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32BJ’s Figueroa and Gov. Cuomo speak out against Trump budget

10/26/2017, 4:15 p.m.
President Donald Trump and the Republican-led Senate’s budget push has met the anger of labor union leaders and Democrats. The ...
Hector Figueroa

President Donald Trump and the Republican-led Senate’s budget push has met the anger of labor union leaders and Democrats.

The U.S. Senate is proposing a $5.8 trillion cut to federal spending, including $1.3 trillion from Medicaid and nearly $500 billion from Medicare. Another $650 billion might be cut from income security programs, such as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (food stamps), Supplemental Security Income for disabled individuals and tax credits for working families.

Hector Figueroa, president of 32BJ SEIU, said that Trump’s budget plan fails the average American.

“The GOP budget plan is a reverse-Robin Hood for 99 percent of the American people—cutting Medicaid, Medicare, help for disabled people, food assistance and Pell Grants to fund tax breaks for the wealthiest 1 percent,” said Figueroa in a statement. “The GOP budget is a blueprint for making the rigged economy even more uneven for working families. The majority of voters on both sides of the aisle do not support cuts to health care and education. This is purely a budget for the 1 percent. Senators Schumer and Gillibrand should reject it.”

According to the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy, a nonprofit, nonpartisan research organization, for New York State, the wealthy would benefit the most from proposed tax cuts. The richest 1 percent of New Yorkers would get an 84 percent total tax cut in 2018. Eighteen percent of households making between $39,700 and $66,300 would get an average tax increase of $1,050. Thirty-three percent of households making between $66,300 and $118,400 would get an average tax increase of $2,100.

Trump and the GOP’s tax plan also would repeal the State and Local Tax Deduction that allows taxpayers to deduct income or sales taxes and state and local property taxes from their federal taxable income.

Monday, New York State Gov. Andrew Cuomo and U.S. Senator Chuck Schumer called for the New York Congressional Delegation to oppose the repeal of state and local tax deductions.

“Now I get the politics,” said Cuomo at a news conference. “New York and California, they’re blue states. Those are predominantly Democratic. They didn’t vote for a lot of, for the president in the election. That’s not how you govern. That is coarse, base politics, and that is not how you govern. And by the way New York and California happen to be the economic engines of this country. You slow down the economy in New York, you slow down the economy in California, you slow down the economy in the United States of America.”

Cuomo also said he doesn’t buy the compromise from Trump and company that implies they’ll only raise taxes on wealthier New Yorkers and eliminate deductibility above that income level.

“And that frankly is the Republican argument that they have made in this state every year, year after year after year,” said Cuomo. “Why are they against the Millionaires Tax? Because you’ll chase away the millionaires. They’ll go to other states. And then you’ll raise taxes on everyone else. So their own logic says this is a terrible, terrible idea.”