One lawmaker is declaring war on wasteful government spending, highlighting another year's worth of shocking waste of taxpayer money, and it all contributes to a serious debt problem for the US.
Oklahoma Sen. James Lankford (R) says even though the government is collecting more tax revenue than at any other time in American history, the country is still drowning in debt.
The overall national debt stands at $23 trillion right now – and Lankford warns that could sink our economy.
“We're approaching a time where it would take the income of every single American for the entire year to be collected as taxes to pay off our debt," he says.
"These kinds of numbers can't be sustained, and everyone quietly knows it in the back of their mind, but dealing with debt and deficit seems to be one of those things we'll deal with the future, someday, someday, someday," he continues. "We should be taking on the issues of debt and deficit now."
For example, US taxpayers paid $371 billion on interest payments alone on America's national debt just last year. And this year we'll spend $423 billion on interest payments. Lankford points out that money could have been used for health care, transportation, or national defense, but instead it was spent on nothing.
Lankford’s office has put out its latest annual “Federal Fumbles” report, documenting foolish federal spending. He argues that smaller cases of wasteful spending need to be tackled to address the bigger, looming debt crisis.
Here are a few examples:
- A nearly $2 million study on sea lions in Russia;
- A $600,000 documentary on Soviet dictator Joseph Stalin;
- Almost half a billion dollars to rent tents, instead of buying them, along the southern border.
Overall, the report lists $383 billion in wasteful and inefficient federal spending. The senator suggested just cutting out all the government’s wasteful spending could save tens of billions of dollars a year.