McAlester News-Capital, McAlester, OK

March 10, 2014

Spending is leading America down the wrong road

By U.S. Rep. Markwayne Mullin

McALESTER — Coming from the private sector, it is not difficult to see the fiscal reckoning that lays ahead for our nation if we do not address federal spending.

As a private sector businessman, I have had to make difficult decisions in order to ensure my employees got a paycheck or my business stayed afloat. Anyone who has the responsibility of signing the front of a paycheck knows that tough decisions are part of the process of staying out of the red.

New government programs, increased spending and additional mandates were some of the main reasons I could not support the Omnibus Spending Package that passed the U.S. House of Representatives earlier this year. The bill passed the House by a vote of 359-67.

The Omnibus Spending Package is what funds our bloated and overspending federal government. In many cases it funds the overlapping and overreaching bureaucracy that causes many Americans to shake their heads in disbelief at the seemingly careless way government operates since the politicians are not willing to make the necessary decisions to eliminate waste, duplication or fraud.

In Washington, D.C. there are too many people who are unwilling to risk their political careers in order to set this country back on the right path.

The architects of our government intended for the U.S. House of Representatives to be made of citizen legislators. These were envisioned to be individuals who would leave their private sector life and go to Washington, D.C. to cast the votes based on how legislation would impact their district. Ideally these would be people with common sense forged from real-world and private sector experience - something other than a career built in the political world.

Making the necessary decisions about reducing wasteful spending or duplicative bureaucracy is easy when one is not trying to protect a career that exists only in the political world.

The people of Oklahoma’s Second District work hard for their paychecks. They see on every pay stub the amount of money taken out in taxes and they deserve a government committed to making sure that money is wisely spent and with an eye toward accountability. When the estimated debt per U.S. citizen is over $54,000 or over $150,000 per U.S. taxpayer according to the U.S. Debt Clock, it is hard to have confidence that is actually happening.

Markwayne Mullin, R-Westville, is the U.S. congressional representative for Oklahoma’s District 2. Write him 1113 Longworth House Office Building, Washington, D.C., 20515; call 202-225-2701, 918-423-5951 or contact him by email at