February 27, 2013

The debate in Washington this week has focused on the mandatory spending cuts, known as sequestration, that go into effect Friday. To hear the media and the White House describe it, the cuts will be “massive.” But are these cuts really that massive?

No. “Federal spending will explode from $3.6 trillion to $6 trillion over the next 10 years, but the much-maligned sequester will cut only 2.4 percent of this spending,” The Heritage Foundation’s T. Elliot Gaiser explains.

The sequester doesn’t gut key social programs

The Obama administration would have you believe it’s coming from “vital” social programs. But, as Gaiser explains,

sequestration leaves the largest component of federal spending—entitlements—nearly untouched. Instead, it falls most heavily on national defense, with 50 percent of sequestration cuts impacting national security. Thirty-five percent would impact non-defense discretionary spending. Less than 15 percent would fall on mandatory spending, which consumes 62 percent of the federal budget.

The sequester won’t force airport delays

Liberals also claim that the sequester will lead to massive inconvenience as budgets are slashed at agencies like the TSA and FAA, Gaiser explains with Heritage’s Jason Lloyd:

President Obama claims that unless Congress raises taxes to undo the imminent automatic budget cuts known as sequestration, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) would be forced to reduce security measures, leaving travelers and the airways vulnerable and increasing wait times at airports.

But there are ways to economize that don’t involve core responsibilities, for example trimming non-essential budget items. Gaiser and Lloyd point out, for example, that the TSA has wasted millions of taxpayer dollars: “The TSA has a warehouse in Dallas, Texas, where 5,700 pieces of unused security equipment sit in storage. The dormant equipment is worth $184 million.”

The sequester won’t lay off teachers

President Obama has also claimed that our nation’s children will be at risk of a poor education if the cuts go through:

“[o]ur ability to teach our kids the skills they’ll need for the jobs of the future would be put at risk…70,000 young children would be kicked off Head Start, 10,000 teacher jobs would be put at risk, and funding for up to 7,200 special education teachers, aides, and staff could be cut.”

This is simply incorrect, Gaiser and Lloyd explain:

No federal education program operated by the Department of Education directly funds teacher salaries—this is a state and local responsibility. Further, there are a multitude of ineffective and duplicative programs that could—and should—be cut, saving billions of dollars annually and restoring state and local education decision-making authority…

Washington has not spent federal taxpayer money judiciously on education. Real education reform would save billions of dollars, while improving children’s educational opportunities by empowering states and parents.

But the sequester will affect national defense

The sequester will affect our nation’s ability to protect itself, however:

National defense, unlike most other discretionary programs, is a central constitutional duty and today represents only 17 percent of the budget. Yet nearly half of the Congress-mandated sequestration cuts—$492 billion—would come from defense. These across-the-board cuts threaten our nation’s defense capability.

Congress should follow through with the sequester

The United States needs to cut spending. And as Heritage’s Amy Payne notes, the sequester is better than many of the alternatives:

It would be better to replace them with smarter cuts, but the reality is that Washington has to start cutting spending now. Real program reforms and a balanced budget are the only way to solve our continuing fiscal crises. So it is critical that Congress keep its word and follow through on these spending cuts to prove it is serious about bringing our budget into balance over the next 10 years.

Do you believe budget cuts are needed? And if so, what should be cut?

Comments (61)

Virginia R. Lamb - February 27, 2013

I have worked for the DoD. If there is to be cuts, DO NOT cut the Armed Forces military. Take a good look at “real needs” and “nice to have” administrative programs which are comprised mostly of civilians. That will hurt people and our economy but we must be able to maintain security of this great Country. Also this is a good time to look for waste and fraud. It is there, just needs to be dug out.

