Idaho lawmakers will send a resolution to members of Congress asking them to balance the national budget and pay down the federal deficit. The Idaho Senate approve the resolution Thursday, following House approval on March 4. The resolution also calls for English to be the only language for governmental activity, encourages the use of the word “God” in public discourse, and that Congress only approve legislation that focuses on a single subject.
“Right now, our federal government operates at a deficit every year, and we continue to grow that deficit,” said Sen. Curt McKenzie, R-Nampa. “We’re taking debt for things we want today and imposing that on the next generation.” McKenzie said the non-binding resolution will send a message from Idaho to Washington, D.C. “This may not have a significant substantive effect, but it voices Idaho’s policy with regards to federalism,” he said.
Part of that federal spending that leads to a deficit goes to Idaho, Sen. Michelle Stennett, D-Ketchum, told lawmakers. “I want to remind everybody that we receive some kind of benefit from the federal government,” she said. “All of us are not happy with the direction of a lot of government … I understand the anger, but we have to recognize that we’re part of this, too.” She said Idaho lawmakers could take a stronger stand against the federal deficit by not accepting federal funds for road construction, human services, or other programs.