Call to Action: No Grand Bargain on the backs of Working People

It is cruel and divisive to whip up hysteria around the so-called "fiscal cliff" crisis. The calls to make benefit cuts to Social Security and Medicare go in the opposite direction of the mandate delivered by the majority of voters on November 6. The message of the election clearly was: tax the wealthy more and protect Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid.

Our country will be stronger by focusing on the real deficits we face. The deficit of jobs, the deficit of health care, of education, the deficit of infrastructure after decades of neglect. The deficit of renewable energy.

All of these deficits can best be addressed by employing 15 million who are without job or working part-time, and putting people to work meeting these real needs. In the first place, hire the unemployed to clean up from the devastation of storm Sandy.

Hundreds of millions of dollars are being spent by the wealthy 1%, through their tax free foundations, to spread lies and panic about Social Security and play on our fears so they can get their hands on the hard-earned Social Security taxes that we have paid.

We support the initiatives of the AFL CIO and many other organizations to demand that the tax breaks which the super rich have enjoyed come to an end, and that no cuts are made to Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid. We strongly support President Obama's determination that the tax cuts for the wealthy expire. But that is not enough.

We reject any "compromise" that balances very modest taxes on the wealthy with severe spending cuts on top of cuts already made that will affect all working class families, starting with children and youth and the most vulnerable.

Instead, an enhanced version of the American Jobs Act should be put forward as part of a green New Deal to create millions of jobs for infrastructure, renewable energy, education and support to state and local government services. Until these programs take effect, Congress must immediately extend the federal Unemployment Compensation program.

To finance these programs, the expiration of the Bush era tax cuts for the wealthy should be only the starting point. We support calls for a financial transaction tax, for closing the capital gains loophole and increasing tax rates on millionaires to the level of the prosperous 1960's, and cutting the level of Pentagon spending in order to meet pressing domestic priorities that create jobs .

The outcome of this battle will set the framework for the next four years and have impact on the lives of ordinary working people for decades to come.

Only the mobilized working people can stop the corporate offensive and begin to meet our needs. The unity of the broad, inclusive and diverse alliance that won this year's election victory should now be directed to reaching out in every community and workplace to bring the message to Congress in a strong and public way. We urge immediate participation in this critical struggle.

Adopted by the National Committee, Communist Party USA, November 17, 2012