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Arrington Legislation Would Help Congress Rein in Out-of-Control Deficits and Bloated Spending

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Representative Jodey Arrington (TX-19) introduced H.R. 9032 – the Controlling America’s Perilous Spending (CAPS) Act – which would help rein in deficits and control the growth of spending. 

“The congressional budget process is broken, and our national debt will soon reach an astronomical $31 trillion. Unfortunately, Congress has done little to impose any restraint on its appetite to spend taxpayer dollars or rein in deficits,” Rep. Arrington said. “The CAPS Act is a meaningful step toward getting our fiscal house in order. While larger reforms will be necessary to stave off a debt crisis and preserve critical safety nets, we must reestablish fiscal discipline, and slow the growth of spending. This bill will force Congress to focus on priorities like national defense and infrastructure.”

Maya MacGuineas, President of the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, said, “With inflation surging and the national debt headed to historic records, it’s time for lawmakers to start taking our deficits seriously. Reinstating discretionary spending caps, as Representative Arrington has proposed, would help restore some basic fiscal discipline and begin the process of getting federal borrowing under control. Caps have been enacted on a bipartisan basis in the past and represent a common-sense step toward restoring fiscal sanity. Representative Arrington deserves immense credit for his leadership on this issue, and we encourage policymakers in both parties and chambers to work with him to enact legislation to re-establish discretionary spending caps.”

“Congress urgently needs to cap discretionary spending again, like they did from 2012 through 2021. Congressman Arrington's CAPS Act would do just that, slowing the unsustainable growth trajectory of spending all over the federal government. NTU applauds Congressman Arrington for his leadership on fiscal responsibility and is proud to endorse the CAPS Act,” said Andrew Lautz, Director of Federal Policy at the National Taxpayers Union.

Background on the CAPS Act:

  • With a fiscal trajectory that is unsustainable and a federal debt now close to $31 trillion, Congress should implement guardrails to control the growth of spending.
  • The CAPS Act does not make immediate cuts to spending – it slows the annual growth rate of spending over the next decade, limiting yearly spending growth to 2% per year.
  • The CAPS Act saves a modest amount relative to the Congressional Budget Office’s (CBO) projected baseline in the early years of the 10-year budget window; however, the savings grow significantly larger in the later years of the budget window, saving $500 billion over the decade.
  • Reestablishing spending caps will force Congress to better prioritize their use of taxpayer dollars, ensuring more resources will be devoted to the core mission of the federal government, like our national defense and infrastructure. 
  • This legislation is a framework based on the CBO’s May 2022 projections. The discretionary caps in the bill may need to be amended to incorporate subsequent baseline changes prior to becoming law.