The Budget, The Deficit, The Debt

The 2006 and 2008 elections at the national level rightly chastised the Republican leadership in Congress for earmarking and the reckless growth of government spending. The South Carolina Republican Party deplores the irresponsible manner in which the state and federal governments have handled fiscal policy related to the budget; whether through the accumulation of a mammoth national debt which undercuts the general welfare of today’s citizens and future generations, or the irresponsible growth of state government spending at unsustainable levels. The Party calls on every level of government to return to sound fiscal management that provides effective and efficient government with a minimum amount of taxation.

To this end, the Party supports transparency and full disclosure of all government budgeting and expenditures. We support the effort to require online check registers for state and local governments as well as school boards.

Budget: Believing that government at all levels should live within its means, we support a balanced budget amendment to the United States Constitution. Our national government must return to its proper constitutional role as it relates to the general welfare. This role is to promote, not provide. We therefore call upon our national government to reduce entitlement spending and other expenditures it was not created to assume.

The same holds true of our state government. Rather than increase government spending at growth rates that are higher than our taxpayers ability to pay, our Party holds that these growth rates should be limited to the corresponding growth rates of inflation plus population.

The Party calls for the implementation of zero-based budgeting techniques at the state and federal levels that demand justification for continued funding for programs and for an end to unfunded mandates. Government spending should be limited to essential government services and on the actual infrastructure needs of our nation and state.

Deficit: The Party believes that government expenditures should be kept within the actual revenue available. Revenue raised for a specific purpose should be used solely for that purpose. When legislators and bureaucrats waste tax money, they deserve to lose their jobs. When they save money, they deserve praise.

Debt: Years of unbalanced budgets and subsequent deficit spending on the federal level have brought us to a national debt that is a disgrace. We recognize our future is heavily mortgaged, and we cannot long afford to pay the interest on debt. The dire consequences of such a self- inflicted predicament, combined with ever greater deficits in the public pension system, are the devaluing of our dollar and the real possibility of national bankruptcy. We support the firmest resolve by national Republican leaders to bring America back to sound fiscal health.