Senator Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) has provided a grim forecast for the United States if lawmakers do not reduce the government debt.
Appearing on Fox News Sunday on Dec. 26, Coburn said that the U.S. will suffer from "apocalyptic pain" if the nation does not curb its massive deficit. He predicted that America could eventually face an 18 percent unemployment rate and hyperinflation if government waste is not curbed. He said that the U.S. may face austerity measures that have been seen in Greece, Ireland, Spain, Portugal and Japan.
"The history of republics is they average 200 years of life. And they all fail in the history over fiscal matters. They rot from within before they collapse or are attacked," Coburn told the news provider.
Coburn, who has the nickname "Dr. No" for his refusal to spend taxpayer dollars, played an important role in reducing the amount of money included in a bill to provide healthcare funds for 9/11 responders, which was passed by Congress last week.
In the televised interview, Coburn said that he can come up with at least $350 billion of waste that can be eliminated without negatively impacting the economic recovery, including an overabundance of job training programs that exist throughout the country. He said there are 105 programs that are designed to encourage people to pursue science-related careers, which he deemed unnecessary.
According to CNN, Incoming House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) has pledged to cut $100 billion from the Federal budget in an effort to reduce the deficit. The news provider reports that the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities estimates that Boehner's goal will lead to a 21 percent annual reduction in the budget that funds education, health, human services, housing and urban development.