In remarks on the Senate floor today, Alabama senator Jeff Sessions blasted President Barack Obama and congressional leadership for holding "secret" fiscal cliff negotiations.
In fact, the President is giving speeches calling for even more spending. On Tuesday, he gave a speech in which he said he wants to use the tax hikes to ‘invest in training, education, science, and research.’ Investment, of course, is just code for spending.
Not once in the speech did he discuss entitlements, our $16 trillion debt, or the economic catastrophe that could occur if we don’t get off this unsustainable path.
The President will go out to the press and use all the buzz words—he says he’s for a ‘balanced plan,’ and talks about a ‘responsible path to deficit reduction.’ But where are the cuts? What is the plan? It seems to me the President’s plan is to talk in general, to meet in secret, and then, under threat of panic, to force through some deal that maintains the status quo: more taxes, more spending, more debt.
That’s why the process needs to be taken out of the shadows. With public debate, people would learn facts that are now obscured. ...
Meanwhile, as the President demands more taxes, he refuses to do anything about government waste. Lavish conferences, duplicative programs, billions in refundable tax credits being mailed every year to illegal immigrants. No one is managing this government effectively. Why should the American people send one more dime in taxes to Washington when we won’t reform and manage the money we are already getting from them?
So I am concerned about the nature of these secret talks and the fact that the Senate is really not participating. News reports say that it is only the Speaker and the President of the United States who are negotiating. Apparently the Majority Leader of the Senate is not intimately involved, the Chairman of the Budget Committee is not involved, the Chairman of the Finance Committee is not involved. These are Democratic leaders in the Senate. Certainly Republican leaders are not involved.
The Senate is a great institution, and we ought to be engaged. The engagement of the Senate would allow the American people to know what’s happening. They are entitled to that. I believe we can do better. We must do better.”