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Editorial: Spending limit is first step in deficit battle

While the Senate voted Thursday to authorize a new national spending limit, House Blue Dog Democrats successfully included a tough new "pay-as-you-go" budget item.

This is a step in the right direction.

The Senate approved a new $1.9 trillion spending limit for the federal government. This will clear the way for the growing national debt, which is on track to hit $14.3 trillion this year. This equates to more than $45,000 for every man, woman and child in the United States.

The growing federal deficit is of national concern, especially since the debt is often held by foreign nations such as China.

While the new debt limit passed the Senate without much fanfare, it came after weeks of extended negotiations between House and Senate Democrats and the Obama administration.

The "pay-as-you-go" budget law makes it harder for Congress to implement new tax cuts or federal benefits programs without balancing it out with appropriate offsetting funding or budget cuts.

This move is not a deficit solution in itself as there are already pay-as-you-go rules in place. Unfortunately, Congress routinely waived those same rules with ease in the past.

However, this is a simple and necessary first step in the battle ahead of significantly reducing the federal deficit.

It is an investment in our future as well as that of our children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren ...