in the Ways and Means Committee--the fact-
based exercise--never happened because what Chairman Camp found was 
that you couldn't bring that top rate down to 25 percent without 
squeezing middle-income taxpayers.
  That is why he had a top rate of 35 percent in his plan, and yet this 
says let's go to a 25 percent top rate. That means $2,000 more in taxes 
for a family with kids to finance the tax breaks for the folks at the 
very top.
  This budget reserves, perhaps, its cruelest blow for those who are 
seeking to climb out of poverty into the middle class, to have an 
opportunity to participate in the American Dream.
  In the last election, the Republican candidate, Mitt Romney, said he 
really didn't care about the 47 percent. This Republican budget sets 
out to prove that statement. If you look at this budget, it is an 
assault on Americans who are struggling to climb out of the middle 
class.
  We had a big debate in this Congress about food nutrition programs. 
The Republican plan called for $40 billion in cuts. It ended up being 
$8 billion. In this budget, it is $137 billion.
  Millions of more kids will go hungry as a result of cutting that 
safety net, and that is why faith-based groups that have looked at 
these Republican budgets over the last 3 years have said that they 
don't meet the tests of a society that cares for the least of these.
  I want to close by asking a question because our Republican 
colleagues say the goal has to be 10 years to hit this political 
target. It is interesting because the Republican budget 3 years ago 
didn't balance until around 2040, but now, we have this sort of 
political target that they have to hit.
  If it is so important to hit that, why do they ask everything of our 
kids and of our seniors and of struggling families and of nothing from 
very powerful special interests?
  This budget does not close one special interest tax break for the 
purpose of reducing the deficit, not one--not a special interest tax 
break for hedge fund owners, not a special tax break for big oil 
companies. We have a race to hit their political timetable here, but we 
are not going to ask those special interest groups to pay one dime to 
help reduce the deficit.
  Here is the really strange thing: after all is said and done, this 
Republican budget does not balance in 10 years if, at the same time, 
the Republicans claim to be repealing the Affordable Care Act. It just 
doesn't add up. The math isn't there.
  What this Republican budget does is this: it gets rid of all of the 
benefits in the Affordable Care Act. It gets rid of the tax credits 
that help Americans purchase affordable care. It gets rid of the 
provision that says you can stay on your parents' insurance policy 
until you are 26.
  It gets rid of the provisions that say you cannot be denied coverage 
because you have a preexisting condition. It gets rid of all of the 
benefits.
  Guess what it keeps? It keeps all of the tax revenue from the 
Affordable Care Act.
  You don't have to take my word for it. This is The Heritage 
Foundation. This isn't some liberal group.
  Here is what they say:

       Perhaps the biggest shortcoming of this budget is that it 
     keeps the tax increases associated with ObamaCare.

  It is what they said about last year's budget. This year is exactly 
the same. This budget also keeps all of the savings from Medicare. It 
doesn't recycle any of those savings to strengthen it as the Democratic 
budget does, but it keeps them.
  If you actually look at this chart, you will see that, in 2024, when 
the Republican budget claims to balance, without the revenues and the 
savings from Medicare, it doesn't come close to balancing.
  So our Republican colleagues have got to choose. Either you claim to 
have a balanced budget and you recognize that you support all of the 
revenues and savings in the Affordable Care Act or not, but you can't 
have it both ways. The sad thing is, after hitting everybody but the 
very wealthy in this budget, they still can't achieve what they claim 
is their goal.
  With that, I reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. RYAN of Wisconsin. Mr. Chairman, I yield myself 30 seconds to 
say: you can't have it both ways.
  That is interesting. You can raid Medicare by $716 billion to pay for 
ObamaCare and then count that money as if it is going back to Medicare, 
counting the same dollar twice. That is not our word. That is the word 
of the Congressional Budget Office and of the actuaries, themselves, at 
Medicare, which is what the other side did with ObamaCare.
  Look, apparently, the only way to revive and protect the American 
Dream is to bring our debt from $17 trillion to $24 trillion and, on 
the way there, raise taxes on hardworking Americans another $1.8 
trillion, and if you are not for that, you are against the American 
Dream.

                              {time}  1545

  With that, I yield 2 minutes to the gentleman from Nebraska (Mr. 
Terry).
  Mr. TERRY. Mr. Chairman, I rise today in support of this budget 
because I believe it is the necessary fiscal path to secure our 
children's future. I hear from my constituents every time I go back 
home. We can't keep borrowing nearly 40 cents on every dollar we spend.
  This budget is a commonsense blueprint that grows our economy. It 
will force Washington to live within its means by cutting $5.1 trillion 
over 10 years to balance the budget. Under this plan, we will make 
much-needed reforms to the complicated and oversized Tax Code that will 
make Americans more competitive and create jobs. It will keep the 
promise to our seniors by strengthening Social Security and give our 
troops the tools they need to secure our country. This budget will 
provide relief from rising health care costs by repealing ObamaCare.
  Families across my congressional district will be able to keep more 
of what they earn, which is exactly what we need to have happen to grow 
our economy. Right now, too many of them are struggling paycheck-to-
paycheck under this Obama economy. Gas prices are still high and 
volatile. My constituents are paying higher health care premiums 
because of ObamaCare.
  Families need a break, Mr. Chairman. This budget gives them a chance 
to get ahead while holding Washington accountable for its stewardship 
of your money.
  Since we have a budget agreement, I am looking forward to seeing the 
Senate budget and when they will vote on it. I would encourage our 
friends on the other side of the aisle to keep Harry Reid's feet to the 
fire and make sure they do have a budget.
  Mr. VAN HOLLEN. Mr. Chairman, I yield 2\1/2\ minutes to the gentleman 
from Rhode Island (Mr. Cicilline), a distinguished member of the 
Judiciary Committee.
  Mr. CICILLINE. I thank the ranking member for his extraordinary 
leadership and for developing a budget proposal that actually reflects 
our Nation's values and priorities.
  Mr. Chairman, this Republican budget, offered by my colleague from 
Wisconsin, is another attempt to impose a

[[Page H3026]]

failed economic theory on the American people. This budget would damage 
economic growth in the short term and it disinvests in our future in 
the long term. It is absolutely the wrong course.
  Millions of Americans continue to struggle to find work. Congress 
should be investing in priorities that will create jobs, priorities 
like education, rebuilding our crumbling infrastructure, and investing 
in advanced manufacturing and innovation that will help set the 
platform for a 21st century economy.
  The Ryan Republican budget does exactly the opposite. According to 
the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office, compared to current law, 
the Ryan Republican budget would stifle our economic growth, reducing 
gross national product per capita by about 0.5 percent in each of the 
next 3 years.
  Let that sink in. If you are searching for work or struggling to get 
by in this difficult economy, the message from this budget is clear: it 
is about to get a whole lot worse.
  What could possibly be their rationale?
  To my colleagues who say we need to make this sacrifice in the short 
term so we can experience long-term economic gains, they have it 
backwards. We need to invest in the short term to have long-term 
economic prosperity.
  How does a budget that freezes Pell grants and slashes funding for 
higher education by approximately $260 billion grow our economy in the 
long term?
  Our Nation's infrastructure is the backbone of our economy and is 
essential to move goods and services in the short and long term. So how 
does a budget that cuts investments in transportation by $52 billion 
next year alone help our economy?
  How can you say a budget that singles out for elimination bipartisan 
programs like the Manufacturing Extension Partnership will boost our 
economy in the long term, a program that leverages Federal funding to 
provide small- and medium-sized manufacturers the capacity to grow, 
innovate, and prepare for a 21st century focus on advanced 
manufacturing? The answer is you can't.
  Let's be clear: this budget cuts from today and disinvests from 
tomorrow. And for what purpose? To pay for another round of tax cuts 
for the wealthiest of Americans, amounting to about $4 trillion in the 
next 10 years. But it is okay, they claim, because the benefits will 
trickle down to the middle class. This budget goes after Medicare, 
Medicaid, and nutrition programs for hungry children, all to pay for 
another round of tax cuts for the wealthy. This is immoral. And we 
know, from past experience, it is the wrong strategy for our economy.
  Mr. Chairman, I urge my colleagues to reject this budget because it 
will hurt jobs and inflict unnecessary pain on working families and our 
economy.
  Mr. RYAN of Wisconsin. Mr. Chair, at this time, I yield 3 minutes to 
the gentleman from California (Mr. McClintock), a distinguished member 
of the Budget Committee.
  Mr. McCLINTOCK. Mr. Chairman, in August of 2010, the Chairman of the 
Joint Chiefs warned that the greatest threat to our national security 
was our national debt. That was $4 trillion of debt ago. In fact, since 
the inauguration in 2009, we have accumulated more total government 
debt than we have run up from the very first day of the Washington 
administration through the third year of the George W. Bush 
administration.
  We were told this would jump-start the economy. It hasn't. Instead, 
it has deprived markets of the capital that would otherwise be loaned 
to businesses seeking to expand jobs, to consumers seeking to make 
purchases, and to home buyers seeking to reenter the housing market.
  I would remind the House that we cannot provide for the common 
defense or promote the general welfare if we cannot pay for them, and 
the ability of our government to do so is being slowly and surely 
destroyed by our debt. Balancing this budget and ultimately paying down 
the national debt is a national security imperative, it is an economic 
imperative, and it is a moral imperative.
  Under Chairman Ryan's leadership, the House is about to pass the 
fourth budget in a row to balance. It stands in stark contrast to the 
President's budget that never balances and that condemns our Nation to 
a debt spiral that will consume our future. It reforms and reorganizes 
our social safety nets. It prevents their impending bankruptcy, and it 
restores them to financial sound foundations for the generations to 
come.
  This is not beyond our ability. President Clinton, working in 
cooperation with a Republican Congress, delivered four balanced budgets 
in a row. Together, a Democratic President and a Republican Congress 
cut Federal spending by 4 percent of GDP. They enacted what amounted to 
the biggest capital gains tax cut in American history. They reformed 
entitlement spending by abolishing the open-ended welfare system. The 
economy blossomed.
  In the years since, under both Republican and Democratic 
administrations, we have veered far from these policies of fiscal 
responsibility and economic expansion, and the economy languishes.
  The budget before us combines the policies necessary not only to 
restore solvency to the government and save the social safety net, but 
it also restores prosperity to the American people. All we lack is the 
same cooperation from the President and the Senate that we had just two 
decades ago.

  Time is not our ally. Every day we delay, the problem becomes more 
intractable and the road back becomes more difficult, protracted, and 
perilous.
  Mr. VAN HOLLEN. Mr. Chairman, I yield myself such time as I may 
consume.
  I would just point out that I think it is useful to look at this 
through the perspective of history, because the last time we had 
balanced budgets in this country was at the end of the Clinton 
administration, and shortly after that, when President Bush came into 
office, we saw back-to-back tax cuts.
  The theory at that time was if you dropped the top tax rate on high-
income individuals, it will trickle down to everybody else and power-
charge the economy. The only problem is that didn't work. It did not 
work at all. The trickle-down theory of economics did not work. We 
didn't get that boost of economic growth. What we did get was huge, 
huge deficits as far as the eye could see.
  And so the problem with this budget is that it is a U-turn back to 
that philosophy--the idea that we are going to provide these tax cuts 
and it will create a big boost of economic activity. But reality has 
shown that it doesn't work that way. We should be building our economy 
from the middle out and from the bottom up. The top-down approach 
doesn't work.
  I yield 2 minutes to the gentleman from Georgia (Mr. Johnson), a 
distinguished member of the Armed Services Committee.
  Mr. JOHNSON of Georgia. Mr. Chairman, this budget is worse than a 
wolf in sheep's clothing. It is like a Dracula in sheep's clothing 
coming in to suck the blood out of the middle class.
  Under the false pretense of deficit reduction and a balanced budget, 
House Republicans have brought forth another attack on American 
seniors, students, workers, and middle class families, all the while 
protecting giveaways for the wealthy and corporations that ship jobs 
overseas.
  This budget kills jobs at home by gutting critical investments in 
education and technological research and throws a wrench in the engine 
of American innovation. Instead of laying the foundation for innovation 
to create the new middle-class jobs of tomorrow or spur new technology, 
economic growth, and the next generation of entrepreneurs, this 
Republican budget uses fuzzy math and magic asterisks to hide its 
attack on the middle class.
  This embarrassing budget is an excuse to assault the social safety 
net that has saved millions of Americans who fell off the economic 
ladder of opportunity during the Bush recession. Programs like food 
stamps, unemployment insurance, Medicaid, and job retraining are 
helping to get Americans back on their feet--Americans who lost their 
jobs and homes due to no fault of their own, but instead due to the 
fault of reckless Wall Street speculators. The victims include 
defenseless infants and dependent children, as well as the sick and the 
elderly.
  The Republican budget uses these programs as punching bags for their

