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Sequester Replacement Reconciliation Act of 2012

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC


Mr. DOGGETT. Mr. Speaker, normally when we think of reconciliation, we think of a coming together, of finding common ground. This is not such a reconciliation. Rather, this is a bill that provides more tax breaks to the few and more pain to the many. It is, in fact, a wreck, as in a train- or auto-wreck--``wreckonciliation.''

There is legitimate concern that we must address our budget difficulties to avoid a long-term budget wreck, but I am concerned about the wreck that this legislation under consideration today poses to the lives of so many Americans. It is a wreck for educational opportunity. The failure of this Budget Committee to address the needs of our youngest Americans with Head Start and early learning, the failure to extend the More Education tuition tax credit that I authored for more opportunity at the Alamo Colleges, at Texas State and institutions across this country.

It is a wreck for our most vulnerable neighbors, the Texas seniors, who rely on one hot meal a day from Meals on Wheels. Their director says it will be ``devastating'' to eliminate the Social Services Block Grant, a wreck for those seniors. It is a wreck for those who are relying on food security, like the 74-year-old who gave me this paper plate at the food bank in San Antonio:

``My Social Security check doesn't give me enough to buy any groceries, just my rent and utilities. Without the food bank, I would starve.''

Those are the kinds of people for whom this bill is a wreck right now.

We had a President once who realized the need for shared sacrifice. He had almost half of his budget from new revenue. What he said was that ``closing off special interest loopholes'' was just ``a matter of simple fairness.'' His name was Ronald Reagan. I think we might follow that example.

The SPEAKER pro tempore. The time of the gentleman has expired.

Mr. VAN HOLLEN. I yield the gentleman another 30 seconds.

Mr. DOGGETT. We would contrast that example with those Republican Presidential candidates who said they wouldn't support $1 of additional revenue for $10 of spending cuts to get our budget in balance.

This is a ``wreckonciliation'' bill that asks nothing of Mr. Exxon, that asks nothing more of hedge fund managers, but asks those who are most vulnerable in our society to share more pain.

I think we must reject this reconciliation bill which is a wreck for so many American families.


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