December 1996 Home   Newsletters

January 1997

February 1997

President's Message (Astrid Monson)
League Testifies on Proposed Tax Changes (Astrid Monson)
December General Membership Planning Meeting (Jean Aoki & Astrid Monson)
Member Alert
This Land Was Your Land (Donella Meadows)
In Memoriam
Sexual Harassment (Ina Percival)
Vote Count (Arlene Ellis)
Domestic Violence and Welfare (Suzanne Meisenzahl)
Planning & Zoning Committee Needs More Members (Astrid Monson)
Orientation Meeting (Grace Furukawa)

Member Alert

In the early days of the 1997 session, the U.S. House of Representatives and U.S. Senate are expected to vote once again on a constitutional amendment to require a federal balanced budget. Congress wisely rejected the proposal in the past.

The amendment would have dangerous economic and governmental ramifications. It would effectively limit the flexibility of U.S. fiscal policy by making it very difficult for the federal government to stimulate economic activity through deficit spending during serous recessions, respond to natural disasters or cover major bank failures that might cause a deficit.

In 1993, after mounting public pressures, Congress passed a deficit reduction plan that will reduce the federal deficit by twothirds by the year 1999. This action is the responsible way to handle the deficit problem as opposed to a "quick fix" which would do more harm than good in the long run. A constitutional amendment to balance the federal budget is not the answer – responsible, persistent deficit reduction is a more prudent way to deal with the problem while maintaining our democratic system of government. Time would be better spent crafting a plan that would gradually further reduce the deficit rather than needlessly writing economic policy into the Constitution.

In addition, a constitutional amendment would seriously undermine majority rule in Congress by requiring a three-fifths majority for passage of any legislation to meet federal obligations that would require a deficit.

Please write or phone your representative and senators now and urge a vote against this constitutional amendment.

Tell them that such an amendment is an unsound proposal which endangers the economy.

League of Women Voters- USA

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