The Sequestration of New Mexico's Middle Class and Low Income Families
Those who have the least will pay the most.
Unless Congressional Republicans agree to a compromise soon, New Mexico will lose more than $41 million for state-wide federal-funded programs in 2013 alone. This amount is in addition to wide defense cuts from $150 to $500 million. $41 million is a lot in a state like New Mexico - some 8% of our current federal aid. What's more, it's drawn from some of the most important programs: education, healthcare, and employment services; essential investments in our quality of life and our children's future. These losses translate into fewer teachers, decreased job training programs, and less support for those New Mexicans most in need. It isn't fair and it isn't right.
Due to the inability of Congressional Republicans to make any compromises on tax cuts to the wealthiest 2% of Americans last winter, a Sequestration process was outlined and will go into effect in January of 2013. Sequestration is a process that will result in $109.3 billion nationally in automatic cuts every year until 2021.
The reality of sequestration for New Mexico is that half of its cuts will be coming from non-defense programs, such as education, employment training, and health care related programs like early child hood care and education services for low income families. These are programs that the 2% and Republicans in Congress have no patience for; so they're not standing with the 98% of Americans who rely on these services for their well being.
According to NM Voices, here is what the fiscal cliff cuts mean for New Mexico:
And taxes on New Mexico's middle-class families will increase, on average, by $2,500 per year for a family making just $50,000 a year.
New Mexico's Congressional delegation has fought hard to put the middle class first. Well, most of our delegation.
Congressman Steve Pearce is the lone Representative from New Mexico who has not only vowed to stand in the way of the expiration of the Bush-Era tax breaks for the wealthiest 2%, but he's gone as far as signing on to Grover Norquist's infamous "Tax Payer Protection Pledge." Now Steve Pearce and his Republican counterparts in Washington are holding essential tax breaks for 98% of Americans hostage, calling for an extension of breaks for the very wealthy that we don't need and can't afford.
What Congressman Steve Pearce and his fellow Republicans seem to misunderstand is that last week the American people decided to take the necessary steps to heal our economy. This means everyone paying their fair share; that includes millionaires, billionaires, and many of Mr. Pearce's oil patch tycoon friends.
Take Action! Tell Congressman Pearce to take a stand for our middle class and low income families, and allow the Bush-Era breaks for the wealthiest 2% expire, and to extend breaks for those who need it. It's right for America and it's right for New Mexico.
The 2% paid their fair share when President Clinton was in office and they didn't drop into the middle class or come close to being in poverty. Do not sequestrate New Mexico's middle class and low income families to save tax cuts for the wealthiest 2% of Americans, do the right thing for 98% of Americans!
*You may also want to remind Congressman Steve Pearce about something President Obama pointed out a few months ago, no one is asking any American to pay more than the Bush Era Taxes on the first $250,000 they make, just to pay their fair share of taxes on income after $250,000. It's the right thing to do, and when the wealthiest 2% paid their fair share in the 90's our economy was at its strongest. Stand up for New Mexico's middle class and low income families!
Our Friends at New Voices for Children's Fiscal Policy Project outlined the impact of the fiscal cliff on New Mexico.
Check out their full report here.