It’s Time to Adopt the Penny Plan


Our national debt is now over $22 trillion, and with the deficit being so high, we have to shell out cash to pay the interest alone. So far, the net interest payments on the debt are estimated to be over $390 billion this fiscal year.  These numbers will keep going up unless Congress makes proactive decisions.

One way Congress can fix our spending mess is by using the Penny Plan. Heritage Foundation economist Steve Moore argues why this bipartisan effort that could work:

“For every dollar, we spend in Washington, next year that agency instead of spending that dollar, they spend 99 cents and cut one penny and the next year they spend one penny less. If you do that for five years, you’ve cut the deficit in half, just by cutting that penny a year.”

Let’s face it: Washington spends too much! There needs to be a way to balance the federal budget.

The Penny Plan does not require all programs to be a part of the same one percent reduction in spending. Congress may deem some programs more worthy than others; that would be fine, as long as the overall one penny per dollar reduction is met.

Also, the reductions in spending required by the Penny Plan are not reductions of planned future growth; they are actual reductions in spending – next year’s outlays would be one percent less than this year’s outlays, and so on. If Congress fails to enact the required reductions in spending, then mandatory across-the-board reductions would be implemented each year and so on.

By implementing the Penny Plan, we could balance the budget within five years. Once the budget is balanced, the legislation would limit overall federal spending to no more than 18 percent of the Gross Domestic Product, which is the historical average during the postwar era.

The debt clock is ticking! Congress needs to stop putting off this problem and start working toward a debt-free future for our country.