[[Page H3027]]

reckless agenda today to cut and gut. Republicans' relentless attacks 
on these programs will only hasten the descent and harden the fall of 
Americans who are already teetering on the brink.
  Mr. Chairman, Republicans are playing their favorite game with the 
budget--hide and cut it. First, they hide behind budget gimmicks and 
magic asterisks, and then they cut unnamed programs that all magically 
fall only upon the backs of the poor, working families, seniors, and 
the middle class.
  Mr. RYAN of Wisconsin. Mr. Chairman, I yield myself 30 seconds to 
say, wow, that sounds horrible. Good thing it is not true. Only in 
Washington is a slower increase in spending awful, blood-curdling, cut-
throating, terrible, and draconian cuts.
  If we are going to get our fiscal house in order, what we are saying 
in this budget is, instead of increasing spending 5.2 percent a year on 
average, let's do it by 3.5 percent a year on average--hardly 
draconian.
  And by the way, maybe people closer to the problems, like our States, 
might have a better idea on how to help people in their communities. 
Those are the principles we are talking about here.
  With that, Mr. Chairman, I yield 3 minutes to the gentleman from 
Illinois (Mr. Roskam), the chief deputy whip.
  Mr. ROSKAM. I thank the gentleman for yielding.
  My home State is Illinois. The State of Illinois, Mr. Chairman, is a 
delightful place. It is the ``Land of Lincoln'' and the birthplace of 
Ronald Reagan, but it is a fiscal basket case. From a fiscal point of 
view, my home State is a national punch line, because one party--the 
other party--has dominated State government for years. For a decade, 
they have had the Governor's mansion. They have got majorities in both 
the Illinois House and the Illinois Senate.
  And what has happened? It has been avoidance behavior, Mr. Chairman. 
An unwillingness to take on serious issues.
  So what did the Democrats in Springfield, Illinois, do? They raised 
taxes. They didn't deal with the underlying fiscal problem.
  And what was the net result? The budget gap didn't close, higher than 
average unemployment, and more per capita debt than nearly any other 
State in the Union on the taxpayers of Illinois.

                              {time}  1600

  All right. So what does that all that have to do with this?
  Springfield, Illinois, is a foreshadowing, Mr. Chairman, of what not 
to do. Basically, we need to look at the fiscal situation in 
Springfield, Illinois, and look at it like a big, big traffic signal 
that says, don't come here; don't go this route; don't take this 
pathway. Instead, go another direction.
  The direction that we need to go is the direction that the chairman 
has articulated, and that I think a majority is going to vote for 
tomorrow, and it is a pathway that says, let's look clearly at these 
difficulties. Let's articulate them clearly. Let's be clear-eyed about 
what they are, and let's make decisions.
  So what does this budget do?
  The budget repeals ObamaCare and makes way for a patient-centered 
approach on health care that our constituencies are calling out for.
  It says that we are going to empower States to make decisions. It 
says we are going to keep promises that are going to be made, not false 
promises, not telling folks that something is going to be there, and 
then just assuming that there is going to be some pixie dust that makes 
these problems go away.
  No, these problems are going to be dealt with, and they are going to 
be dealt with in a forthright manner.
  I think we are at an inflection point. I think the House is actually 
at an incredibly important stage right now, and we can go one of two 
pathways. One pathway we know, one pathway of more taxes, more 
spending, more avoidance, and not dealing with the underlying spending 
programs.
  This is not theoretical, Mr. Chairman. The State of Illinois has 
tried that, and it is a mess. It is a mess that becomes worse. The 
longer the State waits, the worse the options are.
  So what the chairman is saying is, let's not get to that point. We 
have got options. We have got time. We have got choices. We have got 
remedies, but we need to act now.
  So I urge favorable consideration of this budget.
  Mr. VAN HOLLEN. Mr. Chairman, I yield myself such time as I may 
consume.
  Mr. Chairman, I think, for the people who may be watching this, and 
for our colleagues, the question is, how do we achieve the priorities 
that we hope we all want to achieve, which is jobs growing faster, the 
economy growing faster, and deal with the long term deficit and debt in 
a responsible manner?
  The glaring problem with the congressional Republican budget is that 
they don't call for any shared responsibility. They don't ask the most 
powerful special interests to contribute one dime by closing a single 
tax break, not one. And because they shelter the most powerful and the 
most wealthy, everybody else has to take a hit in their budget.
  As a result, the entire country takes a hit because those are 
investments in our kids' education, in basic science and research that 
are important to help power our entire economy.
  Mr. Chairman, I yield 2\1/2\ minutes to the gentleman from Michigan 
(Mr. Kildee), a terrific new member of the Budget Committee.
  Mr. KILDEE. Thank you to my friend from Maryland (Mr. Van Hollen) for 
yielding, and for his leadership.
  He is exactly right. What this budget fails to do is address the 
fundamental questions that we have to address.
  As a new member of the Budget Committee, during the most recent 
budget markup, I offered an amendment. A couple of dozen of our 
amendments were heard and dismissed rather quickly.
  I offered an amendment that would deal with that question of shared 
sacrifice, an amendment that would have simply said that if you make 
more than $1 million in this country, you should pay your fair share, 
applying the so-called Buffett Rule that basically says, if you are 
doing well, you should at least pay the same rate that another member 
of your staff would pay.
  As Mr. Buffett pointed out, his secretary pays a higher rate. This 
would have required a 30 percent rate to apply to those folks making $1 
million.
  What was interesting to me was what I was told by the other side, 
that this amendment was because people in the working middle class, 
people who go to work every day, are jealous of those who have done 
well in the United States.
  Let me assure you, this has nothing do with jealousy; it has 
everything to do with fairness. The only thing we ask is that if we are 
all going to pitch in to adopt a balanced budget and invest in growing 
our economy, we should all pitch in and not have a tax system that 
benefits the wealthiest, and has the rest of us not only have to pay 
more than our fair share, but not receive the important investments 
that will grow our economy.
  So what this budget doesn't do is require we all pay a fair share. 
Neither does it extend unemployment insurance to those who are just 
trying to get from their last job to their next job without losing 
their house and their car and having their family split up.
  It doesn't raise the minimum wage so that those who go to work every 
day won't live in poverty. It doesn't address the fundamental question 
facing us, and that is immigration reform, which would have a 
significant effect on growing our economy. People on the left and the 
right agree with that.
  No, this statement of our collective values fails to address that 
fundamental question.
  But what it does do is cut basic education. It would kick 170,000 
kids out of Head Start, changing the trajectory of their lives forever; 
cuts $89 billion out of education, $35 billion alone out of Title I. 
Cuts higher education, which is an investment in our future, which we 
know pays dividends downstream. Cuts infrastructure.
  The Acting CHAIR. The time of the gentleman has expired.
  Mr. VAN HOLLEN. Mr. Chairman, I yield the gentleman another 30 
seconds.
  Mr. KILDEE. Cuts infrastructure, which we have to address. If our 
companies, if our manufacturers are going to be competitive, we are 
going to have to make those sorts of investment.
  This budget does none of those things. All it does is protect those 
who

[[Page H3028]]

continue to be sheltered by a system that allows for this kind of 
inequality in this country and doesn't address the fundamental 
questions facing us.
  I thank the gentleman for yielding, and I hope that my colleagues 
will join me in opposing this budget.
  Mr. RYAN of Wisconsin. Mr. Chairman, may I inquire as to how much 
time remains between both sides?
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Wisconsin has 72\1/2\ minutes 
remaining. The gentleman from Maryland has 68 minutes remaining.
  Mr. RYAN of Wisconsin. Mr. Chairman, I yield 2 minutes to the 
gentleman from New Jersey (Mr. Lance).
  Mr. LANCE. Thank you, Chairman Ryan.
  Mr. Chairman, I rise to support the Republican budget, which is a 
path to prosperity. It includes commonsense priorities and policies 
that will foster economic growth and job creation.
  This is a plan to balance the budget in 10 years and begin to pay 
down the national debt, and this is exactly what our economy needs.

  CBO says that, by reducing the deficit, our budget would promote 
economic growth. In stark contrast to budgets put forward by the 
President and by House Democrats, our budget will cut wasteful 
spending, rein in our national debt and, we hope, balance the budget. 
And the budget needs to be balanced. This would be done all without 
raising taxes on hardworking Americans.
  It includes pro-growth policies that will harness domestic energy, 
restore patient-centered health care, strengthen retirement and the 
safety net programs that are so essential, and it will reform our Tax 
Code.
  I thank my friend, Chairman Ryan, for putting forth a budget 
blueprint that addresses our Nation's long-term fiscal challenges 
truthfully and in a fiscally responsible manner.
  Let me say that this blueprint spends $43 trillion over the next 10 
years. It reduces spending by $5 trillion. Only in Washington can an 
increase annually of 3.5 percent be considered a cut. That is 
ridiculous.
  At the rate we are going now, our spending would increase by 5.2 
percent. We reform it to 3.5 percent annually over the next 10 years.
  I applaud Chairman Ryan's hard work and courage, and look forward to 
an honest discussion here on the floor of the House.
  Mr. VAN HOLLEN. Mr. Chairman, I yield myself such time as I may 
consume.
  I would just point out that we hear a lot about the global aggregate 
numbers, but the distribution of those cuts is important.
  If you look at the portion of the budget that we have, historically, 
used to invest in education, to invest in innovation, to invest in 
places like the National Institutes of Health, that portion of the 
budget is cut by 24 percent relative to the bipartisan Ryan-Murray 
agreement. And it is cut from there.
  So the part of the budget that does a lot of damage that we are 
focused on in terms of future investments, really does mean that we are 
going to be less competitive as a country. It will dull our competitive 
edge. And I will tell you, our economic competitors will be cheering.
  Mr. Chairman, I reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. RYAN of Wisconsin. Mr. Chairman, I yield myself such time as I 
may consume.
  As the Ryan of the Ryan-Murray agreement, look, I wish that the 
Murray side of the agreement would have agreed to these out-year 
numbers. That didn't happen. That agreement is a 2-year agreement, so 
to compare this budget and the baseline against that of the 24 cut, 
that is not accurate.
  Here is the problem, Mr. Chairman. We are spending money we don't 
have. We are going through the budget, program by program, line by 
line, and trying to reform these programs so that they can better 
deliver on their promises.
  We are looking at certain programs, say, like food stamps, and 
saying, some States have some pretty innovative ideas on how better to 
deliver these services.
  There have been some wasteful and fraudulent activities that needed 
to be gotten at so that we don't waste taxpayer money.
  We think it is important to encourage able-bodied adults who do not 
have dependents to go to work. When we did that in welfare reform in 
the 1990s, it worked. People went to work.
  By the way, child poverty dropped by double digits. Single moms went 
to work. It helped reduce poverty. We want to replicate that kind of 
success with these kind of reforms on these kinds of programs.
  When they talk about education, this administration, and this 
Democratic budget, is making a bunch of empty promises. They are 
promising the world in Pell grants, but they are not funding that 
world.
  We are saying, let's keep Pell and let's fund it, and let's keep it 
where it is, but let's fund it throughout the decade. I would rather 
take a full-funded promise than an empty promise any day. I think that 
is more honest with our students.
  The other part I think we have to look at is, we are feeding tuition 
inflation. If we just keep pumping more and more borrowed money, empty-
promised money into the system, what we are getting out of it is higher 
tuition.
  Why don't we look at why tuition is going up so much in the first 
place?
  Gosh, when we look at that, we are learning the Federal Government is 
part of the problem. Let's fix that.
  Mr. Chairman, we do go through these things line by line.
  The gentleman likes to talk about tax reform. What he won't tell you 
is specifically what this tax reform bill does, because we don't have a 
specific tax reform in here because this is the budget.
  The Ways and Means Committee does specific tax reform. That is where 
the loophole closers are.
  We are saying the outline of it is to get tax rates down on 
businesses, small and large, so they can compete.
  There are $1 trillion in loopholes every year that they can work with 
to get those tax rates down. So to suggest that this, all of a sudden, 
does these tax breaks for millionaires and does this for these other 
people and does that, they are just making that stuff up.
  What I think we ought to do is put the rhetoric aside and balance 
this budget.
  Mr. Chairman, I reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. VAN HOLLEN. Mr. Chairman, I am glad the chairman of the committee 
recognized that there are about $1 trillion worth of tax expenditures. 
What does that mean?
  That means tax preferences in the Tax Code. $1 trillion a year, he 
said. That is right.
  And yet, the Republican budget doesn't close one penny of those tax 
expenditures to help reduce our deficit, not one. It says we have to 
reserve all those tax loophole closures to cut the top rate for 
millionaires by one-third, from 39 percent to 25 percent. That is what 
they want to do with all the tax expenditures.
  Because they refuse to get rid of one of those tax expenditures for 
the purposes of deficit reduction, their budget does hit all these 
students.
  What is honest is to tell students who are going to college right now 
that this budget is going to charge them over $40 billion more in 
interest because now they are going to have to pay interest while they 
are still in college, even though it doesn't close one of those tax 
expenditures for very wealthy people to help meet the targets and 
reduce the deficit, not one.
  So, as we look at the priorities in this budget, we have to ask 
ourselves, why is it that this Republican budget doesn't call for any 
shared responsibility?
  Why is it that it does provide tax breaks to folks at the very top at 
the expense of the rest of the country?
  Mr. Chairman, I reserve the balance of my time.

