Washington is constantly spewing bad news about government spending. The feds admitted recently that they made $247 billion of improper payments with your tax money last year. The total amount of errors since 2004 is now $3 trillion.
The federal workers managed to lose the plot between the couch cushions despite their staggering incompetence.
The numbers are only getting worse. The numbers are even worse for large programs such as Temporary Aid To Needy Families and Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program. The bureaucrats knew that these programs were “risk-prone” and decided to not report them.
In the past three years, nearly every federal program was either illegally or legally abused.
Another report, for example, estimated that at least 200 billion dollars were lost due to fraudulent Covid loans made to small businesses. This admission is from the Small Business Administration Inspector General.
Washington is bad at allocating your money efficiently. They know this, but they continue to ask for more.
When there is a small glimmer of good news in this mess, we should celebrate it and think about how to make it even better.
The Government Accountability Office, Washington’s internal watchdog, reported in June that $46,8 billion worth of duplicative expenditure was discovered and eliminated. Since 2010, taxpayers have saved $600 billion.
This is what we know thanks to Senator Tom Coburn, who died in Oklahoma. In 2010, Congress and Obama engaged in another round of tense debt ceiling negotiations. Coburn insisted that the GAO be required to search routinely for duplicate programs and find inefficiencies across departments. This information is shared regularly with Congress to help them make informed decisions about our tax dollars.
Coburn himself said, “turning these ready-made cuts into savings is the best way Congress can regain trust and confidence from the American people.” Since approval of Congress is at a meager 20%, it’s important that every member keep this in mind. Coburn said that no American, regardless of their party affiliation or ideology, wants to see tax dollars used for unnecessary duplication and expansion. “No” is the Senate’s answer to excessive spending.
Democrates also understand this, as the evidence suggests.
After five years of GAO reports on duplication mandated by Congress, the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs conducted a hearing where both parties examined for inefficiencies and overlapped missions within DHS, an enormous department thrown together after the 9/11 attacks.
Ranking Member Tom Carper (D-Del.) The hearing was opened by stating that the GAO reports showed “we need leadership and oversight both in the Executive Branch and Congress, to determine where there are unnecessary duplications…or where better coordination is needed among government programs with similar mission.”
The Delaware senator spoke of Coburn: “Whenever we speak about duplication, Tom Coburn comes to mind, and I am sure his spirit is with us today. Oftentimes, we add amendments to legislation and vote on them. These are message votes. This was much more than that. This was an amended passed in 2010 on a debt limit increase that had a real effect, provided excellent information and provided real savings…So again, this hearing is really a tribute of Senator Tom Coburn.”
Carper was simply stating what everyone knows: The Coburn Rule doesn’t have anything to do with politics, but is a matter of good governance and conscientiousness. Our leaders need to be more consistent and show more commitment.
The $600 billion savings are a clear and resounding win for American taxpayers, but they’re only a fraction of what was lost. There is still a lot of work to be done by all government leaders. Coburn Rule spirit must guide their decisions.