Jewish World Review Sept. 9, 2004 / 23 Elul, 5764

Joe Scarborough

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Washington politicians are bankrupting America, and they're putting our national security at risk | Osama bin Laden figured out a long time ago that the way to beat America down was to attack our economy. But the news out of Washington today shows that it's not al Qaeda terrorists that are putting our economic future at risk. It's our own elected politicians.

Do you know Congress reported that the deficit for this year is going to hit a record high $443 billion? Now, that pile of red ink is going to be dumped on top of a record $7.5 trillion national debt.

And that is a debt that's built on backstabbing, political lies, and Enron-style accounting. You know, 10 years ago, my friends and I ran for Congress to change the way Washington worked. And for a few years, we were the barbarians at the gates of an imperial Congress and we threatened to change that culture forever. But you know what, friends? The sad truth is that Washington won. Washington always wins. And those same barbarians turned into the palace guards, drunk with power and indistinguishable from those people they hoped to replace.

And you know what? In the process, the party of Reagan became the party of big government, as it became harder to tell any difference between Capitol Hill Republicans and Capitol Hill Democrats. Why? Because, in the end, most seem more interested in keeping power there than in saving America.

Now, I know it sounds harsh, and it is. But we're a nation sinking deeper in debt with a crippled entitlement system and millions of baby boomers racing toward retirement. We're a nation in deep trouble. And this is not a matter open to debate, but it is an issue that most politicians are afraid to touch. You know, George Bush has taken a $150 billion surplus and he's turned it into a $430 billion deficit. John Kerry has posted one of the most liberal voting records in Congress.

And neither one of these candidates is proposing a single spending cut. In fact, John Kerry's talking about universal health care and increasing troop sizes by 40,000. Now, that means more spending, higher deficits, greater debt, higher interest rates, a slower economy, less revenue. And what does that mean? Higher deficits. It's a vicious cycle. And we're on a one-way ticket to an economic meltdown unless politicians get serious about this crisis.

And that means we have to get serious by demanding more from our elected leaders. They have let us down. And now it's time for all of us to fight back.

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Former Congressman Joe Scarborough (R-Fla.) hosts “Scarborough Country,” 10 p.m. ET, weeknights on MSNBC. Comment by clicking here.

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