Jean Smusz - February 27, 2013

I personally believe that this budget cutting measure will do everyone some good. Many have become dependent on programs that just one half deliver the service that they are meant to deliver. Even some of the social service programs – free this and free that – need to be cut back and re-evaluated for who they are serving and why? Every American knows what a budget is – BUT – some have never practiced doing without or doing with less. Sometimes, there are alternatives and sometimes people step forward and fill in the gaps – where needed. There is a LOT of wastefull spending. The pensions that the retired (no longer serving) senators and representatives receive are SINFULL. So many things are crazily absurd!!

The Donald - February 27, 2013

We need to cut 100% of foreign aid except for Israel.
Cut 100% of grants for the arts, and 90% of grants for non-profits like Acorn, studies of the life of frogs, and elimnate departments like Education, Energy and useless departments. Consolidate functions like banking regulatory and housing agencies.
Anything that is not National Security, Federal Roads and National Parks should be reviewed and decreased a minimum of 50% over the next 4 years.

Kathy S - February 27, 2013

Cut the waste, fraud and abuse! No more freebies! Cut or eliminate travel/conferences of departments. Do not hire for retiring individuals. There are plenty of areas to cut without further cutting DoD, which has made significant cuts over the past several years. The sequester is only NOT a true cut but is only decreasing projected increased expenses. National security is of utmost importance to this country. Remember, there has been NO BUDGET for the past four years – only spending increases. Cap pension benefits and pay-in for federal employees including Congress and current administration. No secret service security provided once out of office; benefits only while serving in office.

Beth Wiebe - February 27, 2013

Dear Heritage,
I am so sick and tired of these chicken little scares that it is time that the Republicans get a back bone and join as one to fight this scam on the American people. If the republicans unite, get on every tv, twitter, facebook, townhall, and email blasts they could win this war against obama’s regime. I can’t tell you how sick and tired I am of republicans caving and giving obama victory after victory. WE NEED TO FIGHT FOR THIS COUNTRY AND AGAINST THIS PRESIDENT THAT COULD CARE LESS ABOUT US!!!!!
Thank you
Beth WIebe

Bill & Anne Buckingham - February 27, 2013

This may be the only budget cuts we can expect from Obama. Even though these are miniscule the fight for more will be extremely diifcult. The house should pass and send to the Senate a bill authorizing flexability in where the cuts are made. That would place the responsibility onthe various cabinet members and of course the President. There are areas where spending could be cut with limited inconvience on taxpayers who are footing the bil for all of expenditures excessive or needed. Transportation for instance has many grants that canb reduced ,delayed or cancelled. That would preclude the so called airport delays in the Obama scare package. It is time for the Republican House to stand up to Obama and continually tell their constituants about it. The media woill not be reliable so the representatives have to use all means possible in communicating effectivey. Let us hope for courage from the Speaker and the reresentatives.
Bill & Anne Buckingham

Karen Miller - February 27, 2013

The MAIN reason for the Federal Government is for National Security. More cuts could and should be made, but national security is where cuts should NOT be made. What about all the grants? The Federal Government should get out of Education. The closer to home decisions are made, the better. The Environment Department could be drastically cut. If we had a flat tax or Nat. Sales Tax, most of the IRS could be dissolved. Unfortunately, the powers that be are cutting where it will hurt our country the most.

Pat Galbraith - February 27, 2013

I’ve noticed several things. First, what about disbanding several, essentially, useless agencies? My favorites here are theDepartment of Eduction, and the National Endowment for the Arts and the Humanities. The Education Department has never educated anyone and only soaks up resources needed for actual education. The other two, why do they exist? In my opinion they come under useless frills that should be abolished.

I’m also noticing that all “cuts” are falling on employees – the most vulnerable. This is a management decision. It is intended to inflict the most pain over the widest possible area. You’ve heard of crisis management. This is Management by Crises. Keep the waters muddied.

Mike McDonald - February 27, 2013

I believe the “sequester”should go through – It may not be ideal but its the first thing the Federal has done about cutting spending – they MUST do far more or make a viable plan reverse this spending madness and lower the size of all our governments……….

