February 08,2001

Comments of Grassley, News Conference to Receive President's Tax Bill

To those who say we can't afford tax cuts:

Let me tell you a story about the mountain and the mole hill. The mountain is the $27.9 trillion that the government expects to take in over the next 10 years. The mole hill is the $1.6 trillion in tax cuts that President Bush plans over the next 10 years.

So can afford a tax cut? Absolutely yes.

I'll put it another way. You may know I'm a farmer.

On my farm in Iowa, let's say I have a silo of corn. Every once in a while, I take out a handful and feed the chickens. That still leaves me with plenty of corn.

With $27.9 trillion in the silo, $1.6 trillion is chicken feed. Yet if the government controls the silo, our store won't last a minute.

We in Congress have a passion for spending.

Just last year, in passing the 2001 spending bills to run the government, we went $100 billion over our own balanced budget caps. We lack the discipline to live within our means. Now families have to live within their means, or the bill collectors will haul their belongings away.

That's the difference between government spending and individual spending. I have a lot more faith in the individuals -- the consumers, the parents, the workers -- whose spending supports their families and our economy on the whole.