Joining a majority of their colleagues, 2nd District GOP Rep. John Kline and 1st District DFL Rep. Tim Walz voted Thursday for a two-year budget deal that avoids a government shutdown.
The deal, crafted by Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash., and Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., eliminated $63 billion in across-the-board spending cuts slated to take effect next year and cuts nearly $23 billion from the deficit. The measure easily passed by a vote of 332 to 94. In a statement released after the vote, Kline said the budget deal is "far from a perfect solution."
Kline added, "I supported this bipartisan budget because it reduces the deficit without any tax increases, and protects our national security. This is only a small step toward ensuring economic security for hardworking Americans, and we must reform the way Washington spends money and create conditions that foster job creation and economic growth."
Walz said in a statement he voted for the bill as a way to avoid another government shutdown and ease sequestration cuts which hurt "our defense, our seniors and hardworking middle class families." But he said he is deeply concerned about some provisions in the bill, specifically one that cuts a cost-of-living adjustment for military retirees under age 62.
"Moving forward, I will fight with every fiber of my being to restore these earned benefits for our nation’s heroes," Walz said. "I also believe we should conduct a full audit of the Pentagon to root out waste before more cuts to military personnel occur. I plan on offering legislation to conduct such an audit in the near future.”