Under last year’s agreement on the debt-ceiling, the Obama administration has to impose $109 billion in cuts to 2013 spending, and the House, on Wednesday, approved a bill that would give the administration 30 days to provide details on how it intends to carry out domestic and defense cuts.
According to The Hill, the bill passed in a 414-2 vote, and the language in the bill is similar to language in an amendment to a Senate farm bill that calls on the Defense Department to issue a report on the economic impact of defense sequestration by August 15.
The Obama administration has not indicated which programs they intend to cut, and pressure is mounting on the administration and Democrats to lessen cuts from defense spending.
Rep. Buck McKeon (R-CA) said that the Obama administration needed to give details about the pending defense cuts in order to give industries that would be impacted a heads-up.
Some of those defense cuts will hit Virginia, and Obama potentially risks losing the state — and the election — if Virginians who rely on the defense industry for their paychecks are impacted and then take it out against Obama in November.
A newly-released Quinnipiac poll reveals a virtual tie in Virginia between Obama and Romney, which makes potential defense cuts in the Commonwealth even more dangerous for the Obama administration and his reelection chances.
Virginia’s Gov. Bob McDonnell came to Washington yesterday and said the debate over sequestration is going to be a campaign issue anyway, so it’s better for Washington — especially the Senate and Obama — to be more transparent and clear in their intentions and proposals regarding defense cuts.
“You’re putting hundreds of thousdands of jobs in my state at risk and you’re putting the United States military in a very bad circumstance when they’re fighting a war abroad and trying to figure out how they’re going to govern themselves,” McDonnell said, according to the Washington Post. “It’s not responsible governing. They need to act, they need to act now, and it’s not just Republican governors, Democrat governors as well share this belief that this horrific and unprecedented uncertainty created by the United States Congress.”
Democrats have been trying to get Republicans to raise taxes for a reduction in defense cuts, but Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) — and other Republicans — are not falling for their ploy.
“Government first, taxpayers second,” Ryan said, according to The Hill. “That’s what the so-called ‘balanced approach means.’ It means keep feeding higher spending with higher taxes.
“Since there’s an absence of leadership on these critical fiscal issues from the president of the United States, from the Senate of the United States, at the very least, show us how this is going to work.”