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Results tagged “Economy”

April 8, 2014

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The Huffington Post reports, "April 8 is Equal Pay Day, marking the number of extra days into 2014 the average woman has to work to earn as much as her male counterpart did in 2013... [F]or full-time, year-round workers, women are paid on average only 77 percent of what men are paid; for women of color, the gap is significantly wider. African American women on average earn only 64 cents and Latinas on average earn only 55 cents for every dollar earned by white, non-Hispanic men."

Progressive Point: Virginians believe in an economy that works for everyone equally--not more if you are wealthy and not less if you are a woman. In our communities across the Commonwealth, Virginia women are increasingly the breadwinners for their families. That means gender discrimination in pay isn't just costing businesses because their customers have less to spend--it's hurting families too.

Our Commonwealth's economy must keep up with reality. Outdated workplace policies hold back our businesses and families alike. Catching Virginia up starts with a simple principle: women should earn equal pay for equal work. We've all got a stake in ending gender discrimination in pay. We do better when everybody has a fair shot, when our economy works for all of us, and that means ending gender discrimination in pay.

Get the Facts:

  •  
    • Women working full time, year round earn 77 cents for every dollar earned by men. And it's even less for women of color.

    • Over the course of a 35 year career, a woman with a college degree will make an average of $1.2 million less than a man with the same level of education.

    • If women earned equal pay for equal work, our economy could grow, boosting GDP by 2.9 percent or $450 billion.

    • Women workers make up 64 percent of all minimum wage workers and are concentrated in lower wage jobs, where gender discrimination in pay persists. Over three-quarters of these
      female minimum wage workers are unmarried women.

    • In 2011, over 40 percent of all households with children under 18 were headed by women who were either the sole or primary breadwinners for their families, compared to just 11 percent in 1960. Of these "breadwinner moms," 37 percent were married women with higher earnings than their husbands and 63 percent were single mothers.

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April 3, 2014

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The Center for American Progress reports, "raising the minimum wage would yield tremendous benefits for both workers and for the economy. It would put more money in the pockets of workers, allowing them to spend it in their communities and increase demand in the overall economy. Specifically, in Virginia, raising the minimum wage would boost the economy by giving 744,000 workers a wage hike of $1,261,582,000 and help generate $798,581,000 in economic activity."

Progressive Point: Right now many working Virginians are losing ground and not getting a fair shot at the American dream. Our Commonwealth needs new policies that provide everyone the opportunity to get ahead and a minimum wage that ensures every family can make ends meet. Virginia can't truly be the best state for business if our economy doesn't work for everyone.

It's time for our leaders to wake up to the fact that Virginia is only at its strongest when our economy works for everyone. Virginia's elected officials must stop putting off helping our working families by addressing income inequality and investing in Virginia's economy now. A higher minimum wage gives Virginia workers more money to spend, which in turn gives our community businesses more customers. It's long overdue that we face the reality working families see every day and provide common sense solutions to help all of us get ahead, not just get by.

Get the Facts:

The Center for American Progress reports:

  • Why raising the minimum wage is the right choice for Virginia
    • 511,000: Number of people in Virginia who would be directly affected by increasing the federal minimum wage to $10.10.

    • 233,000: Number of people in Virginia who would be indirectly affected by increasing the federal minimum wage.

    • Increasing the federal minimum wage would have a total wage increase of $1,261,582,000 for Virginia.

    • Increasing the federal minimum wage Virginia helps women; 57 percent of the workers benefitting from a minimum-wage increase are women. 

    • 368,000 children would see their parents' wages rise because of an increase in the minimum wage.

  • Raising the minimum wage will put money into the pockets of workers and may boost the economy
    • Increasing the minimum wage would help workers, who will then spend the money on things such as housing, food, and gas. This boost in demand for goods and services will stimulate the economy and help create opportunities for all Americans. The money gets funneled back to small and large businesses that would need to hire more workers to keep up with the demand, reinforcing a virtuous circle that will help build an economy that works everyone.

    • Increasing the minimum wage may increase economic activity. One study showed that increasing the federal minimum wage from $7.25 to $10.10 per hour would grow the economy by $22 billion.

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2-1 support for raising the wage

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March 26, 2014

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A new poll from Quinnipiac University finds overwhelming support for raising Virginia's minimum wage. Quinnipiac reports, "Virginia voters support 66 - 31 percent raising the state's $7.25 per hour minimum wage. Support is 96 - 3 percent among Democrats and 60 - 36 percent among independent voters. Republicans are opposed 56 - 41 percent. Women want a higher wage 73 - 25 percent while men support it 59 - 39 percent."

Progressive Point: In America, we believe everyone deserves a fair shot to succeed and a fair wage for an honest day's work. Across the Commonwealth, many hardworking Virginia families are struggling, living paycheck to paycheck. Our Commonwealth needs new policies that provide everyone the opportunity to get ahead and a minimum wage that ensures every family can make ends meet.

Elected officials should address income inequality by helping our working families and investing in Virginia's economy. A higher minimum wage gives Virginia workers more money to spend, which in turn gives our community businesses more customers. Right now, the deck is stacked against families who work full time but can't make ends meet. Raising the wage is the first step to ensuring that Virginia workers have the opportunity to get ahead, not just scrape by.

Get the Facts:

  • Via the Center for American Progress: Why raising the minimum wage is the right choice for Virginia:

    • 530,000: Number of people in Virginia who would be directly affected by increasing the federal minimum wage to $10.10
    • 228,000: Number of people in Virginia who would be indirectly affected by increasing the federal minimum wage.
    • Increasing the federal minimum wage would have a total wage increase of $1,421,474,000 for Virginia and a total average increase to individual annual wages of $2,455.
    • Increasing the federal minimum wage in Virginia disproportionately impacts women, 55.7% to 44.3% who would see an average increase to their annual wages by $2,336. [EPI, 11/13/13]
  • Rasing the minimum wage in Virginia will benefit 123,000 Virginians according to Del. Joe Morrissey. He also stated, "the average minimum-wage worker is a 32-year-old black or Latino woman working full time and trying to support children on $290 a week." (Virginian-Pilot, February 5, 2014)
  • Wages in America are now growing at only 2% per year, the slowest rate since at least 1965. (ThinkProgress, January 24, 2014)
  • "If the minimum wage had grown at the same rate as the earnings of the top one percent of Americans the federal wage floor would be more than triple the current hourly minimum of $7.25. Instead, the minimum wage has been lower than a poverty wage ever since 1982." (ThinkProgress, December 1, 2013)

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A Commonwealth economy of opportunity

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February 5, 2014

The Virginian-Pilot reports a House committee killed two bills yesterday that would have raised the minimum wage in Virginia. "House Bill 32 would have raised Virginia's minimum wage to $8.50 from the federally required minimum of $7.25. House Bill 536 would have raised it to $8.25 this year and $9.25 in 2015... The bills failed on a largely party-line vote. A measure to increase the minimum wage in the Senate is still pending. It proposes the same increase as HB536."

