U.S.

February 8, 2013

Obama Calls on Congress to avoid sequestration

Jim Garamone
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama Tuesday called on Congress to avoid deep, across-the-board spending cuts looming March 1 under a “sequestration” mechanism in budget law and to take a balanced approach to America’s debt problems.

If sequestration happens, hundreds of thousands of Defense Department civilian employees could be furloughed and readiness of the military force will plummet, Pentagon officials have said.

The American economy is poised to make progress in 2013, the president said in remarks at the White House today, but sequestration could put an end to any forward movement.

“We’ve seen the effects that political dysfunction can have on our progress,” Obama said. “The drawn-out process for resolving the ‘fiscal cliff’ hurt consumer confidence. The threat of massive automatic cuts [has] already started to affect business decisions.”

While it is critical for the U.S. government to cut wasteful spending, “we can’t just cut our way to prosperity,” Obama said.

“Deep, indiscriminate cuts to things like education and training, energy and national security will cost us jobs, and it will slow down our recovery,” he added.

The president emphasized that sequestration does not have to happen.

“For all of the drama and disagreements we’ve had over the past few years, Democrats and Republicans have still been able to come together and cut the deficit by more than $2.5 trillion through a mix of spending cuts and higher rates on taxes for the wealthy,” he said.

“A balanced approach has achieved more than $2.5 trillion in deficit reduction,” the president continued. “That’s more than halfway towards the $4 trillion in deficit reduction that economists and elected officials from both parties believe is required to stabilize our debt.”

Obama called on Congress to finish the job with a balanced mix of spending cuts and more tax reform. Though he favors a balanced approach that will solve the problem, the president said, he is realistic.

“I know that a full budget may not be finished before March 1,” he said. “And unfortunately, that’s the date when a series of harmful automatic cuts to job-creating investments in defense spending … are scheduled to take effect.”

If Congress cannot act immediately on a bigger package, Obama said, “then I believe that they should at least pass a smaller package of spending cuts and tax reforms that would delay the economically damaging effects of the sequester for a few more months until Congress finds a way to replace these cuts with a smarter solution.”

There’s no reason “that the jobs of thousands of Americans who work in national security or education or clean energy — not to mention the growth of the entire economy — should be put in jeopardy just because folks in Washington couldn’t come together,” he added. “Our economy right now is headed in the right direction, and it will stay that way, as long as there aren’t any more self-inflicted wounds coming out of Washington.”




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
U.S. Army IMCOM photo by Amanda S. Rodriguez

Civilian mentor program shapes Army installation management’s future

U.S. Army IMCOM photo by Amanda S. Rodriguez U.S. Army Installation Management Command mentors and mentees work on teambuilding skills, building a block tower in total silience, during the IMCOM Headquarters Centralized Mentori...
 
 
DoD

DFAS reminds DoD employees to review tax withholdings

The Defense Finance and Accounting Service gave U.S. Department of Defense employees a friendly reminder to review withholdings from their paycheck, in an email last week. If a large tax refund was received or you owed a large amount in taxes during the recent tax season, you may need to look over your federal and...
 
 

Odierno: Information, instability travel at similar speeds

ASPEN, Colo. – As the world has become more interconnected and information travels faster than ever before, it also has become more unpredictable and dangerous, Army Chief of Staff Gen. Ray Odierno said here last night. “People now understand more about what other people might have, what they might want, how much control they want...
 

 
Gabrielle Kuholski

Post children attend Vacation Bible School week

Gabrielle Kuholski Pictured with the microphone, Colleen Sherod, 20, Vacation Bible School volunteer, emcees a review of the week’s religious lessons as VBS students hold up posters of their “Bible buddies.” The activity ...
 
 
Maranda Flynn

Seifert School-Age Center offers fun for kids, piece-of-mind for parents

Maranda Flynn Selene Ferro, 9, Jaliah Eldridge, 7, and Malachi Bergstrom, 7, build a puzzle train city in the creative play area of the first through third grade room at the Seifert School-Age Center. Creative play allows child...
 
 

Coronado National Forest fire crew assists with Oregon firefighting efforts

TUCSON, Ariz. – An initial attack firefighting crew from the Coronado National Forest has been assigned to firefighting duties on the Logging Unit Fires north of Warm Springs, Oregon. Coronado Crew 5 was ordered as a firefighting resource on July 16, 2014. The crew departed July 17, arriving at the fires on July 18. Crew...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin