Republicans call on White House to avoid sequestration
August 11th, 2012
06:00 AM ET
10 years ago

Republicans call on White House to avoid sequestration

(CNN) – Republicans are calling on President Obama and the Democratic-controlled Senate to act before sequestration takes place at the beginning of next year, saying cuts to the military are "not the way to address America's fiscal challenges."

In the Republican weekly address, Sen. Roger Wicker of Mississippi begins by explaining how, after the failure of the budget "super-committee" in November of last year to come up with a solution to face the nation's rising debt, the resulting automatic, across-the-board cuts, largely affecting the military with $487 billion in defense cuts, were set in place.

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Wicker warns that under sequestration, which was put in place as an incentive for the "super-committee" to find a solution to the looming debt crisis, the Army would receive less training before deployment to the Middle East, Marine Corp troops levels would be cut, Navy fleets dropped and the Air Force would lose maintenance funds.

"The stakes are unmistakably high. Crippling defense cuts are just around the corner, and we have an obligation to make tough decisions on how to avoid sequestration and balance the budget long term," said Wicker in the address.

The senator continues: "Some defense manufacturers have already begun the process of issuing legally required layoff warning notices to shareholders and employees. According to multiple forecasts, up to 1 million jobs are at risk. One report estimates that my home state of Mississippi alone could lose more than 11,000 jobs."

Wicker says that despite repeated attempts by Republicans to reach an agreement, the White House has been unresponsive.

"With the administration having kept its plans hidden from public view, Congress overwhelmingly passed the Sequestration Transparency Act, requiring the Obama administration to submit a report to Congress on the impact that sequestration will have. This bill will shine light on the president's plans," said Wicker.

The president signed the Sequestration Transparency Act earlier this week, which will require his administration to detail within 30 days of signing the bill the required $1.2 trillion in cuts to domestic and defense programs if Congress doesn't agree to a deficit-reduction plan by January 2 of next year. This timeframe means Obama will need to report the effects to Congress by Labor Day weekend, also the beginning of the Democratic National Convention.

Wicker points to the Republican-controlled House and Republicans in the Senate who have passed legislation to postpone the cuts and calls for leadership from the president to come to a bipartisan agreement to avoid sequestration.

The White House in turn has called on Congress to pass a balanced deficit reduction plan to avoid sequestration.

CNN White House Producer Alexander Mooney contributed to this report

Filed under: 2012 • Republican Party • Republicans
soundoff (12 Responses)
  1. HenryB

    Hey, I thought you Republicans agreed to this. Equal cuts in defense and domestic programs. Done precisely because it was not palatable for either side. Now the Republicans seem to have amnesia and are afraid to man up (yes, no women are Republicans).

    August 11, 2012 06:21 am at 6:21 am |
  2. ghost

    When the president tried to get a deal with repugs they thumbed thier nose at him. What did they say "the only comprimise is to see things my way", said the repugs. .you agreed to it now live with it.

    August 11, 2012 06:29 am at 6:29 am |
  3. Debra from Georgia

    DO NOT STOP THE SEQUESTRATION. The Repulblican did this by playing around with our national debt. Now, you want to go back on your promise.

    August 11, 2012 06:37 am at 6:37 am |
  4. Dan

    It seems that when the fiscal conserviatives in congress drove the country to the edge of a cliff by not being bipartisan this was the deal that they wanted, now itt looks like they are going to reap what they sowed and now they want to work on a way of avoiding what they asked for. It probably never occurred to them to look at how many jobs that were going to be affected. Maybe we can outsource our military needs to China in the best republican business way.

    August 11, 2012 07:03 am at 7:03 am |
  5. Beverly - NYC

    Typical Republican, whine after the fact, you're adults will fuill knowledge of the consequences now they want a do- over because they thought the President would not take a page from their book and call their bluff. Sen. Wicker should look within to his own party and the T-Party obstructionist .

    August 11, 2012 08:23 am at 8:23 am |
  6. paul

    Republicans make a deal on debt ceiling that insures across the board cuts. Now, they want to back out of the deal????? Amazing. Fact is the US defense budget is currently bigger than the next 15 countries COMBINED. How many elephant guns do you need to kill a mouse? The GOP attack is about "pork" in their respective districts and they will work like crazy to scare the public into believing we can't cut the huge military budget that they agreed to cut!!!

    August 11, 2012 08:36 am at 8:36 am |
  7. John

    Why are you Republican are trying to talk the President out of something you Republican cause. All you had to do was Compromise on a budget and you didn't. You Republican has told ahead of time if a budget wasn't Compromise on what would happen,and you where to dumb to sit down and Compromise on a budget. Because you all sigh Pledges that you shouldn't sigh In the First Place, You all ready took a OATH when you took office. So Now live with what you Republican could.

    August 11, 2012 08:40 am at 8:40 am |
  8. DFW Dann

    Let it happen. Congress couldn't come to an agreement and still can't take it's job seriously. If sequestration happens everyone of them stands a good chance to be booted out of office. We can only hope they will be replaced by grown-ups.

    August 11, 2012 08:48 am at 8:48 am |
  9. enuff

    If the president has until labor day, then why are the republicans trying to make an issue about not having it right now? The republicans are the ones that pushed us to this situation when they refused to negotiate to begin wiith... I blame them. The chickens are coming home to roost and we are seeing the consequences of their refusal to work with the president.

    August 11, 2012 08:59 am at 8:59 am |
  10. page

    It was House Republicans who refused to be bipartisan last year, who caused this mess and now they want to put the onus on Obama. Of course, once again, they refuse to offer a balanced plan.

    August 11, 2012 09:03 am at 9:03 am |
  11. enuff

    Gee. who put sequestration as a condition IF The super committee couldn't reach an agreement... then made sure they didn't? mmmmmm. Can you say the house republicans?

    August 11, 2012 09:08 am at 9:08 am |
  12. Let's get real

    No,No,No that is just what the Republicans are all about. If you know someone with a pension, on Medicare, Social Security,The Dept of Education, Roe v. Wade....No, No, No a little too radical these guys are both throwbacks. I can't trust someone who would sell his soul in business for his own profit...a great example for other rich Americans. Get rich on other people's backs but don't show your taxes...are you kiddin me???

    August 11, 2012 10:41 am at 10:41 am |