August 22, 2008
There's spending, and then there's spending

John Culberson talks about his credentials as a fiscal conservative.

"I've voted against $345 billion in new spending in this Congress, and since 2001, I've voted against over $1 trillion in new spending," Culberson said. "I have always co-authored a Balanced Budget Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, and my starting answer for all new spending requests is 'no,' and 'yes' is very hard to earn."

He said he also returns to the U.S. Treasury an average of $145,000 a year from his office budget.

[Democratic candidate Michael] Skelly on Monday listed the Iraq war as a spending item that imperils the nation's finances.

"I think we cannot afford to stay in Iraq," the challenger said after the news conference.

Skelly pointed out that Iraq is running a budget surplus thanks to the sale of its oil while the U.S. continues to spend on military operations there.

Congress has authorized $859 billion for the war in Iraq and Afghanistan and Homeland Security efforts since Sept. 11, 2001.

All of which John Culberson voted for, with the vast majority being spent in Iraq. It's sweet of him to return that spare change he doesn't spend from his office budget, but as that represents 0.0000017% of what has been spent in Iraq and Afghanistan and Homeland Security efforts since Sept. 11, 2001, he'll have to do a lot more of it to make up the difference.

It's very simple. The federal budget would be in vastly better shape now if we had not chosen to invade Iraq over five years ago. Anyone who still supports and enables that decision today does not have an "anti-spending record".

Posted by Charles Kuffner on August 22, 2008 to Election 2008
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