Sen. Jeff Sessions, top Republican on the Senate Budget Committee, Friday offered an idea to help save money: Ask federal workers where the waste is.
"The President had 18 months to develop reforms to improve the government, but instead he announced furloughs of federal workers as a political cudgel. Yet, his golf weekend at the yacht club with Tiger Woods cost taxpayers over a million dollars—enough money to save 341 federal workers from furlough," the Alabama Republican charged.
"These workers know firsthand how much waste and inefficiency exists in the government. Our Budget Committee office will look for a way to solicit federal employees to send suggestions for how to save money in their departments, agencies, and divisions. What is better? To furlough someone or to empower them to make their office more efficient?"
Here's the rest of Sessions' statement:
"Now, we learn that the President is going to submit his budget plan—which contains his recommendations to Congress, the reason the law requires it to be submitted early in February before our budget work begins—on March 25th. Yet he will be submitting it after the House and Senate have produced a budget proposal and adjourned for Easter. So while the President speaks of his deep concern for American workers and families, he fails to even submit to Congress his financial plan to help those workers and families. Why then doesn’t the President furlough his entire 500-person staff at the Office of Management and Budget instead of threatening teachers and law enforcement personnel? The budget deals with more than just deficits. It is the chief executive’s plan for American prosperity. What does it mean that he doesn’t want to lay that out? He is the CEO of the Executive Branch and every cabinet official and government employee answers to him. It is his duty to the American people to be the person advancing reform, not blocking it.
"Also at issue is the fact that our massive federal government is, right now, creating poverty and hurting families. Look at cities like Baltimore, Chicago, and Detroit. Raising taxes—instead of reforming government—denies struggling Americans the help they need. There is nothing just or virtuous about protecting a stale welfare state that is failing the people it is supposed to help. President Obama is defending the bureaucracy at the expense of the people.
"It is time for the President to end the permanent campaign and work with both parties to make this government work better.”