Progressive Point: Even today, too many hardworking Virginia families are struggling, living paycheck to paycheck. No one is guaranteed success in America, but everyone deserves a fair shot to succeed and make enough to pay their bills. Our Commonwealth needs new policies that provide everyone an opportunity to get ahead and a minimum wage that ensures every family can make ends meet.

It's time for our elected officials to end widespread economic inequality, help our working families, and build a thriving and growing Virginia economy. A higher minimum wage gives Virginia workers more money to spend, which in turn gives our community businesses more customers. Right now, the deck is stacked against families in communities across the Commonwealth. It's long overdue that we face the reality working families see every day and provide common sense solutions to help all of us get ahead, not just get by.

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Get the Facts:

  • Rasing the minimum wage in Virginia will benefit 123,000 Virginians according to Del. Joe Morrissey, HB32's patron. He also stated, "the average minimum-wage worker is a 32-year-old black or Latino woman working full time and trying to support children on $290 a week." (Virginian-Pilot, February 5, 2014)
  • Wages in America are now growing at only 2% per year, the slowest rate since at least 1965. (ThinkProgress, January 24, 2014)
  • "If the minimum wage had grown at the same rate as the earnings of the top one percent of Americans the federal wage floor would be more than triple the current hourly minimum of $7.25. Instead, the minimum wage has been lower than a poverty wage ever since 1982." (ThinkProgress, December 1, 2013)
  • Via the Center for American Progress: Why raising the minimum wage is the right choice for Virginia:

    • 530,000: Number of people in Virginia who would be directly affected by increasing the federal minimum wage to $10.10
    • 228,000: Number of people in Virginia who would be indirectly affected by increasing the federal minimum wage.
    • Increasing the federal minimum wage would have a total wage increase of $1,421,474,000 for Virginia and a total average increase to individual annual wages of $2,455.
    • Increasing the federal minimum wage in Virginia disproportionately impacts women, 55.7% to 44.3% who would see an average increase to their annual wages by $2,336. [EPI, 11/13/13]

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Return America to a fair playing field

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January 28, 2014

ThinkProgress reports, "President Barack Obama will focus on what he has described as 'the defining challenge of our time' during the State of the Union address on Tuesday: the nation's growing gap between the rich and poor. What economists saw as a temporary aberration in the early 1970s -- the first time since the end of World War II when the incomes of lower- and middle-income Americans failed to keep pace with those of the rich -- has in the intervening 40 years become a full-blown crisis."

Progressive Point: Our country's future depends on ensuring it remains the land of opportunity for everyone. We can renew the promise of the American dream to working families through eliminating the barriers of income inequality and getting to a minimum wage that ensures every family can make ends meet. It's time to get back to giving everyone a fair shot and building an economy that works for everyone, not just the richest one percent.

America was founded as a nation that fostered equality of opportunity and rewarded hard work. Anyone who shows up to work every day and works hard so their company can make a profit ought to make enough to pay their own bills. But today many are working harder than ever and yet our middle class continues to shrink. It's time Virginia's elected officials prioritized ending widespread economic inequality, help our working families, and build a thriving and growing Commonwealth. We need to return America to a fair playing field for everyone.

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Get the Facts:

  • Increasing the minimum wage to $10.10 an hour could lift almost 5 million people out of poverty. (ThinkProgress, January 3, 2014)
  • Wages in America are now growing at only 2% per year, the slowest rate since at least 1965. (ThinkProgress, January 24, 2014)
  • "If the minimum wage had grown at the same rate as the earnings of the top one percent of Americans the federal wage floor would be more than triple the current hourly minimum of $7.25. Instead, the minimum wage has been lower than a poverty wage ever since 1982." (ThinkProgress, December 1, 2013)
  • The Washington Post reports that between the 2007-2009 and 2010-2012 time periods, "a shrinking middle class in many states was offset by growth but only in the upper and lower income extremes." The graph below shows the major decline in Virginia's middle class households:

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January 16, 2014

The Roanoke Times reports Rep. Bob Goodlatte, R. Roanoke County, said, "Restricting access to abortion 'very much promotes job creation,'" on Wednesday. "He believes that fewer abortions = more babies which = more population which = more demand for goods and services... The fact is, there's no causal relationship between abortion restrictions and job creation or unemployment. Goodlatte, who chairs the House Judiciary Committee, would like you to believe otherwise. Don't fall for it."

Progressive Point: Rep. Bob Goodlatte couldn't be more wrong. Denying women reproductive health care is damaging to our economy. Without adequate access to family planning services, women are less likely to finish their education, move forward with their careers, or become financially independent.

Conservative efforts to end our reproductive rights hurt the ability of Virginians without means, who need access to affordable health services the most, to provide better economic security for their families. Senator Tim Kaine was right when he said, "You can't empower women in the economy if you take away their choices." Virginians have made clear that we don't support an extreme, right-wing agenda that interferes in our private medical decisions and our families' financial security. It's time our representatives got back to work and focused on expanding health care access and opportunity instead of denying women their constitutionally-protected rights.

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Get the Facts:

  • "Without access to affordable family planning services, women are less likely to be able to finish their education, advance their career, or achieve financial independence." (ThinkProgress, January 15, 2014)
  • "The low-income women who end up carrying unwanted pregnancies to term end up slipping deeper into poverty and struggling with long-term mental health issues. That ends up impacting the social safety net, putting a greater strain on the Medicaid program." (ThinkProgress, January 15, 2014)
  • "Every $1 invested into family planning programs yields more than $5 in savings for the U.S. government." (ThinkProgress, January 15, 2014)
  • According to Rep. Goodlatte's theory, countries that ban abortion should have higher job growth, but many that do have a much higher unemployment rate than the United States. For example: Haiti's at 40.6%, Dominican Republic is at 15.1%, Syria is at 14.9%, Iran is at 10.4%, Poland is at 13.4%, and Angola is at 26.0%. (Roanoke Times, January 16, 2014)
  • "'It's demeaning to suggest that issues about women are just social issues and not economic issues,' Kaine says. 'If you force women to have an ultrasound procedure against their will, and pay for it, that's an economic issue. If you deny women the opportunity, because of personhood legislation, to make constitutional choices, even including whether to purchase contraception, that's an economic issue.'" (Washington Post, October 1, 2012)

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Bob McDonnell shorting our schools

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December 11, 2013

The Daily Press reports, "Gov. Bob McDonnell is offering an increase in state education funding, but the $582.6 million boost appears to fall short of projections for new mandated spending. 'We have to make additional cuts based on those numbers,' Poquoson schools Superintendent Jennifer Parish said. 'Yes, he's providing additional funding, but it doesn't cover the cost increase that K-12 education is experiencing.'"

