Youngblood rejects GOP budget that fails to put ‘People 1st’

HARRISBURG, June 27 – Saying it fails to meet her litmus test of supporting policies that put People 1st, state Rep. Rosita C. Youngblood, D-Phila., today rejected a Republican-crafted budget on grounds that it mimics harmful practices of the past four years.

Youngblood, who serves as secretary of the House Democratic Caucus, said the budget pushed through by the GOP-majority House provides no new direction, and instead promotes a fifth year of a status quo best known for disastrous results.

“We cannot afford another day – let alone another year – of the Republican approach, which has yielded devastating consequences,” Youngblood said. “Under their control, Pennsylvania went from a leader in job growth to dead last among the 50 states, 90 percent of property owners saw increases in their tax bills, school districts were forced to lay off teachers and counselors by the tens of thousands, and the state’s credit rating was downgraded.”

Youngblood said the Republican budget ramrodded through the House fails to make education a priority, while continuing to exempt gas drillers from paying a fair share of taxes – even as the billion-dollar industry reaps hand-over-fist profits.

“This is like looking through your sofa cushions for change to balance your household budget, while not charging rent to a person living in your fully furnished basement,” Youngblood said. “The people of Pennsylvania understand that doing the same thing over and over, and expecting a different result, is the definition of insanity.

“Fortunately, I and my Democratic colleagues realize it, too. Unfortunately, the Republicans who control the chamber do not.”

Youngblood said she remains hopeful a balanced, meaningful and effective budget, one that represents a true shift from the status quo, will be the end result of a budget battle that is now likely to stretch into July.