2:27 am - Monday December 11, 2017

Sequestration Impact on Latinos

Congressional Hispanic Caucus (CHC) Chairman Rubén Hinojosa (TX-15):
“Arbitrary cuts in sequestration threaten thousands of jobs and the economic security of the middle class and the Hispanic community.

“If these cuts go through, our ability to teach children the skills they’ll need for the future will be at risk. 70,000 young children would be kicked off Head Start, including 25,000 young Latino children. With 37% of Hispanic students attending a high-poverty public school, these arbitrary cuts would eliminate extra help in reading and math for 1.2 million children.

“There is no question that we need to cut the deficit. But we cannot simply cut our way to prosperity. Today, Latinos face a 10% unemployment rate. For the sake of our recovering economy, deficit reduction should occur when unemployment is low. Any further deficit reduction should come from closing tax loopholes that benefit the top 2% and wealthy corporations and not by cutting federal programs that invest in Latino children and working families.”

First Vice Chair Ben Ray Luján (NM-03): “It’s time to put partisan politics and ideology aside and work together toward a balanced approach that prevents the sequester’s arbitrary cuts.  The full impact of these across-the-board cuts will weaken our economy and lead to job losses.  Across the country, working families, including many of those in Hispanic communities, will feel the impact of deep cuts to education, public safety, health care, and more.  House Democrats have offered a balanced plan that reduces spending, closes tax loopholes, and doesn’t place the burden of deficit reduction on the backs of middle-class families.”

Second Vice Chair Linda T. Sánchez (CA-38): “The number one priority of this Congress should be creating jobs. Instead, we are wasting time with another manufactured crisis. We should be doing all that we can to prevent indiscriminate, draconian cuts from devastating our economy. American families, small businesses and the markets deserve economic security right now. It’s time for Republicans to join with Democrats and avoid these across-the-board spending cuts that will harm our economy and undermine job creation.  It’s time for Congress to do the right thing.”

CHC Whip Michelle Lujan Grisham (NM-01): “It is time to stop the games. March 1 is right around the corner and now is the time for the Republican Leadership to bring forward a balanced plan to replace the damaging sequester. The uncertainty these draconian cuts are bringing to our economy will stunt our recovery and put more than 750,000 Americans out of a job this year. One of our largest employers, Sandia Laboratories has implemented a hiring freeze due to sequestration. More than 7,000 civilian military personnel in New Mexico are facing furloughs – resulting in more than $42 million in income loss. Nearly 10,000 New Mexicans will not be able to get the help and skills they need to find a job. For states like New Mexico that are struggling and already experiencing negative job growth, these cuts are devastating. We must do everything we can to prevent them.”

Rep. José E. Serrano (NY-15): “The dire consequences of the sequester were enacted to bring about a reasonable deficit reduction compromise. Time and again Democrats — led by President Obama — have offered balanced, reasonable plans to avoid these harmful cuts only to see Republicans refuse to compromise. It is time to come to a sensible compromise solution on behalf of the working families who will be harmed by these senseless sequester cuts.”

Rep. Lucille Roybal-Allard (CA-40): “Allowing the sequester to go into effect means devastating cuts in California. Instead of creating jobs, we’re being led down a path that puts approximately 1,200 teacher and aide jobs at risk and furloughs 64,000 Department of Defense employees in California. Instead of helping people get back to work, we are set to lose $3.3 million in funding for job search assistance, meaning 129,000 fewer people will get the help and skills they need to find employment. This is simply unacceptable.”

Rep. Nydia M. Velázquez (NY-07): “Sequestration is a failure.  It represents the failure of House Republicans to care for 70,000 children who will lose Head Start services.  It shows Congressional Republican have failed the four million seniors who will be denied access to vital food programs.   For Latino working families who disproportionately rely on these services, sequestration represents Washington Republicans’ failure to compromise, lead or find solutions.  Latino voters will not forget who failed them.”

Rep. Grace F. Napolitano (CA-32): “Hardworking people from my district have lost their jobs, and we need to ensure critical services that support them and their families will not be cut. We must reduce spending, but forcing the middle class to bear the burden is not the solution. Ending tax breaks for millionaires and corporations will ensure that they also pay their fair share. The Republicans’ unwillingness to bend on raising these additional revenues is putting the jobs of thousands and the mental and physical well-being of our youngsters, seniors, servicemen and women, and minorities at risk. It is well past time to come together on a balanced plan to avoid these harmful spending cuts.”

Rep. Raúl M. Grijalva  (AZ-03): “Last year’s election showed us why the Voting Rights Act is as important as ever. A lot of people have tried to convince us that civil rights are old news, that we’re past all that, that it’s no big deal and we’ve evolved. Well, we haven’t – certainly not all the way. As I was so proud to say this morning on the steps of the Supreme Court, we need to protect the very basic right to vote for everyone no matter who thinks it’s unnecessary.”

Rep. Albio Sires (NJ-08): “Sequestration threatens the jobs of hundreds of thousands of middle class Americans, as well as vital services for children, seniors, and our troops. Congress must not wait any longer to come to an agreement.”

Rep. Tony Cardenas (CA-29): “Cutting funds in this irresponsible manner will hurt thousands of businesses and families in my district. Cuts will cripple Head Start programs that educate children across the Valley, the FAA personnel who man the towers and ramps at Van Nuys Airport and the hundreds of police, firefighters and paramedics who face an already decimated budget. I hope my colleagues on the other side of the aisle will negotiate in good faith before these cuts harm the people of the San Fernando Valley. I also look forward to the Speaker finally allowing members of our House to vote on a responsible solution to these cuts.”

Rep. Pete Gallego (TX-23): “In small town West Texas, when there is a fire, everyone works together to put the fire out.  No one focuses on how the fire started or who started the fire until after the fire is out. Here and now in Washington, many folks are more focused on who is to blame for the sequester than in trying to do anything about it – or worse, they use inflammatory rhetoric to add fuel to the fire. Not having a vote this week is a decision by some in Congress for decreased border security, job loss, and furloughs. It devastates local communities- and the State of Texas.  Let’s put politics aside and lets work together to avert the sequestration.”

Rep. Gloria Negrete McLeod (CA-35): “There is no question that we need to cut the deficit, but we should do so without harming seniors, our military, small business owners, students, or our children. In California, it is estimated that with Sequestration, more than 15,000 children will not receive vaccines for diseases such as the measles, whooping cough and influenza and 8,200 will be kicked out of federally funded early childhood education programs. This is unacceptable. Congress must work in a bipartisan fashion toward solutions, not sequesters, to create jobs and responsibly bring down the deficit. We must do it for our nation’s future.”

Rep. Juan Vargas (CA-51): “I am outraged that Republicans would stand idly by and allow these disastrous, self-inflicted cuts to go into effect. It is clear that House Republicans do not care about the irreversible harm sequestration will inflict on our working families, our seniors, and our military.  We need to focus on a fair and balanced plan that will create jobs and strengthen our economy, not on devastating draconian cuts that will destroy our nation.”

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