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Springfield Occupy Movement Protests Proposed Budget Cuts


To mark the two month anniversary of the Occupy Movement, Occupy Wall Street Organizers called for a national day of action.  Members of Occupy 417, and Missouri ProVote gathered outside of Senators Blunt’s Springfield office to protest proposed cuts to programs they believe are essential to the majority of Americans.  KSMU’s Matthew Barnes reports. 

[Nats: Cars Honking]

Cars honked in support as protesters outside Senator Roy Blunt’s office waved signs with slogans like “we are the 99%.” Many protesters including David Peery a retired newspaper editor, say they don’t agree with the direction the country is going.

“Well I feel like things have tip out of balance for a lot of people in the United States. The people that have the least income and the middle class too. And it’s just not good for the country, for the people. And we need to have some changes made to bring the balance back,” Says Perry.

Specifically, Peery and the other at the protest say they want to see changes to some of the latest proposals before the congressional Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction.  Kay Mills, an organizer for Missouri Provote, says a proposal that cuts programs used by the majority of Americans is unacceptable.

“We are concerned. We are in an economy where 14 million Americans are out of work and 12 million Americans are under employed. Wages are dropping and the programs that it looks like will see the cuts are programs that are vital to the 99%. We are looking at cuts to Medicare and Medicaid, social security, health care, education and infrastructure improvements,” says Mills.

Cuts to military spending , scaling down corporate welfare and stopping subsidies for big oil and health insurance corporations were just a few of the ideas the protesters had. According Kate Tarrant a single mother in the Occupy Movement; the cuts will greatly affect her children’s future.

“They are both in college and they couldn’t be in college without the help of Pell Grants. There are discussions of cutting the Pell Grant amount which would put us in a pretty bad area. I want my children to be able to get their education and go forward and get out of this low income level we are at,” says Tarrant.

Several people did go into the Senator’s office. The Congressional Committee on Deficit Reduction has until November 23rdto present its proposal. That panel consists of both Republican and Democratic lawmakers. For KSMU News, I’m Matthew Barnes.