I stand with my colleagues in their opposition to many of the dangerous and irresponsible proposals within the Republican proposed budget. In an effort to be a #lampbearer I want to make more available my recent speech from the Senate floor so that citizens can get a clearer picture of just how dangerous this budget can be.
I stand today to second Stevenson IV, Stevenson V, and Stevenson VII.
While I would love to say that 100% of water in this country is safe to drink, that sadly is not the case. In addition to the debacle of Flint, Michigan, there are people who depend on well water that need access to purification supplies and education. There are still an alarming number of lead pipes, more than ten million families. We know that lead can lead to stunted development and moderate to severe cognitive degeneration. We must keep funding initiatives to protect the tens of millions of families in this country that lack access to clean and safe water. That is why I support Stevenson Amendment IV.
We are all in this together. This is most true when we think about the families. The family unit is the foundation of our society; but families do not live in isolation and no family is an island. Neighborhood and Community grants fund programming to that help build stronger connections between families, between people. They provide Americans all across the nation with health education, safe after-school activities (which we know is a top measure for reducing both drug use and teen pregnancy), opportunities to build skills, and provide support for local non-profit initiatives. This is why I support Stevenson Amendment V.
Imagine a program that inspires tens of thousands of young people to ban together to create and improve communities across the nation, from restoring playgrounds, to helping rural citizens access food and medicine, to mentoring our children who are most at-risk, to helping our seniors continue to live strong, confident lives in their later years. Imagine that these tens of thousands of young people are not just having an imapct on the millions they directly and indirectly affect with their work, but also grow and develop into the leaders of tomorrow. Know what I like about this vision exercise? We do not have to imagine it. We already have it: AmeriCorps. Why my colleagues across the aisle want to dismantle a cornerstone program that has lasted nearly a century, that has employed thousands, improved the lives of millions of citizens and communities across the nation, and is a quintessential representation of American values - I do not know. I do know that I and my Democratic colleagues will do all we can to stand in their way. This is why I support Stevenson Amendment VII.“