Push to repeal the sequester (a reconciliation bill in the Senate would allow repeal with 51 votes, thereby putting pressure on House Republicans) and replace it with a “Build America’s Future” Act that would close tax loopholes used by the wealthy, end corporate welfare, impose a small (1/10 of 1%) tax on financial transactions and reduce the size of the military.
A new, non-partisan study by Thomas Hungerford of the non-partisan Congressional Research Service confirms that the explosion of income inequality over the past 15 years is fueled by rapidly rising income from capital gains and dividends.
Working families will be gathering at congressional offices across the country on Wednesday to fight bad budget policies that would hurt both families and the recovering U.S. economy. Specifically, they will be telling members of Congress to reject any benefit cuts to Social Security, Medicare or Medicaid; close loopholes for Wall Street and the richest 2%; and cancel the sequestration crisis they created for themselves and the rest of the country.
Brace yourself. In coming weeks you’ll hear there’s no serious alternative to cutting Social Security and Medicare, raising taxes on middle class and decimating what’s left of the federal government’s discretionary spending, on everything from education and job training to highways and basic research.
“We” must make these sacrifices, it will be said, in order to deal with our mushrooming budget deficit and cumulative debt.
But most of the people who are making this argument are very wealthy or are sponsored by the very wealthy: Wall Street moguls like Peter Peterson and his “Fix the Debt” brigade, the Business Roundtable, well-appointed think tanks and policy centers along the Potomac, members of the Simpson-Bowles commission.
Working families all over the United States are gearing up for round two in the fiscal showdown. Once again, Republicans in Congress are demanding benefit cuts to Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid and threatening to tank our economy by causing a default of the U.S. government on March 1 unless they get their way. Write a letter to the editor today asking our elected officials to:
Oppose benefit cuts to Social Security, Medicare or Medicaid.
Close loopholes for Wall Street and the richest 2% of Americans.
Sen. Tom Harkin (D-Iowa), working families and small business owners, along with with the activist group The Action, took to Capitol Hill on Friday to tell Congress to reject tax breaks for the richest Americans and to avoid raising taxes on middle-class families. The group gathered beneath a massive Times Square-style disco ball, where a New Year's Eve-like countdown was held to show that Republicans were planning to "drop the ball" on working families.
AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka issued the following statement on House Speaker John Boehner’s (R-Ohio) “Plan B” failure and the latest fiscal developments:
Speaker Boehner’s failure last night should be seen as one thing: A reset button to listen to the will of the American people. The slate is clean and we call on the President to come forward with an offer that reflects the reasons he won the election. Across the country working people continue to demand no tax cuts for the richest two percent and no benefit cuts to Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security. At this point, cuts to the Social Security COLA to pay for more tax cuts for the wealthiest 2 percent should be off the table. The President and Congress have no obligation to radical Republicans who have no ground to stand on. What they do have is the backing of millions of hardworking women and men tired of being held hostage by far right-wing Republicans who clearly have little interest in governing.