Barletta calls for budget amendment
WASHINGTON - U.S. Rep. Lou Barletta, R-11, Tuesday called for a Constitutional amendment to require a balanced federal budget as a trade-off for raising the nation's debt limit as requested by President Obama. Barletta rose to make his proposal during a meeting of the House of Representatives Republican Conference Tuesday morning, according to a press release from his office.
Barletta also indicated that he favored a repeal of the medical device tax in Obamacare as part of a funding solution to reopen the federal government.
"This is a country that spends $1 trillion more each year than it takes in," Barletta said. "If we're talking about raising our credit limit, I don't think it's too much to ask that we require our government to balance its checkbook."
With regard to the current government shutdown, Barletta voted for multiple continuing resolutions (CRs) that repealed, defunded or delayed all or parts of Obamacare, but each was rejected by the Senate. While Barletta once expressed openness to a no-strings-attached CR, a growing number of Democrats have emerged who would support a CR that also repealed the medical device tax. Barletta is now pursuing that strategy.
It has looked increasingly like the government funding debate and the looming debt ceiling deadline of Oct. 17 will merge into one larger negotiation. Barletta pledged to work hard on bringing people to an agreement.