"I consider myself one of the strongest supporters of the Arts. But at a time when we are fighting to prevent the traffic nightmare the Mark Center poses for Department of Defense employees, local residents, and all commuters on I-395, this is a very questionable way to spend $600,000. It would seem that money could be much more appropriately used to improve transportation infrastructure around the site, rather than to depict a children's fairy tale."
"Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims of yesterday's bombing in Jerusalem. The return of terrorist violence to Jerusalem is a disturbing and discouraging sign that too much time has passed since Israelis and Palestinians have engaged one another in a meaningful way to resolve their conflict.
"Along with the horrific murders in the West Bank settlement of Itamar and the escalating violence in Gaza, yesterday's attack is a reminder that innocent people suffer the worst effects of this conflict. Whatever message the misguided author of this act intended, the message for those of us who seek peace is clear: the Obama Administration, the Israeli Government, the Palestinian Authority and the international community must move urgently toward serious, substantive negotiations toward a durable peace before it is too late."
"Public television and radio stations are in virtually every corner of the United States and are valuable community partners, particularly in rural and underserved areas," said Moran. "Most people like their local NPR station. I like mine. WAMU and WETA are great. But the funding restrictions put forward in this legislation strike at the heart of these great stations. It will cripple their ability to produce local programming."
The United States has 900 public radio stations, providing more than 27 million Americans with free over-the-air programming each week. Particularly in rural areas, federal funding is critical for the survival of local stations, as it can comprise as much as 50% of their budgets.
"This legislation would prohibit public radio stations from using federal funds to acquire beloved programs such as This American Life, Prairie Home Companion, Morning Edition, Car Talk, All Things Considered, and many, many others," Moran continued. "Eliminating funding for NPR would do little to rein in our national debt. It will not create jobs. Let's stop picking on public radio, use our limited floor time to debate the real issues facing our nation."
Rep. Moran's full statement below:
"As we learn of the devastating effects of the earthquake and tsunamis sweeping Northeast Japan, I offer condolences for the loss of life and prayers for survivors and all the people of Japan," said Moran. "The strong bond of friendship between Japan and the United States is valued now more than ever."
U.S. Forces Japan reported all American military personnel are accounted for with no reports of injuries. The State Department has opened a hotline (1-800-407-4747) for those seeking information on specific U.S. citizens in Japan.
"I encourage those still in harm's way to heed the advice of emergency personnel," said Moran. "In times of tragedy we rely on community and friendship. I support President Obama's offer of assistance and will work closely with my colleagues on the House Appropriations Committee to ensure his request is followed."
Full text of Rep. Moran's letter to Ambassador Fujisaki below:
Large and unfunded Bush tax cuts took this country off the path of fiscal sustainability. U.S. tax revenue for 2010 will be at a historically low level of 15 percent of our GDP. A midpoint of 20 percent has historically generated the strongest periods of growth in the private sector since WWII. This will require thoughtful but substantial spending cuts accompanied by a return to the tax rates of the 1990's (a time of unparalleled prosperity).
Having starved the government of revenue, conservatives now aim to cripple it. As we saw last week during debate on the continuing resolution, Republicans are seeking to defund environmental and financial industry regulation and programs that educate our youth and improve the lives of the least fortunate. These are being sold as necessary and shared sacrifices due to a fiscal crisis. All the while, they refuse to ask for sacrifices from the wealthiest in our society who benefit the most from a strong military, a modern transportation and communications infrastructure and an educated workforce.
This country does face a long-term structural deficit driven primarily by the rise in healthcare costs and a decline in the manufacturing sector. But in the short term, Hoover-style austerity will only stifle economic development and increase unemployment, making it harder for us to invest, innovate, and grow our economy.