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CPC Opposition to Social Program Cuts Gets Coast-to-Coast Coverage

The Congressional Progressive Caucus campaign to prevents cuts to Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security has received significant media coverage. Below are some examples of what people are reading and watching this week about the CPC standing up for a fair economy for working people.

Rep. Ellison on Taking Stock - Why He Voted Against The Debt Deal - August 2

Rep. Grijalva on CNN August 1 - Why He Voted Against The Debt Deal

Rep. Grijalva on PBS "News Hour" August 1 - Why He Voted Against The Debt Deal (w. GOP Rep. Tim Huelskamp)

Rep. Ellison on MSNBC Last Word with Lawrence O'Donnell - July 27

Rep. Grijalva Weekly Video Update (July 27) - Debt Ceiling

Rep. Grijalva July 26 - Local TV Segment: "Demonstrators Thank Grijalva for Protecting Social Programs"

Rep. Grijalva July 25 - Videotaped Interview With a Reporter on Debt Ceiling

Rep. Ellison on MSNBC The Ed Show - July 25

Rep. Grijalva July 20 - Press Conference on What Default Would Mean to Minority Communities

Rep. Grijalva July 16 - CBS "Early Show" (Debt Ceiling)

Rep. Grijalva on CBS Early Show - July 16

Rep. Grijalva on Rachel Maddow - July 12

Rep. Grijalva on Democracy Now - July 12

Rep. Grijalva on MSNBC - July 11

Rep. Grijalva on CNN – July 7

Rep. Ellison on C-SPAN July 7

Rep. Grijalva on Rachel Maddow – July 7

Rep. Ellison on Lawrence O’Donnell – July 7

Obama Offer to Raise Medicare Age Goes Over Like "Lead Balloon" With House Democrats
Talking Points Memo
"I think it's a non-starter with our caucus," Rep. Raul Grijalva (D-AZ) told TPM. "I think this is no time to be gracious, this is a time that these programs need to be defended as strongly and aggressively as the Republicans are protecting tax cuts for the rich."

Liberals warn Obama against cutting entitlement benefits
CNN Online
"We're not trying to be the skunk at the garden party in these negotiations," said Rep. Raul Grijalva, D-Arizona, the caucus co-chair. "We just feel that a perspective, and a very wide perspective of this country, has not been part of the dialogue, and has not been part of the discussions and the deals that are being talked about." Grijalva warned of the political consequences to both parties if such program cuts were made. "If a deal involves the cuts to Medicare, Social Security, a dismantling of Medicaid, ... the consequences, all negative, would befall both parties," he said. "This isn't something that the American people are going to take very lightly."

Progressive Caucus to Obama: No Cuts To Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid
The Progressive Caucus "is not trying to be the skunk at the party," Grijalva said (he could have added that Republicans are doing quite a good job by themselves of stinking up the joint), but someone has to represent whatthe American Majority wants to see out of the deficit talks—an agreement that puts the top priority on putting people back to work and lowers the deficit by rebuilding the middle class. One of the more recent examples of American Majority thinking is reflected ina late June New York Times/CBS News poll, in which 53 percent said the economy and jobs were their top concern, with just 7 percent identifying the federal deficit as their top concern. That same poll found 45 percent of respondents concluding the federal government was paying either no or little attention to the economy.

Obama Gets Pushback From Liberals on Medicare, Social Security Cuts
Wall Street Journal
The backlash was swift Thursday as the White House signaled it is open to cuts in Social Security and Medicare as part of a “grand bargain” to raise the debt ceiling. Before lunch, liberal Democrats and the AARP, the powerful seniors lobby, said the proposal was a nonstarter.

House liberals demand no cuts to Medicare, Social Security in deficit deal
The Hill
"We feel that the discussions have been skewed up to this point," Rep. Raúl Grijalva (D-Ariz.), a co-chairman of the Progressive Caucus, told reporters in the Capitol Thursday. The letter the group sent to Obama leaves little to the imagination:
"First, any cuts to Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid should be taken off the table. The individuals depending on these three programs deserve well-conceived improvements, not deep, ideologically driven cuts with harmful consequences." As a second condition, the lawmakers added, "revenue increases must be a meaningful part of any agreement." "Tax breaks benefiting the very richest Americans should be eliminated as part of this deal," the lawmakers wrote. "The middle class has experienced enough pain during the last three years, Republicans are willing to inflict even more. We will not join them."

Liberal Democrats Have Leverage on Debt Deal
New York Times (blog)
Hence Ms. Pelosi, a former member of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, and its current co-chairs, Representatives Raúl M. Grijalva of Arizona and Keith Ellison of Minnesota, are big players in the negotiation.

Liberal Democrats furious at Obama
Grijalva, Keith Ellison (Minn.), Judy Chu (Calif.), John Lewis (Ga.), Mike Honda (Calif.), Danny Davis (Ill.), John Conyers (Mich.) and Luis Gutierrez (Ill.), also called for a tax increase for the wealthy, saying those tax breaks in the past have come ...

Five Congressmen, Four Views on Debt Negotiations
National Journal
Keith Ellison, D-Minn., a member of the House Financial Services Committee, also emphasized jobs on Morning Joe, resisting questions related to a compromise. He said he wouldn't vote for any budget proposal that didn't include a stimulus plan or ...

Rep. Ellison Questions Putting Social Security Into Debt Ceiling Deal
Think Progress
Keith Ellison (D-MN) defended Social Security against those on both sides of the aisle who say deep cuts to the program will reduce the deficit.