Representative Paul Ryan’s (R-WI) budget proposal for 2012 includes severe cuts directed at many essential social safety net programs including Medicaid and a complete repeal of the Affordable Care Act—President Barack Obama’s health care reform package. Ryan’s budget, titled “The Path To Prosperity,” cuts billions of dollars from social services to the detriment of many Americans including the poor, sick, and elderly - along with others who have benefitted from ACA, including women and children. These are the issues that the National Jewish Democratic Council has focused on and advocated for, and will continue to do so.
Among the proposed cuts in Ryan’s budget contains:
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) tweeted her disapproval of Ryan’s budget:
@NancyPelosi: The #GOP Ryan budget is a path to poverty for America’s seniors & children and a road to riches for big oil #GOPvalues
Representative Chris Van Hollen (D-MD), the ranking Democrat on the House Budget Committee, described the budget as a “rigid ideological agenda that extends tax cuts to the rich and powerful at the expense of the rest of America.”
Senator Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), Vice Chair of the Democratic Policy and Communications Center, expressed her outrage at Ryan’s proposal:
‘Next year’s Republican budget is a thinly veiled attempt to dismantle Medicare for tens of millions of Americans. We need to do everything possible to responsibly reduce our debt, but we should do that by holding government accountable and eliminating programs that aren’t working, not by putting all of the burden on middle class families and seniors. Pulling the rug out from under seniors who have paid into Medicare and Social Security their entire lives is wrong, and extreme plans that dismantle benefits seniors have earned will not pass the Senate.’
Senator Mark Begich (D-AK) rejected the dangerous implications of the cuts to the safety and health of our senior citizens:
‘In order to protect our long-term economic growth, we must get serious about cutting federal spending and ensuring the government lives within its means. However, a plan that puts our seniors’ safety and health at risk is not a plan about long-term security, but about political ploys and instigating fear. If Republicans would join me and my colleagues at the table, I am confident that we could get a real budget plan that not only reduces our deficit, but also ensures that the economy is growing, businesses are thriving and our seniors are protected.’
The GOP’s emphasis on cutting social services exemplifies the skewed priorities of many Republicans and further illuminates the party’s divergence from the vast majority of American Jews. It is the latest demonstration that the Republican Party cannot be counted on to fight for the legislative priorities of the American Jewish community.
You can fight back against Ryan’s budget by:
* Contributing to NJDC so that we can continue our work of promoting social justice in America by maximizing Jewish support for Democrats.