McCarthy: Last Time Senate Passed a Budget ‘The iPad Hadn’t Even Been Introduced’

January 23, 2013 - 8:59 AM

Rep. Kevin McCarthy

House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) (AP File Photo)

( – “The first fundamental responsibility of any elected official is to pass a budget,” House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) told reporters on Capitol Hill Tuesday evening.

The Republican-led House has done so.  But “what’s the history of the Senate?” McCarthy asked.  “The last time they passed a budget, the iPad hadn’t even been introduced.”

The Democrat-led Senate last passed a budget on April 29, 2009. Apple’s iPad was not made available to Americans until a year later, in April 2010.

McCarthy noted that when Republicans gained a majority in the House after the 2010 midterms they passed Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan’s (R-Wis.) budget within four months, on April 15, 2011.

House Republicans on Wednesday expect to pass a bill that will extend the debt limit for three months, postponing what loomed as a major fight between Republicans and Democrats over spending cuts.

The bill also contains a provision withholding the pay of lawmakers if either chamber fails to pass a budget plan by April 15.

McCarthy said the nation has racked up trillion-dollar deficits every year the Senate has failed to produce a budget:  “Nobody would expect to be paid if they didn’t do their job.  No budget, no pay,” he said.

By failing to pass a joint budget resolution, the federal government has operated on a series of continuing resolutions, or short-term appropriations bills that maintain funding at current levels. Since 2009 -- which includes all of Obama’s first term – annual budget deficits have not dropped below $1 trillion.

The budget deficit for fiscal year 2009 was $1.4 trillion, followed by $1.3 trillion deficits in 2010 and 2011.  In fiscal year 2012 the deficit again surpassed the $1 trillion mark, the Treasury announced in October.

And as recently reported, during Barack Obama’s first term, the debt of the federal government increased by $5.8 trillion, which exceeds the combined debt accumulated under all presidents from George Washington through Bill Clinton.