Sen. Cornyn: Debt Deal Bill a ‘Step in the Right Direction’

By Andrew Herzog | August 3, 2011 | 5:33 AM EDT

Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas). ( Starr)

( -- Just before Tuesday’s vote in the Senate on the debt-limit legislation, Sen. John Cornyn (R-Tex.) said that federal spending in fiscal year 2012 would be higher than in fiscal year 2011 but that the bill was “a step in the right direction.”

At the Capitol on Tuesday, asked Cornyn, “With this new bill, will there be more government spending in fiscal year 2012 than fiscal year 2011?”

Cornyn said, “Yes, because we’re spending more money than what we’re bringing in now. Forty-three cents on the dollar is borrowed money right now. And what we’re doing is we’re slowing the train down. We’re not diverting the train or stopping it, but it’s a step in the right direction.”

The estimated federal budgetary spending for fiscal year 2011 is $3.83 trillion and for fiscal 2012 it is $3.75 trillion, according to the historical tables published in the Budget of the U.S. Government for Fiscal Year 2011.   In 2013, the budget is estimated to be $3.91 trillion and in 2014 it is estimated to be $4.16 trillion.

Cornyn went on to say that the legislation, while flawed, sets the stage for a vote on a balanced budget amendment, which ultimately would force the government to spend within its means.

President Barack Obama. (AP Photo)

“Well ultimately there will not be [greater spending] because a part of this is we’re going to have a vote on a Balanced Budget Amendment and force the government to live within the same constraints everybody else does,” said Cornyn.  “There’s a lot to dislike about this bill, but what it doesn’t do is it doesn’t default, it doesn’t raise taxes, and it begins the path of slowing down federal spending.”

“And, ultimately, if my vote prevails, we’ll get a Balanced Budget Amendment so we don’t ever have to do it again,” said the senator.

The Senate passed the debt-ceiling legislation, the Budget Control Act of 2011,by a vote of 74-26 on Tuesday afternoon.