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February 2, 2005
Broken Promises

Tonight is Bush's State of the Union address, the annual speech in which he says a bunch of stuff that sounds really good but he has no intention of actually following through on.

The Centers for American Progress reminds us of all the broken promises Bush has made in his past SOTU (that's what cool people and/or total geeks call them) addresses. Here are a few...

BROKEN PROMISE 2004 – NUCLEAR SECURITY: Last year, President Bush charged, "America is committed to keep dangerous weapons from dangerous regimes." Under Bush's watch, North Korea's nuclear arsenal is thought to have quadrupled. Charles Pritchard, formerly Colin Powell's top official dealing with North Korea, has warned for months that "the White House lacks an effective strategy to dissuade North Korea from building up its nuclear arms." And while the U.S. sat passively on the sidelines, North Korea may have sold nuclear material to Libya. In fact, instead of stepping up efforts to secure nuclear materials, a recent Harvard University report titled "Securing the Bomb: An Agenda for Action," finds "less fissile materials were secured in the two years after Sept. 11 than in the two years before."

BROKEN PROMISE 2004 – TAX CUTS: President Bush touted his massive tax cuts in last year's State of the Union, saying, "The tax relief you passed is working." Think again. President Bush drained resources from domestic programs for middle-class families to give a tax windfall to the nation's wealthiest. For example, the Bush tax cuts for the richest 1 percent of Americans will cost $148 billion this year alone. "That is twice as much as the government will spend on job training, $6.2 billion; college Pell grants, $12 billion; public housing, $6.3 billion; low-income rental subsidies, $19 billion; child care, $4.8 billion; insurance for low-income children, $5.2 billion; low-income energy assistance, $1.8 billion; meals for shut-ins, $180 million; and welfare, $16.9 billion."

BROKEN PROMISE 2002 – POLICE AND FIREFIGHTERS: In his first State of the Union address after the 9/11 attacks, President Bush vowed to support local first responders, saying: "We'll increase funding to help states and communities train and equip our heroic police and firefighters." He didn't follow through. Last year's Homeland Security appropriations bill signed by President Bush cut funding for first responders by nearly $500 million and shortchanged programs vital to local fire departments. Today, according to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), budget cuts have left at least two-thirds of the nation's fire departments understaffed, and nationwide, firefighters "are arriving to fires later each year, with barely over a third of fire departments meeting standards for response time." In his most recent budget, Bush also eviscerated the Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS), which puts police officers on the street, cutting it from $481.9 million to $97 million.

Progress Report, 2/2/05

He's full of shit. Keep it in mind.

Side note: The Centers for American Progress have also announced a new blog, Think Progress (thinkprogress.org | RSS Feed). They will be live-blogging the address tonight, with special guest blogger John Podesta, CEO of American Progress.


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