If you want to see the nation nearly completely abandon our solemn commitment to children, seniors and those forced into poverty during difficult economic times then a Mitt Romney presidency is just what you're waiting for. The non-partisan Center on Budget and Policy Priorities reports:
Presidential candidate Mitt Romney's proposals to cap total spending, boost defense spending, cut taxes, and balance the budget would require extraordinarily large cuts in nondefense programs. If policymakers cut all nondefense programs by the same percentage, the cuts would measure 21 percent in 2016 and 36 percent in 2021. If policymakers exempted Social Security from the cuts and then cut all other nondefense programs by the same percentage, the cuts would rise to 30 percent in 2016 and 54 percent in 2021.
For nondefense discretionary programs, these cuts would comeon top of the 17-percent cut already in law due to the discretionary funding caps of the Budget Control Act that Congress enacted last August and the automatic cuts (or "sequestration") scheduled to start in January 2013. Our estimates of the depth of cuts that the Romney proposals would require are consistent with what Governor Romney himself has said about the required cuts.
These cuts are far deeper than those that House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan's (R-WI) austere budget plan would require. They would shrink nondefense discretionary spending — which, over the past 30 years, has averaged 3.7 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) and never fallen below 3.2 percent — to just 1.7 percent of GDP by 2021.
But, as the Occupy Wall Street movement has helped to clearly demonstrate, it will take a lot of work to reverse the growing economic inequality in our nation that continues to force families in poverty, homelessness and hunger.
People of faith can continue to press both political parties to address these important moral issues by joining the Circle of Protection, a campaign by religious groups to protect America's most vulnerable.