Biden's Spending Is the Biggest Headache Yet

June 9, 2021

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Senator Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.) delivered floor remarks regarding President Biden's current spending. 


To watch Senator Blackburn’s speech, click below or here.



 You can read the transcript below or in the Congressional Record


Mr. President, we have a tendency in this Chamber to

talk about hindsight being 20/20, and I think that this is what we will

be doing in 10 or 20 years when we look back on the Biden

administration. I really expect that we will highlight all of the big

talk here in DC that has led to some really bad ideas the White House

has tried to legitimize through legislation and budget requests.

If you remember, even before the 2020 election, Biden's big talk on

amnesty welcomed the hundreds of thousands of migrants who are

currently flooding the southern border. He said: We expect to see these

migrants at the border.

So, yes, they heard him say, ``Y'all come,'' and they are coming.

His big talk on Green New Deal programs got us the boondoggle of an

infrastructure package that all but ignores roads, bridges, and

broadband. The people in Memphis, TN, have not appreciated some of this

talk of other items as infrastructure. They want bridge repairs

immediately. Then, just before Memorial Day, we got some more big talk

in the form of his $6 trillion budget request that reads like an

instruction manual on how to make our country less secure, less free,

and less competitive.

Back home in Tennessee, people looked at this thing, and they didn't

believe what they were seeing. At church last Sunday, I had some

friends ask me if the budget proposal was supposed to be a joke or if

this were serious because, when they look around, they see real need.

They see communities without broadband, small businesses that are

struggling to get back on their feet, and crumbling roads and bridges.

Yet what did the administration choose to do with their first budget?

They turned away from those needs. They decided to throw billions of

dollars at the environmental lobby to make it happy. They put in money


abortionists and to an already bloated Federal bureaucracy.

Tennesseans are looking at their own budgets and thinking about all

of the ways they have had to make tough choices over the past year, and

they are wondering why the Biden administration cannot seem to bring

itself to show some fiscal restraint. Why is it that they just say:

Crank up the printing press. Let's print more dollars. Let's put more

money in the system. Let's give everybody a check--and no worries about

who is going to pay the bill?

They are used to seeing the Democrats act in a very cavalier manner

about spending, and they are very much concerned about what they see

happening in Washington, DC. They know, without a doubt, that this is

really going to cost them and that it is going to cost their children

and their grandchildren, and as someone said this weekend, it is the

great-grandchildren who will bear the brunt of the Biden extravaganza.

They know better than to nod along with the administration's promises

that only the rich and the megacorporations will be responsible for

offsetting this massive spending program

I will tell you that they know how this works. They have seen it

before. They know that there are higher taxes at the top and that

higher taxes at the top of this wish list and on the top earners will

mean less investment in their communities, which will lead to stagnant

economic development, which will land them in the exact same place that

they were during the Obama-Biden years, except there will be the added

expenses of having to comply with future mandates the administration is

going to pile on them.

They know, when you take from the people who create the jobs and make

the investments and provide the goods that drive our economy, that you

are taking from the middle class, that you are taking from small

businesses on every Main Street in this country. You are making opening

that business too expensive to afford because you have taken those tax

dollars and you are using those dollars to grow union membership, to

show favoritism, and to pick winners and losers Washington, DC, style.

That is exactly how you destroy that competitiveness that makes

companies want to do business here and to emigrate here, and that makes

other countries a little nervous to stand toe to toe with us on the

international stage. This international element is important, and I

fear the Biden administration has lost that perspective.

If you look at the budget items related to immigration, it is clear

that the White House still thinks they can make it out of this border

crisis without having to admit that their policies have, indeed, caused

this crisis at our Nation's southern border. Yes, indeed, this is the

Biden border crisis. Instead of securing the border by investing in the

technology, infrastructure, and manpower our Border Patrol agents have

repeatedly asked for, the administration wants to focus on sending

foreign aid to the Northern Triangle, foreign aid without

accountability. This is a noble effort, but it will do nothing to

mitigate the disaster on the border that has since bled into the

communities that are now playing host to busloads of unaccompanied

migrant children, like we see in Chattanooga.

At least they decided to invest in a few more immigration judges. Yet

what we see them doing through this is making every town a border town

and every State a border State. They are transferring the costs to our

States and to our local communities--the costs for education, for

healthcare, for children's services, for social services, for housing.

