Federal Budgets Must Be Moral Documents

February 12th, 2005 - by admin

FCNL and Earl Hadley / America’s Future – 2005-02-12 09:30:33


Budgets Must Be Moral Documents
FCNL/ Legislative Action Message

All Americans should be deeply concerned about the values reflected in the President’s budget request submitted to Congress earlier this week. For the next few days, newspapers across the country will be reporting the details of this budget. That offers us an opportunity to write letters to the editor questioning whether the federal budget is the best reflection of our nation’s values. We believe it is not:

• This budget promises endless war and increasing insecurity.
• This budget will only make life harder for many on the edge of poverty.
• This budget promises only increasing disparity in wealth, incomes, and opportunities between the haves and the have nots.
• This budget ignores ominous trends in the degradation and depletion of the earth’s resources.

Congress must stand up and challenge these misplaced priorities. The President’s budget priorities do not reflect the values shared by most Americans.

Act Now:
Write a letter to the editor of your local newspaper while the president’s budget is in the news. Express your concern that the President’s budget priorities do not reflect your values. Talk about how the President’s budget priorities will harm your community.

Congress now has the responsibility to either accept the budget the President has proposed or rewrite it. Congress should rewrite it. In your letter, call upon your members of Congress BY NAME to provide leadership and draft a budget that better reflects our nation’s core values. (Your representative and senators read newspapers in their districts very closely)

You can send your letter directly from FCNL’s web site: Go to http://capwiz.com/fconl/issues/alert/?alertid=6950511&type=ME for a sample letter.

In introducing his budget proposal this week, the President called upon all Americans to recognize the need to sacrifice in a time of war. But the plan he presented clearly places the greatest burden of sacrifice on those who can afford it least and on those who have no say in today’s debate – future generations.

• Poor and low-income households are being asked to sacrifice the most through reduced government aid and services.
• Low- and middle-income households today and future generations will pay the price of inadequate and reduced investments in education, health care, energy conservation and renewable energy, scientific research, and public health and safety.
• Future generations are being asked to pay the mounting trillions in government debt and for the cumulative degradation and depletion of our environment and natural resources.
• Seniors will pay the price for today’s tax cuts in the decades ahead when Congress finds it does not have the resources to meet the nation’s obligations under the Medicare and Social Security Systems.

All this while the President proposes to grant the wealthiest few permanent tax cuts totaling hundreds of billions of dollars in the coming years.

For information on how the President’s budget will affect your state, visit the National Priorities Project web site at http://www.nationalpriorities.org/budget.

For more information on how to write a letter to the editor go to http://www.fcnl.org/getin/resources/letters_editor.htm.

Contact Congress and the Administration: http://capwiz.com/fconl/dbq/officials/.

Friends Committee on National Legislation, 245 Second St. NE, Washington, DC 20002-5795. fcnl@fcnl.org. http://www.fcnl.org.
(202)547-6000 * toll-free: (800)630-1330

Reject Bush’s Indecent Proposal
Earl Hadley / America’s Future/

Beneath the incomprehensive federal budget numbers — a $2.57 trillion budget, a $427 billion deficit, $419 billion in military spending — the federal budget is a moment of truth. It reveals what we value, what kind of nation we are and what we seek to build. In this regard, the Bush budget is a stunning disservice to our education system, and it must be rejected.

The president’s budget slashes education programs for children while adding more tax breaks for the wealthiest Americans. Bush literally takes books from the hands of the poorest children to provide the wealthiest Americans with the money for a new Ferrari.

The silver lining is that what the president proposes, Congress disposes. None of Bush’s cuts will happen if Congress rejects his budget. This is where we come in. Congress needs to hear loud and clear from the American people: the Bush budget should be dead on arrival.

Misguided Decisions
Below are ten misguided Bush budget decisions that particularly offend American values and squander our country’s future. Please help to get 100,000 signatures to Congress demanding that they reject Bush’s spending priorities — priorities that are fundamentally out of step with the needs of America’s children and students.

Tell Congress to reject Bush’s indecent budget proposal! Tell them that you don’t want your government to…

• 1. Undercut schools in need by reneging on $12 billion in funding promised to schools by President Bush himself. [1]

• 2. Cut 25,000 children from Head Start. [2]

• 3. Eliminate childcare assistance for 300,000 children by 2009. [3]

• 4. Cut funding for school construction. [4]

• 5. Leave 1.7 million children without after-school programs. [5]

• 6. Eliminate the Even Start family literacy program that helps impoverished children and their parents learn to read. [6]

• 7. Cut funds from Medicaid that would pay health care for 1.8 million low-income children. [7]

• 8. Kill funding for Safe and Drug Free School programs. [8]

• 9. Keep college out of reach for qualified students by failing to raise the maximum Pell Grant as promised [9] — and by freezing work-study funding. [10]

• 10. Force deeper cuts in education programs by adding new tax cuts that will cost $1.6 trillion over ten years. More than half of these cuts would go to households that earn more than $1 million yearly, while virtually none target households earning less than $100,000 per year. [11]

Congress has the power to overrule Bush’s grossly misguided spending priorities. Please contact your representatives today and demand that they reject the Bush budget and realign America’s spending priorities to serve us all, not just a privileged few.

Earl Hadley is Education Coordinator for the Campaign for America’s Future http://www.ourfuture.org/reject_budget.cfm


• [1] “FY 2006 Bush Budget: Breaks Promises, Underfunds K-12 Funding, and Forces Students to Pay More for College.” Democratic Staff, Committee on Education and the Workforce, U.S. House of Representatives.

• [2] ibid.

• [3] “Assessing President Bush’s New Budget Proposal,” Center on Budget and Policy Priorities. 2/7/05.

• [4] FY 2006 President’s Budget Request. US Department of Education. 2/7/05

• [5] “FY 2006 Bush Budget: Breaks Promises, Underfunds K-12 Funding, and Forces Students to Pay More for College.” Democratic Staff, Committee on Education and the Workforce, U.S. House of Representatives.

• [6] White House, Congress to Battle again over Domestic Programs, Washington Post. 2/7/05.

• [7] “President’s Medicaid Budget Shifts Huge Financial Burden to States” Families USA. 2/7/05.

• [8] FY 2006 President’s Budget Request. US Department of Education. 2/7/05.

• [9] Rep. George Miller. Inadequate Yearly Progress. Committee on Education and the Workforce. US House of Representatives. December 2003.

• [10] FY 2006 President’s Budget Request. US Department of Education. 2/7/05.

• [11] “What the President’s Budget shows about the Administration’s Priorities”, Center on Budget and Policy Priorities. 2/7/05.

Take Action: http://www.ourfuture.org/reject_budget.cfm