Senator Bernie Sanders, Member of Budget Committee: The Bush Budget is a Disaster

Washington, D.C. - Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT), a member of the Budget Committee, said today that he would strongly oppose the President's budget proposal to slash health care, education, and nutritional benefits while giving even more tax breaks to the wealthiest Americans and the most profitable corporations. Instead, Sanders will be working to rescind the President's tax breaks for the wealthiest one percent, eliminate corporate welfare and tax breaks for corporate expatriates, cut back on

Washington, D.C. - Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT), a member of the Budget Committee, said today that he would strongly oppose the President's budget proposal to slash health care, education, and nutritional benefits while giving even more tax breaks to the wealthiest Americans and the most profitable corporations. Instead, Sanders will be working to rescind the President's tax breaks for the wealthiest one percent, eliminate corporate welfare and tax breaks for corporate expatriates, cut back on wasteful defense spending; and make sure that the IRS is collecting the $300 billion in taxes that go uncollected each year. Senator Sanders said, "Instead of giving tax breaks to millionaires and billionaires while cutting back on health care, nutritional benefits, Head Start, affordable housing and educational opportunities for millions of ordinary Americans, the time has come for the wealthiest people and the most profitable corporations in this country to pay their fair share. Today, poverty is going up, wages are going down, the number of the uninsured is increasing, energy costs are skyrocketing and the gap between the rich and the poor is growing wider. It is unconscionable for Congress to even consider paying for tax breaks for the rich by slashing investments for the middle class, working families with children and seniors on fixed incomes. During Budget Committee deliberations, I will be offering a Progressive Budget that reflects the needs of the middle class and working families of our country." Among many other cuts proposed by the President there is: A complete elimination of the Commodity Supplemental Food Program (CSFP), a vital nutrition program primarily for low-income seniors but also serving mothers, infants and children across the country. The CSFP provided more than 6.4 million food packages for over 400,000 low-income seniors, mothers and children across the country in 2006, including over 4,000 Vermonters. A $379 million cut to the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program at a time when senior citizens on fixed incomes and low-income families with children struggle to pay to heat their homes this winter. A $100 million cut for Head Start, at a time when only about one-half of the children eligible for this program actually participate due to a lack of funding. A complete elimination of the Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) Program even though each and every year more people are diagnosed with TBI than those who suffer from breast cancer, HIV/AIDS, Spinal Cord Injury and Multiple Sclerosis combined. A complete elimination of the $630 million Community Services Block Grant (CSBG) program, one of the most successful anti-poverty programs in the country, that has provided millions of Americans with emergency food assistance, employment, affordable housing and heating assistance. An 87 percent cut in Rural Health Programs. A $310 million cut in the National Institutes of Health. A $1 billion cut in job training and employment services at the Department of Labor. A $172 million cut in elderly housing and a $115 million cut in housing for persons with disabilities.