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For Immediate Release

Friday, July 29, 2011

TV Ads Launched in 8 States: “If the Social Security Checks, Veterans’ Benefits, Military Pay Americans Are Counting On Don’t Arrive After August 2, Thank Republicans in Congress”

Sen. Dean Heller, 7 GOP U.S. Reps. Implored: Stop Threatening Default and Holding the Interests of Ordinary Americans Hostage to Protect Tax Breaks for Millionaires, Oil Companies and Corporate Jet Owners

Washington, DC — 

With only four days left for Congress to avoid defaulting on the nation’s debt obligations, a new TV ad has hit the airwaves in eight states making clear that if the Social Security checks, Veterans’ benefits and military pay that Americans are counting on are not in the mailbox come August 3rd, they will have only Republicans in Congress to thank. See script below for “Your Check” imploring Senator Dean Heller and seven House Republicans to stop holding the economy and interests of ordinary Americans hostage to protect big oil subsidies and tax breaks for millionaires, corporate jet owners, and companies that ship jobs overseas – an effort airing Friday through Monday, sponsored by American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME), Service Employees International Union (SEIU), National Education Association (NEA), and Americans United for Change.

Click below to view all versions of “Your Check” airing in the following media markets starting today:

Earlier this week, Speaker John Boehner admitted “a lot” of House Republicans are refusing to compromise on a debt ceiling deal in hopes the resulting economic “chaos” of default would force Democrats to support the so-called “Balanced Budget Amendment” – wildly out-of-touch and totally unrealistic legislation that “would require more extreme cuts to Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid than the Ryan Plan” and would literally rewrite the U.S. Constitution to safeguard subsidies for big oil companies or deficit-busting tax breaks for millionaires, corporate jet owners, and companies that ship American jobs overseas.

Gerald W. McEntee, President of the 1.6 million-member American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME): “Republican leaders need to get their priorities straight. They appear willing to throw the economy back into a tail spin and deny Social Security checks to seniors, benefits to veterans and care to sick children – all to save face with their corporate donors. Main Street has had enough.”

Mary Kay Henry, President of the 2.1 million-member Service Employees International Union (SEIU): "Speaker Boehner and House Republicans want to bring us to the brink of financial ruin to protect tax giveaways for corporations and millionaires, while gutting programs that provide vital services for the most vulnerable among us. As we get dangerously close to defaulting on our debt, there are no more excuses for Members of Congress. Simply put, it's time to get this done. The stakes are too high to play a partisan game of chicken that could end with disastrous results for working families, seniors, veterans and children. This is both unacceptable and indefensible."

John I. Wilson, Executive Director of the 3.2 million-member National Education Association: “There is a fundamental question before Congress. Will Congressional Republicans balance the budget on the backs of those least able to afford additional sacrifice? Will they cater to Wall Street and large corporate interests at the expense of America’s children, seniors and the middle class? Or will they put partisan politics aside to do what’s right for all Americans?”

Tom McMahon, Executive Director, Americans United for Change: “Speaker Boehner admits that many of his Republican colleagues are more than willing to derail the economy and withhold checks that millions of seniors, people with disabilities, veterans and military families are counting on unless tax breaks for millionaires and oil companies are permanently protected. This unprecedented recklessness is a sobering display of Tea Party governance in action.”

“The consequences of a Republican-caused default can not be overstated,” added McMahon. “The business, economic and financial communities all warn that default could crush our economy, cost hundreds of thousands of jobs and, ironically, would mean hundreds of billions of dollars in new debt and a tax increase on the American people because it would skyrocket interest and mortgage rates. Republicans have wasted enough time putting politics and wealthy special interests ahead of America’s seniors, veterans and military families – it’s now time to do the responsible thing and work with Democrats to avoid ruining the nation’s credit rating and economy. It’s time to end the three-ring circus that Republicans have manufactured in order to advance their extreme right-wing ideological agenda.”

In addition to the ads, thousands of Americans will be out in force today at their members’ of Congress and Senators’ offices, delivering the message: “Don’t Be Reckless With Our Economy.” From Pennsylvania to Florida to Colorado, Republicans will be swarmed with constituents urging them to prevent a default and stop protecting big corporations and the rich. SEE: the Health Care for America NOW blog for more.

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