McMorris Rodgers Responds to Biden’s Budget Proposal with Legislation to End Unauthorized Spending

The Unauthorized Spending Accountability Act Would End “Zombie” Programs

Washington, D.C. – In response to President Joe Biden’s bloated $6.8 trillion budget proposal that would blow up the debt and raise taxes on American families and businesses, Eastern Washington Congresswoman Cathy McMorris Rodgers (WA-05) today re-introduced her Unauthorized Spending Accountability (USA) Act to cut wasteful government spending. 

The USA Act would restore the American people’s “power of the purse” by eliminating unauthorized spending on government programs that haven’t been authorized by the people’s representatives in Congress. It’s estimated that the United States currently spends more than $300 billion every single year on these programs – also known as “Zombie” programs – that are not authorized to receive funding.

“The United States is $31 trillion in debt. This number continues to grow at a dangerous pace that threatens our future. Yet President Biden’s budget proposal is more of the same wasteful government spending that fails to address the crisis at hand – even with his misguided plans to raise taxes on American families and businesses,” said Rodgers. “It’s time to make a change to this broken budget process and get back to fiscal responsibility. The Unauthorized Spending Accountability (USA) Act brings us closer to that goal by eliminating unauthorized programs that are running on autopilot and robbing taxpayers. As Chair of the Energy and Commerce Committee, I intend to lead by example and start with the programs under our committee’s jurisdiction. The American people want accountability, and I plan to deliver it.”

The following organizations have issued statements in support of the USA Act:

“American families and businesses are frustrated with being on the hook for the seemingly endless federal spending that occurs every year. Compounding that frustration for many is the fact that a growing proportion of such spending goes toward financing government programs that are set on autopilot and, as such, escape virtually all Congressional oversight. The Unauthorized Spending Accountability (USA) Act lends guidance to many Americans’ wishes of restoring regular order and accountability to the budget process by requiring routine scrutiny of these often wasteful zombie programs. 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.” – Brent Gardner, Americans for Prosperity

“Authorization and appropriation are separate in the budget process to ensure programs are evaluated before receiving taxpayer dollars. This makes it more difficult for Congress to waste money on ineffective, self-serving, or controversial programs. If Congress continues to ignore or selectively enforce this process, billions of dollars will continue flowing to agencies and programs with little to no oversight. Heritage Action applauds Congresswoman McMorris Rodgers for introducing this important bill and encourages all members to support it.” – Garrett Bess, Vice President of Heritage Action

“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 spiraling 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.” – Jonathan Bydlak, R Street Institute

“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.” – Brandon Arnold, National Taxpayers Union

“The Unauthorized Spending Accountability (USA) Act is an important step toward eliminating wasteful spending and protecting taxpayers. IWV is proud to support this bill and thanks Representative McMorris Rodgers for her leadership on this important issue. Addressing our government spending, deficits, and debt is an increasingly urgent challenge. We urge all Members of Congress to work toward the bill’s swift passage and take a meaningful step towards restoring fiscal accountability in government.” – Hadley Heath Manning, Independent Women’s

More information on the USA Act:

Click here for a summary of the bill.

Click here for the full bill text.

Stay up to date on the USA Act by visiting


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