                              {time}  1615

  Mr. RYAN of Wisconsin. Yielding myself 15 seconds, the shared 
responsibility we are asking for is let's fix these problems within our 
generation and not pass it on to the next generation.
  With that, I yield 4 minutes to the gentleman from Oklahoma (Mr. 
Lankford), the policy chair of our conference.
  Mr. LANKFORD. Mr. Chairman, it was the basic principle that George 
Washington laid out in his farewell address, that every generation 
should

[[Page H3029]]

take care of the responsibilities of that generation, rather than pass 
it on to their child. It is a 200-year-old concept. It is fairly 
straightforward.
  What is interesting to me is I have been in a personal conversation 
with our current President of the United States about debt and about 
balancing the budget. The conversation back and forth was circled 
around a simple principle: Bill Clinton and Newt Gingrich, two decades 
ago, made it their crowning achievement that they balanced the budget 
in a bipartisan time period.
  My request to this President was: Can we agree that we should set a 
goal to balance the budget? His response to me was: No. Twenty years 
ago, that was a good idea, but now, the perception is that we should 
have sustainable deficits, that is, balance everything except for 
interest.
  This year, our interest payment is $233 billion. CBO forecasts that 
10 years from now, our interest payment--single-year, one-year interest 
payment 10 years from now will be $880 billion.
  We must get us back to balance, and when I say balance, I mean real 
balance. Families balance their budget. Businesses balance their 
budget. States balance their budget.
  We see times in our past when we had a balanced budget and saw the 
economic activity from that; but for whatever reason, now, we are just 
going to ignore that. Why? First off, it is because they will say it is 
hard. It is difficult to balance our budget. Well, I am sorry that it 
is hard.
  This is what leaders do. We make difficult decisions to be able to 
get our Nation back on track for now and for the future.
  The second thing is let's do a balanced approach. Let's raise taxes 
if we are going to reduce spending. Right now, this year, we have the 
highest amount of revenue in the history of the United States coming 
into the Federal Treasury.
  Even with a down economy, this is the highest amount of revenue that 
has ever come into the Treasury, the second highest amount that has 
ever come into the Treasury, last year.
  This is not an issue about not having enough tax revenue. We have the 
highest amount we have ever come into the Treasury. The issue is we are 
overspending. That is the key issue that we have got to get into.
  The other argument that comes out is, you know what, there are no 
more efficiencies left. There is nowhere else left to cut in the 
Federal Government. Well, I have difficulty finding anyone outside of 
Washington that believes this government is running so efficient; there 
is no fraud, there is no waste, there are no inefficiencies in 
government, there is nowhere to cut.
  When you walk through our budget, we are not trying to damage our 
economy. We are trying to protect our economy. We are trying to help 
grow and establish jobs that are happening by stabilizing the economy.
  You go to businesspeople all over the country. They ask for one 
simple thing: give us a stable plan that gets us back onto balance, 
give us some stability in our economy, and we will grow our business.
  Some predictability, that is what this budget is headed towards. It 
also is dealing with some simple things, like national defense. 
National defense is a prime--prime task of the Federal Government. This 
budget aggressively steps up and says we have a responsibility for 
national defense. We should maintain that.
  The conversation about going to 10 carrier units around the world, 10 
aircraft carriers may sound like a lot until you realize only two of 
them are in the ocean at any given time when you get down to 10.
  When we get back up to 11, which is the established amount that we 
want to have, we can now have three out in our oceans. When you drop 
down that amount, you are making a decision that we are not going to 
have a presence somewhere in the ocean.
  We have a stable peace when we are strong. It is a basic principle. 
If we weaken our military presence, we expose ourselves to weakness.
  We need to be able to do this. We need to take out ObamaCare. We need 
to get us back into a stable economy. We need to deal with national 
defense. That is what this budget is all about.
  Mr. VAN HOLLEN. I yield myself such time as I may consume.
  Mr. Chairman, let me just point out to the gentleman that the 
President's budget has two things in it. First of all, it actually 
calls for a fund to increase defense spending for readiness in fiscal 
year 2015, which is not included in the Republican budget.
  Number two, in the outyears, the President also grows our defense 
spending; and as the Joint Chiefs of Staff and the Secretary of Defense 
have testified, those investments will make sure that the United States 
is second to none.
  In fact, the next 10 countries after that, together, spend much less 
on defense than the United States, and we will continue to have that 
additional robust defense spending to make sure that we are strong, but 
we also need to make sure that our economy is strong to support that 
kind of budget, and if you have got the important investments that have 
helped make the economy grow over time, you will not get that.
  Now, I will just respond to the gentleman's comments on revenue. 
Anytime the economy is growing, if you have a certain tax rate, you are 
going to get more absolute dollars of revenue in, but I mentioned that 
the last time we had actually had a balanced budget in this country was 
in the year 1998 through 2001.
  If you look at the amount of revenue that was coming in during that 
period as a percent of the economy, you will find that revenue was 19.2 
percent in 1998, 19.2 percent in 1999, 19.9 percent in 2000, and so on, 
way ahead of the amount of revenue as a percentage of the economy that 
this Republican budget calls for in year 10, even though, between now 
and then, we will have millions more Americans on Medicare and Social 
Security.
  So, again, they just can't bring themselves to close one of these 
special interest tax breaks, not one for the purpose of reducing the 
deficit and contributing to our economic well-being.
  I reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. RYAN of Wisconsin. I yield myself 2 minutes, Mr. Chairman.
  The first priority and responsibility of the Federal Government is to 
secure our Nation and to provide for the common defense of our Nation.
  The gentleman from Maryland mentioned the President has this proposal 
for this year that would have violated our bipartisan budget agreement. 
It is a proposal that holds hostage defense for higher taxes and more 
domestic spending, but worse than that, we had a hearing in the Budget 
Committee about 2 years ago.

  Then-Secretary of Defense Panetta, along with the chairman of the 
Joint Chiefs, came and testified; and they said to our Budget 
Committee: This is as far as we can go, we can't cut any further 
without doing damage to our military.
  That is effectively where the Republican budget is. That is not where 
this year's Obama budget is. The President's budget, which is also 
replicated by the Democratic substitute, cuts the military far lower 
than that. They are bringing the Army and the Marines to a level we 
have not seen since before World War II. They are shrinking our Navy to 
a size we have not seen since before World War I. They are shrinking 
our Air Force to a level we have never seen before.
  They are cutting compensation for our men and women in uniform, not 
to save money for other parts of the military, like readiness and 
training and equipment, but they are cutting compensation, cutting 
force structure, cutting personnel, cutting equipment, cutting 
defense--not to reduce the deficit, but to spend it on more domestic 
spending.
  The Joint Chiefs have said that now, with this budget submission, it 
represents a moderate risk of actually affecting our national security. 
They have never said that before. They have said we have had a low 
risk.
  The CHAIR. The time of the gentleman has expired.
  Mr. RYAN of Wisconsin. I yield myself 15 more seconds to say, of all 
the problems that we have in the President's budget, it hollows out our 
military, sends the wrong signals overseas, and we are not going to do 
that.
  With that, I yield 5 minutes to the gentleman from Georgia, Dr. 
Price, the distinguished vice chair of the Budget Committee.
  Mr. PRICE of Georgia. Mr. Chairman, I want to start by commending the

[[Page H3030]]

chairman of the Budget Committee, Mr. Ryan, for his wonderful and 
positive work on real solutions. When I go back home and I talk to 
folks, they say: Well, don't y'all have any solutions that will 
actually work?
  That is what this is. This is a real solution, a commonsense 
solution. My constituents back home in the Sixth District of Georgia 
also tell me that they are saddened and disheartened by the comments 
that we hear from the other side, primarily, on dividing Americans, 
pitting one American against another.
  It really is a cynical ploy. It may be politically opportune, but it 
is not helpful. It is not helpful for the discourse that we have in 
this country. It is not helpful for us reaching those real solutions; 
so I implore my colleagues on both sides of the aisle: let's get 
together and work together and find those real solutions.
  What my constituents back home also tell me is that the path we are 
on just isn't working. The economy is not thriving; record deficits 
continue. I mentioned the mantra of division that seems to be the MO of 
the other side, but the other side, the Democrats, seem to be happy 
with all this.
  They seem to be happy with an economy that is not thriving. They seem 
to be happy with an economy that has resulted in fewer Americans 
working. They seem to be happy with fewer success stories across this 
country.
  They seem to be happy that more jobs are leaving the country, as 
opposed to being created here. They seem to be happy with higher and 
higher taxes and more and more spending. They seem to be happy with 
borrowing more money from foreign countries. They seem to be happy with 
compromising opportunities for future generations.
  We believe that there is a better way, that there are positive 
solutions and real solutions, and that is our budget--a responsible, 
balanced budget; yes, a balanced budget, a path to prosperity for every 
single American.
  We have had a little discussion over the past few minutes about 
defense. I want to talk about some specific issues in our budget, 
defense being one of them. This is a very dangerous world.
  Our budget recognizes that. It realizes the danger that we have and 
that our allies have, and we increase spending for defense and for 
national security. We account for that in our budget in a positive way.
  The President, irresponsibly, seems to bury his head in the sand. His 
budget, as has been mentioned, puts us back at pre-World War II levels 
for our men and women in uniform. That is not consistent with what the 
American people see in the real world right now, so what we do is 
account for that and increase defense spending in a responsible way.
  In the area of health care, I am a physician. I recognize that the 
world of health care is in an upheaval. There are physicians leaving 
their practices. There are seniors who are losing their doctors. There 
are new Medicare patients who are unable to find physicians.
  In fact, the actuaries of Medicare--not Republican or Democrat--but 
the actuaries of the Medicare system have said that the system is going 
broke. Within a 10-year period of time, it will not be able to provide 
the services for seniors that have currently been promised.
  Our budget positively addresses these issues. We save and strengthen 
and secure Medicare. How? With positive reforms; putting patients in 
charge, not government in charge.
  In fact, the proposal that we outlined a number of years ago and 
continue to include in our budget right now, the premium support for 
seniors, making it so that they have more choices, the Congressional 
Budget Office did a study on that exact program published last 
September.
  They recognize that this program that is proposed by the Republicans 
will not only save money for seniors, but it will save money for 
taxpayers--real positive solutions. Again, it will put patients in 
charge and not government.
  Another exciting difference between our proposal, our budget, real 
solutions and the other side, is that we understand that a growing 
economy is essential to getting us back on the right track. The past 5 
years have certainly not been helpful.
  The Congressional Budget Office, once again, has evaluated our 
proposed policies and has said that, if we are able to get our economy 
back on the right track by instituting our plan of saving over $5 
trillion, that there would be significant benefits to the economy.
  Realistic scoring shows that--and I will quote from the Congressional 
Budget Office--``CBO finds that reducing budget deficits is a net 
positive for economic growth. Deficit reduction creates long-term 
economic benefits because it increases the pool of national savings and 
boosts investment, thereby raising economic growth and job creation. 
These benefits are both significant and lasting.''
  That is our budget, positive growth in the economy and significant 
and lasting benefits to the American people.
  The Acting CHAIR (Mr. Holding). The time of the gentleman has 
expired.
  Mr. RYAN of Wisconsin. I yield to the gentleman an additional 1 
minute.
  Mr. PRICE of Georgia. Finally, I want to just mention briefly the 
issue of the debt. The chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Admiral 
Mike Mullen, said just a few years ago that the number one threat to 
our national security is not the threats that we see from other nations 
and rogue regimes, it is the threat of our national debt. The American 
people know this.
  We are over $17 trillion in debt, and the President continues to 
spend, in his budget, record deficits--record annual deficits. The Path 
to Prosperity, the plan that we are proposing, gets us back on the 
right track, gets us on a path to balance, balancing within a 10-year 
period of time, and on trajectory to pay off the entire debt of the 
United States of America, thereby increasing economic opportunity and 
viability and all.

