Oxonians Protest Federal Budget CutsBy Sandra Knispel | Published 24 Mar 2011 03:52pm |
About 40 people turned out at the Oxford Square to voice their discontent with the looming federal budget cuts. MPB’s Sandra Knispel has more on yesterday’s rally, organized by local MoveOn members, a national Democratic political action committee.
"I’m worried that if this budget gets passed it’s going to really affect Mississippian in a lot of ways that they are not aware of… such as Head Start, Pell Grants, housing, community development, law enforcement, clean and safe water. Lots of ways that they’re not aware of," said
rally co-organizer Cristen Hemmins, who owns a one-woman ad sales agency. Hemmins is calling on Republican Congressman Alan Nunnelee to reconsider the proposed budget cuts.
“I mean it would mean a job loss of about 5800 in Mississippi alone.”
But despite the low turnout, many casual passersby agreed with the demonstrators. Among them Bob Dalton.
“The protesters are doing the right thing. I think the cuts that the Republicans are doing at this point in time are very similar [to] what was done during the Reagan administration in the early 80s and they did not work," Dalton said.
MoveOn argues that on top of cutting dozens of government programs the proposed budget would destroy 700,000 jobs nationwide. For Mississippi specifically, it would mean a $25 million cut from Head Start, which provides early childhood development services for at-risk children … a cut that would affect roughly 46-hundred disadvantaged children in the Magnolia state. But watching from across the street, Greg Hobson from Wichita, Kansas, thinks trimming the federal budget is essential.
“I would be worried if we didn’t have looming budget cuts. We have to do something," Hobson said. "We can’t tax people anymore. There’s only so much you can do with the money. And we sure don’t want be in any more of a deficit than we are. We’re all going to mortgage our futures to China and whoever is buying the paper.”
The federal government is currently operating under a stopgap budget measure that expires on April 8 while the House, the Senate and the administration are trying to hammer out a budget compromise to prevent a government shutdown.
Sandra Knispel, MPB News, Oxford.
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