For years, Republicans have promised that it is only with more power will they be able to advance a meaningful, fiscal conservative agenda. After President Obama led a Democrat wave in 2008, which saw Democrats take control of both chambers of Congress and the Presidency, Republican leaders said with a majority in the House they could fight back against Obama’s agenda.

2008 Senate -- Politimaps
2008 Senate — Politimaps

With the “Tea Party Wave” of 2010, the Republicans retook the House. Although they were not able to reverse his agenda, they still were not able to succeed in bringing about meaningful cuts to government spending. After Romney’s defeat in 2012, Republicans said only with the Senate can they begin to advance their fiscally conservative agenda.

111th United States Congress -- United States Senate in 2010
111th United States Congress — United States Senate in 2010

So in 2014, Republicans saw gains in the Senate, to take control of both the Senate and House of Representatives. Still no meaningful legislation could be advanced to promote the fiscal conservative agenda which they often campaign on.

After the 2014 elections, Republicans oftentimes said that only with the Presidency can they put their fiscal conservative agenda in place. Throughout President Obama’s time in office a constant criticism from the right has been regarding the way in which he has doubled the national debt, adding more debt than all other Presidents in the history of the United States combined.

Washington Post
Washington Post

Yet, as the GOP now has taken control of the House, Senate, and Presidency, it appears that measures to actually balance the budget will not see any advancement. Kentucky Senator Rand Paul introduced legislation which would balance the budget within five years. Although a balanced budget is something which virtually all Republican elected officials would claim to support, it appears that this type of legislation is destined to fail.

The vote was defeated 14-83, there were 13 other Republican Senators who joined with Senator Paul to vote in favor of the legislation. Those joining Paul was Mike Crapo (ID), Ted Cruz (TX), Steve Daines (MT), Jeff Flake (AZ), John Kennedy (LA), James Lankford (OK), Mike Lee (UT), Jerry Moran (KS), James Risch (ID), Marco Rubio (FL), Ben Sasse (NE), Tim Scott (SC), Pat Toomey (PA).

Moving forward, it will be interesting to see if the new Congress will move forward with legislation which will meaningfully cut government spending. As the United States approaches $20 trillion in debt, there certainly is action required to once and for all balance the budget.

What do you think of Rand Paul’s legislation?

Will this type of fiscal conservatism have a place in the government over the next several years?

Let HYPELINE know what you think in the comments!

(h/t The Hill)

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Jake Leahy is a Staff Writer for Hypeline News, frequent contributor on 560 the Answer in Chicago, and a student at Deerfield High School (IL). Follow him on Twitter @jakealeahy.


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