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Economic Justice

Blog: Overseas Contingency Operations and How the Fund Is Currently Used

May 09, 2014 | By Carolyn Burstein, NETWORK Communications Fellow

The Overseas Contingency Operations (OCO) fund is money set aside in the DOD portion of the federal budget for expenses such as: crisis response, infrastructure and coalition support for operations in Iraq/Afghanistan, humanitarian assistance in parts of the Middle East and North Africa and embassy security, among other needs abroad.

The OCO fund is the name given to it by the Obama Administration in 2009 when the nomenclature used by President George W. Bush -- the "Global War on Terror" -- was discarded.

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Revise the Johnson-Crapo Bill to Make Housing Finance Reform Viable

For the past few years, many thoughtful people have been engaged in a heated debate over the future of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the two government-sponsored mortgage enterprises (GSEs) that required a taxpayer bailout in 2008. A consensus has been slowly developing on the goals of GSE reform. While there is guarded optimism about the resulting bill, called Johnson-Crapo, there is also a great deal of controversy over specific sections, and many suggestions for improvement.

Blog: Senate Republicans Block the Minimum Wage Bill

May 02, 2014 | By Carolyn Burstein, NETWORK Communications Fellow

On April 30, Senate Democrats were unable to advance the Minimum Wage Fairness Act (sometimes referred to as the Harkin/Miller bill), which would raise the federal minimum wage from the current $7.25 an hour in three increments to $10.10 an hour by 2016. The vote in the Senate failed by 54-42 to clear the filibuster threshold. In addition to tying the wage floor to an inflation index, the bill would also raise the so-called “tipped” minimum wage for restaurant servers and other tipped workers to 70% of the standard minimum wage.

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Press Release: NETWORK, A National Catholic Social Justice Lobby, Rejects Rep. Paul Ryan’s New Budget Proposal

FOR RELEASE: April 2, 2014

CONTACT: Stephanie Niedringhaus, 202-347-9797 x224, sniedringhaus@networklobby.org

Washington DC: NETWORK, A National Catholic Social Justice Lobby, today issued the following statement in response to Rep. Paul Ryan’s budget proposal:

Blog: Economic Inequality and the McCutcheon Decision

Apr 30, 2014 | By Carolyn Burstein, NETWORK Communications Fellow

“Government should prevent an immoderate accumulation of riches.”  James Madison

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Blog: A New White House Job Training Initiative

Apr 16, 2014 | By Carolyn Burstein, NETWORK Communications Fellow

Today (April 16, 2014), President Obama and Vice-President Biden announced a new initiative that will help close the “skills gap” that prevents people from getting access to high-paying jobs. The announcement, relating to two separate efforts, was made at a community college in Allegheny County, Pennsylvania.

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Blog: Extended Unemployment Compensation

Apr 08, 2014 | By Marge Clark, BVM

On the hundredth day of extreme economic risk experienced by over 2 million Americans and their families, the Senate finally passed an extension of unemployment benefits.

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Blog: Faith Responses to the House Budget FY15

Apr 07, 2014 | By Marge Clark, BVM, and Ryan Murphy

The Inter-Religious Working Group on Domestic Human Needs feels compelled to respond to the budget released by the House Budget Committee – headed by Rep. Paul Ryan. Again, we are horrified by the damage it would do to individuals and families struggling to survive economically. These same households have borne the brunt of budget cuts, and sequestration cuts over the last several years. Most safety net programs have seen a 20% reduction in funding, while prices and need continue to escalate.

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Blog: The Morality of Competing Budgets

Apr 03, 2014 | By Marge Clark, BVM

The House of Representatives is faced with a moral decision when asked to vote on alternative budget proposals as early as next week. Given that neither proposal will gain any traction in the Senate, both are messaging pieces setting the tone for mid-term elections.

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Blog: A Tax Credit Bill That Would Aid People in Poverty and Cut Corporate Breaks

Apr 01, 2014 | By Carolyn Burstein, NETWORK Communications Fellow

Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) introduced new legislation, called the “21st Century Worker Tax Cut Act,” on March 26, 2014, which would increase the maximum Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) for childless workers to about $1400 from $487 currently and reduce the childless worker eligibility age for the credit from 25 to 21.

It would also create a new tax deduction for low-to-middle income families with two earners and at least one child age 12 or less, allowing a 20% deduction on the secondary earner's income.

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