Governor LePage Welcomes Ohio Governor John R. Kasich to Maine

March 26, 2015

For Immediate Release: Thursday, March 26, 2015
Contact: Adrienne Bennett, Press Secretary, (207) 287-2531

AUGUSTA – With the United States facing an $18 trillion deficit, Governor Paul R. LePage today joined Ohio Governor John R. Kasich, as well as legislators, to show united support for a Constitutional amendment that would require the federal government to balance its budget every year.

“Governors across our Nation have the responsibility to ensure their state has a balanced budget. We do not have the luxury of unlimited spending, as does the federal government,” said Governor LePage. “Republicans are taking fiscal responsibility very seriously, but we are encouraging and calling on Democrats to support this change. We must bring fiscal sanity back to Washington, D.C.”

Governor Kasich has long been a proponent for a federal balanced budget amendment. Maine is the tenth state in recent months he has visited to advocate for the Constitutional amendment. It takes 34 states to call for an Article V Convention and 38 states to ratify a constitutional amendment. Twenty-seven states have resolutions calling for an Article V Convention to enact a balanced budget amendment.

“We are now gaining meaningful momentum, and we appreciate Maine’s support,” said Governor Kasich. “Adding South Dakota, Utah and North Dakota this year, there are now 27 states committed to a convention. The movement has reached a tipping point and just seven more states are needed to trigger change.”

Governor Kasich has served as Ohio governor since January 2011, helping Ohio close an $8 billion budget shortfall and restore the state’s fiscal stability. While a member of Congress, Kasich supported a federal balanced budget amendment and, as chair of the House Budget Committee, he successfully led efforts to balance the federal budget in fiscal years 1998, 1999, 2000 and 2001 — the first balanced budgets since 1969.

Since Ohio passed its balanced budget amendment in 2013, Georgia, Tennessee, Michigan, Louisiana, South Dakota, Utah and North Dakota have passed similar resolutions.

Maine Senate President Michael Thibodeau will introduce a joint resolution to the Legislature proposing an amendment to require a balanced federal budget.

“I am very pleased to announce that I will be submitting a joint resolution to the Maine Legislature supporting a Constitutional Convention to call for an amendment to the United States Constitution that requires a balanced federal budget,” said Senate President Thibodeau. “It is unsustainable, and every American should be outraged that we are passing this debt onto our grandchildren.”

“Unfortunately, if we continue down this path of fiscal uncertainty we will lost the ability to live the American Dream,” added Governor LePage. “I would like every American to have an opportunity to live the American Dream as I have.”