Begich Statement on 2011 Budget Vote
U.S. Sen. Mark Begich today released the following statement after supporting passage of the 2011 budget. The vote was 81-19:
"I am pleased the Senate finally passed the 2011 budget and came to agreement on historic budget cuts that are a good first step toward reducing our federal deficit. As I have said for months, we need to get serious about budget cuts.
"Congress made some tough decisions but found the right balance. For Alaskans there is some good news in the details of the budget including:
· Fully funding a military pay raise;
· Keeps strong funding for public radio;
· Increases funding to speed up the pace of offshore oil and gas drilling permits; and
· Increases funding for veteran's health care services.
"It's time to stop playing political brinksmanship with the budget and do what every Alaskan is doing - balance the budget. That is why I have voted for a spending freeze, a balanced budget amendment, and I have sponsored a bill to freeze congressional pay."