Progressive Point: Investing in our children and schools today is an essential commitment to our Commonwealth's economy tomorrow. Both the House and Senate finance committee projections say Bob McDonnell's budget proposal would short our students and our shared financial future by $100 million. Guaranteeing our children's education now is an essential, nonpartisan commitment to ensure a skilled Virginia workforce ready to compete in the global economy in the days ahead.

Virginia's Chamber of Commerce understands that our Commonwealth has to lead in education if we are going to stay a leader in business. They also understand the need for investments leading to a higher quality early childhood education and an improved and competitive workforce. In Virginia's new budget we have the opportunity to renew our economic recovery efforts and ensure a stronger workforce for tomorrow through investment in a quality education for all Virginia families.  

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Get the Facts:

  • Both the Virginia House of Delegates and State Senate finance committees project Gov. McDonnell's state education funding in his two-year budget proposal "is about $100 million short of the cost for rebenchmarking and increases into the Virginia Retirement System. The Senate expects the total cost to be $605.9 million, the House estimates $624.5 million." (Daily Press, December 10, 2013)

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  • Since 2008, Virginia has cut per student funding by 10%, or $592 per pupil. (Center for Budget and Policy Priorities, Sept. 4, 2012)

  • Increasing investment in our schools and closing the educational-achievement gap between the U.S. and higher-performing countries could boost our gross domestic product by 16%. (Wall Street Journal, April 22, 2012)

  • Last month, the Virginia Chamber of Commerce shared Blueprint Virginia, "its strategic vision for growing the economy, which makes clear that businesses have widely embraced the idea that improving workforce development needs to include greater access to high quality early childhood education." (Roanoke Times, November 24, 2013)

  • Gov.-elect Terry McAuliffe, at an appearance before the Chamber, said he also shares the goal of expanding Pre-K and making it more available. The non-partisan goal was also shared by Gov. George Allen's administration in the 1990s when it "launched the Virginia Preschool Initiative for at-risk children who are not served by Head Start." (Roanoke Times, November 24, 2013)

  • Senator Tim Kaine recently opined in the Virginian-Pilot:
    • "90 percent of brain development occurs before a child's fifth birthday. Without early education programs that serve children under the age of five, our education system neglects children during the years its effects could be most significant.

    • Pre-K is also good for the economy. Nobel laureate James Heckman, an economist who calculates how public investments accelerate economic growth, has concluded that early childhood education has one of the greatest returns of any public investment.

    • Early learning programs make it more likely that children will do well in elementary school, less likely they will have to repeat a grade and more likely they will be successful in the future.

    • The return on investment may be even higher when children from low-income families gain access to pre-K programs. Research shows that the value of the program is most powerful for children who might otherwise have learning barriers - developmental disabilities, lack of access to books or other learning material, or a home where English isn't the primary language."

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November 25, 2013

The Roanoke Times opines, Virginia "is poised to move beyond partisan jockeying on at least one needed change to improve public schools: expanding access to preschool, the foundation upon which effective education reform rests. If only Virginia will take the opportunity. The Virginia Chamber of Commerce gave a push last week to slowly gathering momentum to integrate early childhood learning fully into the education of our young."

Progressive Point: Across the Commonwealth, our economic future and the future of our children are shared concerns. Improving the quality and availability of early childhood learning is a shared investment in our working families and Virginia businesses alike. Investing in our children now is an essential, nonpartisan commitment to our Commonwealth's shared financial future.

Senator Tim Kaine knows that investment in early education today ensures a skilled workforce ready to compete in the global economy tomorrow. The Virginia Chamber of Commerce desires investments leading to a higher quality early childhood education that will bring us to an improved and competitive Commonwealth workforce as well. Today we have the opportunity to renew our economic recovery efforts and ensure a stronger workforce for tomorrow through investment in a quality early education for all Virginia families. 

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Get the Facts:

  • Last week, the Virginia Chamber of Commerce shared Blueprint Virginia, "its strategic vision for growing the economy, which makes clear that businesses have widely embraced the idea that improving workforce development needs to include greater access to high quality early childhood education." (Roanoke Times, November 24, 2013)
  • Gov.-elect Terry McAuliffe, at an appearance before the Chamber last week, said he also shares the goal of expanding Pre-K and making it more available. The non-partisan goal was also shared by Gov. George Allen's administration in the 1990s when it "launched the Virginia Preschool Initiative for at-risk children who are not served by Head Start." (Roanoke Times, November 24, 2013)
  • Senator Tim Kaine opined just Saturday in the Virginian-Pilot:
    • "90 percent of brain development occurs before a child's fifth birthday. Without early education programs that serve children under the age of five, our education system neglects children during the years its effects could be most significant.

    • Pre-K is also good for the economy. Nobel laureate James Heckman, an economist who calculates how public investments accelerate economic growth, has concluded that early childhood education has one of the greatest returns of any public investment.
    • Early learning programs make it more likely that children will do well in elementary school, less likely they will have to repeat a grade and more likely they will be successful in the future.

    • The return on investment may be even higher when children from low-income families gain access to pre-K programs. Research shows that the value of the program is most powerful for children who might otherwise have learning barriers - developmental disabilities, lack of access to books or other learning material, or a home where English isn't the primary language."

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November 19, 2013

The News & Advance reports, "The 2014 General Assembly will have, as one of its first orders of business, a bill seeking to repeal the state transportation taxes enacted in July. Del. Ben Cline, R-Rockbridge County, filed HB 3, which became public Monday, the first day to file bills for next year."