Elaine Connelly - February 27, 2013

Yes we need to cut spending. I do not believe that people like Warren Buffett need to collect SS$. He is an old windbag and I would rather eat my foot than listen to that old f**** preach about how much he doesn’t pay in taxes. That’s because the old goat has lawyers to find him ways to get out of paying taxes. Means testing for Social Security Recipients NOW!

Wayne Ollick - February 27, 2013

The absolute number 1 cut that the federal government should make is the gargantuan size of the federal payroll!
Government workers make on average twice what non-government workers make and they contribute nothing to the GNP. Instead of our taxes going to fund important programs like Medicare, most of them are used just to pay these government workers, which I believe are approaching the same number of workers as domestic workers! This is ridiculous in so many ways, there is not enough space to list them! Yet all I hear about is to cut entitlements and defense. I hear no one pushing to cut the government workforce other than the generic statement that the government is too big. This should be a main talking point, in my opinion.

Donald E. Tharp - February 27, 2013

Subsidizing stupidity must stop.

We own a small farm through my wife’s inheritance. I’ve never farmed a day in my life yet the Ag Dept pays most of my crop insurance and if there is a crop failure they pay the short falls that my private insurance company realizes. They also have many other programs that subsidize people who own farms but are not farmers.

If I am stupid enough “not” to insure income that would be vital to me, i.e., if I was a farmer, then it is a decision I have made and one I should have to live with. The people working construction or working in the oil fields, railroads, truck drivers, etc., shouldn’t have to pay for my insurance or any other government payments that subsidizes my choice of making a living.

Roger Willis - February 27, 2013

The truth about the sequester cuts will never see the light of day unless Heritage and all conservative groups get the word out! Budget cuts ARE necessary – and the 2.4% just scratches the surface. While I don’t normally favor across the board budget cuts in any organization, the reality of the political stand-still dictates that there be a mandatory, across the board minimum 10% spending cut. Everyone will feel this, not just the unfortunate folks involved in defense and security. AND I WOULD STRONGLY SUPPORT “SEQUESTERING” 100% OF FUNDS USED TO PAY ALL ELECTED FEDERAL OFFICIALS AND THEIR STAFFS UNTIL THIS CRISIS IS SOLVED! There is no other choice, PERIOD!

Sandra Fosselman - February 27, 2013

Budget cuts are imperative. Don’t cut defense. Instead (1) defund Obamacare and develop a true reform program for health care (2) cut all pork barrel spending by Congress, (3) reduce terms, salaries and outlandish pensions for Congress, (4) cut all foreign aid except Israel, and (5) initiate all other across the board cuts except defense. For future cuts, impose effective accountability and monitoring for Medicaid and Medicare spending, avoid expanding any of the programs until the deficit is reduced, initiate effective control of fraud and corruption in these two programs; increase the eligible age for receiving Social Security and begin a plan of restoring borrowed funds back into the SS account. Initiate a plan to eliminate fraud and corruption in the welfare programs.

Rob - February 27, 2013

How about a graph which shows the percentage of discretionary budget? That would be more meaningful.

Stephen Patterson - February 27, 2013

Do away totally with IRS, go to flat sales tax. Save BILLIONS shrink government and intimidation tacticks! Let them set in the soup line looking for a job while somebody threatens to take everything they own!!!!!!!!!!!

Lee - February 27, 2013

A flat 10% pay-cut for all federal employees would be a good place to start. Folks would still have jobs. If it takes legislation to override union contracts then it should be done. There should be no unionization of public employees in the first place. Secondly, entire departments should be evaluated and eliminated as common sense dictates.

Ron - February 27, 2013

When the furloughs expire and the 600K people come back to their desks, the burn rate of the government will be right back where it was before the sequester. The size of government has not been reduced one iota. The only way to make real gains is to eliminate the job positions.

