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Take Action to Stop Cuts to Critical Programs TODAY
11/30/2005

Who is the best lobbyist in Washington?

You are! And right now we need your help. The House of Representatives has recessed and will return to Washington December 5th. The Senate will return the week of December 12th. Your Representatives and Senators are easier to meet while they are home so this is a great time to contact them. The affects of this summer's hurricanes continue to be felt by those most vulnerable. Because of the increased burden on the very programs those affected need most—including Medicaid, the Food Stamp Program and Temporary Assistance for Needy Families—the FY '06 Federal Budget Reconciliation process must be stopped. Click here to find out what you can do to stop the budget cuts to programs that serve the least among us!

Before leaving for the Thanksgiving recess, Congress narrowly passed budget reconciliation legislation that cut programs that serve the working poor, children and the elderly. Because of your overwhelming efforts e-mailing, calling and writing your Senators and Representatives we can report two important victories:

  • Senators dropped initial cuts of $543 million to the Food Stamp Program.
  • Moderate Republicans in the House were able to remove a provision opening the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to drilling.

Your efforts helped make those victories possible. House and Senate conferees must now work out the differences between the two budget reconciliation bills and find compromises between the $50 billion House figure and the $39 billion in the Senate – compromises that we already know will further hurt the working poor, children and elderly of our country.

  • Senate Version: Includes $39 Billion in cuts to programs that serve the working poor, children and the elderly as well as cuts to Medicaid and student loan programs. The Senate also included language that opens the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to oil drilling.
     
  • House Version: Includes $50 Billion in cuts to programs including Medicaid, the Food Stamp Program, tuition assistance, child support, and aid to those with disabilities. The House also renewed Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, including provisions damaging to the working poor.
     

Senators and Representatives need to hear from you: The Budget Reconciliation bill and its reductions in key programs must not go forward! Click here to find out what you can do!

In a recent interview with reporters, Presiding Bishop Frank Griswold called on Congress to stop the budget reconciliation process: "Congress and the President must come together and focus on poverty that exists across the nation, not exacerbate poverty …as Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church I feel morally obliged to call upon Congress to abandon the budget reconciliation process."

The potential $50 Billion in cuts being considered in the Budget Reconciliation Bill will strain to the breaking point programs that are vital to survivors of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita -- including Medicaid, the Food Stamp Program and Temporary Assistance for Needy Families.



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