Progressive Point: Businesses and families alike know that investment is vital to the economic success of our communities--not passing the buck on fixing roads, refusing to find revenue to pay for it, and taking a cuts-only approach that stymies economic growth. However, conservatives like Del. Cline want to go back to the same failed policies that have not fixed our transportation problems for years.

We all know Virginia's roads and transportation system are still a mess and will need serious infrastructure investments in order to get better. Home front investments in our infrastructure put Virginians back to work and grow our economy. Last year, Virginia dropped from 10th to 33rd place in CNBC's ranking on state infrastructures and transportation because of failed cuts-only policies like those of Del. Cline. Virginia families deserve leaders that fight for us and for our priorities: investment in our economy, infrastructure, and future growth. The Richmond conservatives' cuts-only budget approach would continue to get us nowhere. 

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Get the Facts:

  • Del. Cline's bill would strip all new revenue from the new transportation law that is designed to raise $6 billion over five years for transportation projects. (Virginian-Pilot, November 19, 2013)
  • Last year, Virginia dropped from 10th to 33rd place in CNBC's ranking on state infrastructures and transportation, causing Virginia to lose it's position as the best state in the country to do business. "Infrastructure -- specifically the state's perpetually clogged highways -- has long been an issue in fast-growing Virginia, CNBC said." (Richmond Times-Dispatch, July 10, 2012)

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November 18, 2013

The Commonwealth Institute reports, "Disparate growth in wages has been trending for decades in Virginia, with the top earners getting farther ahead and lower earners falling behind. As a result, Virginia faces record levels of inequality that threaten the state's economic stability and long-term prosperity because the middle class and low-income households that make up most of the population aren't earning enough to buy the goods and services the economy is capable of producing."

Progressive Point: Virginia's working families pay their fair share of taxes and for that they deserve fair shot at the American dream. To ensure an equal chance, we need an economy that works for all Virginians, and budget priorities that get us there. But instead of encouraging tax fairness, Bob McDonnell's budget legacy will be endless giveaways for big corporations and the wealthy.

Making matters worse, conservative politicians still refuse to fix the sequester, forcing working families across the Commonwealth and the country to scrape by with smaller paychecks, less health care and education, and fewer of the basic services we all rely on. Our Commonwealth's budget is about more than just numbers--it's a roadmap for our community priorities. That means putting people back to work and growing our economy by getting rid of tax breaks and loopholes that don't work. In Virginia, everyone should get a fair shot, pay their fair share, and play by the same set of rules.

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Get the Facts:

Via The Commonwealth Institute:

  • "Over the last 30 years, median wages in Virginia have grown 24 percent, taking account of inflation. But wages for the top 10 percent of earners grew 19 times as fast as those at the bottom.
  • Since 2007, only workers earning the median or higher have seen their wages grow in Virginia.
  • In 2012, the top 10 percent earned 2.7 times as much as the median worker. Only California had a larger disparity.
  • After a slight narrowing of the gap between male and female median wages during the recession, that progress started to unravel in 2012, setting back gains for women to pre-recession level."

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November 14, 2013

The New York Times reports, "The White House has thrown its weight behind a proposal to raise the federal minimum wage to at least $10 an hour. 'The president has long supported raising the minimum wage so hard-working Americans can have a decent wage for a day's work to support their families and make ends meet,' a White House official said. President Obama, the official continued, supports the Harkin-Miller bill, also known as the Fair Minimum Wage Act, which would raise the federal minimum wage to $10.10 an hour, from its current $7.25."

Progressive Point: This is America, where growth comes from the middle out, not the top down. People want to be working hard and earning a decent wage that can support a family. To do that we need to put more money in the pockets of hardworking Americans, not continue the failed "trickle down" policies of the last decade that lined the pockets of the rich and left most American families worse off.

The problem for many families is work doesn't pay enough. Greedy executives keep wages low and let taxpayers feed their workforce with food stamps. A higher minimum wage gives working families more money to spend, which in turn gives our community businesses more customers. America's greatness comes from everyone striving for a shot at the American dream, not lower tax rates for the wealthy. Raising the minimum wage will give our economy the shot in the arm it needs now, after a manufactured government shutdown that cost Virginia working families so much.

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Get the Facts:

  • Via the Center for American Progress: Why raising the minimum wage is the right choice for Virginia:

    • 530,000: Number of  people in Virginia who would be directly affected by increasing the federal minimum wage to $10.10
    • 228,000: Number of people in Virginia who would be indirectly affected by increasing the federal minimum wage.
    • Increasing the federal minimum wage would have a total wage increase of $1,421,474,000 for Virginia and a total average increase to individual annual wages of $2,455.
    • Increasing the federal minimum wage in Virginia disproportionately impacts women, 55.7% to 44.3% who would see an average increase to their annual wages by $2,336. [EPI, 11/13/13]
  • Congress's recent government shutdown severely hurt low-wage government contract workers who were not paid during the closure. Unlike most federal employees, contractors who get paid some of the lowest wages in the government as janitors, security guards, and food-service workers do not receive back pay for the time they didn't work during the shutdown. (Washington Post, November 13, 2013)

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October 22, 2013

The Washington Post reports, "Virginia gubernatorial candidate Ken Cuccinelli II said Monday he was uncertain whether he would have voted for the bipartisan measure on Capitol Hill that brought the 16-day federal shutdown to an end. 'I don't know whether I would have voted for it,' Cuccinelli told reporters in response to a question."

Progressive Point: We need leaders who care about the real life problems facing middle class Virginians, despite the priorities of Tea Party shutdown extremists. Across the Commonwealth, blue-collar workers, families, and veterans were stuck struggling with the consequences of the GOP shutdown that Ken Cuccinelli now says he's not sure he would have even voted to end. Our families deserve a government that works, and leaders who denounce extreme antics that kept thousands of Virginians from their jobs.

The Tea Party shutdown caused serious economic harm to hundreds of thousands of federal workers and their families, many right here in our Commonwealth. But conservatives like Cuccinelli would still rather hurt their own constituents than see health care reform succeed. We count on public workers to keep our country and our Commonwealth running -- to inspect airplanes and food, run parks and treat sick kids. But for far-right conservatives, the less our government does, the better. While many Virginia families suffered because of the senseless shutdown, Tea Party Republicans like Cuccinelli don't seem to regret it and can't wait to do it again.

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  • The cost of the shutdown according to ABC News:
    • $3.1 billion in lost government services. Although furloughed workers will get their back pay, taxpayers won't see the products. (Source: I.H.S.)

