For Immediate Release
U.S. PIRG’s Response to the Report of the National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform
"The Commission's recommendations represent some solid steps toward loosening the tight grip that special interests have on our government by finally putting agribusiness subsidies, corporate giveaways and unnecessary and outdated defense spending on the chopping block. We're also pleased to see that one of the most egregious tax loopholes for millionaire hedge fund managers would finally be closed.
"In many places, the Commission's report lacks specifics - including several that were included in the co-chairs' draft proposal released earlier - around spending cuts and subsidies. Those will be tough conversations, but ones that need to happen sooner rather than later. Also, calls for broad, across the board cuts do not safeguard national priorities over wasteful programs and can be counterproductive.
"Whether the federal budget is in surplus or deficit, eliminating wasteful or harmful subsidies and making government more efficient should be priorities for Congress.
U.S. PIRG, in coordination with the National Taxpayers Union, has identified $600 billion over 5 years of specific cuts that have support from across the political spectrum. Members should start where there is this kind of widespread agreement.
"Regardless of the outcome of the final vote on Friday, Congress can and should act on serious, specific recommendations, and not spend time on dueling accusations and sound bites that do not move the debate forward."
A more detailed analysis on the Commission's recommendations will follow.
Read the U.S. PIRG and National Taxpayers Union study Toward Common Ground: Bridging the Political Divide to Reduce Spending.
Read the U.S. PIRG report, The Next Trillion, which identifies additional revenue proposals.
U.S. PIRG, the federation of state Public Interest Research Groups (PIRGs), stands up to powerful special interests on behalf of the American public, working to win concrete results for our health and our well-being. With a strong network of researchers, advocates, organizers and students in state capitols across the country, we take on the special interests on issues, such as product safety,political corruption, prescription drugs and voting rights,where these interests stand in the way of reform and progress.