On November 15 I was named chair of the Financial Services and Retirement Security Task Force of the House of Representatives’ “New Democrat Coalition” the new financial task force and am calling on Washington leaders to take a balanced, bipartisan approach to negotiations to avert the “fiscal cliff” budget cuts looming in less than two months.
The recent elections sent the message loud and clear that the American people want Congress to act in a bipartisan way I’m ready to reach across the aisle, as I always have, to get our fiscal house in order, and look forward to my new role on the Financial Services and Retirement Security Task Force.
The New Democrat Coalition is a group of up to 51 (pending five outstanding election results) moderate, business-friendly Democrats from around the country dedicated to ensuring a strong domestic economy and favorable conditions for businesses of all sizes and individual entrepreneurs.
The New Dems believe firmly in the power of American ingenuity and innovation, and their work is focused on finding ways to foster and harness this creativity so it leads to new domestic jobs, greater economic prosperity, and a safer and more secure future for the nation.
The New Democrat Coalition consists of more than one fourth of the Democratic caucus and represents the largest caucus of moderates in Congress.
I also signed a letter today to President Obama, House Speaker John Boehner and House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi, calling on the leaders to work together in a bipartisan way to avert the impending “fiscal cliff” budget cuts.
The letter states:
Now is the time to act. Americans are ready for pragmatic solutions to address our pressing fiscal issues. We do not support calls to delay or put off the difficult decisions that are necessary for the fiscal well being of our nation.
Congress has a responsibility to address the fiscal situation in a way that inspires confidence in the markets and avoids further damage to our credit. That means being deliberative, responsible, and thoughtful about any short-term spending cuts that could adversely affect economic growth and job creation. We cannot have a full debate that allows us to address the multitude of issues facing our country if either side takes a potential solution off the table. We must leave room for investments in innovation, infrastructure and education, the keys to prosperity in the medium and long term. It also means passing a long-term deficit reduction plan that includes comprehensive tax reform and that is balanced, fair, and makes clear to the world that the United States is serious about reducing its debt.
As economically centrist Democrats, we stand ready to support you on a bipartisan, comprehensive deficit reduction proposal that combines spending cuts and revenue. We look forward to supporting your efforts to maintain America’s economic leadership in the world.
Carolyn McCarthy is the representative of New York’s Fourth Congressional District. She was first elected in 1996.