WASHINGTON — U.S. Senator Ben Cardin (D-Md.) issued the following statement after voting against the final passage of the Fiscal Year 2016 Budget Resolution (S. Con. Res. 11). The budget presented by Republican leadership kept the across-the-board cuts of sequestration in place, repealed health benefits for 16.4 million Americans covered under the Affordable Care Act and contained a number of dangerous provisions attacking bedrock environmental protections.
“There is so much at stake in setting our federal budget that I could not in good conscience support this highly partisan effort to take and take more from those who could least afford it. This is a deeply flawed budget that simply ended up as a bad deal for Marylanders. The Republican budget falls short on the most basic test of fairness and proportionality. We also cannot expect our federal workforce to continue to perform the myriad critically important tasks they do on behalf of the American people when Congress keeps undercutting their value and attacking their work.
“A budget should reflect the priorities of a nation concerned with the well-being of all citizens. This budget falls well short of that goal. It attempted to strip health care from millions by repealing the Affordable Care Act, make it harder for students to afford higher education, weaken provisions to ensure our children can enjoy clean air and clean water – all to cut taxes for a small percent of the public and keep wasteful loopholes in place. With this budget, Republicans sent a clear message to the American people about their priorities.
“I’m ready to go back to the drawing board and get this right. It’s time to work in a bipartisan manner to create a budget that prioritizes a bright future for all Americans. I agree with my Republican colleagues who want to reduce the deficit and ease the tax burden on businesses and families. However, we need to look at expenditures and revenues in an objective way, which is something this Republican budget failed to do.”