    • According to the U.S. Travel Association: There has been $152 million per day in all spending related to travel lost because of the shutdown. As many as 450,000 American workers supported by travel may be affected.

    • According to the National Park Service: They welcome more than 700,000 people per day usually in October and visitors spend an estimated $32 million per day impact in communities near national parks and contribute $76 million each day to the national economy. Those revenues were lost.

    • According to Destination D.C., the official tourism corporation of D.C.: There is a 9 percent decrease in hotel occupancy from the last week in September before the shutdown to the first week of October during the shutdown. This year, hotel occupancy was down 74.4 percent for the week Sept. 29 to Oct. 5 compared to the 2012 numbers. (Source: Smith Travel Research, Inc.) In 2012, an estimated $6.2 billion of visitor spending supported more than 75,300 jobs.


  • The hit to Washington, D.C. has been especially hard, according to Mayor Vince Gray's office:
    • Regional (D.C./Maryland/Virginia) impact: $217 million a day (17.6 percent of the region's economy) from lost/deferred federal and contractor wages.

    • Washington, D.C. economic activity impact: $44 million a week decrease

    • Washington, D.C. tax revenue impact: $6 million a week decrease

    • Hospitality sector observations: 7 percent decrease in restaurant traffic in the first week in October compared to 2012 and 13,000 fewer hotel bookings (8.3 percent decrease) and $2 million less room revenue in the first week in October compared to 2012.

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October 21, 2013

The News & Advance reports, "Thursday morning, when the Republican-forced partial shutdown of the federal government ended, we checked to see how Central Virginia's two congressmen -- Robert Hurt of the Fifth District and Bob Goodlatte of the Sixth District -- had voted. The answer didn't surprise us too much, but we are more than a little disappointed in our two member of the House of Representatives who voted against reopening the government and keeping the U.S. and global economies safe and sound." The Martinsville Bulletin also reports, "A year from now, if U.S. Reps. Morgan Griffith and Robert Hurt are running for re-election, we hope voters remember that on Oct. 16, 2013, these two cast votes that would have sent the nation into default."

Progressive Point: We count on public workers to keep our country and our Commonwealth running -- to inspect airplanes and food, run parks and treat sick kids. But for House conservatives, the less our government does, the better. Their shutdown cost our economy $24 billion and drove us to the brink of a catastrophic default. While many Virginia families suffered because of the senseless shutdown, Tea Party Republicans can't wait to do it again.

Americans across the country were united by their frustration with the shutdown. It denied treatment to kids with cancer, disrupted military funerals for Americans killed in the line of duty, and took money out of the pockets of everyone from firefighters to small business owners. The Tea Party shutdown caused serious economic harm done to hundreds of thousands of federal workers and their families, many right here in our Commonwealth. Representatives Goodlatte, Griffith, Hurt, and Forbes' political stand threatened the foundation of the nation and the financial security of Virginia families. Virginia can't afford Congressmen who vote against the very job they were elected to do just for their partisan priorities of fighting health care reform.

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Get the Facts:

  • Via the Washington Post - How Congress voted on the government shutdown:
    • Virginia Congressmen who voted to keep the shutdown: Reps. Randy Forbes, Bob Goodlatte, Moran Griffith, Robert Hurt

    • Virginia Congressmen who voted to end the shutdown: Reps. Eric Cantor, Gerry Connolly, Jim Moran, Scott Rigell, Bobby Scott, Rob Wittman, and Frank Wolf


  • The cost of the shutdown according to ABC News:
    • $3.1 billion in lost government services. Although furloughed workers will get their back pay, taxpayers won't see the products. (Source: I.H.S.)

    • According to the U.S. Travel Association: There has been $152 million per day in all spending related to travel lost because of the shutdown. As many as 450,000 American workers supported by travel may be affected.

    • According to the National Park Service: They welcome more than 700,000 people per day usually in October and visitors spend an estimated $32 million per day impact in communities near national parks and contribute $76 million each day to the national economy. Those revenues were lost.

    • According to Destination D.C., the official tourism corporation of D.C.: There is a 9 percent decrease in hotel occupancy from the last week in September before the shutdown to the first week of October during the shutdown. This year, hotel occupancy was down 74.4 percent for the week Sept. 29 to Oct. 5 compared to the 2012 numbers. (Source: Smith Travel Research, Inc.) In 2012, an estimated $6.2 billion of visitor spending supported more than 75,300 jobs.


  • The hit to Washington, D.C. has been especially hard, according to Mayor Vince Gray's office:
    • Regional (D.C./Maryland/Virginia) impact: $217 million a day (17.6 percent of the region's economy) from lost/deferred federal and contractor wages.

    • Washington, D.C. economic activity impact: $44 million a week decrease

    • Washington, D.C. tax revenue impact: $6 million a week decrease

    • Hospitality sector observations: 7 percent decrease in restaurant traffic in the first week in October compared to 2012 and 13,000 fewer hotel bookings (8.3 percent decrease) and $2 million less room revenue in the first week in October compared to 2012.

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October 17, 2013

ABC News reports, "The 16-day government shutdown is over, but the country has taken at least a $24 billion hit along the way. The financial ratings agency Standard & Poor's said Wednesday the shutdown 'to date has taken $24 billion out of the economy' equaling $1.5 billion dollars a day and 'shaved at least 0.6 percent off annualized fourth-quarter 2013 GDP growth.' These estimates are for the overall economy, taking into account not just federal wages and productivity, but all the ripple effects and costs as well."

Progressive Point: Keeping our government running is the job Congress gets paid to do. Senators Warner and Kaine and seven of our Virginia Congressmen from both sides of the aisle get it. But even last night, when it has never been more dire, four Virginia House Republicans, Congressmen Goodlatte, Griffith, Hurt, and Forbes, refused to do that job. They refused to fund our government's basic operations because they refused to compromise and accept Obamacare.

The government shutdown meant keeping working Virginians from their jobs when our economy is still fragile.  Simply put, four Virginia Tea Party congressmen voted last night to hurt their own constituents rather than see President Obama succeed. They lost the argument. Obamacare was passed by Congress, upheld by the Supreme Court, and President Obama was reelected. But instead of accepting our democratic and constitutional process, they tried to hold our government hostage to get their way. Today thousands of working Virginians can get back to their jobs, despite Congressmen Goodlatte, Griffith, Hurt, and Forbes refusing to do theirs.

