Upon becoming House speaker in 1995, Newt Gingrich decided it was crucial to adopt a plan to eliminate the federal deficit. In a meeting of House Republicans, Budget Committee Chairman John Kasich balked: "Where is it in stone that we have to balance the budget in seven years?" Gingrich had a quick answer: "Let's put it to a vote. Who wants to put it in stone?" Everyone but Kasich voted yes. The Republicans had made a commitment they would have to keep.