“Skyrocketing inflation is the most pressing issue facing Kansans with an estimated $8,500 in extra cost hitting households. We need to stop it and ensure that government operates on the same principles that guide the fiscal responsibility of our Kansas families.”
– Amanda Adkins
Skyrocketing Inflation Requires a Stronger Plan
“The problem is not that people are taxed too little,– President Ronald Reagan
The problem is that government spends too much.”
Skyrocketing inflation is the defining issue of the 2022 midterm cycle. It is estimated that inflation is currently costing the average household in Kansas’ Third Congressional District $8,666 a year.1 Good, competent governance from our representatives is the only solution to the short-term problem of inflation and the looming long-term problem of deficits and the national debt.
When elected to Congress, I will be committed to building targeted and effective economic solutions that:
- Get us back to a surplus. Crackdown on wasteful discretionary spending by getting rid of cumbersome regulations and eliminating funding for bad spending measures such as the so-called “Inflation Reduction Act.”
- Ensure sustainability of programs. Reform mandatory spending programs to ensure long-term solvency.
- Provide a long-term solution. Congress must pass a Balanced Budget Amendment to prevent future fiscal mismanagement.
The main contributors to price inflation include everyday household expenses such as energy and food.
Higher natural gas prices are caused in part by the Biden Administration crushing American energy production as I referenced in my plan on energy security.2 U.S. households could see a 30% to 40% hike in monthly energy bills this year if high natural gas prices persist, according to new analysis from Barclays PLC.3 Average monthly electric and natural gas bills will be $55 to $75 higher than in 2020.
Energy cost also feeds into the overall cost of most goods and services including food. Farmers are grappling with increases in costs in all stages of the farming process, from collection to transportation, which suggests the price of food will continue to rise.
Rep. Davids is complicit in this inflationary trend. The Biden-Davids voting record is filled with irresponsible fiscal decisions that have driven inflationary price pressures higher and higher. It all started with the $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan. Lawrence Summers, President Clinton’s Secretary of the Treasury, said we would not have these levels of inflation without overwhelming stimulus spending that occurred in 2021.
This trend has been exacerbated by additional bad policies Davids has voted for including the so-called “Inflation Reduction” Act. It expands the size of the Federal government through the hiring of an estimated 87,000 IRS agents, while increasing inflation until 2024 according to non-partisan aggregator Penn Wharton. While Democrats claim the bill will reduce deficits, they cite increased revenue collection as the basis for $200 billion in reduction. I repeatedly hear concern from Kansans that audits will increase for individuals and businesses. It is a recipe to expand government and further take power away from individuals.
Short-Term Solution: Turn the Deficit Into a Surplus
As badly as our nation’s economy has been mismanaged by the current administration, there is still hope for our nation’s fiscal health. A Republican majority in the House must focus on turning the current deficit into a surplus and begin chipping away at the national debt.
Our nation has not had a budget surplus since 2001. The political environment during this time period (pre-War on Terror) supported fiscal conservatism, and the Republican Congress was able to advance a budget that had the lowest level of percentage-based government spending since the 1960s. This involved bipartisan fiscal discipline that is so lacking in today’s politics. The overall budgetary trend has favored increased deficits each year from 2015 to 2020. Even with 2021 representing a slight year-over- year decrease, the past two years have represented over $2.5 trillion dollars in deficits.
I support the Republican Study Committee, a group of fiscal conservatives in the US Congress, as they proposed a plan to scale back spending and balance the budget by 2026. This budget would still manage to reduce taxes by over $1.9 trillion dollars; offsetting this by slashing wasteful spending to the tune of $14.4 trillion over the next 10 years. Broadly, it is a very solid blueprint for combating inflationary pressure and reducing government spending – thereby returning decision-making to local Kansans, not far-sighted bureaucrats in Washington, D.C.
Mandatory Spending Reform: Advancing Workforce Numbers to Shore up Social Security
During the annual budget process, Congress needs to be transparent with the American people regarding the status of programs important to seniors such as Medicare and Social Security. At the current pace, Medicare will be in jeopardy by 2026, and Social Security will be depleted by 2034. The estimates are that benefits may be cut by approximately 25% if nothing is done.
As your Congresswoman, ensuring the long-term solvency of Medicare and Social Security will be a top priority. One reform idea to consider is increasing the pool of workers paying into the Federal Insurance Contributions Act (FICA) tax which pays for these programs. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, there are still 10.7 million unfilled jobs as of June 2022. The U.S. needs to consider the requirements of industries with a growing workforce and/or unmet needs. Immigration can and should be a workforce issue. New workers paying into the system is good for America and our future growth.
Balanced Budget Amendment: A Long-Term Solution to Fiscal Problems
Finally, I support a Balanced Budget Amendment (BBA) as the longer-term solution to stop financial mismanagement. In simple terms, a BBA basically states that government cannot spend more than it collects. I support restricting federal spending to no more than 18 percent of Gross Domestic Product (GDP); requiring a two-thirds majority vote in the House and the Senate to raise taxes; and a three-fifths majority vote in both houses of Congress to raise the debt limit. A waiver could be passed by a supermajority in Congress that allows for deficits during times of war or other national crises.
Thirty trillion in national debt is too much. We need to ensure that the government operates on the same principles that guide the fiscal responsibility of our Kansas families.
Wasteful spending takes money out of the hands of hard-working Kansans and gives it to bureaucrats and coastal politicians who don’t share Kansas values. In returning power to the people through targeted deficit reduction, greater transparency, and structural reform to the budget process, we can tackle the current inflationary spiral, help Kansas families struggling with rising prices, and save our children and seniors’ futures.
1 Calculation based on the difference in costs between August 2022 and January 2021 for the average Kansas family to get the same goods and services.