Posted by | August 4, 2011 17:47 | Filed under: Contributors Opinion Sandi Behrns

by Sandi Behrns

At a time of 9.2% unemployment and a stalled recovery, and following on the heels of a debt ceiling deal to slash $2.4 trillion from the federal budget, two brave men have stepped up to keep the party going. GOP Senators Tom Coburn (OK) and Orrin Hatch (UT) have decided things should could be even worse more fiscally restrained. The Hill reports:

GOP Sens. Orrin Hatch (Utah) and Tom Coburn (Okla.) on Tuesday introduced legislation that aims to save $600 billion over 10 years by freezing federal salaries and bonuses, cutting employees and contractors by 15 percent and cutting the federal travel budget by 75 percent.

“Some may see things differently, but I don’t see any way that we can restore the integrity of the nation’s fiscal position without significantly reducing the size and cost of the federal government,” he said. “The bill we are introducing today would be an important and measurable step toward that goal.”

To be clear, we’re talking about a freezing salaries and bonuses for three years, cutting 300,000 federal jobs and 15% of contractors on top of the two year pay freeze President Obama announced this fall, and the more than 500,000 Federal workers who have lost their jobs since 2009. Indeed,  if our concern is truly, as Mr. Hatch claims, restoring “the integrity of the nation’s fiscal position,” we would be engaged in serious discussions about how to control heath care costs, which are the single largest driver of our deficit. Instead, Senators Coburn and Hatch are focused on one aspect – federal workers – for which the cost has remained essentially flat for the last five years.

Click here for reuse options!
Copyright 2011 Liberaland
By: Sandi Behrns

Sandi Behrns is a noted policy nerd, new media & web developer, and consultant to progressive organizations and campaigns. She is a senior contributor to Liberaland, and the Executive Editor of Progressive Congress News.