Today, Congressman Jesse Jackson, Jr. issued the following statement:
"The budget proposal from President Obama is right from the Republican plan. This request for FY2012 opens the door for the huge cuts that Republicans are forcing us to digest for the rest of FY2011. How can we stop the Republican cuts when the President has one-upped them? As the President, he should be the last line of defense for the most vulnerable Americans, instead of the first one to cut.
"The President's budget looks like it is straight out of President Reagan's 'starve the beast' strategy. President Reagan proposed huge tax cuts, so that he could choke off the resources that the government had and use deficit reduction as a justification for cutting the safety net programs that he was ideologically opposed to. President Obama's budget proposals look all too Reagan-like.
"The compromise in December on cutting taxes for the highest income Americans means that safety net programs are on the chopping block in order to avoid huge deficits. That's why the President has proposed cutting LIHEAP, cutting community development grants, and cutting some Pell Grants for college students. That's why House Republicans are proposing cutting $100 billion in their FY2011 spending bill.
"We need Presidential leadership to stand up to these cuts, and instead propose a jobs program that will end unemployment once and for all. Instead of cutting vital programs for the neediest, which will literally leave poor people in the cold, we should be focusing on ending unemployment."