The Federal Government doesn't want to admit they are incurring that


So what are they doing? At taxpayer expense, they are putting these

over a half-a-million illegal entrants onto airplanes, onto buses, and

they are sending them to communities around this country. That is what

they are doing, and that is what millions of Americans, including

thousands of Tennesseans, are pushing back on.

I have to tell you, I had a telephone townhall last night. It was

with some of the counties that are around Chattanooga, TN, in that

area, and COVID-19 and the immigration policies of the Biden

administration were the top questions that came up.

I will tell you that things don't look any better on the national

security front. If you account for inflation, you find out that the

topline request for the Department of Defense represents a $7 billion

decrease compared to fiscal year 2021 funding levels. That is right, a

$7 billion decrease for defense. Maybe they forgot that what we are

responsible for, first and foremost, is providing for the common


Talk about misplaced priorities. The Biden administration picked the

absolute worst time to undercut the military and employ President

Obama's demand to do more with less. We know from experience that it

takes between 3 and 5 percent in annual growth to keep our military and

national security programs competitive, and this budget doesn't even

come close to hitting that mark. For reference, China increased their

defense budget by 6.8 percent this year--oh, and who is our main

competitor when it comes to great power competition? You are right. The

answer is China, absolutely.

Biden's budget, on the other hand, asks for $112 billion in R&D

spending, but it cuts procurement spending. Imagine that. This means,

as of right now, the administration has no plan to put that R&D to good

use. Keep doing the research and development, but by the way, we are

not planning to purchase. Think about that. Think about the message

that sends to our allies and the message it is sending to our


They paid lip service to supporting our nuclear programs, but earlier

this month, the Secretary of the Navy sent a strategic memo ordering

the service to defund the development of the nuclear sea-launched

cruise missiles that are essential for deterring China in regional

waters. That is right. The Secretary of the Navy sent a strategic memo

ordering the Navy to defund the development of the missiles that are

essential for deterring China in regional waters.

The kicker? All of this is to be done before the Nuclear Posture

Review is even completed. So don't wait for the report. We need an

outcome, and the outcome is, Let's make ourselves less competitive.

This is astounding. Instead of following the directives that have

clearly been laid out by last year's NDAA and investing in a combat-

credible force, the budget guts and confuses the mission driving the

Pacific Deterrence Initiative, and this has had bipartisan support.

Keep in mind that this is the best set of tools we have against Chinese

aggression in the Indo-Pacific region, and the Biden administration has

decided to use it like some sort of slush account for projects that, in

a normal year, would be funded under other categories.

They are going for an outcome. The outcome is not ``America first''

or an America able to defend. Their budget is cutting defense. Their

budget is cutting these cruise missiles. It makes no sense.

And I can assure you, as we begin the NDAA negotiations, that this is

something that will deserve and will get a full review.

I have said it before and I will say it again: The American people

understand that elections do have consequences. They knew that some

priorities would change with President Biden. Even my friends back home

who voted for President Biden will tell me they liked what they heard

on the campaign trail from him. But they will also tell you they did

not vote for this.

They did not vote for what is happening, for the Executive orders

that are coming out of this administration, for the ridiculousness that

they see in this budget. They did not vote for tax plans that will

stand in the way of local investment with small businesses. They did

not vote to make things more expensive and scarce at the grocery store.

They did not vote to fund a bloated and power-hungry Federal

bureaucracy. They didn't vote to leave our border in shambles, to wreck

our Nation's sovereignty.

They certainly didn't vote for a defense strategy that will allow the

Chinese Communist Party to expand their influence into underdeveloped

countries and threaten our allies in the Indo-Pacific. No, they did not

vote for that.

Our National Guard men and women, our men and women who every day are

in service there at Fort Campbell--God

bless them. And we worry about the lack of attention to defense.

I would remind my Democratic colleagues that any action they take on

this budget proposal won't exist in a vacuum, and I ask them to

reconsider their justification for asking the American people, who just

survived a global pandemic and a near total economic collapse--I think

they should reconsider their justification for asking them to bankroll

an activist-driven, radical, fantasy budget that nobody really asked


I yield the floor.