SANTA FE, N.M. (KRQE) – Wednesday, New Mexico’s House of Representatives took time to declare that the U.S. national debt is an issue. They voted to pass a Republican sponsored memorial making February 8 “National Debt Awareness Day” in the House.

“I think it’s very important to talk about the national debt, whether we have a Republican or a Democratic President in our White House,” Rep. John Block (R-Alamogordo) said on the Senate floor. “This debt is paid for by us, we the people,” so it’s important to talk about it, he added.

Currently, the national debt is $31,455,106,801,791. That’s according to the U.S. Treasury.

The Treasury notes that the U.S. debt has existed since the country first began. Over the centuries, the debt grew at times and shrank at times. But mostly, the debt has grown.

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“Debts incurred during the American Revolutionary War amounted to over $75 million,” the Treasury notes in a guide to the national debt. In 1835, the debt shrank as the U.S. sold off land and cut the federal budget. The budget grew again through wars, depression, and the COVID-19 pandemic.

The New Mexico House voted in favor of the memorial recognizing the national debt as an issue. It passed on a vote of 44 to 10, and because it’s a simple memorial, it does not have to go to the Senate. Next, a copy of the memorial goes to the Governor’s desk, not for her approval, but so Governor Lujan Grisham can see that the House thinks this is an important issue.