Today, Congresswoman Lucille Roybal-Allard released the following statement on the Republican (Ryan) Budget:
This week we were faced with a series of votes on funding proposals to guide our federal budget priorities for the next 10 years. I supported proposals that were carefully crafted to protect our economic recovery; ensure the health and welfare of our most vulnerable; strengthen the middle class; and educate and train the next generation to meet the challenges of global economy. Unfortunately, Republicans defeated these proposals and passed the Republican (Ryan) Budget that does none of those things.
I cast my vote against the Ryan budget because it does nothing to stop the job losses associated with this year's sequester, and according to the Economic Policy Institute, could cost an additional 2 million jobs in 2014. It is hard to understand why Republicans would jeopardize our recovery by throwing people out of work and starving investments in the physical and human capital of this nation, while lowering taxes by nearly $6 billion for wealthy tax payers.
There are so many ways in which the Ryan budget is wrong for our nation. But as we continue to mark Women's History Month, I want to focus for a moment on why it is particularly wrong for women.
The Ryan Budget repeals the benefits of the Affordable Care Act, undoing the protections that eliminated gender bias with respect to preexisting conditions--in other words, once again, just being a woman could be a pre-existing condition. In addition, three million senior women will be subject to the prescription drug "donut hole," and be forced to pay higher, unaffordable out of pocket costs for medications. Women on Medicaid, including seniors in nursing homes, would confront an uncertain health future as states block grant this essential safety net program. And the nation's low-income mothers, struggling to feed their children, would face dramatic reductions in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).
These are only some of the reasons I voted against the Ryan budget and instead supported Democratic alternatives which would replace the harmful sequester with a balanced approach to deficit reduction, extend tax relief for the middleclass and emphasize job creation. My hope is that as we continue to deliberate on our budget, we move forward to deal with the nation's spending and tax policies in a common sense, compassionate, and strategic manner.