He did this last year too, actually, and so what if it’s a politically expedient and less-than-a-drop-in-the-bucket gesture? It’s about leaving no stone unturned in the quest for a more fiscally prudent bureaucracy, and I am one hundred percent for it. Via CNN:
Sen. Rand Paul cut another six-figure check to the United States Treasury Wednesday, taking the money he said he didn’t need from his office’s budget to make a tiny dent in the nation’s massive federal debt.
“We watch every purchase,” Paul, a Republican from Kentucky, said at an event next to an oversized check for $600,000. “We watch what computers we buy, what paper we buy, the ink cartridges. We treat the money like it’s our money, or your money, and we look at every expenditure.”
The $600,000 reflects more than 20% of Paul’s annual office budget, according to a press release.
Paul’s office returned half a million dollars about this time last year, adding up to a grand total of over a million dollars in savings in just his two years in the Senate. Again, taking the time to bother with even just the itty bitty chunk of the federal budget allotted to you may be a small thing, but it’s a good one. What if all Congresspeople, administrators, officials, agencies, bureaus, and departments were this frugal, instead of operating under the current use-it-or-lose-it mentality? It can be done, and that could very quickly amount to billions of dollars in government savings. It isn’t entitlement reform, but it ain’t nothin,’ either.
Federal entities have pretty much zero incentive to save money, since the faceless, ‘endless’ supply of taxpayer dollars provides for their budget — but what if we could shift the federal government toward a more business-model, free-market based structure? Sen. Paul already has one such idea on the books — giving bonuses to federal employees who find potential for savings in their departments — and it could be a great way to get that slow-moving, big-spending bureaucracy off of its entitled collective backside and actually encourage innovation and efficiency. More, please.
Mixing up the chemical makeup of the federal bureaucracy may very well be a long shot, but it’s a longer shot still if nobody bothers to even suggest it.
Fiscal conservatism, for the win.