Earlier this week, I spoke on the Senate floor in support of my bill with Senator Mike Lee (R-UT) to do a short-term extension of government funding to February 2023 so the new Republican House majority can play a more significant role in our long-term spending plans for the next year. I began my remarks with a simple question: “When are we going to say enough?” Democrats blocked our good faith attempt to avoid a government shutdown but again refused to answer my question about being accountable to American taxpayers.
America’s national debt is $31 TRILLION and growing. When are we going to be so fed up that we decide this isn’t sustainable? When we get to $35, $40 or $45 TRILLION IN DEBT? Democrats, and Republicans, in Washington are happy to close their eyes, plug their ears and pass another reckless, multi-trillion dollar spending bill we can’t afford. This should make every American mad. And doing that now, just weeks before a new Republican majority takes power in the House, is nothing short of shameful abandonment and betrayal of our House colleagues and the conservative voters in Florida and across the nation who elected them.
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House Republicans have been crystal clear that they do not support passing the Pelosi-Schumer Omnibus Spending Bill. That makes sense. Passing an omnibus right now ties the hands of the new Republican House majority and extends the priorities of Nancy Pelosi and House Democrats – the leaders and party that the American people just voted out of power. Now, some in the Senate have tried to argue that we should ignore the wishes of House Republicans. They argue that expecting a new, slim House Republican majority to keep the government funded is just too much to ask. That’s nonsense.
Congressional Republicans should be taking every opportunity to stop the reckless, big government policies that Joe Biden, Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi have jammed down the throats of the American people over the last two years.
Let’s not forget, the last time Democrats passed a massive spending bill, they approved $80 BILLION so the IRS can hire 87,000 new employees to target working families and small businesses. Right now, I am fighting to get this revoked before any of these agents get hired. We must stop the Democrats efforts to force every American to report any transaction of $600 or more to the IRS because this means that every time you sell a piece of furniture and get paid via Venmo, or help out a friend by sending them money using PayPal, federal agents will be granted unprecedented access into your personal finances. How can any Republican argue that extending this gross government overreach funding Biden’s supersized IRS is the right way forward? And let’s be clear – that is exactly what passing the omnibus spending bill would do.
The way I see it, the decision before Senate Republicans is as simple and straightforward as it gets here in Washington. We can either stand with Republicans, or once again cave to the Democrats. We can either make sure it is House Republicans, not Pelosi and her outgoing Democrat majority, that get a say in how Congress spends taxpayer dollars next year, or we can hand the recently fired Speaker a massive retirement gift on her way out the door.
Florida families know that the process we have up here isn’t working. Inflation is raging, debt is out of control and Congress so routinely passes massive, thousand-plus page spending bills without giving anyone time to read them that even the press doesn’t bother to scrutinize this broken system anymore. While this might be business as usual in Washington, hardworking Americans find it disgusting and Florida voters used the recent election to send even more Republicans to Washington to demand change.
I ran for Senate Republican Leader because I am SICK AND TIRED of seeing Republicans in Washington cave to Democrats and abandon the voters they claim to represent. Supporting the Pelosi-Schumer Omnibus Spending Bill means abandoning House Republicans before their majority even begins. It means betraying conservative voters who elected them to power. It’s time for Republicans to be a brick wall and end the reckless spending that’s fueling Joe Biden’s historic inflation crisis. The time to fight for conservative principles is now and we must stand together if we want to win.
Rick Scott, a Republican, represents Florida in the United States Senate. He is the former Governor of Florida.
This article originally appeared on Palm Beach Post: Sen. Rick Scott: Republicans must oppose Democratic overspending bill