Former U.S. Comptroller General David Walker warned Iowans last week not to be fooled by any presidential candidate who claims to have a magic bullet to deal with the national debt.
“We can’t grow our way out without double digit economic growth for decades,” Walker said. “We can’t only cut our way out without harming retirees and national security . . . We can’t tax our way of the problem because of limits on how much we can tax without harming economic growth and our competitive posture.”
Speaking at a conference in Des Moines, Walker said tough choices involving the tax code, Social Security, and health care programs are necessary to lower federal debt from historically high levels.
He said presidential candidates need to be asked if they will “commit their first budget as a framework for debt stabilization.”
The conference was hosted by the Foster Group, in partnership with First Budget, a joint non-partisan initiative by Fix the Debt and The Concord Coalition to raise public awareness of the nation’s fiscal challenges and encourage presidential candidates to address them.