THOMPSON VOTES AGAINST HOUSE GOP BUDGET
Washington, D.C. – U.S. Rep. Mike Thompson (CA-5) today voted against H.Con.Res. 27, the House Republicans’ Fiscal Year (FY) 2016 budget resolution. The budget resolution passed by a vote of 228-199. No Democrats voted for the resolution and 17 Republicans voted against the resolution. The budget, if passed by the Senate would be vetoed by President Obama.
“If this reckless spending plan was to ever be implemented it would be a devastating blow to hard working American families,” said Thompson. “It would kill jobs, raise taxes on working families, and make it harder to afford a home, send kids to college, and save for a secure and enjoyable retirement. It is the exact opposite of what our county needs. American families deserve for their government to put a spending plan in place that grows the economy and helps make sure everyone who works hard has an fair and equal opportunity to get ahead and succeed.
According to the non-partisan Economic Policy institute, the House Republicans’ budget plan will destroy 2.9 million jobs in 2017, and decrease economic growth by 2.5 percent.
The budget cuts the top corporate tax rate to 25 percent, and according to the non-partisan Tax Policy Center and Citizens for Tax Justice, taxpayers with income exceeding $1 million would receive an average tax cut of more than $200,000. These cuts and tax breaks are paid for by increasing taxes on working families by an average of $2,000.
The budget plan would turn Medicare into a block grant program, ending the Medicare guarantee and raising health care costs for seniors. According to CBO projections of the House Republicans’ similar plan last year, the budget would raise premiums for traditional Medicare by 50 percent on average.
Seniors would also be forced to pay more for prescription drugs since the budget repeals the Affordable Care Act (ACA) which closed the Medicare Part D prescription donut hole. In 2014, 417,500 California seniors and people with disabilities saved an average of $940 because the donut hole was closed. Repealing the ACA, as the budget calls for, would require seniors to pay for preventive health services such as cancer screenings. The cost of such services was eliminated under the ACA.
H.Con.Res. 27 ends higher education tax credits which 11.5 million working families use each year to help pay the cost of college. Pell Grants would be frozen at their Fiscal Year 2015 levels for 10 years, and eliminates 89 billion in Pell Grant increases that Congress already enacted and paid for. 1,027,000 California students rely on Pell grants to afford college. The budget plan would also raise the cost of student loans by $34.8 billion over ten years by charging interest on loans while students are still in college. Additionally, it eliminates $16.3 billion in student loan repayment benefits that cap borrowers’ monthly student-loan bills as a percentage of their income. Overall, the budget cuts support for student loans and college aid by more than $220 billion over 10 years.
Additionally, 4,510 fewer children in California would have access to Head Start services.
H.Con.Res. 27 cuts $187 billion – nearly 20 percent – from transportation funding in the coming decade despite the fact every $1 billion in infrastructure spending creates nearly 35,000 jobs.
The budget cuts funding for veterans’ programs by $1.9 billion in FY 2016 and by $19 billion over the next ten years below the President’s proposed budget. It slashes investments in clean energy, jeopardizes nutrition assistance, reduces housing vouchers, and cuts job training and employment services.
Congressman Mike Thompson is proud to represent California’s 5th Congressional District, which includes all or part of Contra Costa, Lake, Napa, Solano and Sonoma Counties. He is a senior member of the House Ways and Means Committee. Rep. Thompson is also a member of the fiscally conservative Blue Dog Coalition and chairs the bipartisan, bicameral Congressional Wine Caucus.
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