The Free Press, Mankato, MN

January 9, 2013

Your View: Walz needs to match his words with action

By Cory A. Geneliln, Le Sueur

— According to his website, Rep. Tim Walz believes "that the key to balancing a budget is paying for what you spend ..."

Unfortunately, Congress has done no such thing since Walz took office. According to the Congressional Budget Office, the deficit in 2007 was $342 billion. Within two years of Walz being sworn in, the deficit had risen to $1.5 trillion. In 2012, it was just under $1.4 trillion. The CBO's estimates out to 2017 include continued deficits above levels seen before Walz took office.

If he truly wants a balanced budget, Walz has an opportunity to make that happen in the very near future. Current law holds that the federal government may not incur more than $16.4 trillion in debt. Because of the deficits Walz claims to oppose, the government will reach that limit in the next 60 days and will need to stop deficit spending -- it will need to pay for every dollar it spends.

To bring this about, Walz and Congress need take no action whatsoever.

Continued deficit spending would require an affirmative act. Walz and Congress would have to proactively introduce and pass legislation allowing for additional debt.

If Walz truly wants a balanced budget he will vote against any such legislation. If, on the other hand, Walz believes that $16.4 trillion in debt is not enough and that what we need is more debt, he should change his website to reflect his position.