Friends of Jan Schneider, P.O. Box 57, Sarasota, Florida 34230 | 941-955-6595



Jan Schneider is, of course, concerned over deficits and national debt. The United States entered 2024 with a national debt of over $34 trillion. This equates to around $100,000 for each citizen and closer to three times that per taxpayer. The debt also exceeded the gross domestic product of close to $28 trillion for 2023.

The federal government also came into 2024 with only a temporary and partial patch to a looming debt ceiling crisis. Raising or suspending the debt ceiling becomes necessary when the federal government needs to borrow more money to pay its debts than has been authorized by Congress. For most of the past century, raising the ceiling was routine, with Congress acting quickly, amicably and sometimes unanimously. Recently, however, the issue has become highly
polarized and contentious.

The United States hit its debt limit on January 19, 2023. The Department of the Treasury was, however, able to use “extraordinary measures” to keep the federal government going until the so-called “X-date” (insufficient funds to pay federal bills) that could have come as early as June 1.

After months of acrimony, on May 31, 2023 the House of Representatives passed a bipartisan bill to suspend the debt limit through December 31, 2024 and to cut spending by at least $1.5 trillion. The tally was 314 to 117, with 149 Republicans and 165 Democrats voting Yea. Much of the opposition — 71 Rs and 46 Ds — came from the far right and left wings of the parties. The next day, the vote in the Senate was 63 to 36, with 46 Ds and 17 Rs voting in favor. Again, extremists from both parties were among the nays.

As responsible legislators from both major parties realized, a United States default could well have plunged the U.S. and world economies into unprecedented chaos. Among other dire consequences, the U.S. credit rating would almost certainly be downgraded; financial markets could tank; and Social Security, veterans, military, food stamp and other payments would likely be delayed. Brinkmanship with partisan grandstanding presents enormous risks and is no way for Congress to act or the federal government to do business.

Jan, although socially progressive, is fiscally conservative. While steadfastly supporting balanced budgets and fiscal responsibility, she opposes a Balanced Budget Amendment. It would deprive federal policymakers of essential flexibility to address national security, economic and natural disaster emergencies and would give dangerous additional power to congressional extremists. Opponent Vern Buchanan (R-FL16) has constantly touted his successful if cloudy business experience, including in support of his unsuccessful bid to chair the House Ways and Means Committee. Nevertheless, he has been willing to plunge the federal government into default and financial chaos. He was even one of six Republicans on Ways & Means to vote against the recent bipartisan debt deal.


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Florida 16th Congressional District