Ranking Member DeLauro Statement at President Biden’s Fiscal Year 2024 Budget Request and Economic Outlook Hearing

2023-03-23 15:32

Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro (D-CT-03), Ranking Member of the House Appropriations Committee, delivered the following remarks at the Financial Services and General Government Subcommittees's fiscal year 2024 budget request and economic outlook hearing:

Thank you, Chairman Womack and Ranking Member Hoyer, for hosting this important hearing. Delighted to welcome our guests today, Secretary Yellen and Director Young, both of whom I’ve had the honor, as many of you have, of working with over the years. With Shalanda, I worked with her when I was Ranking Member on Labor-H. But when I got to be Chair, she only spent a few weeks before she just was snatched away by the White House. It’s a pleasure to be with you. It’s a great job you both do. 

Like the Appropriations Committee, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) and the Department of Treasury touch every corner of our nation and impact people at every stage of their lives—OMB by preparing the budget request and then distributing funding bills after enactment, and Treasury by paying the Nation’s bills and collecting our revenue. You directly impact the government programs and services that our communities rely on and help us create jobs, lower costs for families, improve public safety, support small businesses, and strengthen economic opportunity.

This committee knows this well because over the past two years, with support from you and Democrats and Republicans in both the House and the Senate, we passed and enacted government funding bills that reversed decades of underinvestment while lowering drug and energy costs, creating jobs, supporting our police, and making our nation and communities safer.

To continue this critical work, President Biden’s 2024 budget allows for vital increases in investments in the programs and services that hardworking people, small businesses, and communities in need rely on. And with an increase in taxes on big corporations, President Biden is proposing a plan that rewards work, not wealth. 

I know that this budget blueprint would not be possible without the tireless and dedicated work of the staff in your agencies that adapt and respond to the economic challenges of our day. Secretary Yellen, I am glad to see a request for increased funding at the Department of the Treasury and look forward to discussing how this will ensure the wealthy and large corporations pay their taxes, improve taxpayer experience, increase equity through community development and job creation, combat money laundering, help implement a new outbound investment review program, and support sanctions activity related to the war in Ukraine. I look forward to discussing this request and to reviewing the President’s request in full over the coming months. 

Secretary Yellen, I just have to say a thank you for all your work, and the department’s work, on the Child Tax Credit. We would not have been able to implement the Child Tax Credit without the Treasury and without the IRS. You distributed nearly $93 billion to the families of approximately 61 million children around the country in five months, lifting four million children out of poverty—the largest decrease in child poverty in history and the largest tax cut for working families in generations. I have never seen a federal program that has such a profound effect in such a short amount of time. I believe this is an essential tool to fight rising costs – an and give people and families financial stability

I just have to mention, like Mr. Hoyer mentioned, I am worried about the House Republican Leadership’s reported proposal to cut 2024 discretionary spending back to the 2022 level. I have received responses to most of my letters to cabinet secretaries and senior leaders outlining the dangers posed to the American people if those cuts were enacted, and the numbers are really horrifying. The cuts would cause irreparable damage to our communities by gutting the programs every single American relies on. Those proposals, in my view, are unrealistic, unsustainable, and unconscionable and put people at risk. 

I look forward to discussing this with our witnesses today and during the weeks to come. I will continue working with my colleagues in both chambers and on both sides of the aisle to pass final funding bills—which we did, we passed final funding bills two years in a row, with both sides of the aisle and both Houses.  No Member, no Senator, no party, no chamber can do it on its own.

Thank you again to our witnesses for being here today and for your testimony. It could not be any more timely. 

With that, I thank Chairman Womack and Ranking Member Hoyer and I yield back.

118th Congress