McMorris Rodgers Re-Introduces USA Act, Legislation Targeting Unauthorized Spending

WASHINGTON, D.C. (APRIL 26, 2017) — Eastern Washington Congresswoman Cathy McMorris Rodgers (WA-05), Chair of the House Republican Conference, today re-introduced her legislation, the Unauthorized Spending Accountability (USA) Act. The USA Act aims to restore the American people’s “power of the purse” by eliminating unauthorized spending — spending on government programs that hasn’t been authorized by the people’s representatives in Congress.

“Too much of the federal government is on autopilot, leaving the American people less able to effectively review, rethink, and possibly eliminate government programs. The concept behind the USA Act is simple: every penny of taxpayer money should be subject to the American people’s scrutiny and accountability.”

Read more about the USA Act here:

In a CNN report on reauthorization, Jake Tapper referred to these programs as “Zombie” programs. Click here to view this short zombies-inspired video released by McMorris Rodgers on Friday, March 11, 2016.

Click here to read a September Washington Post op-ed by McMorris Rodgers and Tim Phillips, president of Americans for Prosperity.

NOTE: H.R. ___, the Unauthorized Spending Accountability (USA) Act of 2017, puts all unauthorized programs on a pathway to sunset in three years and requires any new authorizations or reauthorizations to include a sunset clause. This means every government program will be routinely and more carefully scrutinized and updated by the People’s representatives.

The following 27 representatives have cosponsored McMorris Rodgers’ legislation:

Rep. Joe Barton (R-TX), Rep. Rob Bishop (R-UT), Rep. Rod Blum (R-IA), Rep. Ken Buck (R-CO), Rep. Michael Burgess (R-TX), Rep. Bradley Byrne (R-AL), Rep. Steve Chabot (R-OH), Rep. Kevin Cramer (R-ND), Rep. Tom Emmer (R-MN), Rep. Blake Farenthold (R-TX), Rep. Bill Flores (R-TX), Rep. Richard Hudson (R-NC), Rep. Lynn Jenkins (R-KS), Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH), Barry Loudermilk (R-GA), Rep. Tom McClintock (R-CA), Rep. Luke Messer (R-IN), Rep. Pete Olson (R-TX), Rep. Gary Palmer (R-AL), Rep. John Ratcliffe (R-TX), Rep. Jim Renacci (R-OH), Rep. Phil Roe (R-TN), Rep. Jason Smith (R-MO), Rep. Chris Stewart (R-UT), Rep. Ann Wagner (R-MO), Rep. Mark Walker (R-NC), Rep. Ted Yoho (R-FL)


“Your legislation would help empower Congress to better exercise its power of the purse by requiring the periodic authorization of federal programs [….]We commend you on your thoughtful approach to increasing accountability, which will result in reducing unnecessary federal spending.”
Letter of support by more than 20 groups

“Thankfully there are some members who are willing to stand up for good governance and reining in spending. […] The Unauthorized Spending Accountability Act (USA Act) lends guidance to many conservatives’ wishes of restoring regular order and accountability to the budget process. Lawmakers that are serious about reversing the trend of runaway spending in Washington should support McMorris Rodgers’s legislation that gets at the heart of the problem of unauthorized spending.”
Americans for Prosperity

“The USA Act is an excellent piece of legislation that will bring more accountability and oversight to federal spending. National Taxpayers Union is pleased to endorse this bill, the passage of which would be a huge win for taxpayers.”
National Taxpayers Union

“CCAGW has long supported the enactment of sunset legislation. The USA Act is an important step toward the goal of subjecting all federal programs and agencies to a periodic review. The number and cost of unauthorized programs is now equal to more than half of the non-defense discretionary budget, which is unnecessary and unacceptable. The USA Act will compel authorizing committees to do their job more effectively and give taxpayers a much better idea of which programs are effective or essential, and which should be eliminated or pared back.”
Citizens Against Government Waste

“The Unauthorized Spending Accountability (USA) Act is an obvious step toward getting our fiscal house in order. Unauthorized appropriations are an increasingly large chunk of the federal budget, and our nearly $20 trillion national debt necessitates that we take action. The USA Act is a straightforward option for getting Congress to follow its own rules, and we strongly urge every member of Congress to support this legislation.”
Coalition to Reduce Spending

“Separation of powers is one of the United States government’s most basic principles. But for several decades, presidents from both parties have gradually concentrated more and more power in the executive branch, at the expense of Congress and the judiciary. A bill introduced today from Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-Wash.), the Unauthorized Spending Accountability (USA) Act of 2017, seeks to rebalance a tilted scale. It would tackle unauthorized executive branch programs, hold Congress accountable for those programs, and create a commission to assess proper oversight of mandatory spending programs. Restoring a proper separation of powers is a tall order and the USA Act is no panacea for all of government’s ills, but it would mark an important step in a crucial area of reform.”
–Competitive Enterprise Institute

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