For Immediate Release - Thursday, June 22, 2006
Contact - Stephanie DuBois, (202) 225-5456
(Washington, D.C.) - First District Congressman Jeb Bradley, a member of the House Budget Committee, today voted for the Legislative Line-Item Veto Act, which would allow the President to eliminate wasteful spending measures within appropriations bills and would require an up-or-down vote in Congress on the proposed cuts. H.R. 4890, of which Bradley is a cosponsor, passed the House of Representatives this afternoon by a bipartisan vote of 247 to 172 and now awaits action in the Senate.
"This bill shines a light on special-interest spending, whether it is earmarks or special-interest tax breaks tucked in appropriations bills and other measures," said Bradley, who spoke on the House floor earlier today in support of the legislation. "Many of these earmarks are quietly inserted in essential legislation that funds programs for our troops or other vital measures, making it virtually impossible for Members to vote against the legislation. By highlighting this irresponsible spending through measures such as a line-item veto, we can help to reduce our budget deficit in the long run and ensure that taxpayers are the ultimate beneficiaries."
H.R. 4890 will give the President the ability to recommend the elimination of specific spending items or new special-interest tax breaks in a given bill. The legislation implements a fast-track procedure for congressional consideration of a proposed rescission, requiring the President to propose a rescission within 45 days after signing a spending measure into law. The House and Senate must then cast an up-or-down vote on the rescission. Any savings generated by a rescission would be devoted to deficit reduction, and not used for additional spending in other areas as is the current practice. This ensures that Congress continues to hold its constitutional power of the purse and has the final word when it comes to spending.
"A presidential line-item veto will bring greater transparency and accountability to the appropriations process. It gives the President the authority to eliminate specific special-interest projects, but also retains Congress' power of the purse by giving the House and Senate the final vote on the President's proposed cuts," Bradley concluded.