NEW YORK — Michael A. Peterson, President and CEO of the Peter G. Peterson Foundation, commented today on news reports that Senate negotiators have reached a budget deal to increase defense and domestic spending by approximately $300 billion over the next two years. Peterson said:
"This continues an unfortunate trend of fiscal irresponsibility. After adding trillions to our national debt in last year’s irresponsible tax bill, our leaders are now adding another $300 billion in deficits over just the next two years. It’s wrong to mortgage America’s future in order to simply keep the government open.
"Investing in our national defense and domestic programs is important, but if we do so with our credit card, many of these priorities will be undermined by weakening the nation. Growing our national debt hurts America’s future economy and role in the world.
"Today, America’s fastest growing program is interest on the debt. On top of $20 trillion in national debt, we are now looking at trillion dollar deficits starting next year, and permanently thereafter. Avoiding tough decisions simply deepens our fiscal hole, and leaves even greater challenges for the next generation. If these programs are important enough to be in the budget, they should be paid for."