GOP calls for federal hiring freeze, spending cuts

Rep. John Boehner, R-Ohio, introduced the plan Thursday morning. Rep. John Boehner, R-Ohio, introduced the plan Thursday morning. Saul Loeb/Newscom
House Republicans on Thursday unveiled plans to freeze federal hiring in an effort to reduce the size of government.

The "Pledge to America," a document GOP members have called a "governing agenda," includes a series of proposals to cut government size and control spending. In addition to canceling unspent stimulus funds and capping discretionary spending, Republicans promise to freeze federal hiring for all non-security-related jobs. Government shouldn't grow at the expense of the private sector, the document stated.

"By cutting Congress' budget, imposing a net hiring freeze on non-security federal employees and reviewing every current government program to eliminate wasteful and duplicative programs, we can curb Washington's irresponsible spending habits and reduce the size of government while still fulfilling our necessary obligations," the report said.

Party leaders also pledged to continue weekly votes on the YouCut program, an initiative to rein in government spending. The public each week votes on proposals, and the winning idea goes to the House floor.

Michele Bachmann, R-Minn., in May proposed eliminating the 1.4 percent federal pay hike President Obama requested for 2011, but House lawmakers rejected the legislation. Other proposals have included federal workforce cuts and a plan to fire government employees with delinquent income taxes.

Rep. Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., and Rep. John Boehner, R-Ohio, House minority leader, led party efforts to draft and review the pledge.

Rep. Gerry Connolly, D-Va., called the GOP's promises a "broad assault on the federal workforce."

"The idea that a hiring freeze somehow is going to wipe out the federal deficit is nonsensical and frankly is an arbitrary, capricious and mindless approach to government," said Connolly, adding additional federal workers are needed in areas like border patrol, health care and scientific research and development.

"Even under a hiring freeze the work of the federal government would still have to be done," said Colleen Kelley, president of the National Treasury Employees Union. "But without sufficient staffing, federal agencies would be forced to turn to unaccountable and costly private contractors."

Stay up-to-date with federal news alerts and analysis — Sign up for GovExec's email newsletters.
FROM OUR SPONSORS
JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Close [ x ] More from GovExec
 
 

Thank you for subscribing to newsletters from GovExec.com.
We think these reports might interest you:

  • Forecasting Cloud's Future

    Conversations with Federal, State, and Local Technology Leaders on Cloud-Driven Digital Transformation

    Download
  • The Big Data Campaign Trail

    With everyone so focused on security following recent breaches at federal, state and local government and education institutions, there has been little emphasis on the need for better operations. This report breaks down some of the biggest operational challenges in IT management and provides insight into how agencies and leaders can successfully solve some of the biggest lingering government IT issues.

    Download
  • Communicating Innovation in Federal Government

    Federal Government spending on ‘obsolete technology’ continues to increase. Supporting the twin pillars of improved digital service delivery for citizens on the one hand, and the increasingly optimized and flexible working practices for federal employees on the other, are neither easy nor inexpensive tasks. This whitepaper explores how federal agencies can leverage the value of existing agency technology assets while offering IT leaders the ability to implement the kind of employee productivity, citizen service improvements and security demanded by federal oversight.

    Download
  • IT Transformation Trends: Flash Storage as a Strategic IT Asset

    MIT Technology Review: Flash Storage As a Strategic IT Asset For the first time in decades, IT leaders now consider all-flash storage as a strategic IT asset. IT has become a new operating model that enables self-service with high performance, density and resiliency. It also offers the self-service agility of the public cloud combined with the security, performance, and cost-effectiveness of a private cloud. Download this MIT Technology Review paper to learn more about how all-flash storage is transforming the data center.

    Download
  • Ongoing Efforts in Veterans Health Care Modernization

    This report discusses the current state of veterans health care

    Download

When you download a report, your information may be shared with the underwriters of that document.