By Peter Schroeder - 02/02/13 11:00 AM EST
Freshman Rep. Susan Brooks (R-Ind.) blasted Democrats Saturday for not producing a budget, calling it a "failure to lead."
"It's been nearly four years since Senate Democrats last passed a budget — 1,375 days to be exact," she said.
"For too long, the Democratic majority in Washington has failed to see the value in this sound model of working hard and living within your means," she added.
However, she said she was proud to back the "No Budget, No Pay Act," a bill crafted by House Republican leaders that suspended the debt limit for three months and required both chambers of Congress to pass a budget by April 15 for members to continue receiving paychecks on time.
"By forcing Senate Democrats to finally live up to one of the most basic responsibilities of governing — passing a budget — we are presenting them a golden opportunity to confront and solve our spending problem," she said.
The legislation provides a "cause for optimism," she contended.
Brooks touted her Hoosier roots, saying she was proud to come from a state that enjoys a "AAA" credit rating and a budget surplus. She credited the fiscal health to the state's "strong sense of responsibility and accountability."
While Senate Democrats have said they plan to bring a budget forward in the coming year, Brooks said there were still skeptics in Washington who fail to see the benefit of doing so, which she said ran counter to common sense.
"I respectfully disagree, and I'm sure many hard-working parents do as well," she said. "You see, solving these questions is why I ran for Congress in the first place."
Brooks also sought to blame President Obama for the pending automatic sequestration spending cuts, arguing that he proposed them in 2011, and now Republicans want to replace those indiscriminate, across-the-board cuts with "better, thoughtful, common-sense cuts and reforms."
She touted the fact that Republicans leading the House have produced budgets for the past two years, and said that determination and a "big dose of optimism" could allow Congress to meet its challenges.
"Republicans will work tirelessly to hold the Democratic majority in Washington accountable and make sure, together, we seize this opportunity," she said.
Brooks signed off from the address by noting that her father was a former high school football coach, wishing everyone a "happy Super Bowl weekend."