Ron Wyden: Administration’s Budget Proposal ‘A Cynical Assault On American Ideas’ – OpEd

This budget uses “Madoff math” and failed economic theories that will burden future generations. This proposal is more than numbers on a lopsided ledger – it’s a cynical assault on the fundamental idea that Americans should be there for one another when it counts. Gutting food security programs and financial assistance for Americans who need a helping hand is an attempt to rip apart the last threads of our social safety net. Nearly seven million Oregonians have counted on SNAP benefits over the last decade, but this proposal would throw working families off SNAP when they can least afford it.

Trump’s budget breaks his promise not to touch Social Security, which at its core is lifeline insurance for Americans who can no longer work, not just in retirement, but also due to a disability. It also slashes Medicaid by over $600 billion beyond the damage done by Trumpcare, further threatening pediatric care, the nursing home benefit, special education programs in schools, and other health care like substance misuse treatment.

This proposal takes from the playbook of Betsy DeVos, who has launched a full-fledged attack on public education in America. Robbing public schools of scarce taxpayer dollars flies in the face of America’s long-time, common-sense investment in education for all Americans. And by dismantling student loan programs that made it possible for many people to get a college education, this proposal throws more roadblocks in front of young Americans who work hard with the hope of one day getting ahead.

Additionally, Trump’s budget slashes resources for the Environmental Protection Agency to clean up industrial waste and protect clean air and clean water for American communities. It would also sell off most of the Bonneville Power Administration, increasing costs for tens of thousands of Oregon homes and businesses. I successfully fought Republicans’ efforts more than a decade ago to privatize Bonneville Power, and I will fight this misguided attempt. Public power customers in the Pacific Northwest have paid for the system and their investment should not be put up for sale.

I’m putting this budget where it belongs – in the trash can.


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