RG Schmidt - February 27, 2013

Of course cuts are needed. If it were mine to do, I would start with “entitlements,” by, as just one example, returning SSI to what it was intended to be, that is assistance for those who CAN NOT work. One of the ways this administration has “reduced the number of unemployed” was by relaxing SSI requirements. Next would come true fraud detection, including heavy penalties, in the myriad welfare programs such as food stamps and aid for children. Just getting the “entitlements” back to their original purpose and scope would be a great start.

Murvel Green - February 27, 2013

Spending needs to be seriously cut, especially entitlements!

Beverly McVey - February 27, 2013

My Senator, Dr. Tom Coburn, as you know; has put together a massive book, “Back to Black, outlining cutable spending. I think conservatives should agree to stand in front of the Capitol and, using Sen. Coburn’s book, counter President Obama’s high profile cuts with specific “cut suggestions” out of the, “Back to Black” book. We’ve got to think outside of the box and dramatically present that there are bona fide ways to cut. As they say: “Just Do It.”

Ruth - February 27, 2013

There are many places cuts should be made but until they cut the entitlement program that benefits only those in government we have a HUGE problem!! Cut those and then we can talk about the others.

Victress Jenkins - February 27, 2013

All programs & departments should be thoroughly examined and this should include the executive[no more separate plane for the first family dog]. Cut out the waste by taking out the “duplication” of services, old & useless/unneeded defense programs, protect our country’s necessary defenses [personnel,ships,planes] as we never know what terrorist group or rogue nation is going to do next to us or our friends.
Our country needs to protect its citizens.

Richard Storm - February 27, 2013

We have a President that is more interested in being popular with Voters and is in a continuos Popularity Contest with the aiding and abetting News Media. Obama doesn’t know how to act responsibly as a Manager or how to act in a businesslike way. He surrounds himself with anti-business, anti-American Values Ideologues. The Sequestor is one way that Obama’s true incompetence may be brought to the public’s attention. Certainly there are some Obama voters that care more about America than the Democrat agenda of weakening America?

Jim Wilson - February 27, 2013

We could stop paying people not to work, why should the Americans that work and want nothing from the government be made to pay the ones too lazy to work? Why should the corporations receive a subsidy and tax cuts. I am in business, if a business cannot survive on their own, they need to fail. The same with corporate tax, this a hiden tax, this tax is really passed on to the one who uses their service or buys their product. I would also stop all foreign AID, why is it our responsibility to hold them up, like the give away to our enemies in Egypt.

Susan Petrarca - February 27, 2013

My concern is giving control of budget cuts to the White House. This is constitutionally-protected responsibility of Congress. Granted, the Senate Democrats illegally refuse to pass a budget, but the House holds the purse strings and should DEMAND that waste and fat be cut before essential programs are compromised. I believe affected agencies have 120 days or so to identify cuts, so it appears the mechanism is in place to cut judiciously. Just don’t let the White House do it — and that means making Chuck Hagel justify every cut he suggests. By his own admission he’s not in charge of policy and will be carrying the water for whoever at the White House is really in charge of defense. It’s also a travesty that entitlements are not part of the deal. At the very least the expansion in food stamps and Social Security Disability should be rolled back. No one says ‘No” to free stuff, and they’ll squawk when it’s taken away because they’ve been coached to think of it as their “right.” But giving goodies to people who aren’t needy is nothing more than fostering dependence on government, which corrodes self-reliance and self-respect and enslaves recipients who are beholden to their benefactors.

Bill R McNeese - February 27, 2013

Obama Care with its massive costs that our leaders did NOT study and understand should be STOPPED.
All federal salaries should be immediately reduced by 15%.
All federal benefits should be immediately REDUCED to the average of the Nation.
Stop the Multiple Plane vacations of the Obamas.
No Retirement benefits after ONE term in Office!
ENACT a TERM LIMIT of 2 SENATE and 3 House terms.
THIS WOULD START US ON THE RIGHT PATH!

