Rep. Thomas Massie (R-KY) took a step toward honesty in government on Thursday, proposing an amendment that would have accurately renamed legislation to suspend the debt limit and push the U.S. further toward permanent insolvency.
Massie wanted to rename the legislation, “A Bill to Kick the Can Down the Road, and for Other Purposes.”
“Imagine if bills were named based on what they actually did,” Massie wrote in a tweet about his measure.
Imagine if bills were named based on what they actually did.
47 voted to name this bill honestly.
— Thomas Massie (@RepThomasMassie) July 25, 2019
The amendment received only 47 votes, with Rep. Justin Amash (I-MI) and House Freedom Caucus leaders Mark Meadows (R-NC) and Jim Jordan (R-OH) voting in favor of it. Five Democrats also voted for the measure, showing the amendment achieved bipartisan support.
The debt bill, which passed the House by a 284-149 vote with overwhelming support from the Democrats, has enraged fiscal conservatives because it establishes a massive budget of $1.37 trillion for the next year with $738 billion for defense spending and $632 billion for nondefense spending.
Budget Deal gives great victories to our Military and Vets, keeps out Democrat poison pill riders. Republicans and Democrats in Congress need to act ASAP and support this deal.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 23, 2019
Massie’s backbone has earned him the favor of fiscally conservative groups on Capitol Hill, who have called the debt bill backed by President Trump and House GOP leadership obscene.
“Republicans who go along with this budget deal will lose all credibility on spending. This is budget deal is ludicrous,” said Jason Pye of FreedomWorks.
“The GOP has been misleading the American public on spending for years now. Yeah, they talk a great game on the campaign trail. But when it’s crunch time, they fold,” he added.
“President Trump has worked hard in his budget to restrain Congress’s unending desire to spend, but we can’t support this spending deal,” said David McIntosh, president of the Club for Growth.
“This deal comes less than four years after President Trump campaigned to balance the budget by cutting spending and after his administration produced three budgets to move toward fiscal sustainability,” said Heritage scholar Paul Winfree.
“If President Trump takes this deal — the worst in a decade — his fiscal legacy will be no different than the Obama and Bush administrations that he has criticized,” he added.
Massie is one of the very few legislators in Congress who always stands strong, even as President Trump gets played by House Republican leadership, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, and the rest of the Washington D.C. swamp.