                              {time}  1630

  We are for the greatest amount of success for the greatest number of 
Americans and the greatest number of American Dreams being realized. 
The way that you do that is through the Path to Prosperity, a balanced 
and responsible budget.
  I urge my colleagues to support this balanced budget.
  Mr. VAN HOLLEN. Mr. Chairman, I would just note that it is this 
Republican budget here in the House of Representatives that divides 
America. And when we point out that this is a budget that protects tax 
breaks for the very wealthy at the expense of everybody else, our 
colleagues say, oh, no, no, that is dividing America. But what we are 
explaining is the Republican budget, and that is, unfortunately, what 
it does.
  The chairman originally said that only in Washington is an increase 
really a cut. I would just point out that in the President's defense 
budget, it goes from $521 billion in fiscal year 2015 to $646 billion 
10 years from now--hardly a cut, in fact, quite an expansion going 
forward.
  I am now pleased to yield 1\1/2\ minutes to the gentleman from Texas 
(Mr. Castro), a distinguished member of the Armed Services Committee 
who has focused a lot on defense.
  Mr. CASTRO of Texas. Thank you, Ranking Member Van Hollen, for all of 
your work on this.
  Mr. Chair, there are many damaging cuts in this budget, but I would 
like to speak just a minute about the cuts to education. In ancient 
civilizations, literacy and education were closed off to all but the 
very affluent; and the beauty of America, since its founding, has been 
the democratization of a way to become educated, make your way into the 
middle class and to do well.
  This budget would threaten that, and it does it in several ways. 
First, it cuts Pell grants, that is, grants to college students, by 
$145 billion. It also very significantly makes Pell grant aid 
unavailable to part-time students.
  I want to focus on that for just a second because this is something 
we see over and over in our districts again: single moms or working 
parents, men or women, who are trying to balance a job and go to school 
at the same time. They are trying to take two or three classes maybe, 
make their way, still be able to work to support their families, but 
also go to college and finish off and slowly get their degree.
  This budget would not allow them to access Pell grants. It would make

[[Page H3031]]

achieving their goal of getting their education, maybe training for 
another kind of job, impossible for millions of Americans. The cuts to 
Pell grants are especially significant because in States like mine, in 
Texas, since 2003, tuition has gone up an average of 104 percent for 
thousands and thousands of Texans.
  The Acting CHAIR. The time of the gentleman from Texas has expired.
  Mr. VAN HOLLEN. I yield the gentleman an additional 30 seconds.
  Mr. CASTRO of Texas. So when Republicans put forward a budget that 
cuts off access to higher education, what they are doing is cutting off 
a path to the middle class for millions of Americans, and every 
American, young and old, should be concerned about that.
  Mr. RYAN of Wisconsin. Mr. Chair, I reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. VAN HOLLEN. Mr. Chairman, I now am very pleased to yield 2\1/2\ 
minutes to the gentlewoman from California (Ms. Lee), a terrific member 
of the Budget Committee who is focused on lots of important issues 
including the challenge of poverty in America.
  Ms. LEE of California. I want to thank the gentleman for yielding and 
for your tremendous support and leadership on behalf of the majority of 
the American people in our country.
  Mr. Chair, I rise, of course, in strong opposition to this very 
reckless Republican budget. This is yet another Republican messaging 
document masquerading really as a budget resolution. Once again, 
Republicans have brought forth a budget that slashes the programs that 
keep the poorest and most vulnerable Americans healthy, working, and 
with food on the table.
  Under this cruel plan--and, yes, it is a cruel plan--seniors on 
Medicare would see their payments for services and prescriptions 
skyrocket. We would see an end to the Medicare guarantee as we know it.
  By converting SNAP to a block grant program, Republicans, once again, 
seek to balance the budget on the backs of the most vulnerable by 
cutting our Nation's first line of defense, and that is hunger. Between 
cuts and policy changes, this budget would cut $137 billion in SNAP 
benefits over 10 years--$40 billion wasn't enough.
  And at the same time that our Nation is facing the greatest income 
inequality since the Great Depression, this Republican budget would 
protect some of the most outrageous tax breaks and loopholes for the 
wealthiest millionaires, billionaires, and Big Oil companies. That is 
right. Once again, this plan really wreaks havoc on the poor and the 
middle class, who really pay the price so that my colleagues across the 
aisle can claim a balanced budget.
  Sadly, it does not stop there. While the Republican budget continues 
to keep the American Dream out of reach for the poor, it would increase 
spending, mind you, for the already bloated Pentagon budget and 
continue the Overseas Contingency Operations slush fund, which is 
really paying for wars hopefully in the future that won't exist. We 
simply cannot continue to write a blank check for spending on war if we 
are to ever have a chance of getting our fiscal house in order.
  We can't do this to America's struggling families and the working 
poor. Republicans claim they want to eliminate poverty, and, yes, we 
are holding this debate. Finally, it has become a national debate. We 
are debating poverty and how to make sure people find pathways out of 
poverty. Yet just read this budget. It is a pathway into poverty.
  The Acting CHAIR. The time of the gentlewoman from California has 
expired.
  Mr. VAN HOLLEN. I yield the gentlelady an additional 30 seconds.
  Ms. LEE of California. Yes, I said a pathway. And thank you, Mr. Van 
Hollen, because we have looked at this budget and looked at how it will 
create more poverty. So it is a pathway into poverty.
  Budgets are moral documents. They reflect our values. So the 
underlying values in the Ryan budget really do not reflect who we are 
as Americans, believing that we really are our brothers' keepers and we 
really are our sisters' keepers.
  So I urge Members to reject this Republican budget and instead 
support the budget proposals presented by the Democratic Caucus, the 
Congressional Progressive Caucus, and the Congressional Black Caucus. 
We need a budget that puts Americans back to work.
  The Acting CHAIR. The time of the gentlewoman from California has 
again expired.
  Mr. VAN HOLLEN. I yield the gentlelady an additional 10 seconds.
  Ms. LEE of California. I just want to conclude by saying we need a 
budget, and all three of the budgets that I just mentioned put 
Americans back to work. They invest in our future, they protect the 
safety net, and they work to reignite the American Dream for all. This 
budget does just the opposite. So I hope that all of us will vote 
``no'' on the Ryan budget.

  Mr. RYAN of Wisconsin. Mr. Chairman, I yield myself 30 seconds just 
to say there are different visions. We don't think we should take more 
money from hardworking taxpayers to spend it in Washington and then 
borrow more from our children. We think we should balance the budget 
and pay off the debt.
  We are going to see a lot of budgets coming to the floor here offered 
by the other side, which is great. It is their right. I am glad they 
are offering alternatives.
  Mr. Van Hollen's Democratic budget will have a $1.8 trillion tax 
increase, just like the President's new $1.8 trillion tax increase. The 
Progressive Caucus budget, they have the candle here: a $6.6 trillion 
tax increase they are encouraging.
  The Acting CHAIR. The time of the gentleman has expired.
  Mr. RYAN of Wisconsin. I yield myself an additional 15 seconds.
  Spending by the other side, what they are saying is let's just have a 
bidding war on how much we can raise people's taxes. Let's even raise 
spending more. And nobody else is offering a budget that will ever 
balance the budget. So the idea here is borrow endlessly, never balance 
it, and give our children an inferior standard of living.
  With that, I would like to yield 5 minutes to the gentleman from 
Mississippi (Mr. Nunnelee), a distinguished member of the Budget 
Committee.
  Mr. NUNNELEE. Mr. Chairman, I want to thank Chairman Ryan for 
yielding, but, more importantly, thank him for his work and leadership 
in this area.
  Tonight around America, families will sit down at the kitchen table 
to talk about their family finances. And there always seem to be more 
needs than there are dollars in a paycheck. So those families will sit 
down. They may shed tears tonight, and they may have some tense words 
between them, but before the night is over, they will sit down and make 
tough decisions about how they will spend their family's budget.
  Just last week, the State legislature in my State adjourned, but 
before they did, they made some tough choices. They weren't able to 
fund everything they wanted to fund, and they had to set priorities. 
Local governments and county governments are making tough choices.
  When it comes to American families sitting around their kitchen 
table, if the State legislature, if city governments and county 
governments are making those tough choices, they have every reason to 
expect their government in Washington to do the same thing. And for 4 
years now, under the leadership of Chairman Ryan, we have put forward a 
budget that does make these tough but necessary decisions about getting 
control of our Federal spending.
  That is why I am proud to join my colleagues and vote for a budget 
that responsibly cuts $5.1 trillion over the next 10 years by reforming 
the main drivers of our debt--targeting wasteful spending. At the same 
time, this budget seeks to expand opportunity to help the private 
sector create jobs by highlighting policies that will grow the economy.
  Meanwhile, the administration wants to take more money out of the 
paychecks of hardworking Americans by raising their taxes, wants to 
spend more money, and wants to borrow more money from successive 
generations and never balance the budget.
  This administration has made all sorts of promises it can't keep. For 
example, the Congressional Budget Office says that Pell grants will 
begin to have a shortfall in 2016 and every year thereafter. Medicare? 
My mom and dad

[[Page H3032]]

worked all of their life, paid into a program, and their government 
made them a promise. They said that, when you get to retirement age, we 
are going to provide you health care; yet the actuarial models say that 
program is going bankrupt, and the administration doesn't deal with it.
  This budget does make tough decisions and makes tough choices. And 
the critics? They call this budget draconian. Only in Washington is 
making a tough choice labeled as being controversial.
  It is important that we make these decisions and put our government 
back on a path of sustainable finances to grow our economy. By making 
these tough choices, we ensure our children and our grandchildren a 
better future because we are doing more than just balancing a budget. 
We are living out the American Dream. Beating in the heart of every 
American since this country was founded is the desire to leave a better 
way of life to successive generations, not saddle those generations 
with massive amounts of debt.
  So, for those reasons, I support this budget, and I urge my 
colleagues to support this budget, as well.
  Mr. VAN HOLLEN. Mr. Chairman, the gentleman referred to tough 
decisions. Well, it is true that the House Republican budget is really 
tough on our kids' education. It cuts deeply into early education, 
Early Head Start, and Head Start. It cuts very deeply into K-12. That 
includes Title I and special education for kids with disabilities. As 
we have talked about, it charges college students higher interest 
rates.
  And it is true that the Republican budget is tough on seniors on 
Medicare, because if they have high prescription drug costs, the 
Republican budget reopens the doughnut hole so they will face $1,200 
more per year on prescription drugs.
  So it is tough on kids' education, and it is tough on seniors.
  I will tell you who it is not tough on. It is not tough on powerful 
special interests, people who are spending millions of dollars right 
now on TV advertising trying to influence people's votes. It is not 
tough on them at all. As I said, this budget calls for cutting the top 
tax rate by, fully, 30 percent.
  Now, during the Budget Committee debate, the Democrats said, okay, 
the only way you can do this mathematically, if you are cutting the top 
rate by 30 percent, from 39 percent to 25 percent, is if you do it in a 
deficit neutral way, then you are going to be increasing taxes on 
middle class taxpayers and families to finance those tax cuts. And so 
we said to our Republican colleagues, if that is not what you intend to 
do, let's at least pass an amendment telling the Ways and Means 
Committee that one of our principles is at least maintaining the 
current progressivity of the Tax Code so we don't increase taxes on 
middle class families or lower-income families to finance the tax 
breaks for the folks at the top, called the Protect the American Middle 
Class from a Tax Increase amendment.

