WASHINGTON, D.C. – Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA) today praised passage of
his Budget Amendment to restore critical resources for key health,
human services, education, job training, and human services
initiatives. The President has slashed funding for these
initiatives-funded each year through the Labor HHS Education
Appropriations measure- over the past two years. The President’s
proposed FY07 Budget funds the Departments of Health and Human
Services, Education and Labor $7 billion less than two years ago,
threatening initiatives that keep America competitive and provide a
basic safety net for our most vulnerable citizens. The amendment,
offered by Harkin and Senator Arlen Specter (R-PA) adds $7 billion to
these departments, restoring funding to the FY05 levels. Specter
and Harkin are the chairman and ranking Democrat respectively on the
Senate panel that funds health care, education and labor initiatives.
Bipartisan Harkin-Specter Budget Amendment Passes the Senate!
“Amidst his frenzy of new spending and tax cuts for the wealthy, the
President says that somebody has got to sacrifice. So his budget
cuts funding for 17 of the 18 institutes at the National Institutes of
Health. It includes the largest cut to education in the 26-year
history of the Department of Education. It cuts the number of
children served by the Head Start program. It even cuts the Meals
on Wheels program,” said Harkin. “The passage of this amendment
has sent the President a powerful message that these misguided
priorities will no longer be tolerated by the American people or by
The President’s proposed Budget threatened key health care, education and job training initiatives including:
National Institutes of Health: The President’s budget cuts
funding for 18 of the 19 institutes at NIH. Funding for cancer
research would be cut by $40 million.
Human Services for the Poor: The President’s budget cuts the
Social Services Block Grant by $500 million and completely eliminates
the Community Services Block Grant.
Education Programs: The President’s budget eliminates 42
programs, including all the vocational and technical education
programs, Educational Technology State Grants, GEAR UP, Safe and
Drug-Free Schools and Communities State Grants, TRIO Talent Search and
Student Financial Aid: The President’s budget freezes the maximum
Pell Grant award at $4,050, the same amount as four years ago, while
tuition costs have raised dramatically.