A budget is about finance and economics, but it is also about values.
At a time when the federal debt is more than $15 trillion, we need to be smart about the budget and about where and how to cut. Our budget should reflect our values and our commitment to creating a better future for our children and grandchildren. At a time when some big companies are paying nothing in taxes and when profitable industries like oil and gas are getting special breaks, it is shameful that Washington would ask seniors to live on less or tell young people they have to take on more debt for school. Those are not decisions that reflect our values.
Budgeting for our future means making smart cuts and smart investments. We need to cut the tax breaks to the oil and gas industry and the loopholes for hedge fund managers. We need to go back to Clinton-era tax rates for the wealthiest Americans. As we wind down two wars, we can make cuts in our defense budget - smart, targeted cuts that preserve our national security. We should get rid of the giveaways in Medicare that prevent negotiating lower drug prices. And we should improve efficiency throughout government by getting tough on fraudulent and abusive practices and by cutting wasteful spending.