The Congressman was referring to the 76 members of the Congressional Progressive Caucus. The Communist Party has publicly referred to the Progressive Caucus as its allies. The Progressive Caucus speaks for itself. These individuals certainly aren’t proponents of free markets or individual economic freedom.
Asked to comment on these charges, Libero Della Piana, a vice chairman of the party, stated that there were no Congressional lawmakers who were party members and that West’s comment is a “sad ploy.”
And now some folks like Sarah Palin are suggesting West as a potential VP candidate. Who would have thought?
I’ve been so tired of all the discussion of Paul Ryan’s disastrous Republican budget, and the Right-wing’s claims that no one else is making one (despite the fact that the President is working on one which he will start discussing tonight).
Well, the Congressional Progressive Caucus which includes progressive members of both the House and Senate ( I counted 83 members… not a tiny caucus) are proposing a budget as well… and this one is not only practical and works hard to correct our financial situation faster than the Republicans without destroying the Middle Class and making the 1% upper class grab even more of our dollars.
April 6, 2011
Dear Ranking Member Chris Van Hollen:
Thank you for taking the time to discuss the fiscal year 2012 budget with progressive Members of Congress. We agree that it is essential to offer a clear contrast to the monumentally reckless Republican proposal. From the current budget debate, it is clear that Republicans are leading us down a road to ruin. Democrats stand with the people, and our legislative proposals should reflect that.
The Republican budget will wreak havoc on hard-working Americans. They have proven, once again, their unwavering commitment to taking trillions of dollars from the pockets of the middle class and giving ever more generous windfalls to millionaires and large corporations.
They want to throw seniors off Medicare. Their slash-and-burn tactics will throw hundreds of thousands of people out of work. They will eliminate health care for children and those with disabilities. They will fire teachers, firefighters and police — some of the truest heroes of our society. We must be clear — we will not and cannot stand for this recklessness. We must fight for the American people.
We need a tax system that is fair and stops the giveaways for millionaires and corporations that ship American jobs overseas. We need to close corporate tax loopholes being exploited at a great cost to taxpayers. We must cut subsidies to oil and gas companies currently reaping windfall profits at the expense of consumers. We must protect Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security — the safety nets that have made this country strong and prosperous. The Republicans have opened an all-out attack to privatize and destroy them.
We must invest in our children and make sure they have the same opportunities we have. We need to responsibly end the wars abroad and limit future military excursions that obligate tax dollars and the lives of young men and women with little direct benefit to the United States. We should use this money to take care of our troops and veterans by making sure they have jobs and health care when they return.
The best way to get us on track is to put the millions of Americans who would love to be taxpayers again back to work building new infrastructure and a twenty-first century economy. We can present a clear alternative to the American people. We can and must produce a budget that eliminates the deficit, protects the American people, and creates jobs.
I would like to present you our alternative plan: “The People’s Budget.” This budget saves the American people from the recklessness of the Republican majority. The attached memo outlines our plan. I hope you will give this due consideration as we move through the budget process.
Co-Chair Progressive Caucus
Raül M. Grijalva
Co-Chair Progressive Caucus
TO: Ranking Member Chris Van Hollen
FROM: Co-chairs, Congressional Progressive Caucus
RE: 2012 Budget
The CPC budget:
• Eliminates the deficits and creates a surplus
• Puts America back to work with a “Make it in America” jobs program
• Protects the social safety net
• Ends the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq
• Is FAIR (Fixing America’s Inequality Responsibly)
To summarize what our budget accomplishes:
• Primary budget balance by 2014.
• Budget surplus by 2021.
• Reduce public debt as a share of GDP to 64.4% by 2021, down 16.9 percentage points from a baseline fully adjusted for both the doc fix and the AMT patch.
• Reduce deficits by $5.7 trillion over 2012-21
• Both outlays and revenue equal 22.3% of GDP by 2021.
Breakdown of Policies:
Individual income tax policies
1. Extend marriage relief, credits, and incentives for children, families, and education, but let the upper-income tax cuts expire and let tax brackets revert to Clinton-era rates
2. Index the AMT for inflation for a decade (AMT patch paid for)
3. Rescind the upper-income tax cuts in the tax deal
4. Schakowsky millionaire tax rates proposal (adding 45%, 46%, and 47% top rates)
5. Progressive estate tax (Sanders estate tax, repeal of Kyl-Lincoln)
6. Tax capital gains and qualified dividends as ordinary income
Corporate tax reform
1. Tax U.S. corporate foreign income as it is earned
2. Eliminate corporate welfare for oil, gas, and coal companies
3. Enact a financial crisis responsibility fee
4. Financial speculation tax (derivatives, foreign exchange)
1. Enact a public option
2. Negotiate Rx payments with pharmaceutical companies
3. CMS program integrity and other Medicare and Medicaid savings in the president’s budget.
4. Prevent a cut in Medicare physician payments for a decade (maintain doc fix)
1. Raise the taxable maximum on the employee side to 90% of earnings and eliminate the taxable maximum on the employer side
2. Increase benefits based on higher contributions on the employee side
1. End overseas contingency operations emergency supplementals starting in 2013, providing $170 billion in FY2012 funding for withdrawal
2. Reduce baseline Defense spending by reducing strategic capabilities, conventional forces, procurement, and R&D programs
1. Invest $1.45 trillion in job creation, early childhood, K-12 and special education, quality child care, energy and broadband infrastructure, housing, and R&D
2. Infrastructure bank
3. Surface transportation reauthorization bill
4. Finance surface transportation reauthorization
- Congressional Progressive Caucus Budget Proposal (oliverwillis.com)
- Rep. Mike Honda: The Only REAL Democratic Budget: Why Progressives Have the Answer to What the American Public Wants (huffingtonpost.com)
- Congressional Progressives Propose a People’s Budget (beavercountyblue.org)
- The People’s Budget (themoderatevoice.com)
- Morning Must Reads: Commission (swampland.blogs.time.com)
- Jeffrey Sachs: The People’s Budget (huffingtonpost.com)
- The People’s Budget (theatlantic.com)
- Progressive Caucus Budget: Truly Courageous and Serious (crooksandliars.com)
- Here’s a Real Democratic Budget that Serves the Interests of the American People (alternet.org)
- Jeffrey Sachs: The People’s Budget (bruceturnerjr5.wordpress.com)
- People’s budget or roadmap to ruin? (politico.com)
- Jeffrey Sachs: Restoring American Democracy (huffingtonpost.com)
- Sherrod Brown to Obama: ‘Oppose any attempts to dismantle Medicare’ (dailykos.com)
- President Barack Obama turning his attention to the nation’s crushing debt (economicnewsblog.wordpress.com)
- Richard (RJ) Eskow: Don’t Do It, Mr. President. Don’t Cut Social Security or Medicare. (huffingtonpost.com)