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Get the Facts:

Via the Washington Post - How Congress voted on the government shutdown:

Virginia Congressmen who voted to keep the shutdown: Reps. Randy Forbes, Bob Goodlatte, Moran Griffith, Robert Hurt

Virginia Congressmen who voted to end the shutdown: Reps. Eric Cantor, Gerry Connolly, Jim Moran, Scott Rigell, Bobby Scott, Rob Wittman, and Frank Wolf

The cost of the shutdown according to ABC News:

  •  
    • $3.1 billion in lost government services. Although furloughed workers will get their back pay, taxpayers won't see the products. (Source: I.H.S.)
    • According to the U.S. Travel Association: There has been $152 million per day in all spending related to travel lost because of the shutdown. As many as 450,000 American workers supported by travel may be affected.
    • According to the National Park Service: They welcome more than 700,000 people per day usually in October and visitors spend an estimated $32 million per day impact in communities near national parks and contribute $76 million each day to the national economy. Those revenues were lost.
    • According to Destination D.C., the official tourism corporation of D.C.: There is a 9 percent decrease in hotel occupancy from the last week in September before the shutdown to the first week of October during the shutdown. This year, hotel occupancy was down 74.4 percent for the week Sept. 29 to Oct. 5 compared to the 2012 numbers. (Source: Smith Travel Research, Inc.) In 2012, an estimated $6.2 billion of visitor spending supported more than 75,300 jobs.

The hit to Washington, D.C. has been especially hard, according to Mayor Vince Gray's office:

  •  
    •  
      • Regional (D.C./Maryland/Virginia) impact: $217 million a day (17.6 percent of the region's economy) from lost/deferred federal and contractor wages.
      • Washington, D.C. economic activity impact: $44 million a week decrease
      • Washington, D.C. tax revenue impact: $6 million a week decrease
      • Hospitality sector observations: 7 percent decrease in restaurant traffic in the first week in October compared to 2012 and 13,000 fewer hotel bookings (8.3 percent decrease) and $2 million less room revenue in the first week in October compared to 2012.

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October 10, 2013

The Hill reports, "A national veterans advocacy group [VoteVets.org] is launching a national ad that features a veteran chastising Republicans for their role in the shutdown... It features Redge Raynard, a 90-year-old World War II Navy veteran, addressing the camera and recounting fighting in 'epic battles,' a reference to a comment Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) made about being 'locked in an epic battle' over the shutdown. 'Your shutdown is not an epic battle. It's bad governance. Americans and American Veterans like me depend on the entire government being open,' Raynard says. 'I served this nation with honor. Today, I can't say the same about most Republicans in Congress.'"

Progressive Point: It is time for our representatives to do their job. It is time for John Boehner to do his job. It is time for Congress to vote. We do not want to see any more kids with cancer denied treatment, veterans denied benefits, or airline safety inspectors kept off the job. The American people want our government working again.

A government shutdown hurts Virginia veterans and working families. It is keeping thousands of us from our jobs and stopping essential services for those who have served our country. And still, conservatives in the House would rather hurt their own constituents than see health care reform succeed. Keeping our government running is the job Congress gets paid to do. Simply put they are refusing to do their job which is keeping thousands of Virginians from theirs and keeping government closed to our veterans who depend upon it.

Watch the video here.

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  • On Saturday, the House of Represenatives voted unanimously to approve a bipartisan bill, sponsored by Rep. Jim Moran, that guarantees back pay to the hundreds of thousands of federal employees currently furloughed by the government shutdown. (Military Times, October 5, 2013)

  • Meanwhile on Saturday, Sen. Ted Cruz headlined a fundraiser for the "gay-bashing, abortion-hating, home-school-loving" Family Foundation in Richmond where Ken Cuccinelli was also featured. But Cuccinelli "risks infuriating everyday Virginians, to say nothing of the state's 170,000 federal civilian employees, who dislike the government shutdown much more than the health-care law." (Washington Post, October 4, 2013)

  • In addition to the government shutdown's extreme effects on thousands of civilian federal employees in Virginia and the Commonwealth's economy, Senator Mark Warner also said that it "is threatening the country's national security because about 70 percent of the country's intelligence community are civilian, and are subject to being furloughed." (Daily Progress, October 2, 2013)

  • "2,000 workers at the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard were sent home on Tuesday, and commissaries in northeast and southeast Virginia, which provide inexpensive groceries to members of the military, closed on Wednesday." (Mother Jones, October 2, 2013)

  • At a conservative rally in Washington, DC just two years ago, E.W. Jackson was even caught on camera chanting "Cut it, or shut it" in support of shutting down the federal government if Tea Party budget demands weren't met. (Washington Post, October 3, 2013)

  • Virginia received more than $38 billion in federal contracts last year - more than any other state in the country. Additionally, almost 175,000 Virginians work for the federal government. (Politico, October 3, 2013)

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October 7, 2013

The Washington Post opines, "We suspect that if [Ken] Cuccinelli or [E.W.] Jackson were in the Senate, rather than on the statewide ballot this year, they would have no trouble siding with Mr. Cruz and the other conservative absolutists who have forced the government to its knees. There is very little in either man's background to suggest they'd embrace pragmatism over what they regard as principle. By contrast, Virginia has benefited from statewide elected officials who have tended to govern from the middle, whatever their ideological preferences."

Progressive Point: Virginians across the Commonwealth want government to get back to work so they can get back to their jobs. The way forward is simple: vote. This is a democracy.  One vote and we're back in action again, because even many House Republicans, including four from Virginia, realize this is madness and are ready to be done.

There is hope since every member of the House on Saturday agreed to ensure hundreds of thousands of furloughed workers receive back pay--but only if Tea Party obstructionists like Ted Cruz get out of the way. Virginia families do not want to be furloughed, see any more kids with cancer denied treatment, veterans denied benefits, or airline safety inspectors kept off the job. But that's what is happening right now because of a minority of extremists. Virginians want government to get back to work now so they can get back to their jobs today.

