Polls released since the debt ceiling agreement was reached make it clear the majority of people think it was a bad deal. In fact, the majority of voters in at least one poll supported cuts in defense spending, raising taxes on people with annual incomes of more than $250,000, and opposed cuts to programs for the poor. Yet the deal protects military spending and ignores tax cuts – which both helped create the deficit in the first place.
Now in the aftermath, which includes wild stock market gyrations after Standard & Poor’s downgrade of US credit rating, we have a moment of opportunity to make our lawmakers listen – and we hope you’ll join us.
Congress is home on recess now, making this a great time for you to let your Representative and Senators know where you stand on budget priorities. Please visit or call them to let them know you demand:
- Real cuts in the Pentagon budget
- Taxes on the wealthy and corporations
- Continuing protection for programs that aid the most vulnerable
- Short-run investments to stimulate job creation
Our partners at the Friends Committee on National Legislation have designed an excellent toolkit to help you communicate with your representatives. If you need more support, please reply to this email and we’ll try to help however we can.
When Congress reconvenes after Labor Day, the "super committee" created by the debt deal will take up ways to further decrease the deficit. Lobbyists and conservative activists already are putting pressure on Congress to pick those who will protect the Pentagon and tax cuts for the wealthy while on cuts from programs that help the poor and middle class.
We, too, need to be vocal about our priorities. Two wars and runaway military spending on top of the Bush era tax cuts for the wealthy were major causes of the deficit. Cuts to the Pentagon and increased revenues should be the tools we use to cut the deficit. Moreover, direct investments in job creation will stimulate consumer spending and lead to higher long-run tax revenues.