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Strengthening America’s Middle Class

Christian E. Weller Testifies to the House Education and Labor Committee

Middle class families are caught in a crunch, struggling to pay for a home, health insurance, transportation, and college with mounting debt.

Center for American Progress Senior Fellow Christian E. Weller testifies this morning before the House Education and Labor Committee on strengthening America’s middle class.

Weller will discuss the rise in financial and economic insecurity that has led to middle class anxieties. Over the past five years, middle class families’ ability to weather economic emergency has eroded substantially, and their liquid financial wealth has declined.

America’s middle class families are caught in an unprecedented crunch. Despite a growing economy, their incomes have been stagnant or flat. And because prices for big ticket items, such as housing and health care, have gone through the roof, families were not able to put away a rainy day fund. Instead, middle-class families have had to take on more debt to maintain their basic needs and could not save anything for a rainy day, Taken together, these trends have left families increasingly vulnerable to the impact of an economic emergency, such as unemployment or a medical emergency.

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