FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE August 10, 2010
CONTACT: David Holtz 313.300.0054
Over Republican Delegation’s Objections, Congress Sends Jobs-Saving Legislation to President’s Desk
LANSING, MI – With help from U.S. Reps. Gary Peters (D-Bloomfield Hills) and Mark Schauer (D-Jackson), and six other Democratic representatives, emergency state assistance that will protect the jobs of teachers, police officers, fire fighters, and nurses across Michigan is on the way to the President’s desk. Michigan is poised to receive $698 million in increased federal Medicaid assistance and emergency allocations to school districts under the legislation approved by Congress today. In addition to helping states facing severe budget shortfalls avoid laying off hundreds of thousands of public service workers, the legislation will cut the deficit by $1.4 billion over the next decade.
“A big thanks to Reps. Peters and Schauer and the rest of the Democratic delegation for standing up for police officers, fire fighters, and teachers across Michigan whose jobs were in real jeopardy. They acted quickly to see this critical, job-saving state assistance through to the President’s desk, treating the severe budget woes states are dealing with in the Bush recession like the emergency it is,” said David Holtz, executive director, Progress Michigan. “Reps. Peters and Schauer helped overcome fierce opposition from Congressional Republicans like minority leader John Boehner who has offered no apologies for belittling Michigan’s educators and first responders as “special interests.” Talk about out of touch. Reps. Peters and Schauer, along with the six Michigan Democratic representatives who joined them in voting yes, showed once again that they’re the strong voice middle-class Michigan workers can count on to protect their interests and stand up to the real special interests like the Wall Street banks that had their way during the Bush years.
But our Republican delegation once again will have to explain themselves to Michiganders. They’re going to have to answer for their votes today to fire thousands of Michigan’s police officers, fire fighters, and teachers. These seven representatives played politics with job-saving federal assistance instead of tackling the severe budget woes Michigan faces. Considering this legislation will actually cut the federal deficit by almost $1.4 billion, they had no excuse to stand in the way. They’re standing behind Republican Party leaders who insist on more of the same Bush tax cuts for the rich and big corporations that blew a hole in the federal deficit – instead of standing with middle class Americans who are struggling. Talk about out-of-touch: ‘yes’ to more deficit-ballooning Bush tax cuts for the rich, but ‘no’ to saving the jobs of hundreds of thousands of educators and first responders? Our Republican delegation needs to seriously reevaluate their priorities, because Michigan’s hard-working families seem to be at the bottom of their list.”
Fact Sheet on the emergency state assistance bill Congress passed today:
1. Saves and creates 290,000 American jobs (140,000 teacher jobs saved and 150,000 jobs created or saved, including police officers, firefighters and nurses).
2. These funds are needed immediately to prevent layoffs or actually rehire teachers and prevent law enforcement officers from losing their jobs.
3. Completely paid for, in part by closing tax loopholes that encourage corporations to ship American jobs overseas.
4. Cuts the deficit by $1.4 billion over 10 years, according to the CBO.