Moms Leader Identifies the Good, the Bad and the Ugly in the FY 2020 Budget Congress Passed Today
“The fiscal year 2020 budget the U.S. Senate passed today, and the U.S. House of Representatives passed earlier this week, is a mixed bag for America’s moms. It contains appalling funding streams that reward immigration agencies that have been responsible for the mass separation of children and families and the deaths of children in detention, and missed opportunities to address surprise medical bills and reduce prescription drug costs. It also includes modest advances on child care and Head Start funding, and very welcome, vitally important funding for gun violence prevention research, the Census, nutrition, and election security.
“It is unacceptable that Congress provided additional funding for ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement), the agency responsible for inexcusable human rights abuses against immigrants. It is truly disappointing that the FY 2020 budget includes funding for President Trump’s wasteful and harmful border wall – a symbol of hate the country neither wants nor needs – and fails to prevent the administration from redirecting other funds to the wall. It is past time for our elected leaders to use the power of the purse to stop President Trump’s cruel treatment of immigrant children and families. The moms of America have taken to the streets to demand the Trump administration stop the cruel separation of children and families. We expect our elected officials to stop using our hard-earned tax dollars to abuse immigrant children and families, and instead fund education, nutrition, and health care programs our families and communities desperately need.
"This budget’s $25 million for research on gun violence, to be conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the National Institutes of Health, is very welcome and long overdue; America’s moms recognize gun violence as a scourge and know that research can help identify solutions. The new budget also will help families through its increases for Head Start and its $550 million increase for the Child Care Development Block Grant, although the latter is only a start and additional investments are needed to remedy our country’s child care crisis. We are pleased, as well, with the appropriation for the Census and election security.
“The new budget funds the Medicaid program serving Puerto Rico and other territories for two years, which will help avert what could have been a humanitarian health crisis. While we would have preferred four years, we recognize this as progress. The failure, however, to include measures to stop surprise medical bills and reduce the cost of prescription drugs is a missed opportunity that will harm moms and families; MomsRising continues to urge the U.S. Senate to pass H.R. 3, the Elijah E. Cummings Lower Drug Costs Now Act, which the House passed last week.
“We also believe it was a missed opportunity that Congress did not include any improvements or expansions of the Child Tax Credit and Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC), yet felt the need to once again pass $200 billion in tax breaks for businesses like medical device makers and insurance companies. Working families are sick and tired of being left out of tax packages that time and time again have benefited the well-off and corporations. We plan to work tirelessly in the coming year to make sure the needs of working families, especially low-income families, are addressed in future tax policies.
“We recognize how hard House leaders and Senate Democrats worked to stave off budget cuts that would have devastated working moms and families, and commend them for their resolve.”