Statement by MaryBe McMillan on “Fix the Debt” Campaign Coming to N.C.

November 27, 2012

Contact: Jeremy Sprinkle, Communications Director, 336-255-2711,


As “Fix the Debt” rolls into town with its lavishly funded campaign seeking to cut your benefits and their taxes, North Carolinians should keep in mind that this coalition includes many of the same big corporate CEOs who created the financial crisis and were bailed out with taxpayer money.  The $60 million war chest “Fix the Debt” is using in this media campaign is chump change compared to what the group’s backers stand to gain if lawmakers lower corporate income tax rates and spare Wall Street from any “shared sacrifice” in reducing the deficit.

The more than 80 CEOs who comprise its “Leadership Council” have a lot to lose if Congress and the President agree to a deal that lets the Bush tax giveaway for the richest 2% finally expire while protecting Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid – programs that provide economic security to the other 98% of Americans. These CEOs personally received more than $40 million from the Bush tax cuts, and 63 of the companies for which we have public records stand to rake in $134 billion (yes, BILLION) in windfalls if Congress passes the “Fix the Debt” plan to eliminate taxes on offshore profits. What’s more, 24 of the CEOs received more money in compensation last year than their corporation paid in federal corporate income tax.

Real leadership is listening to the will of the voters who, in re-electing President Obama, support raising revenue to lower our debt in a balanced way by asking folks making more than $250,000 a year to pay more. Real leadership is acknowledging that we cannot “fix the debt” by giving huge tax cuts to the wealthy and corporations. Defending the money working people have paid into Social Security and Medicare and not using it as a piggy bank to satisfy the pledge of a special-interest group with deep pockets – that’s the kind of real leadership North Carolinians need right now from their members of Congress.

Wall Street’s greed caused the Great Recession, and now these Wall Street CEOs want working people to pay to clean up their mess. Instead of calling themselves “Fix the Debt”, might I suggest a more honest name – “Fix the Mess We Made”?


The North Carolina State AFL-CIO is the largest association of local unions and union councils in North Carolina, representing over one-hundred thousand union members, fighting for good jobs, safe workplaces, workers’ rights, consumer protections, and quality public services on behalf of all working families. PO Box 10805, Raleigh, NC 27605.