Friday, July 07, 2017

Christian Leaders Speak Out Against Trump’s Devastating Budget Cuts

From Circle of Protection website
In June, a diverse group of Christian leaders gathered at the National Press Club on behalf of the Circle of Protection to protest potential budget cuts targeting the poor. 

Representing the full range of Christian traditions, the speakers spoke with prophetic urgency about Jesus' call to care for the poor, the sick, the elderly — the very people the administration's budget would hurt the most. 

Here are a few excerpts (in alphabetical order), courtesy of Sojourners

During the election campaign, many Christian leaders together asked the presidential candidates to tell us what they would do to provide help and opportunity to hungry and poor people. Donald Trump wrote to us on Sept. 28. Candidate Trump expressed concern about poverty in America and around the world. He said nothing about deep cuts in the programs that help people in poverty. (See a reply from the Circle of Protection leaders to President-elect Trump)  -David Beckmann, president of Bread for the World.  See Full Statement

Evangelicals believe that people and nations are sufficiently blessed by God’s common grace that we can seek the good of others, as well as our own welfare. As a result, we are prepared to work together across partisan divides and to respect those with whom we may differ on policy choices....Our call to protect programs that serve our most vulnerable neighbors transcends any political party. Our concern for the vulnerable extends beyond our borders to encompass those who are poor, hungry, or threatened by violence throughout the world. -Galen Carey, vice president of government relations for the National Association of Evangelicals (NAE), See Full Statement

Many of us have called this budget immoral and unjust. I would have to go even further than that. I would call it mean, vicious, callous, cruel, and yes, because of the devastating impacts it would have on individuals, families, and entire communities, I would even call it evil – perhaps not in intent, but certainly in effect...We stand unwilling to be silent, and asking our brothers and sisters in Christ to make their voices heard. We want them to join us in letting Congress know that we expect them to do what is just and moral and to vote against this budget. -Leslie Copeland-Tune is director of the Ecumenical Poverty Initiative  See Full Statement 

We are here because we believe in a different world. We believe in a world where all have life in abundance. We are here because we cannot accept a federal budget that steals from the poor in order to increase the coffers of the powerful; a budget that enshrines war and tramples the poor. Carlos L. Malavé, executive director of Christian Churches Together in the USA. See Full Statement

Jesus said, “let the children come to me,” and expects us to follow in that spirit. This budget makes American children go hungry — please hear me when I say that — children in America will go hungry because this budget cuts SNAP (formerly known as food stamps) by more than 25 percent. Greatest negative impact? Low-income working families. Sharon Watkins is Chair of the Board of the National Council of Churches  See Full Statement

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