Civil Rights Coalition Urges Opposition to “Irresponsible and Inequitable” Budget Plan

Media 03.20,03

WASHINGTON ? The Leadership Conference on Civil Rights (LCCR), the nation’s oldest, largest and most diverse civil and human rights coalition, wrote to members of the House of Representatives urging them to vote against H. Con. Res. 95 on the House floor. In the letter, LCCR cites the budget plan recently approved by the House Budget Committee as grossly discriminatory and containing unfair and inequitable provisions.

“Like the President’s tax cut plan, H. Con. Res. 95 provides the clearest evidence to date of the intent to balance tax breaks for millionaires on the backs of poor and middle-income families,” the letter from LCCR chairperson Dr. Dorothy I. Height and executive director Wade Henderson stated.

H. Con. Res. 95, the budget resolution referred to in the letter, proposes massive cuts in funding for Medicare, Medicaid, education, health care for veterans, and other federal programs that are aimed largely at helping Americans with the greatest needs. The House leadership plans to make these cuts in order to help pay for more than $1.3 trillion in tax cuts that have been proposed by President Bush, tax cuts that will be of little benefit to the lower and middle-class Americans who are facing the greatest difficulties in today’s slow economy.

At the same time, according to LCCR, H. Con. Res. 95 “seriously undermines our nation’s ability to meet critical domestic and foreign responsibilities and does not offer adequate aid to financially strapped states,” most of which will be forced to choose between raising taxes themselves or slashing their own budgets. “Moreover, it is unconscionable to vote on a budget resolution at a time when the costs of a war and its aftermath are unknown and have not been included in the budget plan.”

“The economic priorities of H. Con. Res. 95 shortchange economic security, and the hopes for the future of millions of ordinary Americans, in order to provide tax breaks for a handful of the wealthiest in our country,” the letter concluded. “They represent an irresponsible and inequitable blueprint for our nation’s economy.”

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