Budget Blog

On Monday, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) released its latest assessment on the impacts of a changing climate on our planet. This assessment is an exhaustive survey of the best available scientific, technical, and socioeconomic literature on the impacts and vulnerabilities from climate change.

The evidence is clear: Climate change is real and its impacts are already being felt by every nation across the planet. The negative impacts of climate change are disproportionately borne by the poor and most vulnerable members of society. Adaptation is important, but as emissions of carbon pollution increase, there will be impacts that exceed the ability to adapt.
Yesterday, Chairman Murray emphasized that federal investments in research and development, particularly in basic research, are critical investments for our country at an event hosted by the Senate Aerospace Caucus, which she co-chairs. Speaking to the crowd, Chairman Murray noted that because of federal R&D investments, DARPA—a Department of Defense agency that develops new technologies for the military—has repeatedly achieved significant technological breakthroughs; introducing the world to innovations like the Internet, night vision, and GPS.

Below are a few stories from late last week and over the weekend highlighting Senator Murray’s 21st Century Worker Tax Cut Act, which would complement critical reforms like raising the minimum wage by helping workers and families in today’s economy keep more of what they earn.

E.J. Dionne, Washington Post Columnist: “…one of last week's most important and least noted political events was the introduction of the 21st Century Worker Tax Cut Act by Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash. Murray favors a minimum wage increase to $10.10 an hour, but she also has other ideas that would help Americans at the bottom of the income structure to earn more.” LINK

Reihan Salam, National Review Columnist: “…Murray has done us a service by advancing a serious proposal that has the potential to better the lives of a large number of workers.” LINK

CQ News: “The Washington Democrat’s proposal, released this week to coincide with the unveiling of the Democrats’ ‘fair shot’ election-year agenda, would expand the Earned Income Tax Credit and create a new credit for families with two earnersAn anchor of federal anti-poverty programs that has grown dramatically since its inception in 1975, the EITC is drawing renewed interest on both sides of the aisle: Republicans see the program as a more efficient alternative to raising the minimum wage, and Democrats have made expanding it a cornerstone of their efforts to fight income inequality. LINK

On Tuesday, Chairman Patty Murray spoke at the Fortune Most Powerful Women event in Washington, D.C. There, in an interview with Nina Easton, the senior editor of Fortune, she discussed the bipartisan budget deal she reached with Congressman Paul Ryan in December.

She said during negotiations, she and Congressman Ryan relied on trust to make compromises and forge a two-year deal that rolls back some of the automatic spending cuts, known as sequestration, and prevents another government shutdown through 2015.

Since 1975, the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) has helped millions of households lift themselves out of poverty. Now, it's time to modernize our tax code to better reflect today's workforce with The 21st Century Worker Tax Cut Act. Click on the image for a more detailed look. 

The 21st Century Worker Tax Cut Act

See the PDF of this infographic here.
Yesterday, Senator Murray met with port directors from across the country to discuss the nation’s critical and growing infrastructure deficit. This deficit affects the United States’ highways, transit systems, rail, ports, and more. It is hurting businesses, hurting commuters, hampering economic growth—and if investments aren’t made to tackling this problem now, it is only going to get worse.

Senator Murray also outlined some of the ways she would like to build on the two year budget to continue working to tackle the serious deficits the country is facing, from research and development to education, jobs, and infrastructure.
Chairman Patty Murray wrote an op-ed in The Hill to announce the 21st Century Worker Tax Cut Act, which would update the tax code to help today's workers and families keep more of what they earn. The bill would build on work incentives both Republicans and Democrats agree have been effective, and it is paid for by closing wasteful loopholes both parties have proposed eliminating.