Today, a diverse group of small business owners, veterans, former elected officials, business and community leaders, and concerned citizens from across the country met with Members of Congress to urge them to address the immediate and long-term debt challenges that face the U.S.
“The fiscal cliff is the most pressing threat to our economy today, and it is compounded by the need to address the long-term U.S. debt load,” said Maya MacGuineas, president of the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget and head of the Campaign to Fix the Debt. “Unless Congress and the White House all work together on a meaningful solution, the economy very well could be pushed back into a recession. We are here today because individuals from every corner of the country recognize the consequences of inaction and are stepping up to tell policymakers we must reduce spending, raise revenue, and reform entitlement programs.”
“The national debt has gotten out of hand, and it is having a real impact on every level of the economy,” said Wanda Rohm, who founded and owned Presto Printing in San Antonio, TX, before selling in 2009. “As a business owner, I had to work within my means, and I would expect Washington to do the same. Businesses aren’t going to gamble on new investments when lawmakers are playing a high-stakes game of poker with the national debt. I’m here to tell Congress we need to set politics aside, put all our cards on the table, and work together on solutions that create stability for business owners.”
“Working with vulnerable communities is what prompted me to join the Campaign to Fix the Debt,” said Stella Adams, founder and CEO of S J Adams Consulting, who traveled from Durham, NC, to participate in the fly-in. “Failing to address the federal debt would not only jeopardize those who are already struggling, it would create a lower standard of living for all Americans. Ignoring our debt problems, or failing to address them because of political gridlock, is a scenario we can’t afford as a country.”
The national debt now exceeds $16 trillion and is on a continued path of unsustainable growth. At the end of the year the country faces a hazardous combination of spending cuts and tax expirations – called the “fiscal cliff” – that the Congressional Budget Office predicts would cause the economy to shrink in 2013.
The Campaign to Fix the Debt is a national bipartisan group of over 300,000 business leaders, former elected officials, thought leaders, and concerned citizens. On Wednesday, concerned individuals from 8 states joined CEOs and business leaders from across the country in Washington to amplify the call for lawmakers to work together to avert the fiscal cliff and resolve our long-term national debt problems.
“Fixing the debt needs to be a priority,” says Harry Prestanski, executive director of Ohio Veterans United. “In the last few years I have encountered hundreds of veterans who have become more and more concerned about our nation’s debt and how it is now having an adverse impact on our national defense and our country’s well being. If we don’t do something about the debt today — and I don’t mean yesterday or next year — we will continue to face challenges like sequestration when everything is cut arbitrarily. Instead, we need to put everything on the table and make a series of priorities. In doing so we can guarantee our economic well-being and a prosperous future for generations to come.”
The Campaign to Fix the Debt is a non-partisan movement to put America on a better fiscal and economic path. We come together from a variety of social, economic and political perspectives, around the common belief that America’s growing federal debt threatens our future and that we must address it. The Campaign will mobilize key communities – including leaders from business, government, and policy – and people all across America who want to see elected officials step up to solve our nation’s fiscal challenges.