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Public Statements

The Republican Budget

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC


Mr. CUMMINGS. It's my honor. I want to, first of all, thank the gentlelady for yielding, and I thank you for calling this Special Order.

As I was listening to you talk, particularly when you talked about Pell Grants and women, I could not help but think about something that you and I hear over and over and over again as we serve together on the Joint Economic Committee. We hear that the less education a person has the more recessionary periods affect them negatively. In other words, if you have a little education, less than a high school education, your chances of being put out of a job or of not having a job are great. If you have a college education, you have a better chance of retaining a job.

You talked a moment ago about women, and women with regard to Pell Grants. Just the other night, I was at Howard University's annual dinner where they were trying to raise money for students to get scholarships. The president of the university got up and said something that was very interesting. He said, We are now having to let young people go who have averages above 3.2 because they don't have the money. I can guarantee you most of those folks were women. He said, when they did the research and looked at young people who had left school years ago and when they just kind of tracked them, they noticed that only about 25 percent ever even returned to school.

What you're talking about is the quality of life for women. So, when you look at the Ryan budget cutting Pell Grants and cutting those things that women are so concerned about--their children and how they're going to be able to raise them, to nurture them, to give them a head start--those things are being cut as if somebody is just going through a forest, cutting down trees with a hatchet. I think that we have to stand up for women. We have to make sure that we let the Nation know what is being done in this budget and make it clear that we're not going to stand for it.

I just want to thank the gentlelady for her presentation tonight and for bringing us together with regard to this very, very important issue.

Keep in mind that he is talking about doing away with the Affordable Care Act. So much of the Affordable Care Act goes to keeping people well--keeping women well, keeping their children well, keeping their families well. It allows them to have affordable and accessible insurance, which is something that women are most concerned about, and being able to pay comparable rates that men would be paying. I mean, he comes in, and he wants to just do away with the Affordable Care Act and create and give us this budget that really makes no sense.


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