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ATLANTA - As the U.S. Senate began negotiations to stave off a federal government shutdown, representatives from Georgia PIRG urge the Senate to focus their spending cuts on wasteful handouts to narrow special interests.
As detailed in a new comparison chart released at the event by Georgia PIRG, the House-passed spending resolution makes deep cuts to public priorities while largely leaving in place wasteful subsidies and tax loopholes for special interests. Georgia PIRG sent letters of disappointment to supporters of the House resolution. “Tough choices are supposed come only after the easy ones,” said Stephanie Ali, Georgia PIRG Program Associate. “It’s difficult to imagine how cuts to Pell Grants, food safety, and clean drinking water come before subsidies to BP and advertising for fast food and clothing. And yet, that’s exactly what the House resolution does.”
Georgia PIRG compared the spending cuts in the House budget resolution and President Obama’s budget proposal to a series of reports produced by Georgia PIRG. One report, Toward Common Ground: Bridging the Political Divide to Reduce Federal Spending, identified $600 billion in spending reductions over 5 years that have support across the political spectrum.
The spending reductions detailed in the report amount to more than the reductions called for in the House passed resolution. “The waste identified in the Common Ground report should be low-hanging fruit,” Ali said. “Rather than preparing for a partisan brawl in the Senate, why not start where we might find some agreement?” Georgia PIRG expressed appreciation for five of Georgia’s representatives votes against H.R. 1, including Atlanta’s Rep. John Lewis, and called on Senators Isakson and Chambliss to reject the House blueprint and start with cuts to programs that that do not serve the public interest.
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