Senator David Perdue, a member of the Senate Budget Committee, released the following statement after the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) released its 2016 Long-Term Budget Outlook, which projects the United States would face steadily increasing federal debt over the next 30 years—reaching the highest level of debt relative to GDP ever experienced in this country:
“The CBO is again exposing how Washington’s financial irresponsibility threatens our ability to fund the priorities of our government. Discretionary spending has been scaled back since 2009 and this CBO outlook reminds us that the runaway costs of our mandatory expenses will add trillions to the debt in the next 10 years. We’re past the tipping point in this debt crisis and we simply have to face up to the difficult choices we have to make today to arrest the spiraling debt.
“Right now, our country cannot afford everything it is doing. With over $19 trillion in debt and over $100 trillion in future unfunded liabilities, each American family is responsible for nearly $1 million of this debt. Even more concerning, if interest rates were to rise to the 50-year average of 5.5 percent, the interest on the debt would amount to over $1 trillion annually, more than twice what is currently spent on national defense.
“The budget process is broken and has only worked four times in more than forty years. Fixing the budget process alone will not solve the debt crisis, but the debt crisis cannot be solved until we fix the budget process. In addition, we have to face up to the reality that the Social Security and Medicare trust funds go to zero in less than 15 years. We have to save Social Security and Medicare. Growing the economy and arresting the spiraling nature of our health care costs are also necessary to save these programs and rein in this out of control debt.”