By Teresa Welsh |
The GOP budget plan revealed this week by Rep. Paul Ryan may be a boon for millionaires but it is a disaster for our seniors, children, and working families. It is also a blueprint for the Republicans' electoral defeat in 2012.
Why? Because most Americans would strongly disagree with the Republicans that we should take Medicare away from seniors, and tell students and parents to pay more for education while extending taxpayer giveaways to millionaires, Big Oil, and corporations that ship jobs overseas.
Congressional Republicans believe that their slash-and-burn budget will rally their base in an election year by claiming it would cut spending deeply. In reality, experts say the huge tax cuts would actually increase the deficit.
Republicans tout the $3 trillion in tax cuts in their budget plan but average working Americans are smarter than Ryan thinks. That is because most of the proposed tax cuts would go to millionaires and big corporations, who would see their tax rates cut by 10 percent. Working families are tired of the Republicans' failed "trickle down" economics, which has led to higher deficits, less jobs, and a shrinking middle class.
The Republican budget is particularly bad for seniors and women. It calls for ending Medicare's guaranteed earned benefits and replacing it with a privatization scheme forcing seniors to buy the best insurance they can afford with a fixed amount voucher. What if the voucher's amount is not enough to cover certain health problems? How about for women who tend to live longer than men, and thus rely more on Medicare's guaranteed benefits? Republicans say tough luck for living too long or for being on a fixed income.
The GOP budget would also hurt kids and parents by cutting more than $115 billion from Head Start, kindergarten through 12 grade, and college education. That amounts to 9.6 million students losing $1,000 in Pell Grants, 1 million students losing education loans to go to college, and nearly 2 million kids unable to qualify for Head Start. If the Republicans have any hope of winning the young adult or soccer mom vote, this budget is impossible to defend.
With their latest budget, Republicans in Congress are proving to the American people again that they are on the side of millionaires and big corporations, not children, seniors, and working families. In November, voters will decide who they think will best represent their interests.
About Eric Griego Democratic Candidate for Congress in New Mexico's First District
Travis Waldron Reporter/Blogger for ThinkProgress.org
Stephanie Slade Project Director at The Winston Group
Ron Bonjean Former Chief of Staff for the Senate Republican Conference