                              {time}  1645

  Republicans said no to that.
  They have got all sorts of other instructions to the Ways and Means 
Committee in their budget, like reducing the top rate by a third for 
millionaires; but when it came to instructing the Ways and Means 
Committee not to increase the tax burden on middle class Americans, 
they said no to that.
  So, yes, this Republican budget is tough on the middle class. It is 
tough on seniors, and it is tough on our kid's education; but for folks 
at the very top, they just don't ask for any shared sacrifice. We are 
just pointing that out. It is a fact in their budget.
  The chairman talked about all those tax expenditures, $1 trillion a 
year worth. Not one of those tax expenditures are closed for the 
purpose of reducing the deficit.
  Now, I yield 2\1/2\ minutes to the gentleman from California (Mr. 
Waxman), a Member of Congress who has worked hard throughout his entire 
career to try and make sure that our country grows and that every 
American has opportunity, the ranking member of the Energy and Commerce 
Committee.
  Mr. WAXMAN. Mr. Chairman, we have a choice to make. The House 
Democratic budget and the Republican's budget present very different 
choices about America's future. The Democratic alternative promotes job 
growth and expands opportunity. The Republican budget gives away 
trillions to the wealthy and special interests, while shredding the 
social safety net.
  The Affordable Care Act is the most significant expansion of health 
coverage in 50 years. It ends discrimination based on preexisting 
conditions. It promotes health and prevention. It improves quality and 
lowers cost.
  The Republican budget repeals the Affordable Care Act. Over 10 
million Americans will lose coverage immediately. Insurers could 
discriminate based on preexisting conditions. More than 8 million 
seniors who have saved more than $10 billion on prescription drugs and 
more than 32 million who have benefited from free preventive services 
would immediately see higher costs. The 129 million Americans with 
preexisting conditions would no longer be safe from discrimination.
  After they repealed the Affordable Care Act, the Republican budget 
would slash Medicaid by a full 25 percent. This will hurt millions of 
seniors in nursing homes, millions of low-income babies whose mothers 
receive important prenatal care, and millions of people with 
disabilities. These are immoral and outrageous cuts.
  The Republican budget also ends the Medicare guarantee, forcing 
seniors who stay in fee-for-service to pay more for the coverage they 
have today. It slashes key domestic spending, cutting biomedical 
research, key job creation programs, and programs that keep kids from 
going hungry, just to name a few examples. Are these responsible 
choices? I don't think that is the path we ought to take.
  The Democratic alternative is fiscally responsible and good for our 
Nation's health. I urge my colleagues to reject the House Republican 
approach and, instead, support working families, seniors, and people 
with disabilities by protecting our health care system from these 
attacks.
  I urge a ``no'' vote on the Republican budget. Vote support for the 
Democratic budget.
  Mr. RYAN of Wisconsin. Mr. Chair, at this time, I would like to yield 
4 minutes to the distinguished gentlelady from Missouri (Mrs. 
Hartzler).
  Mrs. HARTZLER. Mr. Chairman, thank you for your leadership.
  As a member of the Budget Committee and the Armed Services Committee, 
I am proud to support a balanced budget that stops spending money we 
don't have. It provides regulatory relief and promotes for a strong 
defense.
  Our Federal debt tops an astonishing $17 trillion. This is 
unacceptable. It is irresponsible to take more money from hard-working 
families just to spend more here in Washington.
  Our Path to Prosperity budget balances in 10 years by cutting 
wasteful spending and reforming government. Just as importantly, this 
budget gets our priorities right again by providing for the common 
defense. It replaces $274 billion in scheduled defense cuts to ensure 
the American people have a bright, safe future.
  It is imperative we do so because, since taking office, President 
Obama has directed over $1 trillion in cuts to our military. Under the 
President's budget, which cuts $75 billion over the next 2 years, with 
deeper cuts expected if sequestration returns in fiscal year 2016, 
Secretary of Defense Hagel and other senior defense and military 
officials acknowledge that these budget choices will create additional 
risk to our Nation. We can't allow this to happen.
  While we cut nearly one-fifth of our defense resources, Russia and 
China are arming at an alarming rate. Russia's military spending is up 
roughly 30 percent, and China's has more than doubled in recent years.
  Given our military shortfalls, we must build upon the recent 
compromise and further reverse the current trajectory to mitigate the 
permanent damage to our national security.
  I am proud to support a balanced budget that reins in government 
spending, promotes job creation, and reprioritizes our national 
defense. Our Path to Prosperity budget accomplishes these goals.
  We cannot keep going to the Department of Defense to cut spending. We 
must deal with the real drivers of our debt and put our country on a 
sustainable path to grow the economy. America's future depends on it.

[[Page H3033]]

  Mr. VAN HOLLEN. Mr. Chairman, it is now my privilege to yield 2 
minutes the gentlewoman from Connecticut (Ms. DeLauro), a fighter for 
working Americans and a member of the Appropriations Committee.
  Ms. DeLAURO. Mr. Chairman, a moment ago, the gentleman from 
Mississippi said that families were sitting around at their kitchen 
table. Yes, they are sitting at their kitchen table, and they are 
crying.
  They do not have a job. Their unemployment benefits have not been 
extended. Their wages have stagnated. They can't afford to send their 
children to college; and this majority fiddles while Rome burns and 
refuses to address any of these issues, but they certainly make it easy 
to lower the top tax rate for the richest Americans.
  I rise in strong opposition to this cruel budget proposal; yet again, 
the House majority has put forward an ideological plan that puts all of 
the burdens on the most vulnerable among us, especially women and 
families.
  Today is Equal Pay Day, a day that women's earnings finally catch up 
to what men made in 2013, but the fact is this dubious milestone, that 
it even exists, is a sad testament to the financial pressures that 
women and families face.
  This budget proposal puts more pressure on women and families. Two-
thirds of seniors in poverty are women. They rely on the bedrock 
American institution of Medicare to survive. This budget ends Medicare 
as we know it. It turns it into a voucher program. Seven in 10 elderly 
individuals, six in 10 nonelderly individuals rely on Medicaid, they 
are women.
  The budget proposes $2.7 trillion in cuts to Medicaid and other 
support that help low- and middle-income families buy health insurance.

  WIC provides critical food benefits to 8.3 million pregnant 
postpartum women, infants, and children across America. The budget 
drastically slashes the program, hurting the same family struggling the 
most in this economy.
  It devastates food stamps, the program in which almost two-thirds of 
the adult participants are women and children, and they account for 
nearly half of all recipients.
  It cuts 170,000 kids from Head Start, educational services for 3.4 
million disadvantaged children. It cuts the Pell grant by over $125 
billion. It allows the insurance companies to, once again, charge women 
more than men.
  The Acting CHAIR. The time of the gentlewoman has expired.
  Mr. VAN HOLLEN. Mr. Chairman, I yield the gentlewoman an additional 
30 seconds.
  Ms. DeLAURO. Mr. Chairman, it cuts Pell grants, and yet it allows 
insurance companies to, once again, charge women more than men and to 
treat pregnancy as a preexisting condition.
  According to the Center for Budget and Policy Priorities, 69 percent 
of the cuts in the Republican budget would come from programs serving 
low- and moderate-income people. This Ryan Republican budget is not a 
reflection of America's values. It is not who we are as a country. It 
is an ideological document that threatens American families.
  I urge my colleagues to reject it.
  Mr. RYAN of Wisconsin. Mr. Chairman, I would like to insert into the 
Record a very specific recitation of the Center for Budget Priorities' 
claim that the gentlewoman mentioned, and at this time, I yield 2 
minutes to the gentlewoman from Tennessee (Mrs. Black), a distinguished 
member of the Budget Committee.

 Responsible Spending Restraint and Reform--Response to the Center on 
                      Budget and Policy Priorities

       In Brief:
       A smaller increase is not a spending cut.
       Under this budget, spending will grow, on average, by 3.5 
     percent a year over the next decade--on the current path, it 
     will grow by 5.2 percent.
       This budget spends $3.5 trillion on Medicaid over the next 
     ten years. We increase spending every year from fiscal year 
     2016 onward.
       This budget spends $600 billion on food stamps over the 
     next decade. And it does not convert SNAP into a block grant 
     until 2019, when the economy will have recovered.
       This budget maintains the current maximum Pell award 
     ($5,730) throughout each of the next ten years of the budget.
       The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities claims the House 
     Republican budget ``gets 69 percent of its cuts from low-
     income programs.'' Instead, the House GOP budget grows them 
     at a more sustainable rate.
       On the current path, the federal government will spend 
     roughly $48 trillion over the next ten years. By contrast, 
     this budget will spend nearly $43 trillion.
       On the current path, spending will grow, on average, by 5.2 
     percent a year over the next decade. Under this budget, 
     spending will grow, on average, by 3.5 percent a year.
       Nearly $43 trillion is enough. Increasing spending by 3.5 
     percent instead of 5.2 percent is hardly draconian.
       President Obama and his party have made promises they can't 
     keep--they've promised huge expansions to safety-net programs 
     that ultimately would bankrupt them.
       Medicaid: This budget repeals Obamacare--including the 
     law's massive expansions of Medicaid, which are 
     unsustainable. Instead, this budget spends $3.5 trillion on 
     Medicaid over the next ten years. We grow the program every 
     year from fiscal year 2016 onward. We simply slow the rate of 
     growth and give states the flexibility to meet the unique 
     needs of their people.
       SNAP: This budget spends $600 billion on food stamps over 
     the next decade. By capping open-ended federal subsidies and 
     allowing states to develop new, innovative methods, the 
     budget's gradual reforms encourage states to reduce rolls and 
     help recipients find work. The budget also doesn't covert 
     SNAP into a block grant until 2019, when the economy will 
     have fully recovered. The budget also calls for time limits 
     and work requirements like the reforms that helped reduce 
     poverty nationwide in the mid-1990s.
       Pell Grants: Congressional Democrats and the President have 
     pushed Pell Grant spending to unsustainable rates. The 
     Congressional Budget Office reports the program will face 
     fiscal shortfalls starting in 2016 and continuing through 
     each year of the budget window. We need to reform the program 
     so it can keep its promises. This budget brings Pell spending 
     under control and makes sure aid helps the truly needy, not 
     university administrators. At the same time, this budget 
     maintains the current maximum Pell award ($5,730) throughout 
     each of the next ten years of the budget.

  Mrs. BLACK. Mr. Chairman, I rise today in support of the House 
Republican budget plan. Unlike the President's budget, this is a 
serious proposal that balances our budget and helps our economy grow.
  Our Nation is $17.4 trillion in debt. If we want to preserve this 
country for our children and our grandchildren, we must reform the way 
Washington works.
  Everyone knows that Medicare will soon go bankrupt, and that is why I 
am so happy that this budget proposal saves this important program for 
our seniors and future generations. By transitioning to a premium 
support model, we can preserve Medicare for those in or near retirement 
and strengthen Medicare for younger generations.
  Furthermore, this budget ends ObamaCare's raid on the Medicare trust 
fund and repeals ObamaCare's Independent Payment Advisory Board to help 
ensure our seniors get the care they deserve.
  Despite what some critics say, this does not eliminate traditional 
Medicare. Instead, it ensures that Americans will always have 
traditional Medicare as an option. Under this plan, every senior will 
have the support they need to get the care they deserve. Those who 
attack this reform without offering credible alternatives are complicit 
in Medicare's demise.
  So I want to commend Chairman Ryan and my Republican colleagues on 
the Budget Committee for leading, where President Obama and the Senate 
Democrats have failed. One way or another, this country will have to 
address our out-of-control debt and deficits, and this budget does so 
responsibly.
  Mr. VAN HOLLEN. Mr. Chairman, it is now my privilege to yield 4 
minutes to a fellow Marylander, Mr. Hoyer, the Democratic whip, who has 
spent a lot of time focused on budgets to empower our economy and to 
make sure we do so in a fiscally responsible manner.
  Mr. HOYER. Mr. Chairman, I thank the ranking member for yielding.
  I would first observe, Mr. Chairman, that the American people ought 
to lament another opportunity missed, an opportunity to come together 
and adopt a big, balanced plan for investment and balance in our fiscal 
system in America.
  Mr. Chairman, last year, we adopted a budget. During the course of 
its implementation with the consideration of appropriation bills, the 
Republican chairman of the committee called the sequester numbers 
adopted in the 2014 Ryan plan unrealistic and ill-conceived.

[[Page H3034]]

  For 2016 through 2024, Mr. Chairman, this budget has numbers below 
sequester levels that the chairman said were unrealistic and ill-
conceived.
  Chairman Rogers has called the numbers in this budget draconian, 
Chairman Rogers, responsible for funding the operations of government 
and assisting and building our economy and its people.
  Mr. Chairman, I believe it is all that and a call to disinvestment. 
This budget is a call to disinvestment in America's growth and success.
  We have heard a lot of claims, of course, about what the Republican 
budget will do for our country. I have heard those claims from previous 
Republican chairmen, frankly. They did not pan out.
  Let me clear that fog away and get down to the raw numbers which 
reveal the magnitude of the damage the Republican budget will inflict. 
As a matter of fact, with all due respect, I call it a retreat--an 
alliterative retreat of course, the chairman's retreat.
  First, the Republican budget would repeal the patient protections and 
other benefits of the Affordable Care Act, leaving millions without 
health insurance coverage.
  Of course, it keeps the money; it just didn't give the benefits. It 
would turn Medicaid into a capped block grant program and cut its 
funding by $732 billion over the next decade.