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Get the Facts:

  • On Saturday, the House of Represenatives voted unanimously to approve a bipartisan bill, sponsored by Rep. Jim Moran, that guarantees back pay to the hundreds of thousands of federal employees currently furloughed by the government shutdown. (Military Times, October 5, 2013)

  • Meanwhile on Saturday, Sen. Ted Cruz headlined a fundraiser for the "gay-bashing, abortion-hating, home-school-loving" Family Foundation in Richmond where Ken Cuccinelli was also featured. But Cuccinelli "risks infuriating everyday Virginians, to say nothing of the state's 170,000 federal civilian employees, who dislike the government shutdown much more than the health-care law." (Washington Post, October 4, 2013)

  • In addition to the government shutdown's extreme effects on thousands of civilian federal employees in Virginia and the Commonwealth's economy, Senator Mark Warner also said that it "is threatening the country's national security because about 70 percent of the country's intelligence community are civilian, and are subject to being furloughed." (Daily Progress, October 2, 2013)

  • "2,000 workers at the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard were sent home on Tuesday, and commissaries in northeast and southeast Virginia, which provide inexpensive groceries to members of the military, closed on Wednesday." (Mother Jones, October 2, 2013)

  • At a conservative rally in Washington, DC just two years ago, E.W. Jackson was even caught on camera chanting "Cut it, or shut it" in support of shutting down the federal government if Tea Party budget demands weren't met. (Washington Post, October 3, 2013)

  • Virginia received more than $38 billion in federal contracts last year - more than any other state in the country. Additionally, almost 175,000 Virginians work for the federal government. (Politico, October 3, 2013)

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October 4, 2013

The Washington Times reports, Ken "Cuccinelli and Sen. Ted Cruz, Texas Republican, are scheduled to appear in Richmond on Saturday at an annual fundraising dinner for the Family Foundation. Mr. Cruz has been leading the charge in trying to force the defunding of President Obama's health care overhaul before Congress agrees to approve a temporary spending measure."

Progressive Point: It's simple: when government isn't working it puts Virginians out of work. However, in one of the worst weeks ever for our Commonwealth's economy and when tens of thousands of our families are furloughed, Ken Cuccinelli is choosing to stand with Sen. Ted Cruz and his shutdown. Our families deserve a government that works, and leaders who denounce these extreme antics that are keeping working Virginians from their jobs.

It shouldn't surprise us that the same antics that Ted Cruz has pushed on Congress is the same politics that Ken Cuccinelli has pushed in the past himself. With Virginia's own budget, Cuccinelli also likes threatening to shut things down or not pass a budget if he doesn't get 100% of what he wants. Instead of Ted Cruz fundraisers, we need leaders focused on ending furloughs, putting Virginians back to work, and get government running again now. 

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Tomorrow, please join us in Ricmond to rally against Cruz, Cuccinelli, and their government shutdown:

What: Rally at Cuccinelli/Cruz Family Foundation Gala
When: Saturday, October 5th, 2013
Time: 5:00pm
Where: Greater Richmond Convention Center -- Entrance at the corner of 5th and E. Broad Street

The federal government shutdown is Cruz's creation, and it's keeping tens of thousands of Virginians out of work. It takes a lot of nerve for Ken Cuccinelli to campaign with Ted Cruz in Virginia during the middle of the government shutdown that Cruz is personally responsible for. Make sure you're there with us to greet him.

Get the Facts:

  • In addition to the government shutdown's extreme effects on thousands of civilian federal employees in Virginia and the Commonwealth's economy, Senator Mark Warner also said that it "is threatening the country's national security because about 70 percent of the country's intelligence community are civilian, and are subject to being furloughed." (Daily Progress, October 2, 2013)

  • "2,000 workers at the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard were sent home on Tuesday, and commissaries in northeast and southeast Virginia, which provide inexpensive groceries to members of the military, closed on Wednesday." (Mother Jones, October 2, 2013)

  • At a conservative rally in Washington, DC just two years ago, E.W. Jackson was even caught on camera chanting "Cut it, or shut it" in support of shutting down the federal government if Tea Party budget demands weren't met. (Washington Post, October 3, 2013)

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October 3, 2013

The Richmond Times-Dispatch reports, "There are now four Virginia Republicans in the House of Representatives who would back a clean spending bill - without provisions to delay the federal health care law - to keep the government running. We reported today that Rep. Scott Rigell, 2nd, and Rep. Frank Wolf, 10th, supported a clean CR. Now it appears Rep. Robert J. Wittman, 1st, and Rep. J. Randy Forbes, 4th, would back such a measure as well."

Progressive Point: This government shutdown is crippling thousands of Virginia families and our Commonwealth's economy. It could all end today if just a small group of ultra-conservatives in the House, who are supported by Ted Cruz, Eric Cantor, and Ken Cuccinelli, get out of the way. Bipartisan support to move forward includes four Republican and three Democratic Congressmen as well as both Senators Mark Warner and Tim Kaine. We need to put Virginians back to work and get government running again now.

The government shutdown means more Virginians are out of work when our economy is still fragile. But ideological extremists in the House would rather hurt their own constituents and our Commonwealth than see President Obama succeed. Keeping our government running is the job Congress gets paid to do. Simply put, they are refusing to do their job: they are refusing to fund our government's basic operations unless they get extraordinary legislative changes that they can't get the right way because most Americans don't want them. Virginia Congressmen on both sides of the aisle get it: we need to end this shutdown now.

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  • Virginia received more than $38 billion in federal contracts last year - more than any other state in the country. Additionally, almost 175,000 Virginians work for the federal government. (Politico, October 3, 2013)

  • In addition to the government shutdown's extreme effects on thousands of civilian federal employees in Virginia and the Commonwealth's economy, Senator Mark Warner also said that it "is threatening the country's national security because about 70 percent of the country's intelligence community are civilian, and are subject to being furloughed." (Daily Progress, October 2, 2013)

  • "2,000 workers at the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard were sent home on Tuesday, and commissaries in northeast and southeast Virginia, which provide inexpensive groceries to members of the military, closed on Wednesday." (Mother Jones, October 2, 2013)

  • Yesterday, the Free Lance-Star reported Virginia's economy is already hurting:
    • "Word from the U.S. Census that Virginians' median income declined 2.2 percent last year could be a precursor to news even more grim unless the government gets back in business quickly. After just one day, the shutdown is taking a toll on both government workers and private industry here."

    • The "Census also reports that the poverty rate in Virginia rose slightly, from 11.5 percent to 11.7 percent." That "rate remains above 2007's 10 percent, demonstrating the continued inability of the poor to achieve any post-recession income growth."

    • Additionally, "the number of sub-$35,000 Virginia households continues to grow."

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September 30, 2013

The Richmond Times-Dispatch reports, "With just hours left for Congress to reach a deal, Virginia is bracing for the possible impact of a partial shutdown of the federal government on Tuesday. An impasse appeared more likely late Saturday night. The Republican-controlled House pushed toward passage of legislation imposing a one-year delay on parts of the nation's new health care law and repealing a tax on medical devices as the price for avoiding a partial government shutdown. Senate Democrats pledged to reject the measure and the White House vowed a veto."

