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Letter to Co-Chairs and Members of the Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction

Dear Co-Chairs and Members,

Congress and the American people have entrusted you with a great responsibility - ensuring the economic well-being of our nation and the creation of jobs. This is no simple task and will require both bold decisions and fair compromises.

We understand that you will consider many options when it comes to reaching the benchmarks set by Congress. But too often, when it has come time to reduce spending, the most vulnerable - the working poor and the middle class - have been asked to bear most of the sacrifice. Fortunately, there are other alternatives.

To generate much-needed savings, we strongly urged you to examine the costs of the ongoing wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. To date, the wars have cost our taxpayers at least $2.3 trillion, with an additional $884 billion in future costs for veterans and their families. This adds up to a total of at least $3.2 trillion. By ending the wars and paying for a safe, orderly, and responsible redeployment of troops from both Afghanistan and Iraq, we can go a long way toward meeting our fiscal challenges. We propose:

Ending the overseas contingency operations emergency supplementals and on-budget appropriations starting in Fiscal Year 2013, providing $170 billion in Fiscal Year 2012 to fund redeployment, while saving more than $1.8 trillion from current law spending levels over ten years

These reductions are substantial and robust. They will put us on the road to a more prosperous and secure future while advancing our national security interests.

Exorbitant spending on failed wars that have killed thousands of Americans must not be exempt from budgetary scrutiny. before we ask American families to pitch in more, let's bring our troops home - and, in the process, our tax dollars home.

Lynn Woolsey
Robert A. Brady
David N. Cicilline
Jackie Speier
Doris O, Matsui
Mike Thompson
Kurt Schrader
Walter B. Jones
John J. Duncan, Jr.
Ron Paul
Timothy V. Johnson
John Garamendi
Fortney Pete Stark
Donna F. Edwards
Karen Bass
Jarred Polis
Marcia L. Fudge
Yvette D. Clarke
John W. Olver
Sam Farr
Chellie Pingree
John Lewis
Paul Tonko
James P. McGovern
Steve Cohen
Keith Ellison
Jim McDermott
Loretta Sanchez
Rush D. Holt
Hansen Clarke
Laura Richardson
Peter Welch
Michael E. Capuano
Emanuel Cleaver
Earl Blumenauer
Donna M. Christensen
Raul M. Grijalva
Judy Chu
Michael M. Honda
Michael H. Michaud
Bruce L. Braley
Peter A. DeFazio
Danny K. Davis
Marcy Kaptur
George Miller
Jose E. Serrano
Elijah E. Cummings
Edolphus Towns
Elijah E. Cummings
Edolphus Towns
Gwen Moore
Barney Frank
Luis V. Gutierrez
Barbara Lee
Bobby L. Rush
Donald M. Payne
Carolyn B. Maloney
Jerrold Nadler
Charles B. Rangel
Joe Baca
Janice D. Schakowsky
Janice Hahn
Wm. Lacy Clay
Jesse L. Jackson, Jr.
Linda Sanchez
John Conyers, Jr.
Bob Filner
Maurice D. Hinchey
Dennis J. Kucinich
Tammy Baldwin
Louise McIntosh Slaughter
Mike Quigley


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