Dennis Kucinich on Budget & Economy
Democratic Representative (OH-10); Democratic Candidate for President
DEAN: The first priority is balancing the budget. What we will do is lay out a plan to balance the budget and include some sort of plan to increase corporate taxes, just as Lieberman has suggested, because corporate taxes are now at the lowest level since 1934, which means the rest of us are paying the rest of the tax burden and that's not fair.
KUCINICH: Dean takes the position that he's going to balance the budget, but he said repeatedly that he won't touch Pentagon spending. Half the discretionary budget of the US goes for the Pentagon. The solution is get out of Iraq, cut the bloated Pentagon budget by 15%, and stop the tax cuts that are going to the wealthy.
DEAN: There are an enormous number of needs in defense that aren't getting met: special operations, an anti-terrorist task force, human intelligence; cyber intelligence; soldiers aren't paid properly. What I will do is leave the Pentagon budget alone.
A: The truth of the matter is that we should have a full-employment economy. With the government, the employer of last resort, there ought to be jobs, enough jobs for all who want to work. And as president, I will create a full-employment economy by sponsoring a WPA-type program, which will rebuild America's cities and rural communities, new bridges, water systems, sewer systems, new energy systems, put millions of people back to work.
KUCINICH: When you consider that a steelworker who's making $40,000 a year has virtually the same tax burden as someone who's making $400,000 a year, you see that there are inequities. This administration has used the tax code to accelerate wealth to the top. Most of the tax breaks have gone to people in the top bracket.
And what does that mean? That means that we have a diminishing capacity to take care of needs here at home. Look what's happened with this budget the administration has just submitted. They're cutting funds for job programs, for veterans, for health care, for education, for all the real social needs. So the wealth continues to be redistributed upward. We need a tax code that's fair. But we need to cancel the Bush tax cuts that go to people in the top bracket.
KUCINICH: The following steps need to be taken in order to begin to help the American economy recover. First of all, when you consider that we've lost 2.7 million manufacturing jobs since July of 2000, it's shocking but the US does not have a manufacturing policy, an economic policy which states that the maintenance of steel, automotive, aerospace and shipping is vital to our national economy and our national security. We will have a policy when I'm president.
A: The only way to meet pressing social needs and be fiscally responsible is to cut the runaway Pentagon budget, which now almost equals the military spending of all other countries in the world combined. My Administration would eliminate the Star Wars National Missile Defense system, the profligate F-22 and Joint Strike Fighter and other expensive, unworkable and unnecessary weapons systems. Plus, I would ban weapons in space.
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George W. Bush
Third Party Candidates:
Carol Moseley Braun
|Adv: Avi Green for State Rep Middlesex 26, Somerville & Cambridge Massachusetts|