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What they’re saying about Obama’s budget plan

By Josh Richman
Monday, February 1st, 2010 at 6:00 pm in Barbara Boxer, Carly Fiorina, Dianne Feinstein, George Miller, John Boehner, Obama presidency, U.S. House, U.S. Senate.

…starting with California’s U.S. Senate race.

From U.S. Sen. Barbara Boxer, D-Calif.:

“With an emphasis on creating jobs through investments in infrastructure, clean energy, education and tax cuts for businesses, this budget will help put California and our nation back on track. It also includes targeted spending cuts that will put us on a path of fiscal responsibility.

“This budget represents the priorities I have been working on as part of the leadership team in the Senate that is putting together the new jobs initiative, which will include investments in infrastructure and incentives to help small businesses create jobs.

“While I may disagree with the President on some line-item cuts, I fully agree with the thrust of his budget – creating jobs, jumpstarting our economy and taking important steps toward fiscal responsibility.”

From Republican U.S. Senate candidate Carly Fiorina:

“The budget the President presented today builds on failed policies that have resulted in massive increases in federal spending, ballooning deficits and increasing the debt we are leaving to our children and grandchildren by trillions of dollars. This is the wrong policy for our nation’s economy both in the short and long term.

“The budget is a roadmap for the future. Unfortunately, the President did not take the opportunity today to set us on a path toward a sound fiscal future. This budget only further mortgages our nation’s future by pushing our national debt to its highest level in history.

“There are two ways to get rid of our deficit and get control of our debt: cut spending and grow the economy. If our leaders in Washington are serious about economic recovery and job creation, I urge them to set aside the President’s proposal and instead make the tough decisions necessary to rein in out-of-control spending and support our nation’s true job creators: the entrepreneurs and small businesses that will lead our nation to recovery.”

I sought statements from the other Republican gubernatorial primary candidates, Tom Campbell and Chuck DeVore, about two and half hours ago, but haven’t received them yet.

More from other sources, after the jump…

From U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif.:

“The President’s budget is a sober reflection of the challenges our country faces – a nascent economic recovery that is encumbered by deep and persistent unemployment, and the rising costs of national debt and deficit.

“It’s clear that the number one priority for this Administration and Congress is jobs. The President recognizes the gravity of the unemployment problem, and has called on Congress to produce a Jobs Bill without delay. I urge my colleagues in the House and Senate to enact a bill to get this money flowing to projects that will create jobs for the American people, many of whom are continuing to suffer in an economy that remains bad despite signs of recovery.

“At the same time, this budget reflects the extraordinary fiscal pressures we face as a nation, including soaring national debt and deficit. We need to begin to address the long-term solvency of our nation’s entitlement programs — Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid, while ensuring that they remain solvent for the millions of Americans who depend on these safety net programs for their economic survival. I am encouraged by the President’s directive to establish a fiscal commission to put forth legislative recommendations to deal with the growing costs of these entitlements and help balance the budget.

“There are a number of provisions in this budget proposal that will be a big help to California, and these include: $100 billion for a Jobs Bill to help put Americans back to work; tax relief for 12.6 million middle class families in California; $330 million nationwide for SCAAP, the State Criminal Alien Assistance Program; six-month extension of enhanced FMAP (Federal Medical Assistance Percentage); $40 million for CalFed; and more than $6 billion for infrastructure modernization in California, including funding for high-speed rail and increased oversight of transit rail.

“Over the next few days and weeks, more work needs to be done to fully analyze the budget and its impact on all Americans. I look forward to working with my colleagues during the annual appropriations process to address some of these shortfalls, within the budgetary spending constraints approved by Congress.”

From House Minority Leader John Boehner, R-Ohio:

“Just three days after talking to House Republicans about the importance of fiscal responsibility, President Obama is submitting another budget that spends too much, taxes too much, and borrows too much.

“Filled with more reckless spending and more unsustainable debt, the President’s budget is just more of the same at a time when the American people are looking for Democrats in Washington to listen and change course. Families asking ‘where are the jobs’ deserve better than more government ‘stimulus’ programs and another year of attempting to tax and spend our way to recovery. Under President Obama’s budget, the federal government will continue to live well beyond its means for years to come with no relief in sight.

“I’m pleased that the President has spoken out about the need to get our fiscal house in order, and his proposed spending freeze is certainly a good first step, though it’s already being undercut by Washington Democrats and liberal special interests. Serious fiscal responsibility requires more than a few cuts here and there at the margins. Republicans have proposed adopting strict budget caps that limit federal spending on an annual basis and are enforceable by the President. These caps were a critical plank in the budget alternative Republicans proposed last year, led by Budget Committee Ranking Republican Paul Ryan, and they are notably absent from the President’s budget. Without these caps, the federal budget deficit will continue to spiral out of control and this broken status quo will continue.

“I am also pleased that the President’s budget ensures our troops in Iraq and Afghanistan have the resources they need to succeed in their mission. It’s my hope that this will continue to be an area in which the President and House Republicans find consensus.

“Another priority that has received strong bipartisan support in recent days is putting a stop to the Obama Administration’s plan to try the mastermind of the 9/11 attacks and his-co conspirators in civilian courts in downtown Manhattan. Yet, the President’s budget irresponsibly spends hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars on importing dangerous terrorists to U.S. soil, housing them at a ‘Gitmo North’ facility and trying them in civilian courts. Republicans will continue to stand with the American people and fight this severely misguided plan.”

From House Education and Labor Committee Chairman George Miller, D-Martinez:

“Last week President Obama presented his vision for how we can continue to rebuild our economy and our middle class. His budget delivers on that vision, making smart investments in working families while working to reduce the deficit responsibly.

“Right now, we are focused on the twin goals of creating jobs and making sure those are good jobs – with fair pay, benefits and safe working conditions. The President’s budget makes critical investments to improve worker safety and health and prevent employers from misclassifying their employees, which can deny workers their earned benefits.

“Especially in light of the challenges workers and businesses faced dealing with H1N1, I am very pleased this budget launches a new partnership with states to offer more workers paid sick leave. It will also help us build a more competitive workforce by investing in effective worker training programs and summer jobs and other innovative work opportunities for young Americans.

“This budget rightly recognizes that workers’ retirement savings were one of the greatest casualties of the financial crisis. Their proposals will help workers restore their savings while protecting them from ulterior motives of Wall Street middle men. This represents a major step forward.

“I applaud the President’s continued funding commitment to early education and our K-12 schools. His budget sends the right message about balancing incentives with resources – spurring major school improvements and providing the resources needed to make them. I agree with his focus on rigorous standards, effective teachers and turning around our lowest performing schools. We will examine these and other key areas as we begin working on a bipartisan rewrite of our federal education laws.

“The President’s budget also reinforced his support for the Student Aid and Fiscal Responsibility Act, a key component of his education agenda that starts with our earliest learners. This should send a clear message to the Senate: Join the House in voting to send over $80 billion in federal taxpayer subsidies to children and students – instead of to banks.”

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