Skip to comments.Senator Murray and Shared Sacrifice
Posted on 07/15/2011 5:06:56 PM PDT by Parmy
Printer Friendly BUDGET: Senator Murray Calls on Republicans to Put Middle Class Families over Tax Breaks for Millionaires Senator Murray: Republicans dont understand shared sacrifice, American families do. July 6, 2011
(Washington, D.C.) Today, U.S. Senator Patty Murray (D-WA), as a part of ongoing budget negotiations, spoke on the Senate floor calling on Republicans to stop protecting tax-breaks for oil companies and corporate jets over much-needed support for struggling middle-class families. During the speech, Senator Murray also called for shared sacrifice in the efforts to reduce the debt and deficit.
Im here to ask Republicans why they are asking everyone to sacrifice - except those who can afford it most. Im here to ask Republicans why they are willing to risk, not only defaulting on our nations debts, but also: the health care and benefits our veterans rely on, pay for our troops, social security benefits, and the Medicare system our seniors are counting on. All to defend tax breaks for oil and gas companies, sweetheart deals for corporations, and the most generous tax rates wealthy Americans have enjoyed in 60 years, said Senator Murray on the Senate floor.
Read the full text of the speech below:
Mr. President, there is no question that we are at a point where we have to take substantial and painful steps to get our nations fiscal house in order.
That is why we are rightfully working to tighten our nations belt at a time when American families are doing the same all across the country.
But today Im here to talk about one major difference in the way Republicans have proposed to go about addressing our budget and the way American families - who understand shared sacrifice and equal burden have done it.
Today Id like to point out one glaring omission in the Republicans plan amid all their tough talk about fiscal responsibility.
Im here to ask Republicans why they are asking everyone to sacrifice - except those who can afford it most.
Im here to ask Republicans why they are willing to risk, not only defaulting on our nations debts, but also: the health care and benefits our veterans rely on, pay for our troops, social security benefits, and the Medicare system our seniors are counting on.
All to defend tax breaks for oil and gas companies, sweetheart deals for corporations, and the most generous tax rates wealthy Americans have enjoyed in 60 years.
Mr. President, sometimes its hard for me to listen to some of my Republican colleagues talk at length about their newfound fiscal sensibilities here on the floor and in the press.
Its difficult because - like many of them - I was here in 2000.
I remember that when President Clinton left office we were on a course to completely pay down the $5.6 trillion debt by 2012.
I remember the projections of surpluses.
And I remember the efforts by many of us to safeguard that funding for our seniors and to pay down the debt.
But I can also remember at that time many Republicans couldnt wait to get their hands on the nations credit card.
And when they did after President Bush took office they spent lavishly.
And Mr. President, a lot of that spending went to some of our nations wealthiest individuals and companies.
Throughout the Bush years - and particularly in the Bush tax cuts of 2001 and 2003 - trillions of dollars in tax breaks went to the very wealthiest Americans.
There were capital gains tax roll backs. Tax breaks designed to benefit corporate giants. And a new tax bracket that provided wealthy Americans the lowest tax rates they have enjoyed since World War II.
And these taxes breaks were all unpaid for, all handed out to those who could most afford to pay, and all put on the nations credit card.
But today, now that that credit card bill has come due guess who wont be asked to pay their fair share?
Unfortunately, under the Republicans plan, its the wealthy companies and individuals who have benefited the most from their spending.
Its corporations like Exxon Mobil who despite reporting a profit of over $10 billion in the first quarter of this year at the same time gas prices rose for families across the country - are being protected from a roll back of tax subsidies for oil and gas giants.
Its corporate CEOs who are now lobbying against closing the tax loopholes they enjoy for private jets and yachts.
And its companies - who all too often ship American jobs overseas - but who still enjoy offshore tax havens.
And guess who has drawn a line in the sand to protect these corporations and wealthy individuals?
Well, its the very same Republicans who were so quick to break out the nations credit card back when we were running a surplus.
The same Republicans who have repeatedly pledged to block any new revenues - even as we have met them far beyond halfway in these negotiations.
And finally, guess who it is thats left to pick up the credit card tab under the Republican plan?
Well unfortunately its everyone else.
Its seniors who under the Republican budget will lose access to Medicare as we know it.
Its students that will be asked to pay more even as tuition rises.
Its family farmers.
And those who cant afford health care for their children.
Its all the middle class families that have found themselves living paycheck to paycheck.
If Republicans get their way, it will be everyone but those who can afford it most wholl be left to sacrifice alone.
Mr. President, unfortunately the Republicans approach is something that has become all too common in the aftermath of this recession.
While the effects of this recession are being felt so profoundly by working families in lost jobs, lower wages, and less financial security than ever before.
The very wealthiest Americans seem to be doing just fine.
On Sunday I picked up the New York Times and noticed they ran an article that showed that the salaries of CEOs at Americas largest companies grew by an average of 23% over last years mark.
However, the same article noted that over the past year the pay for average workers had declined.
And it didnt even mention the thousands of layoffs at the same companies where bonuses have skyrocketed.
Unfortunately, this is the same economic theory that Republicans are bringing to these budget negotiations.
For those who can afford it - their budget provides all the perks, none of the sacrifices. All the tax breaks, none of the revenues. All of the benefits, none of the pain.
But Mr. President, it doesnt have to be this way. We can have a plan that works for middle class families and invests in our nations future.
