WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator John Boozman (R-AR) today said he will vote for a bipartisan bill that ends the government shutdown and avoids default on our nation’s financial obligations.
“The government shutdown and the debt ceiling are two major issues with very serious impacts. Already, Arkansas’s seniors, veterans, families and businesses are feeling the effects of shutdown. This bipartisan solution ends the unnecessary pains caused by the shutdown and avoids the potentially dramatic hit to the savings and pensions of hardworking Arkansans,” Boozman said. “This agreement extends through the first of the year which allows us to continue negotiating on debt and deficit reduction while chipping away at Obamacare.”
The agreement reached between the two Senate leaders holds federal spending at the Budget Control Act spending levels for the life of the continuing resolution.
“As a result of the Budget Control Act, we have curbed the growth in Washington’s spending for the first time in decades. In fact, this is the first time since the end of the Korean War that we have reduced federal spending for two consecutive years. It is imperative that we do not reverse this positive outcome,” Boozman said.
Boozman said the shutdown and the debt ceiling debate underscore the need for Washington to return the budgetary process to regular order.
“The requirement for the House and Senate to convene a budget conference to resolve our larger fiscal issues is a step in the right direction to returning to regular order in Washington. We have a budget that can’t be strained any further. Our debt stands at nearly $17 trillion. $6 trillion of that has been added on President Obama’s watch. You can’t take on that much debt and pretend it isn’t a problem,” Boozman said.
Finally, Boozman noted that the agreement included language that requires income verification for recipients of subsidies under Obamacare’s newly-established exchanges.
“This is no-brainer. Requiring income verification to assure that subsidies for Obamacare are going to right people will help prevent waste, fraud and abuse,” said Boozman, who previously helped U.S. Senator Tom Coburn (R-OK) introduce the No Subsidies Without Verification Act in an effort to eliminate Obamacare’s honor system.
Specifically, the bill would:
• Keep the government funded, at Budget Control Act spending levels, through January 15, 2014
• Extend the debt limit until February 7, 2014
• Require income verification for recipients of subsidies under Obamacare’s newly-established exchanges
• Provide back-pay for furloughed workers
• Allow Congress to vote to disapprove of the debt ceiling increase and require President Obama to veto that legislation if it passes in order to raise the debt ceiling.