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Public Statements

Cut, Cap, and Balance Act of 2011

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC


Ms. WASSERMAN SCHULTZ. Mr. Speaker, I rise in strong opposition to H.R. 2560, which attempts to manipulate the Constitution in order to impose a Ryan budget plan on steroids.

This is yet another thinly veiled attempt by our colleagues across the aisle to end Medicare as we know it while refusing to even consider ending ill-advised tax breaks for millionaires.

It is crucial that the American people understand that this plan would require even deeper cuts than under the Ryan Republican plan we saw in April. This means deeper cuts to investments in education, clean energy, and increased costs for our seniors.

President Obama has vowed to veto this bill, which ends the Medicare guarantee. And, incredulously, the gentleman from Florida, who represents thousands of Medicare beneficiaries, as do I, is supportive of this plan that would increase costs for Medicare beneficiaries, unbelievable from a Member from south Florida. It slashes Medicaid and critical investments essential to winning the future in favor of protecting tax breaks for Big Oil, millionaires and companies who ship American jobs overseas.

Achieving a solution to America's fiscal challenges is absolutely an economic necessity, but the only way to achieve a real solution is through shared sacrifice. We can't ask our seniors, working Americans, and students to bear the burden of our deficits when we're asking nothing of corporations, special interests, and the wealthiest few. Incredibly, our friends across the aisle won't even put that on the table.

The nonpartisan CBO, Congressional Budget Office, has said that the number one policy decision that brought us to the need to prevent the Nation from defaulting on our debt for the first time in history were the Bush tax cuts in 2001 and 2003 that disproportionately benefited the wealthiest Americans. Yet here we are again rewarding the most privileged at the expense of our working families and our seniors, the bedrock of our society.

Cut, cap, and balance may make for a great sound bite, but it would have a devastating impact on our economy and American seniors. It is clearly more like "duck, dodge, and dismantle.'' For the sake of our economy, it is essential that we move beyond politics as usual and take action to reduce our Nation's deficit and get our fiscal house in order.

On behalf of the 102,000 Medicare beneficiaries in

my home district and on behalf of all middle class Americans, I urge my colleagues to join me in opposition to this reckless bill and pass a balanced plan that engages us all in shared sacrifice to solve our Nation's debt crisis.


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