                              {time}  1700

  That is from seniors who need long-term care. That is from people 
with disabilities who need medical services.
  Two-thirds of Medicaid spending goes to low-income seniors, and the 
Republican budget cuts it by a quarter.
  It would also end the Medicare guarantee and reopen the doughnut hole 
for prescription drugs, shifting costs back to seniors.
  Secondly, the Republican budget disinvests, as I said, from many of 
the very important initiatives Congress has made a priority for the 
future growth and competitiveness of our economy.
  It cuts over $120 billion from middle class college affordability 
programs like the Pell grant and will leave a college undergraduate 
taking out a student loan as much as $3,800 deeper in debt.
  By eliminating funding for applied research, their budget will reduce 
Federal research grants by half--by half disinvestment. It could result 
in 2,400 fewer National Science Foundation research awards and 1,400 
fewer National Institutes of Health awards.
  The reality is, Mr. Chairman, the Republican budget would decimate 
pediatric research. We have heard a little bit about that. It would 
decimate pediatric research. It would decimate all other research as 
well and other medical research in the lifesaving diseases by billions 
of dollars, not just pediatric research: cancer, heart, lung, blood, 
Alzheimer's, and others. $173 billion will be cut from highway spending 
over the next 10 years, disinvestment, even though infrastructure 
investments are critical to the growth of our manufacturing sector and 
job creation.
  The Acting CHAIR. The time of the gentleman has expired.
  Mr. VAN HOLLEN. Mr. Chairman, I yield the gentleman an additional 
minute.
  Mr. HOYER. Overall, the Republican budget reduces our long-term 
investments in education, research, infrastructure, and job training by 
over 15 percent over the next decade compared to the deal the 
Republican chairman negotiated just 4 months ago.
  I will tell you, Mr. Chairman and Mr. Ranking Member, our competitors 
around the world are not retreating in terms of investments. Perhaps 
the most egregious mark against this budget, though, is that it does 
not achieve the fiscal balance its authors give as the reason for these 
cuts in the first place.
  Instead, it relies on ``dynamic scoring.'' That is, pretend something 
will happen. Now, if it happens, we would have a bonus and we could use 
that bonus. But if it doesn't happen, this budget will guarantee that 
we will be further in the hole.
  It has an asterisk for $966 billion. It doesn't say what that $966 
billion is about, at least two-thirds of it. But you guess, pretend, 
hope. If it doesn't happen, you are in the hole.
  The Acting CHAIR. The time of the gentleman has again expired.
  Mr. VAN HOLLEN. Mr. Chairman, I yield the gentleman an additional 30 
seconds.
  Mr. HOYER. This budget, Mr. Chairman, is a blueprint for economic 
decline, for vulnerable Americans being left to fend for themselves, 
and for an America less equipped to protect its citizens.
  I urge my colleagues to defeat this resolution and send a message 
that our country will continue to invest in its priorities: 
opportunity, security, and growth. Let us not retreat. Let us serve 
this country and serve its greatness.
  Mr. RYAN of Wisconsin. Mr. Chairman, I yield myself 1 minute.
  I want to rest the mind of the distinguished minority whip at ease. 
Chairman Rogers does support this budget. His comments in 2013 aside, 
he is a supporter of this budget. This budget balances using CBO 
numbers.
  I would also say this. All these complaints about spending cuts or 
slower increases in spending aside--this budget, by the way, doesn't 
specify that NIH is going to have all of that--all of these reductions 
in spending or reductions in the increase in spending will pale in 
comparison if we have a debt crisis, if we have a bond market incident, 
if we have an interest rate shock.
  If we keep kicking the can down the road, the solution then will be 
so much uglier, so much more draconian, than any of this hyperbolic 
rhetoric even suggests.
  With that, I yield 2 minutes to the distinguished gentleman from 
Tennessee, Dr. Roe.
  Mr. ROE of Tennessee. Mr. Chairman, I rise in strong support of the 
House Republican budget.
  Today, our national debt exceeds $17.5 trillion. Mr. Chairman, that 
is a blueprint for decline--more than $55,000 for every man, woman, and 
child in America. If we fail to address this mounting debt now, our 
children and our grandchildren will inherit an America that will be 
poorer, less free, and provide fewer opportunities.
  To address this looming crisis, Republicans propose balancing the 
Federal budget in 10 years. Most Americans don't realize that 
discretionary spending has decreased 4 consecutive years, a tremendous 
accomplishment spurred on by House Republicans.
  Now we must show the same resolve to tackle our largest drivers of 
debt, mandatory programs, including Medicaid, Medicare, Social 
Security, and SNAP. We can achieve balance without reducing overall 
spending--let me say that again--we can achieve balance without 
reducing overall spending by simply slowing the rate of growth at which 
spending increases. We must spend hardworking taxpayer dollars smarter.
  Mr. Chairman, I am Medicare age, and I realize that for every dollar 
that we pay in in premiums, we get $3 out in benefits. This is clearly 
not sustainable.
  As a physician, I would like to commend Chairman Ryan for his 
continued efforts to save and strengthen Medicare. We must act to 
protect seniors' access to medical care before the Medicare trust fund 
becomes insolvent in 2026, a short time from now.
  This proposal achieves that goal while ensuring those Americans 55 
and older experience absolutely no change.
  I urge my colleagues to support this very conservative budget.
  Mr. VAN HOLLEN. Mr. Chairman, I reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. RYAN of Wisconsin. Mr. Chairman, at this time, I yield 2 minutes 
to the distinguished gentleman from Montana (Mr. Daines).
  Mr. DAINES. Mr. Chairman, to create jobs and grow our economy, we 
must work toward lasting solutions that put our Nation back on solid 
fiscal ground, stop wasteful Washington spending, and balance our 
budget.
  The American people deserve more accountability from Washington, and 
Washington has a responsibility to the American people to produce, 
number one, a budget, and, number two, a budget that balances. Anything 
less than that is a failure to lead.
  That is why I introduced the Balanced Budget Accountability Act, 
which requires Congress to pass a balanced budget or Members won't get 
paid. The principles found in my Balanced Budget Accountability Act 
reflect Montana commonsense, and they stand in stark contrast with the 
President's budget, which never achieves

[[Page H3035]]

balance, and the Senate, where Democrat leaders have decided the 
American people don't deserve a budget at all. That is irresponsible 
and will only lead to never-ending deficits and a debt that will take 
generations to pay off. That is not the Montana way, that is not the 
American way.

  I don't agree with everything in this budget, but I know that the 
people of Montana want and deserve a solution to our debt crisis, a 
balanced budget, and a Congress with the courage to lead.
  Mr. VAN HOLLEN. Mr. Chairman, I am very pleased to yield 3 minutes to 
the gentleman from Oregon (Mr. Blumenauer), a member of the Budget 
Committee and the Ways and Means Committee.
  Mr. BLUMENAUER. Mr. Chairman, I appreciate the gentleman's courtesy 
in yielding me time.
  As I am sitting on the floor listening to the back and forth and the 
division, I was thinking back to a time when there was consensus in 
this body on important investments for our future.
  Indeed, the character of our Nation, our economic vitality, was 
grounded in the investment the United States made in our ports, our 
railroads, our highways. The finest infrastructure in the world gave 
the United States the strength to be victorious in battle in World War 
I and World War II, to have the economic strength to be able to meet 
national challenges, and to provide economic security and well-being 
for our families.
  Unfortunately, as families struggle, as we have difficulty providing 
family-wage jobs for American workers, the American infrastructure is 
no longer the envy of the world, as it was in the past. In fact, all 
the independent studies show we are not anywhere near the top of the 
pack. We fall into the lower ranges of the development world.
  The American Society of Civil Engineers has given our infrastructure 
a grade of D-plus and suggests we will need to invest over $3 trillion 
over the next 6 years just to remain economically competitive in the 
global marketplace. The failure to deal with our infrastructure is 
going to cost American families in terms of wear and tear on their 
vehicles over $1,000 a year and millions of hours stuck in traffic in 
congestion.
  We are facing a soon-to-be-bankrupt highway trust fund. The clock is 
ticking. By the end of September, it will run out of money, which means 
we are seeing cutbacks on Federal contracts this summer, which means 
some States are having to act now this spring. The decision of 
Tennessee this last week--it is the 11th State that has announced 
cutbacks.
  The Republican budget being debated today ignores this pending 
crisis, let alone the growing needs of American communities. Their 
budget would freeze us in decline, a 30 percent reduction over the next 
decade from already inadequate levels, making it impossible to deal 
with projects of national significance and severely straining ongoing 
maintenance of our highway and transit systems.
  It doesn't have to be this way. A broad and powerful coalition 
ranging from the AFL-CIO to the Chamber of Congress, the trucking 
association, AAA, bicyclists, environmentalists, local governments, 
contractors, businesses large and small have joined with a group of 17 
bipartisan governors and the heads of 31 State chambers of commerce to 
urge that Congress face this funding crisis so that we can have a full 
6-year reauthorization so that we can put hundreds of thousands of 
Americans to work, strengthen the economy, and protect our communities.
  The CHAIR. The time of the gentleman has expired.
  Mr. VAN HOLLEN. Mr. Chairman, I yield the gentleman an additional 
minute.
  Mr. BLUMENAUER. Instead of wasting more time on a budget that is 
going nowhere, we should come together to address our failing bridges, 
roads, and water system. Our future demands it, our constituents expect 
no less.
  I strongly urge the rejection of the Republican budget if for no 
other reason than it freezes us in this decline for infrastructure and 
look forward to the day when we will work together to solve this 
problem.
  Mr. RYAN of Wisconsin. Mr. Chairman, I reserve the balance of my 
time.
  Mr. VAN HOLLEN. Mr. Chairman, may I inquire how much time is 
remaining on each side.
  The CHAIR. The gentleman from Maryland has 40 minutes remaining. The 
gentleman from Wisconsin has 41\1/2\ minutes remaining.
  Mr. VAN HOLLEN. Does the chairman have any further speakers?
  Mr. RYAN of Wisconsin. I do not have any further speakers at the 
moment.
  Mr. VAN HOLLEN. Mr. Chairman, I am pleased to yield 2 minutes to the 
gentleman from New York (Mr. Tonko), a member of the Energy and 
Commerce Committee.
  Mr. TONKO. Mr. Chairman, I thank the chair and ranking member of our 
Budget Committee for the opportunity to share some thoughts.
  Mixed messaging--it really grips the American public. Washington 
Republicans are presenting their budget and proclaiming that we are 
about reducing the debt and reducing the deficit. We are concerned 
about our children, we are concerned about our grandchildren.
  At the same time, the mixed message is to the crowd that is above a 
million dollar threshold, income threshold: We have money for you we 
are going to spend for you. We are so concerned about the debt and the 
deficit that needs to be reduced, but we will spend on you. We will 
offer you an average $200,000 tax break, so allow us to spend on you.
  Somehow the children and the grandchildren are not a worry then. So 
the mixed messaging on this one is amazing.

