A picture of Representative Steve Israel
Steve I.
Democrat NY 3

About Rep. Steve
  • The Middle Class Deserves a Break

    by Representative Steve Israel

    Posted on 2015-01-21

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    ISRAEL asked and was given permission to address the House for 1 minute and to revise and extend his remarks.) Mr. ISRAEL. Mr. Speaker, the three most important topics in the President's State of the Union last night were, in order of importance: middle class, middle class, and middle class.

    Now, some have called the President's desire to strengthen the middle class with a tax cut class warfare. Well, I have got to tell you, if you have been in the middle class, you feel like you have survived a war over the past many years.

    There was the Great Recession, which was created by bad economic policies between 2000 and 2008. You lost your home values. You lost your 401(k). You watched your paychecks shrink.

    Now you have gone through a recovery where the statistics tell you that things are going well: the economy has improved 12 percent; that is good news. Corporate profits are up 46 percent; that is good news. The stock market is up 92 percent; that is good news. But you look at your pay stub and say: Where is my good news? I am not keeping pace with everybody else.

    In 1992, Jim Carville famously said, ``It's the economy, stupid.'' In 2015, it is my paycheck, stupid. It is paramount that this Congress, Democrats and Republicans, find ways to provide tax cuts to provide the break that the great middle class deserves and the break that has eluded them for too long.

    This is not class warfare, Mr. Speaker. This is growing the great and strong middle class of this country.


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