President-elect Donald Trump on Saturday named Rep. Mick Mulvaney, a noted Capitol Hill fiscal hawk, to head the Office of Management and Budget, calling him a "high-energy leader" and signaling a tougher stance on government spending.
"We are going to do great things for the American people with Mick Mulvaney leading the Office of Management and Budget," Trump said in a statement, reports The Washington Post. "Right now we are nearly $20 trillion in debt, but Mick is a very high-energy leader with deep convictions for how to responsibly manage our nation’s finances and save our country from drowning in red ink."
Trump said by adding the South Carolina Republican to head OMB, his administration will "make smart choices about America's budget, bring new accountability to our federal government, and renew the American taxpayer's trust in how their money is spent."
Mulvaney, 49, was elected during the 2010 Republican sweep, but quickly established himself as a fiscal conservative and played a key role in the passage of budget caps in 2011.
He also has pushed his own party to seek spending cuts, and House Speaker Paul Ryan on Saturday said Trump made the right choice.
"In Congress, he has been a conservative reformer from day one, proposing solutions to fix the budget process and our regulatory system," said Ryan, R-Wisconsin. "At OMB, he will lead the work he has started to improve the way government does the people's business."
Mulvaney, as a founding member of the House Freedom Caucus, was part of a group of lawmakers who pushed former House Speaker John Boehner to resign in 2015, and while he's a conservative hard-liner, he has also broken ranks with his party several times.
One of his particular emphasis has been on defense spending, including the overseas contingency operations war funding stream, which allows a way to fund military and anti-terror operations overseas while avoiding spending caps.
He also favors a Constitutional amendment that would mandate a balanced budget.
Mulvaney, as OMB director, will be in charge of overseeing Trump's call for a tax code overhaul. The president-elect wants to slash the nation's corporate tax rate from 35 percent to 15 percent, while streamlining the tax code for America's households.
Trump also has called for $1 trillion in infrastructure spending, a move Ryan and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Kentucky, oppose the measure.
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