Chairman Cleaver Opposes Republican Budget
Washington, DC – Chairman Emanuel Cleaver, II released the following statement on his opposition of the Republican Budget:
“The Republican Leadership’s budget is simply more of the same–more reckless and draconian cuts that will hurt our fragile economy and threaten the wellbeing of those in our most vulnerable communities. In no way does this budget support, protect, or uplift hardworking American families, rather it significantly harms them. Like their previous budget, the Republicans continue to make the wrong choices by deeply cutting vital programs, like Medicare, Medicaid, education, job training, and transportation, to pay for massive tax cuts that benefit the wealthiest Americans. Our nation’s communities of color have been hit hardest by the effects of the recession and the Republican Budget does little to address the priorities of these communities. Even as our nation’s economy has created nearly 3.9 million private sector jobs since February 2010, communities of color are still experiencing disproportionately higher rates of unemployment, home foreclosure, educational disadvantages, and economic hardship. As a result, vulnerable communities are increasingly relying on public programs to meet their basic needs. With the passage of the Fiscal Year 2011 Continuing Resolution, the Budget Control Act of 2011, and Fiscal Year 2012 Consolidated Appropriations Act, these same vital programs have been slashed and targeted for even deeper cuts in the House Republican Budget.
“Budgets should be a window into the moral compass of our conscience as a nation—and our compass is evidently off. The American people do not deserve this. They deserve access to good jobs to ensure their ability to protect and care for their families. They deserve parity in educational opportunities for their children. They deserve retirement security and access to affordable healthcare for their families. Hardworking American families may not be the priority of the Republican leadership, but they are the priority of the ‘Conscience of the Congress’: the Congressional Black Caucus. Late yesterday evening, the House of Representatives considered several alternative budgets to the Republican Budget, including one offered by the Congressional Black Caucus of which Congressman Bobby Scott was the primary author. The CBC Budget would have reduced the deficit over the next decade by an additional $769 billion compared to the Republican Budget, which also jeopardizes vital programs like Social Security and Medicare. The Republican Budget passed into law today ends Medicare as we know it and shifts the burden of rising health care costs to seniors and rewards corporations that continue to ship American jobs overseas while eliminating investments in education and scientific research that help America compete in the global economy. During this budget debate, it has remained clear that the Republican Leadership’s allegiance remains with the rich at the expense of our seniors and our most vulnerable communities. The Congressional Black Caucus choose the all American people, rich, poor, middle class and those striving to be in the middle class. We are all in this fight together no one’s future is greater than the other.”
While the CBC Budget received the support of a majority of the House Democratic Caucus, the amendment failed by a vote of 107-317 (Roll Call No. 144). To read more about the CBC Budget, click here. To watch Chairman Cleaver, Rep. Bobby Scott and Members of the Congressional Black Caucus speak in favor of the CBC Budget during last night’s floor debate, click the image below.