Washington, DC—DemocraticSenators Kent Conrad and Max Baucus and Representatives John Spratt and George Miller joined a recipient of the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) and a recent college graduate today to discuss the Democratic budget. This week the Senate and House will debate Democrats’ plan to cut taxes for the middle class, create jobs here in America and strengthen the nation’s struggling economy.
“Middle-class taxpayers who are finding it harder to cope with higher energy, education and other costs, will like what they see in our Democratic budget,” Conrad said. “We not only lower taxes for families, but we make needed investments in energy, education and infrastructure. These efforts will create jobs and bring needed relief for workers and their families. Unlike past Republican budgets that have heavily favored the wealthiest among us and caused the country’s deficit and debt to explode, our Democratic budget provides help for the vast majority of working Americans, and does so in a fiscally responsible way.”
Said Spratt: “When we set out to do this budget, our overriding objective was to balance it, because we are appalled at the mountain of debt being left our children and at our stature in the world as the greatest debtor nation. But we want more than arithmetic balance; we want priorities balanced; we want a budget that does more for our children’s education and their health care as well; a budget that makes our workers more competitive and our scientists more innovative. We want to revive America, reclaim our future, and restore our fiscal soundness. This budget is one first step in that direction.”
“Any money left over in the budget should go back to America’s working families, and we should also move now to help the military men and women giving their all for this country right now,” Baucus said. “With funds saved through fiscal responsibility, Congress can cut taxes for all taxpayers – particularly for married couples, for parents, and for soldiers – and we can make sure that all American homeowners get the tax relief they need. Working in the budget to help American families and military folks is right for Montana and right for the whole country.”
Said Miller: “In stark contrast to President Bush’s eighth and final budget, which only features more of his same misguided policies, the Democratic Budget Resolution will invest in our nation’s schools, enhance our workforce and competitiveness, and build on our efforts to help every qualified student afford a college education. These are the priorities needed to get our economy back on the right track, restore responsible spending, and lead our country in a more prosperous, new direction.”
“The high price of oil forces low-income families to make choices between heating and cooling their homes and other essentials, like food, medication and clothing,” said Sharon Patterson-Stallings, a recipient of LIHEAP energy assistance. “This is no choice any American should have to make. By increasing LIHEAP funding in the 2009 budget, Congress can help thousands of low-income families like me who are struggling to make ends meet.”
Said Carmen Berkley, Vice-President of the United States Student Association: “Students are working two jobs to stay in school and to help their parents stay in their homes. The Bush budget exacerbates students’ hardships by undercutting the programs that help keep college affordable and accessible.”