Thursday, April 12, 2018

BREAKING: 3 AZ Reps Cross Party Lines As Balanced Budget Amendment FAILS, 233-184

Three of Arizona's 8 Representatives crossed party lines on today's vote on a Balanced Budget Amendment. The resolution failed to garner the required 2/3 vote, and failed 233-184.

Only 7 Democrats voted in favor of sending the proposed Constitutional Amendment to be considered by the states. (178 voted against.) Rep. Kyrsten Sinema (D-CD9) voted "aye". She has not yet commented publicly on her vote.

Sinema is running for the Senate seat opened up  by the impending retirement of Sen. Jeff Flake (R-AZ). Not coincidentally, her leading Republican opponent - Rep. Martha McSally (R-CD2) also voted aye, and trumpeted that she was one of the (65) co-sponsors of the measure.*

Republican House Members supported referring the Amendment to the state by a count of 226-6. Arizona Reps. Paul Gosar (R-CD4) and Andy Biggs (R-CD5).

In a tweet and a  column posted on, Biggs said "the so-called balanced budget amendmennt...may be the most cynical (proposal) in my short time in Congress."  His point was that it "incentivizes Congress to raise taxes" because it would be easier than slashing spending.

Gosar's explanation brought Biggs' point into sharper focus by tying it to the omnibus deal** that was passed last month. 
Two weeks after blowing through spending caps by passing without reading the 2,300 page, $1.3 trillion omnibus spending deal, Congress seems to have conveniently found religion and suddenly cares about spending limits. My vote against the Balanced Budget Act reflects my frustration with the spending hypocrisy of this Congress. I am committed to using tools provided to Congress by the Constitution to ensure that we do not tie our country's future to the debts of our past. In previous years, I've supported legislation that provided a path toward fiscal responsibility like the Cut, Cap And Balance Act. Unfortunately, this amendment is filled with loopholes and doesn't get us any closer to fixing Washington's out of control spending. This bill was nothing more than a CYA charade and the American people see right through it. (Emphasis added)

*McSally's initial news release after the vote indicated that the resolution had passed. A corrected release soon followed.

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