Sen. Mike Lee
, R-Utah, says he will vote against the continuing resolution to keep the federal government operational when the Senate takes it up Thursday, and his choice portends where he and like-minded GOP colleagues stand on the need for deeper cuts than those built into the House-passed measure and the 2011 spending plan.
“We are accumulating new debt at a rate of almost $1.7 trillion a year, and I think before we put a new spending plan in place, we’ve got to have more aggressive plans in place – to start cutting more,” Lee said Wednesday on Fox Business News’ “Lou Dobbs Tonight.” “I don’t have a firm count yet, but I believe we could have perhaps 10 or 12 in the Senate who will vote against it, along with me tomorrow.”
On Tuesday, the House voted 271-158 to pass the bill to fund the government until April 8, with 54 Republicans voting against the measure. After the expected passage by the Democratic Senate Thursday, the continuing resolution goes to President Barack Obama for his signature.
House Republicans who voted against the bill said passing another short-term measure only postpones the inevitable, grueling debate over spending cuts. The bill cuts $6 billion in spending.
Dobbs asked whether voting against the stopgap spending measure is where Lee and his colleagues are taking a stand on government spending, with votes on raising the debt ceiling and 2012 budget discussions on the horizon.
“This is where we start to lead out, and forecast what we are going to do there,” Lee said.
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