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Concerned pastors are making a statement to Congress today: Don’t balance the federal budget on the backs of the poor. As Republicans and Democrats fight over cuts, taxes and debt limits, faith leaders are worried that the ultimate losers will be the programs relied on by the poorest Americans for food, education and health care.

Yesterday, a coalition of 5,000 pastors, led by the Washington-based social-justice group Sojourners, is releasing an open letter to Congress saying they’d like to form a “Circle of Protection around programs that meet the essential needs of hungry and poor people at home and abroad.”



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