While those at the top are doing better than ever, too many Americans are working harder than ever, but feel like they can’t get ahead.
President Obama provided a nuts-and-bolts budget discussion this morning in his weekly address, slamming Paul Ryan’s joke of a budget presented this week, and extolling his own “Opportunity for All” budget he presented earlier this year.He outlined the four-point approach in his own plan—job creation, job training, quality education and raising the minimum wage—and then let loose on Ryan’s April Fools Day proposal:
The Republican budget begins by handing out massive tax cuts to households making more than $1 million a year. Then, to keep from blowing a hole in the deficit, they’d have to raise taxes on middle-class families with kids. Next, their budget forces deep cuts to investments that help our economy create jobs, like education and scientific research.Now, they won’t tell you where these cuts will fall. But compared to my budget, if they cut everything evenly, then within a few years, about 170,000 kids will be cut from early education programs. About 200,000 new mothers and kids will be cut off from programs to help them get healthy food. Schools across the country will lose funding that supports 21,000 special education teachers. And if they want to make smaller cuts to one of these areas, that means larger cuts in others.
He pointed out that the Ryan plan also—of course—wants to take health insurance away from the 7 million (and still counting!) now covered under Obamacare, and is full of deregulation of the financial industry: “Their budget guts the rules we put in place to protect the middle class from another financial crisis like the one we’ve had to fight so hard to recover from.”He closed, highlighting the ultimate contrasts between the two budget proposals:
Policies that benefit a fortunate few while making it harder for working Americans to succeed are not what we need right now. Our economy doesn’t grow best from the top-down; it grows best from the middle-out. That’s what my opportunity agenda does – and it’s what I’ll keep fighting for.
To read the transcript in full, visit the White House website.