Press Releases

“This is not a debate about the merits of the postal bill. It’s a debate about paying for it… A vote to waive the point of order was a vote to waive the debt deal agreement… yet every Democrat Senator voted to break the budget. Today’s vote is more evidence that their Senate majority—which, as of this Sunday, will have refused to pass a budget since exactly three years ago—is determined to avoid any semblance of financial accountability.”

WASHINGTON—U.S. Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL), Ranking Member of the Senate Budget Committee, issued the following statement today after the Senate voted to waive a point of order he raised on the postal bill, thereby allow spending and debt above the limits set in law under the Budget Control Act:

“Last summer, a debt limit agreement was signed into law exchanging $2.1 trillion in spending cuts over ten years for an immediate $2.1 trillion increase in the debt limit. Now, before the ink is even dry on that bill, the Senate has violated the agreement and voted to increase spending and debt $34 billion above the levels set in law. On a mostly party-line vote, the Senate has waived a budget point of order that I raised against the legislation because none of the spending in the bill is offset. The bill requires the Treasury to borrow $34 billion to cover the cost, and the taxpayers will be on the hook for every penny of that amount.

A vote to waive the point of order was a vote to waive the debt deal agreement. In a sad and revealing vote, 62 Senators voted to violate the very modest spending cuts agreed to as a condition for raising the debt ceiling. Thus, the debt deal—sold as a dollar for dollar increase-to-cut ratio—has been broken.

This is not a debate about the merits of the postal bill. It’s a debate about paying for it. If this bill is important, then why can’t the Senate find $34 billion in offsets over ten years? That’s only about $3 billion a year at a time when this year’s deficit alone will be $1,200 billion. Finding an offset would be easy: the Government Accountability Office has identified $400 billion spent every year on programs that are wasteful, duplicative, or inefficient.

A vote to uphold the debt and spending limits would not have killed the bill, but simply forced a review to find offsets. Yet every Democrat Senator voted to break the budget. Today’s vote is more evidence that their Senate majority—which, as of this Sunday, will have refused to pass a budget since exactly three years ago—is determined to avoid any semblance of financial accountability.”