A plan that balances tough but necessary spending cuts with new revenues that ensure corporations and wealthy Americans are also paying their fair share.
That restores fairness to this process by ensuring that in these difficult times we are not balancing our budget solely on the backs of seniors, students, and middles class families.
And most importantly, a plan that recognizes that yes, we have a budget deficitand we need to address thatbut we also have an infrastructure deficit, an education and skills deficitand most importantly, a jobs deficit.
And the only way that we will address that deficit is to invest in education, in energy, and in infrastructure areas that will produce jobs both now and into the future.
A worker who lost his job through no fault of his own doesnt just want to hear about cutshe wants to hear about how we are going to create jobs.
And a small business owner who had to shut her doors when the recession hit and customers stopped coming in doesnt want to hear about debt ceilingsshe wants to hear about how we are going to get the economy back on track.
It cant just be about slashingit also needs to be about investing in jobs and workers here in America.
And Mr. President that is what we should be working together toward.
But I understand that time is not on our side in this debate.
Because the truth is that Republicans arent merely offering their everybody pays except the rich philosophy up for debate theyre holding our nations economy hostage with it.
By refusing to accept new revenues from corporate tax loopholes, and tying that refusal to the nations debt limit, they are rolling the dice on default.
In fact, in my 18 years on the Senate Budget Committee, I have never seen anything like what Republicans are willing to risk in these budget negotiations and who they are willing to risk it all for.
Last week, the Bipartisan Policy Center put out a report authored by a former Bush Treasury official about what would happen if Republicans continued to play chicken with default and the Administration was forced to make desperate spending decisions in August.
And the scenarios were worse than grim.
Potentially at risk are: the benefits and health care we owe our veterans. Loans for struggling small businesses. Food stamps for those that are struggling to buy groceries. Social Security checks for our seniors. Unemployment benefits for the millions of workers desperately seeking jobs. And even active duty pay for our military.
Yet by rejecting revenues in this deal - and by dealing in ultimatums rather than compromise - Republicans are willing to put all these Americans at risk.
And they are willing to risk it all in order to go to the mat to protect trillions in tax breaks for the wealthiest few.
Theyre willing to chance loans for Main Street businesses in order to defend offshore tax breaks for multi-national companies.
Theyre willing to jeopardize troop pay in order to stand up for hedge fund managers.
Theyre willing to gamble default on tax breaks for horse tracks.
I believe thats a bet we all lose.
Mr. President, we were elected to work for all Americans, not just the privileged few at the top.
Its time for our Republican colleagues to come to the table with flexibility not ideology.
Its time for compromise.
Its time for common sense.
Its time to ask everyone to sacrifice to meet a challenge we all face together.
Remeber, this is Patty Murray....Washington State’s answer to Sheila Jackson-Lee.
>>Middle Class Families over Tax Breaks for Millionaires<<
False dichotomy — Standard libtard rhetorical device.
I wonder what trained monkey she got to write this tripe.
From Open Secrets. 2009 figures for Patty Murray:
From $449,017 to $1,185,000
Rank: 69th in Senate
15 totaling $449,017 to $1,185,000
I think the demogogues in DC have already ‘sacrificed’ the childrens futures to the out of control spending demons worshipping the federal beast of debt burdens. We are all ‘forced’ to share in that sacrifice on the altars of the IRS.
where is the Dem spending cut (shared sacrifice from the government) plan? Huh, Patty? Where is it? .....didn’t think so.
Do people like Madame Murray ever stop and consider that all taxes paid by “the Rich” are just passed along to the poor in higher prices? Aren’t they smart enough to realize that, or are they just liars?
That’s a rhetorical question.
“Government does not tax to get the money it needs; government always finds a need for the money it gets”.-—Ronald Reagan
People of Washington State, your Senator might as well be on DRUGS! Serious brain sizzling drugs.
I’ve wondered for a while why every time there is a Democrat Senate press conference, Patty always appears with Reid, Durbin and Schumer. My friend says perhaps it’s because those three know they all look and sound kinda limp-wristed and feminine, and figure that if they were in the company of a female, people would think they were straight.
She’s an idiot and we can’t get rid of her because we have a majority of idiots who keep re-electing her.
Find all the tax breaks the Democrats have passed for the last 20 years, formulate a bill in the House to kill those tax breaks, pass the bill in the House and send it to the Senate. If no calendar date is set for a vote, hold a news conference and ask why the bill you passed to kill tax breaks like the Democrats demanded has not been voted on and doesn't have a date for a vote and then without taking questions, walk away from the microphone.
Every time they open their lying mouths about something, call their bluff and pass legislation that gores one of their sacred cows. Squeeze them till they pop like pimples on a teenager. Make them go apoplectic and start losing their cool every day. Squeeze them. Put on the pressure till they go ballistic and start yelling and lose control and start saying stupid stuff. Squeeze, squeeze, squeeeeeeeeeeze.
Wrong, bitch. We do. You just can't stand the fact that we're wise to your evil game: Spending trillions of borrowed dollars on immoral and unconstitutional programs and then whine about the fact that some of us don't want to pay for them and even correctly identify YOU and your ilk as the creators of the problem. You freaking, disgusting, short-sighted economically illiterate moron.
She got re-elected in the 2010 Republican blow-out.
Wash State must be a lost cause.
They ran a respectable establishment R against her... Not much of a campaigner, and not someone who would energize hardcore conservatives.
Having said that, the WA electorate is heavily populated with zombies.