'Gov't spending unsustainable,' says watchdog group
By Ed Thomas
September 25, 2007
The House is expected to vote on a bill today that would increase the federal tobacco tax in order to boost funding for the expanded state children's health program (SCHIP).
The tax is expected to raise $35 billion for SCHIP over the next five years. (See related article http://www.onenewsnow.com/2007/09/house_to_vote_on_childrens_ins.php) A watchdog group says this proposed increase in federal spending was preceded by a request from the Treasury Department to increase the nation's debt ceiling. Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson asked Congress to increase the current limit on the national debt from $8.965 trillion to $9.82 trillion before October 1 so the country can keep the government operating and pay its debts.
National Taxpayers Union http://www.ntu.org/main/'s government affairs manager Kristina Rasmussen says it boggles her mind that legislators are considering using the SCHIPS program, intended for families of low-income children, to fund healthcare for the children of middle- and upper-class families. She also states that programs like this are leading the country further into debt and spending problems.
"So we really need to keep this big number [debt ceiling] in mind when we go about approving new spending. If anything, government should be cutting back on spending right now because it's at an unsustainable level," she explains.
Rasmussen says the boondoggle of how SCHIPS funds are being spent is typified by the fact that some states are enrolling adults into the program, which she believes shows a larger agenda is at play: using the program to push the
Source: OneNewsNow.com http://www.onenewsnow.com