Progressive Point: Obamacare is the law of the land. The House of Representatives should listen to their constituents who oppose repealing the law and want our leaders to work together to implement and improve it. Instead, conservatives in Congress are manufacturing a crisis to shut down the government in order to give power back to insurance companies.

A one year delay is repeal by another name and will hurt middle class families. The House will take away the benefits and protections millions of Americans already receive from the Affordable Care Act. It would mean higher premiums, more left without insurance and higher deficits. Conservatives in Congress need to stop sabotaging our economy to satisfy their obsession with slashing Medicare and Social Security, and gutting Obamacare.  Working Virginians want their leaders to focus on creating jobs and strengthening the economy.

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Get the Facts: Via the Center for American Progress:

What a shutdown means:

$2 billion bill for the American people. If Republicans shut down the government for the same amount of time as in 1995 and 1996, it would cost the American people more than $2 billion. [The Washington Post, 9/23/2013]

More than 2 million military service members may have their pay delayed.  If the government shuts down for more than 10 days, more than 2 million military service members may see their pay delayed. [Military.com, 9/20/13; Huffington Post, 6/19/13; DoD]

More than 737,000 civilian military personnel may have their pay delayed. If the government shuts down, the Department of Defense estimates that half of the civilian workforce would be furloughed without pay and the other half would have to work for delayed pay. [Military.com, 9/20/13; Huffington Post, 6/19/13; DoD]

More than 8.9 million pregnant women, recent mothers, and young children may lose their nutritional support. According to the Department of Agriculture's plans in the case of a government shutdown, in the event of a shutdown, there are no additional federal funds to support the Special Supplemental Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC)'s clinical services, food benefits, and administrative costs. State funds and contingency funds would not be enough to cover the entire month of October, meaning pregnant women, recent mothers, and their children would lose their nutritional supports when their WIC cards run out.  As of 2012, WIC served 8.9 million participants. [USDA; USDA, Food and Nutritional Services]

401 national parks will be closed. During a shutdown, "[a]ll the national parks will close." Other attractions like the Smithsonian Institution and the National Zoo will also close." [Christian Science Monitor, 9/25/2013; House Appropriations Committee, 9/2013Department of Interior]

Nearly 6 million small businesses could see their financial support delayed.  In FY2012, the SBA's flagship 7(a) and 504 loans programs approved 53,847 applications and supported 571,383 jobs, for an average of just over 1,000 applications per week. A shut down would put a stop to this critical source of small business credit until the government resumes operation. [Small Business Administration FY14 Budget Justification; SBA]

More than 800,000 federal employees may be furloughed without pay.   During a government shutdown, more than 800,000 federal employees around the country could be furloughed without pay.  [Washington Post, 9/23/13; Think Progress, 9/24/2013]

Veterans benefits may be delayed.   During a shutdown, new veterans' educational, compensation and pension benefits processing could be delayed. During the 1995-96 shutdowns, more than 400,000 veterans saw their disability benefits and pension claims delayed, while educational benefits were delayed for 170,000 veterans. [JEC; Army Times, 2/3/11; CNN, 1/4/96; VA]

Americans may have their Social Security checks delayed. Although checks for current Social Security benefits would still go out during a shutdown, applications for new benefits would be delayed and services for seniors could be significantly curtailed. As a result of furloughs and service cuts during the last shutdown, 112,000 claims for Social Security and disability benefits were not be taken, 212,000 applications for Social Security Numbers were not taken, and 800,000 callers were denied service on the Social Security Administration's 800 number. [BPC; SSA History; SAA, 2012]

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September 27, 2013

The Washington Post reports, "A liberal think tank's analysis of Ken Cuccinelli II's economic plan for Virginia says the Republican gubernatorial candidate would cut a $1.4 billion hole in the state's budget to shave $6,391 off a millionaire's tax bill, all at a time when the state economy seems less able to withstand such a blow. The tax proposal would also put another $985 in Cuccinelli's own pocket, based on his 2012 salary as attorney general, the report says. That's 10 times higher than the average tax break a middle-class family would receive, the group says."

Progressive Point: We need an economy that works for all Virginians, and budget priorities that get us there. Ken Cuccinelli's tax plan would benefit the already wealthy, giving away thousands of dollars in tax cuts and leaving the middle class behind. Leadership is standing up to campaign donors and for working families, and that's one thing Cuccinelli won't do.

Everybody should get a fair shot in Virginia, but Cuccinelli's plan gives another leg up to those who are already succeeding while leaving behind those hit hardest by the recession. Working families and small business owners pay their taxes so we can invest in Virginia and make everyone better off. If we want to fix Virginia's budget problems asking corporations to pay their fair share is the first step.

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  •  
    • Cuccinelli's tax plan would give millionaires additional tax breaks of more than $6,000, while working-class Virginians get little to no tax relief. A Virginia millionaire will enjoy a $6,391 tax cut, while almost 40 percent of low- and middle-income households in Virginia will see little to no tax breaks from Cuccinelli's proposed tax plan.
    • Cuccinelli's tax plan would mean deeper cuts to investments in education and transportation. Cuccinelli's tax plan would put a $1.4 billion hole in Virginia's budget during a fragile recovery. Because Virginia has a balanced-budget requirement, this loss in revenue must be made up in other areas. Cuccinelli has not stated how he would pay for this costly and unnecessary tax break for millionaires, but the math suggests that critical services and investments that benefit middle-class Virginia families would be at stake.
    • Cuccinelli's record jeopardizes major investments in transportation. ;During his time in public office, Cuccinelli has opposed several measures funding state transportation projects. His history of opposition to transportation funding calls into question his willingness to make needed investments in Virginia's infrastructure.
    • Cuccinelli's continued opposition to increasing Virginia's stagnant minimum wage will hurt Virginia's economy and its workers. Increasing the minimum wage to $10.10 would positively impact wages for 758,000 working Virginians. In 2007, Cuccinelli--then a state senator--opposed a minimum-wage increase, while three-fourths of his colleagues supported raising it. He continues to oppose a real living wage today.
    • Cuccinelli's ideological resistance to Medicaid expansion would cost Virginia jobs, billions in revenue, and health care for working families. Medicaid expansion would help more than 400,000 Virginians access health care coverage and bring $21 billion to the commonwealth, but Cuccinelli has refused the funds, which will instead flow to other states.

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