LETTER: Ryan budget immoral,To the Telegram: “The House budget is a moral sin and it is unpatriotic and we will not rest until politicians like Paul Ryan set it aside,” stated Sister Simone Campbell of the Network, a Catholic social justice organization. Several other groups have been speaking out about the Ryan Budget, written by Republican Congressman Paul Ryan of Janesville.
To the Telegram:
“The House budget is a moral sin and it is unpatriotic and we will not rest until politicians like Paul Ryan set it aside,” stated Sister Simone Campbell of the Network, a Catholic social justice organization. Several other groups have been speaking out about the Ryan Budget, written by Republican Congressman Paul Ryan of Janesville.
While the Ryan Budget was being discussed in the House of Representatives earlier this year, the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops criticized the budget for cutting food stamps and other assistance programs for the poor. The bishops said the budget fails to meet certain “moral criteria” by disproportionately cutting programs that “serve the poor and vulnerable people.”
Some 60 Catholic social justice leaders released this statement: “This budget is morally indefensible and betrays Catholic principles of solidarity, just taxation, and a commitment to the common good. A budget that turns its back on the hungry, the elderly, and the sick while giving more tax breaks to the wealthiest few can’t be justified in Christian terms.”
Robert Greenstein, president of the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, released an analysis in March 2012 that found the Ryan budget would “likely produce the largest redistribution of income from the bottom to the top in modern U.S. history and likely increase poverty and inequality more than any other budget proposed in recent times (and possibly in the nation’s history).”
A version of the Ryan budget was passed by the House of Representatives (HR 8) in July with all Republicans voting yes, including Congressman Sean Duffy.
On Aug. 1, after the House budget was passed, Pastor Jim Wallis of Sojourners had this to say: “A budget is a moral document.” In effect, “to roll back tax credits for the poor to help fund tax breaks for the rich is morally reprehensible, and the faith community needs to speak out.
“Proven and effective tax credits which can lift families out of poverty, such as the Earned Income Tax Credit and the Child Tax Credit are being drastically reduced. All the while, tax cuts for the wealthy are further expanded and the amount of money the richest can keep from their estate taxes continues to grow. This is an egregious contrast and a starkly immoral budget choice.
“To reward the rich even more while actually punishing the poor is a direct offense to all religious traditions.”
Some highlights of HR 8:
* A $160,000 tax break on average to someone who makes more than a million dollars a year.
* $5.3 trillion spending cuts for the have-nots.
* $4.3 trillion in tax cuts for the wealthy.
Ryan is on record saying: “I’m not concerned about the very poor.”
“If we have a debt crisis, then the people who hurt the first and the worst are the poor and elderly.”
I am a person of faith and I am speaking out. The budget passed by the House is immoral.
Editor’s Note: Joyce Luedke noted information for this letter came from: Belief Blog, Sojourners, Washington Post, Faith in Public Life and MSNBC.