Former U.S. comptroller offers keynote at Del Mar financial services conference

By Claire Harlin

In recent weeks, former U.S. comptroller general David Walker’s outspoken advocacy regarding the federal government’s fiscal accountability has been making headlines — from his “no deal, no break” campaign urging Congress to get its work done before taking a vacation, to his comments on ABC News about the state of the union, to his recent opinion columns on

and the Washington Times giving Uncle Sam an “F” in money management. And on Feb. 5, the former head of the U.S. Government Accountability Office made a stop in Del Mar for the second year in a row to give the keynote speech on his “Comeback America Initiative” at the LifePro Tax Free Retirement Summit.

The event, hosted by Carmel Valley-based LifePro Financial Services, Inc., was geared specifically for financial advisors and featured a variety of educational presentations and panels with experts in addition to Walker.

Local resident and LifePro CEO and president Bill Zimmerman said Walker was “the perfect person” to bring back to the conference to offer the keynote speech and closed the speech by saying one of Walker’s most memorable assertions was that Washington is dominated by “special interest wing nuts in career politics.”

Walker spoke about his “roadmap to reform,” not only providing insight into why the country is amid a fiscal crisis, but he also offered ideas to help secure America’s financial future. He outlined needed reforms, from defense spending to tax cuts to the healthcare budget.

His advocacy initiative also includes specific political reforms, such as redrawing congressional districts in states to be as competitive as possible and restructuring congressional elections to let all candidates run in the same primary, no matter their political party, with the top two vote-getters advancing to the general election.

He also said that the U.S. government doesn’t need to balance the budget, but just get debt to a reasonable level.

“When you have no plan, no budget and no performance measures,” Walker said, “all you have is prayer.”

He went on to compare the federal budget of today to the budget of 1912, and he also projected what it will look like in 2040. He showed that in 1912 the budget was 97 percent in control, whereas it is now only 33 percent in control, with interest rates putting the rest “on autopilot,” he said.

“That one-third that’s being controlled is not being invested in young people; it’s being invested in seniors, and it’s not sustainable,” he said. “Something’s got to give.”

Walker outlines his entire initiative in detail on his website,

, and he also he is also trying to empower citizens by outlining how to get involved on the site, as well as offering a “fiscal I.Q.” quiz to test people’s understanding of the country’s financial situation. Walker’s book, “Comeback America,” is also available on and other major book-selling websites.

More information on LifePro is available at