WASHINGTON, D.C. - Mary Kay Henry, President of the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), issued the following statement after House of Representatives passed the "Budget Control Act of 2011":
"Speaker Boehner wasted valuable time today by holding a vote on a bill that he knows will be dead on arrival in the Senate. This bill would have led to massive cutbacks to Medicaid, Medicare and Social Security, shredding the social safety net that millions of Americans rely on.
"In just a few days, our economy could face a calamity of epic proportions if we default on our debts. This leaves no time for political posturing that impedes progress toward a deal that both parties can live with.
"Hopefully, the House and Senate will be able to deliver a bill that takes a balanced approach toward addressing our deficit. We need to protect vital programs like Medicaid, Medicare and Social Security while finding ways to generate significant revenue. So far, neither party has offered a plan that does that.
"Every day we are seeing new polls showing that Americans want Congress to compromise on a deal that takes a balanced approach to reducing our deficit. Today's vote shows that Speaker Boehner and House Republicans are ignoring the will of the American people by insisting on a cut-only agenda."
With 2.1 million members in Canada, the United States and Puerto Rico, SEIU is the fastest-growing union in the Americas. Focused on uniting workers in healthcare, public services and property services, SEIU members are winning better wages, healthcare and more secure jobs for our communities, while uniting their strength with their counterparts around the world to help ensure that workers--not just corporations and CEOs--benefit from today's global economy.