Study: Incoming House GOP Committee Chairs Have Legislative Agendas to Cut Budget an Average of $41 Billion

Dec 06, 2010, 18:04 ET from National Taxpayers Union Foundation

ALEXANDRIA, Va., Dec. 6, 2010 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Will the new House Republican majority get the budget back in the black? Some interesting clues are offered in a National Taxpayers Union Foundation (NTUF) study of Committee leadership released today.


The analysis utilizes NTUF's BillTally system to compare the legislative agendas of potential new Committee Chairs in the next Congress. BillTally tabulates the cost or savings of every piece of spending legislation and cross-indexes these figures with the sponsorship records of all Representatives and Senators. Figures are based on legislation introduced through the late-summer recess of 2010. Among the findings:

  • Each one of the 19 outgoing Democratic Chairs included in the NTUF analysis compiled net legislative agendas to increase annual federal spending, from a minimum of $10.0 billion (Armed Services head Ike Skelton) to a maximum of $1.463 trillion (Financial Services Chair Barney Frank).
  • The average overall net spending hike (minus any offsetting cuts) this group advocated was $803.2 billion – significantly higher than the $500-plus billion average for all Democrats in the House.
  • At least 12 of the 19 incoming Republican Chairs sponsored bills whose net effect would lower federal outlays, proposing an average annual agenda to cut the budget by $40.9 billion – nearly in line with the $48.1 billion reduction that the average rank-and-file House Republican called for during the same period.
  • Individual totals for incoming Chairs ranged from a net spending hike of $63.3 billion (Peter King, Homeland Security) to a net reduction of $123.1 billion (Lamar Smith, Judiciary).

"The shift in political control over the House of Representatives will also lead to major shifts in the fiscal work-product most of its Committees will send to the floor," said NTUF Senior Policy Analyst and study author Demian Brady.  "The recent records of the incoming Committee Chairs indicate that taxpayers should see not just less spending coming from the legislative 'workshops' of the House, but possibly real attempts to pare it back."

NTUF is the research affiliate of the 362,000-member National Taxpayers Union, a non-profit citizen group. Note: The study is available online at

SOURCE National Taxpayers Union Foundation