Preserving America's Economic Security, Hearing Before a Subcommittee of the Committee on Appropriations, United States Senate, One Hundred Twelfth Congress, First Session, Special Hearing, February 5, 2011 - Cedar Fall, IA   [open pdf - 286KB]

From the opening statement of Tom Harkin: "Here in Cedar Falls and across America, there is serious concern about our record-high deficits. And we all understand that these deficits ultimately are unaffordable and unacceptable. We know that in the years immediately ahead, we must take aggressive and painful and unpopular steps to bring this deficit under control, both by cutting unnecessary spending and by raising revenues. Certainly, we took an important first step by passing, I think, the new health reform law, which will reduce the deficit, according to the Congressional Budget Office (CBO), by $240 billion in the first decade and nearly $1 trillion in the second decade. I also intend to push for a wide range of additional spending cuts. And I might just add, parenthetically, including eliminating some expensive cold war-era weapons systems. However, I will strenuously oppose attempts to balance the budget on the backs of our most vulnerable and powerless people in our society, and I will insist that we continue to make prudent investments in education, infrastructure, biomedical research, the things that will help us, as President Obama said, to win the future. So, yes, Government should make tough decisions to live within its means, just as ordinary working families do. But if you are a family trying to reduce your debt, that doesn't mean you pull your daughter out of college. It doesn't mean you forgo replacing the worn-out brakes on your car or you stop taking your diabetes medication. These things would put you and your family at risk. Well, likewise, we need to maintain investments that are critical to the future of our American family even as we reduce overall spending. Now this is exactly my approach, as chair of this subcommittee that funds education, as I said, labor, health, and human services." Statements, letters, and materials submitted for the record include those of the following: Tom Harkin, Benjamin J. Allen, Emily Thatcher, William Dotzler, Jerry Nelson, Kim Young-Kent, Jerry D. Durham, Mark A. Anderson, and Jonathan Keniston.

Report Number:
Senate Hrg. 112-122; Senate Hearing 112-122
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