Schakowsky Statement on President Obama's Budget

February 2, 2015
Press Release

WASHINGTON, DC – “President Obama’s budget is a clear blueprint for how we can move our country forward and build an America that works for all of us rather than just the richest few.

It reflects our values and it invests in our future by creating jobs, raising wages, investing in child and dependent care, education, infrastructure, research and development, retirement security, and other priorities. This budget would strengthen our country and promote economic security for those who are struggling to make ends meet. 

In making the argument for new investments, the budget renounces the austerity approach championed by Congressional Republicans and it ends the sequester once and for all.  We are the richest country in the world, and we’re richer than we’ve ever been, so it’s time to stop operating through a framework of scarcity. Too many hard-working Americans come home to a big plate of worry every single night. We cannot let this continue when we have the power and resources to improve quality of life for American families.

Today the President said, ‘We can afford to make these investments.’ I completely agree. Congress should enact a budget that truly supports our middle class and those striving to get into it.

This budget also specifically shows how to pay for those critical investments.  We can – and must – ask the richest Americans to pay their fair share by closing tax loopholes, including those that encourage shipping American jobs overseas. These loopholes are fundamentally unfair.  We can – and must – make it more costly for financial institutions to make the same kind of risky moves that brought our entire economy to the brink of disaster 7 years ago.  By taking these and other steps, we can help get average Americans back on their feet again.

In his well-prioritized plan, the President also responsibly continues to reduce the deficit – to the tune of almost $2 trillion over the next decade.

With this budget every American can do better. Even the top 1 percent will do better if working families have more money in their pockets to spend on the goods and services they need.

In recent years, Republicans and Democrats couldn’t have two more different approaches. Republicans have been for the super-rich and claim we must eliminate services people rely on to cut the deficit, even as the economy grows. Democrats are for the little guy, those striving to make it and we believe investing in these Americans to make sure they have a fair chance.

If Speaker Boehner and House Republicans really care about Americans who are struggling to make ends meet, they will put a budget on the House floor that includes many of the President’s proposals.

As the budget process continues, I will do whatever I can to promote the President’s call to raise wages, invest in America, and provide retirement security – which I believe means protecting and expanding Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid.  I will do all I can to reject a Republican alternative that continues to reward the richest among us at the expense of everyone else.”