There are glimmers of light in our battle to put America’s finances in order. New hope for a long-term budget deal has come in the form of two ideas, both from outside Congress, that many of our elected officials have embraced:“No Budget, No Pay” and “No Deal, No Break.”
The critical matter now is whether these two initiatives will lead to serious negotiations, or just be rhetorical weapons in Washington’s political warfare.
Both these campaigns speak to substantive needs we have as a nation. “No Budget, No Pay” is a signature campaign of No Labels, a national coalition of Republicans, Democrats and independents advocating that Washington should focus on progress not partisanship. I am a co-founder of this group.
“No Deal, No Break” is a nonpartisan effort supported by my organization, the Comeback American Initiative, and others. It is pushing for Congress to stay in session until a deal is reached.
“No Budget, No Pay” is intended to pressure our politicians by withholding their salaries if they don’t pass a timely budget. Federal law spells out that Congress should pass a budget by April 15 each year. Yet the Senate has not passed a budget in four years, and Congress has not passed a budget and related spending bills on time in 15 years.