Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Lawson says Trump’s budget plan would take away lifelines from nation’s poorest citizens

Yesterday, U.S. Rep. Al Lawson (FL-5) released the following statement in response to U.S. President Donald Trump’s proposed budget for fiscal year 2018:

“Once again, President Trump’s budget calls for extreme cuts to vital funding for programs that help our nation’s poor, from health care and food stamps to student loans and disability payments. It is a short-sighted plan that seeks to give tax breaks to the wealthiest while taking away lifelines for those who need it most.

“In my district, one in every four Floridians has been on food stamps at some point over the last 12 months. That is twice the national average. It is unconscionable for the President to propose cutting nutrition benefits at any level, because any reduction would mean less for those in North Florida who need it most. Every day, children who qualify for free breakfast and lunch attend school and are fed the only meals they will receive that day because their parents can’t afford to feed them. We put hard-working Floridians in the no-win position of having to choose between paying their light bill or affording healthy food. This is unacceptable.

“This budget calls for slashing $800 billion from Medicaid over the next decade, another $192 billion from nutritional assistance, and $72 billion from disability benefits. It calls for eliminating loan programs that subsidize college education for the poor and for those who take jobs in the government or nonprofit organizations. At a time when we need to be working to make college more affordable and accessible in order to prepare the next generations for tomorrow’s jobs, this is counterproductive to the President’s own stated goals.

“This budget continues corporate welfare for Wall Street and major corporations, while forcing those who can afford it the least to sacrifice the most. I believe that our national budget is a reflection of our values as a society and this does not align with the values of Florida’s Fifth Congressional District, and therefore I intend to strongly oppose it. I will continue to stand firmly for all Americans who need a helping hand in order to find jobs, support their families, contribute to growing our economy and to what makes America a great place to call home.”

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