                              {time}  1715

  Over the last couple of days, I have had the opportunity to either 
meet in the office or in group sessions or in large gatherings here in 
Washington with a number of advocates who are concerned about 
investments that need to be made in this Federal budget.
  There is the Alzheimer's Association that is imploring us to find a 
cure, to invest in research. Washington Republicans say: no, we need to 
spend on tax cuts for the wealthy, and we need to use your funds to 
reduce the debt and the deficit.
  Washington Republicans will tell our college-bound students who need 
an affordable path to that higher ed opportunity that: we can't spend 
on you or invest in you, we need to spend on tax cuts for the wealthy.
  Washington Republicans will sweep the savings and the revenues of the 
Affordable Care Act and proclaim to the senior community that: we are 
now repealing the Affordable Care Act, all of the benefits that were 
there for you are now removed.
  Washington Republicans will tell a group that I met with about water 
infrastructure needs: we can't spend on you because we need to spend on 
tax cuts for the wealthy.
  This is a mixed message that is disingenuous.
  The CHAIR. The time of the gentleman has expired.
  Mr. VAN HOLLEN. I yield the gentleman another 30 seconds.
  Mr. TONKO. Mr. Chair, I think we should be real with the American 
public. We either stand for spending or we don't. We want to address 
the debt and deficit or we don't. We believe in investment, as the 
Democratic minority in this House believes, that will grow the economy 
and provide a greater opportunity for jobs.
  There is this path to prosperity for a few that the Republicans have 
put together with their budget. I suggest that we look at a highway for 
hope that has been advanced by the Democrats in the House that invests 
in Alzheimer's research, higher ed opportunities, infrastructure for 
this Nation, and a continuation of the Affordable Care Act.
  Mr. RYAN of Wisconsin. Mr. Chairman, I yield myself 2 minutes.
  I think there is this view that the pie of life is fixed, that 
society is static--the economy, a fixed pie--and that we here in 
Washington should decide how to redistribute the slices of the pie.
  We reject that whole, entire premise. Life is dynamic. The economy is 
dynamic. We want to grow the pie for everybody. You don't grow the 
pie--grow opportunity or grow the economy--if you drive this country to 
a debt crisis, if you continue spending way beyond your means, if you 
spend money we

[[Page H3036]]

don't have that is taken from the next generation.
  This President has already raised taxes $1.7 trillion. The top 
effective tax rate on successful small businesses is almost 45 percent. 
The tax rate on big businesses, like corporations, is 35 percent.
  The CHAIR. The time of the gentleman has expired.
  Mr. RYAN of Wisconsin. Mr. Chairman, I yield myself an additional 
minute.
  Our competitors, the countries we compete with, tax their businesses 
at 25 percent. When we tax ourselves a lot more than our foreign 
competitors tax themselves, they win, and we lose.
  What we are hearing from the other side is that $1.7 trillion tax 
increase is not enough. Let's go farther and tax another $1.8 trillion.
  Then this rhetoric about winners and losers and the few and the this 
and the that is a notion that all of the good ideas come from 
Washington. It is a notion that goes beyond the idea that government 
needs to play a supporting role in our lives, in fulfilling important 
missions like health and retirement security and a safety net, to 
government needs to play the commanding role in our lives, that it 
needs to dictate these things, that government runs the economy, that 
government decides who wins and who loses.
  Guess what, Mr. Chairman? When you do that, the interest groups that 
they are all complaining about, they are the ones who call the shots up 
here.
  What we are trying to do with this budget is to get the basics right. 
What we want to do is to make sure that we can make good on these very 
important missions of health and retirement security, and we want to 
make sure that people get to decide how it is done in their lives.
  We want to make sure that American businesses have what they need to 
compete and survive and grow and to create jobs in this global economy. 
What we want to make sure is that we don't live beyond our means so 
that our kids live below their means. We want to grow this economy.
  The CHAIR. The time of the gentleman has again expired.
  Mr. RYAN of Wisconsin. Mr. Chairman, I yield myself an additional 
minute.
  We have got a big debt. We all know that. The question is: Who owns 
our debt? Who is in control of our future?
  We already know we are asking a lot from the next generation, more 
than any other generation has before. Back when I was born in 1970, 6 
percent of our national debt was owned by foreigners. In 1990, when I 
was in college, 19 percent was owned by foreigners. Today, 47 percent 
of our national debt is owned by foreigners. They control half of our 
debt.
  That is not in our country's interest. Relying on other countries to 
cash flow our country--to cash flow our budget--is not smart economics, 
and we know we are taking control of our country and are ceding it 
elsewhere.
  This is why we have got to get this debt under control, for our kids, 
for our grandkids, for our economy, and for our sovereignty.
  With that, I reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. VAN HOLLEN. Mr. Chairman, I yield myself such time as I may 
consume.
  We all believe in a growing economy, and we all believe in greater 
prosperity. The issue is how do we make sure we have that prosperity as 
a country.
  We have two very important strains in the American character. One 
strain is the entrepreneurial strain, the self-reliance strain, and 
that has helped generate great prosperity in this country.
  It has helped unleash huge amounts of potential; yet we have also 
learned as a country that there are some things we can do better by 
working together than if we are just hundreds of millions of people who 
are separately operating on their own, with things like investing in 
our national infrastructure, with things like investing in a world-
class college system, with things like working and investing in medical 
research, so that we are the world's leader in those areas.
  Those are what have made us a world economic power and that have 
allowed us to support our military.
  The problem with the Republican budget is that it ignores that part 
of the American character. We keep hearing from our colleagues about 
all of those tax expenditures that are out there, but I just have to go 
back, Mr. Chairman, to point out that they don't close one of those tax 
loopholes for the purpose of helping to reduce the deficit.
  Because they make that decision--because they decide to say: we are 
not going to touch those very powerful special interests and the very 
wealthy--their budget mathematically has to come after other people in 
the country, after the middle class, after seniors, after our kids' 
education, after our infrastructure. That is what this is all about.

  Our budget and the President's budget dramatically reduce the 
deficit. They reduce the debt as a function of a share of the economy 
in the outyears going down. The Republican budget didn't balance until 
2040 just a few years ago.
  So the issue is whether you are going to be driven by the ideological 
target or whether your fundamental focus will be jobs and opportunity. 
That is what ours does.
  Mr. Chairman, I ask unanimous consent that the gentleman from Oregon 
(Mr. Blumenauer) control the balance of the time.
  The CHAIR. Is there objection to the request of the gentleman from 
Maryland?
  There was no objection.
  Mr. BLUMENAUER. Mr. Chairman, I reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. RYAN of Wisconsin. Mr. Chairman, I yield 2 minutes to the 
gentleman from Pennsylvania (Mr. Rothfus).
  Mr. ROTHFUS. I thank Chairman Ryan of the Budget Committee for the 
hard work that he has been doing over the last several years as we look 
to get a handle on the spending problem we have here in Washington, 
D.C.
  Mr. Chairman, our debt is out of control. In the past 10 years, it 
has more than doubled, from $7.1 trillion to $17.6 trillion today. We 
paid almost $416 billion in interest just last year. Imagine where that 
money could have been better spent.
  The failure to address the debt and deficits reduces opportunity and 
prosperity for future generations. It directly threatens our ability to 
pay for our priorities like Social Security, Medicare, a strong 
national defense, and taking care of our veterans.
  Unfortunately, President Obama has offered another budget that 
increases taxes, that expands the government, that does nothing to save 
Medicare or Social Security, and that never balances. Harry Reid's 
Senate will not even consider a budget this year.
  The budget we offer to the American people protects and preserves 
Medicare and Social Security, and it balances in 10 years. When 
Congress responsibly budgets, we increase economic security for our 
families and ensure that we leave our children and grandchildren with 
more opportunities and a brighter future.
  Mr. Chairman, I call on my colleagues to do the right thing by 
workers, families, and future generations. Pass this budget.
  Mr. BLUMENAUER. Mr. Chairman, at this point, I yield 1\1/2\ minutes 
to the gentlelady from Texas (Ms. Jackson Lee), a distinguished member 
of the Judiciary Committee.
  Ms. JACKSON LEE. I thank the gentleman from Oregon, and I thank all 
of the Members for a thoughtful and important debate.
  Mr. Chairman, that is what this is all about. It is about gripping--
taking hold--of the heart and soul of America.
  As I said in the Rules Committee, the budget is actually a moral 
document, a moral compass, of where we want to take this country. I 
think what needs to be explained to the American public is that, in 
actuality, we have been making progress.
  The deficit has gone down from $1 trillion from the past 
administration, from the Bush administration, to now $680 billion. We 
are making progress, from losing 800,000 jobs a month to gaining close 
to 200,000; yet the document that is on the floor today, the Ryan 
budget--the Republican budget--chooses not to have the morality and the 
affection for the American people that is desired.
  When you look at their budget, you will see that $3.3 trillion of 
their budget--69 percent--is cut from programs

[[Page H3037]]

for people with low or moderate incomes, from the very people who need 
a stairstep of opportunity, and they give $200,000 in tax cuts to the 
top 1 percent.
  None of us have any challenge to prosperity and opportunity, but how 
can you have a budget that hits low-income programs or programs that 
give opportunity?
  How many have gone to school because of Pell grants? $175 million in 
cuts. How many people have gotten their health care from Medicaid and 
still do, like children? How many people have needed to have the SNAP 
program?
  I believe that we should have budgets that work for all people. I 
intend to vote for the CBC budget and for the Democratic budget and 
``no'' on this underlying Republican budget. We need to have a standard 
that respects all people in this country, and this budget does not.
  Mr. Chair, I rise in strong opposition to H. Con. Res. 96, the House 
Republicans' ``Budget Resolution for Fiscal Year 2015.'' I oppose this 
irresponsible budget resolution because it continues the reckless 
approach to fiscal policy that the House majority has championed for 
years, with disastrous results.
  Mr. Chair, the budgeteers on the majority side have a very poor track 
record when it comes to economic forecasts and projections.
  For years, they have based their entire legislative agenda and 
strategy on their belief that the Affordable Care Act or ``Obamacare'' 
would be a failure.
  The wish was father to the thought. But they were wrong.
  Because of Obamacare more than 10 million Americans now know the 
peace of mind that comes from affordable, quality health insurance that 
is there when you need it. (7 million through the exchange and 3 
million through Medicaid).
  House Republicans oppose increasing the minimum wage, claiming that 
it costs jobs. Wrong again. Every increase in the minimum wage has been 
accompanied by an expanding economy, especially during the Clinton 
Administration.
  House Republicans opposing comprehensive immigration reform claim 
that it will lead to lower incomes and lost jobs. Wrong again. Studies 
conducted by groups as far apart as the Chamber of Commerce and the 
AFL-CIO consistently show that comprehensive immigration reform will 
grow the Gross Domestic Product by $1.5 trillion over 10 years.
  Given this sorry track record of economic forecasting, I strongly 
oppose the Republican budget because it favors the wealthy over middle 
class families and those struggling to enter or remain in the middle 
class.
  I oppose this Republican budget because it asks major sacrifices of 
seniors who can barely make ends meet, and fundamentally alters the 
social contract by turning Medicaid and SNAP programs into a block 
grant and Medicare into a voucher.
  I cannot and will not support a resolution that attempts to balance 
the budget on the backs of working families, seniors, children, the 
poor, or mortgages the future by failing to make the investments needed 
to sustain economic growth and opportunity for all Americans.
  Mr. Chair, we Democrats have a better way. We understand that we are 
all in this together and that our current economic situation calls for 
a balanced approach between increased revenues and responsible 
reduction in expenditures.
  Our plan will protect and strengthen our recovering economy, reduce 
the deficit in a responsible way, while continuing to invest in the 
things that make our country strong like education, health care, 
innovation, and clean energy.
  Mr. Chair, this Republican budget is bad for America but it is 
disastrous for the people from my home state of Texas who sent me here 
to advocate for their interests. Let me highlight a few examples.
  1. If the Republican budget resolution were to become the basis of 
federal fiscal policy, 3,435,336 Texas seniors would be forced out of 
traditional Medicare and into a voucher program. Under the Republican 
plan to end Medicare as we know it, Texas seniors will receive a 
voucher instead of guaranteed benefits under traditional Medicare.
  2. For the 3,435,336 Texans aged 45-54, the value of their vouchers 
would be capped at growth levels that are lower than the projected 
increases in health care costs. Previous analyses showed that this type 
of plan would cut future spending by $5,900 per senior, forcing them to 
spend more out of pocket and diminishing their access to quality care.
  3. Additionally, private insurance plans will aggressively pursue the 
healthiest, least expensive enrollees, thereby allowing Medicare--
currently the lifeline for 3,187,332 Texas seniors--to ``wither on the 
vine.''
  4. If the Republican budget resolution were to be adopted by 
Congress, 206,304 Texas seniors would pay more for prescription drugs 
next year.
  5. The Republican plan would re-open the ``donut hole,'' forcing 
seniors to pay the full cost of their prescription drugs if their 
yearly drug expenses are more than $2,970 for the year.
  6. Seniors reaching the prescription drug ``donut hole'' would pay an 
average of $828 more in prescription drug costs in 2014 and 
approximately $13,000 more from now through 2022.
  7. Under the Republican budget, the 2,445,462 Texas seniors who 
utilized free preventive services currently covered by Medicare in 2012 
will face increased costs in the form of higher deductibles, co-
insurance, and copayments for certain services, including even cancer 
screenings and annual wellness visits.
  8. The Republican budget slashes $31.71 billion in nursing home care 
and other health care services for 754,500 Texas seniors and disabled 
who currently rely on Medicaid for their long-term care needs.
  9. The draconian cuts included in the Republican budget would have a 
devastating impact on the 1,191 certified nursing homes in Texas that 
serve 91,717 seniors, with more than half relying on Medicaid as their 
primary payer. As a result, nursing homes would be forced to slash 
services, turn away seniors, or close their doors.
  Mr. Chair, this budget could have invested in programs that help 
strengthen the middle class, reduce poverty, and strengthen our 
economic recovery. Instead, the Republican budget makes deep cuts to 
the area of the budget helping low-income families put food on the 
table and make ends meet.
  These are families who are already struggling with unemployment, 
lower wages, and just simply trying to make ends meet.
  The House Republican budget will push millions more Americans into 
poverty and put a large number of low-income children, seniors, and 
people with disabilities at risk.
  It guts Medicare and Medicaid and calls for massive cuts to food 
assistance, all in order to protect tax breaks for special interests 
and for multimillionaires who are not even asking for them.
  The Republican budget may be characterized in many ways--cruel, 
irresponsible, short-sighted, reckless--but ``fair and balanced'' is 
not one of them.
  In contrast, the alternative budgets proposed by the Democratic 
Caucus, Congressional Black Caucus, and Congressional Progressive 
Caucus, which were made in order by the Rules Committee, are each 
worthy of support because they fairly balance the need for increased 
revenues and responsible reductions in expenditures with the imperative 
of making the necessary investments in human capital required to move 
our country forward.
  Specifically, the Alternative Budgets proposed by the Democratic 
Caucus, CBC, and CPC:
  help create more jobs now;
  replace the sequester;
  make key education investments;
  invest in research and development and clean energy;
  invest in long-term infrastructure;
  preserve Medicare as we know it;
  protect health reform's benefits for seniors;
  protect Medicaid for seniors in nursing homes;
  preserve Supplemental Nutrition Assistance (SNAP);
  reduce the deficit through a smart, targeted, and steady approach 
provides tax relief for working families and ends tax breaks for the 
wealthy;
  take a balanced approach to reducing the long-term deficits and debt; 
and
  put the budget on a sustainable path
  Mr. Chair, under the Democratic budget, the deficit would fall from 7 
percent of GDP in 2014 to 2.3 percent of GDP in 2024.
  The Democratic Budget Alternative will generate at least a million 
more jobs this year compared to the Republicans' ``austerity first'' 
plan by making the investments needed to create jobs, strengthen the 
middle class, create greater upward mobility, and ensure opportunity 
for our children and future generations.
  The Democratic alternative budgets extend Emergency Unemployment 
Compensation for the long-term unemployed, which provides a lifeline to 
the 2.37 million jobless workers who have already lost their benefits 
and the 72,000 persons who stand to lose there benefits each week if 
Congress does not act.
  Additionally, the Democratic budget immediately ends the Sequester, 
which would otherwise cost the economy 750,000 jobs by the end of the 
year, and replaces it with deficit reduction resulting from a balanced 
approach combining responsible spending cuts with increased revenues by 
cutting tax breaks for special interests and wealthy individuals 
without increasing the tax burden on middle-income Americans.

