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Ayotte Co-Sponsors Legislation to Cap Federal Spending

CAP Act Would Place Binding Limit on Domestic Spending

May 12, 2011

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Continuing her efforts to rein in out-of-control federal spending, Senator Kelly Ayotte (R-NH) announced today that she has co-sponsored legislation that would enforce a strict cap on government spending. The "Commitment to American Prosperity (CAP) Act" would reduce all federal spending over a period of 10 years to the 40-year historical level of 20.6 percent of U.S. gross domestic product.

"We are facing a $1.6 trillion deficit and our national debt is over $14 trillion. Congress must pass real and meaningful reforms to reduce spending, and the CAP Act is part of a comprehensive approach to getting our country back on a fiscally responsible path," said Ayotte. "Our fiscal crisis isn't a Republican problem or a Democrat problem - it's an American problem. I look forward to working with my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to pass this meaningful spending control."

Specifically, the bill would:

• Establish a 10-year glide path to cap all spending - discretionary and mandatory - to a declining percentage of the country's gross domestic product, eventually bringing spending down from the current level, 24.7 percent of GDP, to the 40-year historical level of 20.6 percent, and

• If Congress fails to meet the annual cap, require the Office of Management and Budget to make evenly distributed, simultaneous cuts throughout the federal budget to bring spending down to the pre-determined level. Only a two-thirds vote in both houses of Congress could override the binding cap.

Ayotte has made reducing wasteful government spending her top priority since coming to the Senate and is working to advance significant budget reforms. In addition to helping put in place a moratorium on pork-barrel projects known as "earmarks," Ayotte is actively pushing to pass a Balanced Budget Amendment to the Constitution.

The CAP Act was introduced by Senators Bob Corker (R-TN) and Claire McCaskill (D-MO).

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