[[Page H3038]]

  Mr. Chair, the Democratic alternative budget maintains our commitment 
to Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security; expands the EITC for 
childless workers; extends the tax credits from the American Taxpayer 
Relief Act due to expire at the end of 2017, and provides $7.6 billion 
annually for early childhood education.
  It is said often, Mr. Chair, but is no less true, that the federal 
budget is more than a financial document; it is an expression of the 
nation's most cherished values. As the late and great former senator 
and Vice-President Hubert Humphrey said:
  ``The moral test of government is how that government treats those 
who are in the dawn of life, the children; those who are in the 
twilight of life, the elderly; and those who are in shadows of life, 
the sick, the needy, and the handicapped.''
  For that reason that in evaluating the merits of a budget resolution, 
it is not enough to subject it only to the test of fiscal 
responsibility. To keep faith with the nation's past, to be fair to the 
nation's present, and to safeguard the nation's future, the budget must 
also pass a ``moral test.''
  The Republican budget resolution fails both of these standards. The 
Democratic alternatives do not. For these compelling reasons, I stand 
in strong opposition to H. Con. Res. 96 and urge my colleagues to join 
me in voting against this ill-conceived and unwise measure.
  Mr. RYAN of Wisconsin. Mr. Chairman, at this time, I yield 2 minutes 
to the gentleman from Arizona (Mr. Schweikert).
  Mr. SCHWEIKERT. I thank the chairman.
  Mr. Chairman, one of the reasons I ran over here right now is that I 
have been listening to some of the speakers on the left.
  As the gentlewoman just spoke, in referring to the budget as a moral 
document, I actually somewhat agree with that, but let's actually 
discuss what is moral for the next generation and the generation after 
that and the generation after that.
  For the fun of it, as I was running out the door, I grabbed this 
little poster which had been dropped off to me last week. It is a 
little poster from over at the Mercatus Center, which has been doing 
some calculations of what the United States' debt would look like if 
you took the debt in the unfunded liabilities of this country and put 
it on GAAP accounting, so if you actually treated it honestly.
  What is the real number, the typical actuarial 75-year window, 
attached with regular debt?
  Process in your mind what you have been told year after year of our 
unfunded liabilities, and I need you to wipe that number clean. The 
number they came up with recently has hit $205 trillion of debt in 
unfunded liabilities.
  You do realize, if you go right now to Google and look up the best 
estimates of the wealth of the world, our unfunded liabilities are now 
exceeding many of the estimates of the wealth of the entire world.
  This is what so many Members are willing to hand to our children, to 
our great-grandchildren, and to the future generations?
  If you want to make a moral argument, that debt--those unfunded 
liabilities--is the moral argument.

                              {time}  1730

  Mr. BLUMENAUER. Mr. Chairman, I yield 1\1/2\ minutes to the gentleman 
from Vermont (Mr. Welch) a member of the Energy and Commerce Committee.
  Mr. WELCH. I thank the gentleman.
  We are both making an argument that aligns with our points of view on 
the budget, and the bottom line here is that we have got to invest, we 
have got to have a balanced budget, and we have got to figure out how 
to do it. But the question I have about this budget is: What is going 
to happen to the potholes in America?
  I came out of a State legislature where we had constraints on us. We 
had to find ways to pay our bills within the means of the people of 
Vermont to be able to pay them. We had to deal with real problems. It 
required a confident approach to investing in the future. That has to 
be part of a budget.
  America's roads are falling apart. Our bridges are falling down. This 
is a real disaster when it comes to meeting the infrastructure needs of 
this country. The American Society of Civil Engineers rates our 
infrastructure D-plus and estimates that the amount of investment 
needed by 2020 is $3.6 billion.
  This budget accepts the looming insolvency of the highway trust fund, 
and it does absolutely nothing to fix it. Those potholes are not going 
to fix themselves. And that is not a Republican or Democratic deal. 
Those are potholes in your district and mine.
  It is scientific research as well. Both sides of the aisle are proud 
of America's scientific achievements. What this budget continues to do 
is reduce and squeeze National Institutes of Health grants by about 
1,400. Just in the State of Vermont, the University of Vermont has seen 
a 20 percent drop in those research grants that help those with Ph.D.'s 
find cures for diseases in the future.
  A confident nation is going to fix its roads.
  Mr. RYAN of Wisconsin. May I inquire how much time remains?
  The CHAIR. The gentleman from Wisconsin has approximately 34 minutes 
remaining, and the gentleman from Oregon has 32 minutes remaining.
  Mr. RYAN of Wisconsin. Having the right to close, we have no more 
speakers on this side.
  Mr. BLUMENAUER. Just so I understand, the majority has consumed 34 
minutes?
  The CHAIR. The gentleman from Wisconsin has 34 minutes remaining, and 
the gentleman from Oregon has 32 minutes remaining.
  Mr. BLUMENAUER. I yield myself 2 minutes.
  I do appreciate the back-and-forth discussion here, but I want to put 
this in perspective, if I could, because our friends with the 
Republican budget have assumed, for instance, that we don't necessarily 
have to raise taxes. We could actually cut some of the loopholes that 
we have offered repeatedly; and although that is referred to 
rhetorically, they have never been able to follow through with any that 
they would cut.
  There are Medicaid cuts. And make no mistake about it, these Medicaid 
cuts are actually reductions in nursing home care for America's most 
vulnerable. That is two-thirds of this money that it is going to be 
visited back on the States and impacting families.
  They repeal the Affordable Care Act, but they keep all the associated 
revenues.
  We went through a campaign season excoriating Democrats for the 
reductions in Medicare Advantage, and they keep that in their budget.
  There is the magic of dynamic scoring, which we have heard about 
repeatedly for years, which never really quite proves itself.
  And then we have cuts to Pell grants. We heard described in committee 
that these cuts to Pell grants are not a problem because they are just 
an excuse to raise tuition and enrich lavish academic salaries.
  Mr. Chairman, this Republican budget would not only freeze us into a 
downward decline in our infrastructure, it would be the lowest level of 
nonmilitary discretionary spending that we have seen in generations. It 
is not going to happen; it shouldn't happen; and my Republican friends 
should not be able to get away with assuming that this is a viable and 
responsible approach.
  I hope we will come to the point again where we can find a way to 
come together to deal with things that we actually agree on in a 
tangible way and make some real progress.
  Mr. Chairman, I reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. RYAN of Wisconsin. Mr. Chairman, I yield myself 4 minutes.
  Mr. Chairman, budgeting is about choosing. Budgeting is about setting 
priorities. In this particular case, it is about setting a path for the 
country.
  We have got serious fiscal challenges unlike any we have ever had 
before; and when we look at some of these fiscal challenges, it is very 
clear that the sooner we get on top of these problems, the sooner we 
deal with these problems, the better off everybody is going to be.
  Here, in a nutshell, is our big fiscal issue. It is not a Democrat or 
Republican thing. It is not a partisan thing. It is really sort of a 
demographic and math thing.
  We are going from roughly 40 million seniors to about 80 million 
seniors, retirees. The baby boomers are retiring, 10,000 people a day, 
at this pace, for 10 years. The programs that they rely on, like 
Medicare--really important programs--grow 6 to 8 percent a year.
  So when you have a pay-as-you-go system where current workers pay 
current taxes under their current paychecks to pay for current 
retirees--as I

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am paying my payroll taxes for my mom's Medicare and Social Security 
benefits, and when I am retired, my kids will do the same for me--and 
you have an 89 percent increase in the retirement population but about 
a 17 percent increase in the taxpaying population, therein lies your 
challenge.

  So these programs are growing so much faster than our ability to pay. 
They are growing faster than wages, economy, and revenues, to the point 
where these programs that we rely on that are so special and 
necessary--I have seen Social Security and Medicare do important things 
in my own family and my own life--these things are going bankrupt. The 
sooner we fix it, the better off we are all going to be.
  The other problem is, if we don't fix this, if we don't even show the 
world or the country that we intend to fix this, our economy really 
suffers, because the economy, businesses, banks, credit unions, 
creditors, small businesses, and large businesses don't know what the 
future is going to look like.
  So all these things we need to do to get people to take risks and 
hire people and invest and start a new business, we are slowing that 
down. That is why the CBO says the economy is slowing down. It is hard 
to get people out of poverty if we don't have good jobs for them to get 
out of poverty with.
  If you look at this chart, we are going into unchartered territory. 
We have had big debt before. Our debt was as big as our economy in 
World War II, but for the years we fought World War II, then it went 
back down.
  Because of this problem I described--not a Republican or Democrat 
problem, but just America's problem--our debt has grown more than twice 
the size of our economy. You can't have a prosperous society with that 
kind of debt. It has never been done before.
  And so what we are saying is let's get ahead of this problem. Let's 
phase in these reforms so that we can make good on our promise to our 
seniors who have already retired and so that all those people nearing 
retirement--people in their later fifties thinking and planning for 
their retirement--let's make good for them. But let's acknowledge that 
those of us in the X generation and lower--those younger--these 
programs will not be there for us when we retire. We need to fix this.
  And by the way, we need pro-growth solutions: reform the Tax Code, 
balance the budget, have an energy renaissance in America, and 
streamline regulations so businesses know how to plan so that we can 
create jobs and economic growth. This budget does all of that. That is 
why I urge its adoption, and that is why I look forward to continuing 
this debate tomorrow.
  I reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. Chairman, I move that the Committee do now rise.
  The motion was agreed to.
  Accordingly, the Committee rose; and the Speaker pro tempore (Mr. 
Barr) having assumed the chair, Mr. Hastings of Washington, Chair of 
the Committee of the Whole House on the state of the Union, reported 
that that Committee, having had under consideration the concurrent 
resolution (H. Con. Res. 96) establishing the budget for the United 
States Government for fiscal year 2015 and setting forth appropriate 
budgetary levels for fiscal years 2016 through 2024, had come to no 
resolution thereon.

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