Terry Lyon - February 27, 2013

Eliminate aid to any and all Muslim Brotherhood outfits such as Egypt and Pakistan. Get the Feds out of picking winners and losers in the green energy field. This is a prime example of corrupt (political) capitalism. Eliminate ethanol subsidies and unattainable goals.Get the feds out of public radio and tv. Cut back the feds role in education. I could go on but that’s enough for now.

Terry Lyon - February 27, 2013

I forgot to mention 7 million $ vacations for the Obama family. After all flying 2 fleets of aircraft to different locations just to continue a Hawaiian vacation and golf outing for the big cheese and another flight for an undisclosed # of people to slobber all over Michelle in Aspen is a little much. Talk about carbon footprint. Only hypocrit Gore does it better.

Sigrid - February 27, 2013

I too am tired of republicans who can’t seem to make the case for our core values of smaller government, lower taxes, and less regulation. We are becoming very small, helpless people indeed, as we continue to allow our government to get bigger and depend upon them to solve problems that Americans once tackled themselves. I agree with Donald that all the departments that have been started since the New Deal should be scrapped. Everything that the Feds touch gets worse from education to the arts…they have all deteriorated since the Gov’t. started meddling with them.

Darrell W. O’Neal - February 27, 2013

Stop the growth of spending that is automatic. Means test every entitlement and really audit the test. Then, start cutting back 1/2% per year and make this automatic.

alfred waldram - February 27, 2013

I doubt this can be done, but I think furloughs should start in the White House and all elected officials present and past should have 2 days per month deducted from their
pay, also include their staff. I also agree with Kathy S –
February 27, 2013.

Cynthia Stang - February 27, 2013

If Senator Rand Paul can cut 25% of his Senatorial budget and return it why can’t the rest of Congress do with less? It can be done. Let’s see them walk the walk. We are tired of the talk.

Ronald Schoenau - February 27, 2013

Cuts?? Easy-peasy. Eliminate all programs that coddle Indians (er…’scuse me; I mean Native Americans). We also don’t need Departments of Education, Energy, Commerce…and TSA.

John Heil - February 27, 2013

if the average american family can reduce their expenses by 2% to offset social security, certainly congress is not too stupid to reduce their expenditures by 2.4%. if they are, they should be replaced.

Donald Dee Wesdorf - February 27, 2013

Move retirement age up 2 to 3 yewars, Cut 10% of all wellfare. Make all recipiants of well fare go to central location to pick up welfare check…..make all welfare recipiants do some form of work for their check if only showing up for work and sit the full work day. Cut waste and fraud where ever you find it. This just for starters. Fathers of out of wedlock must be declared by welfare mother and then father must contribute for productive work to be given in jail. Set % of population for # of federal workers. Let the polititions fight over who gets how many. That will be interesting! More later.
DDWesdorf

Charles Shaffer - February 27, 2013

I srongly recommend an across the board cut of 10% to all federal programs. These are the types of cuts I have experienced and directed as a finance and general management officer in business, and in local government. We did them by scrutinizing every expense, reducing unneccesary expenses and prioritizing needs. It is time the federal government did the same, and this includes defense. It’s also time expense accounts for the president and his staff, both houses of Congress and their staff’s, and all federal government agencies did the same! There is too much waste in all federal govenment programs, and the blank checks must stop!. After all, it’s our money, not the government’s! Quit the feeding at the trough!

Gaile Frasier - February 27, 2013

I believe the NUMBER 1 cut should be:
1) Federal Government payroll, Million dollar vacations for the President and his family, cap pension benefits for the federal employee. Cap all benefits for the working federal employees including Congress and current administration. When is it ever enough?
Tell me Mr. President, where could we have put the million dollars to work in the interest of the American People and our debt that you used out of our tax money to go on vacation? I know you deserve a vacation, don’t get me wrong, but really Mr. President, couldn’t you find a better use for at least half your vacation expense?
The majority of the American People can’t even afford a vacation but maybe every couple of years if their lucky.
and your asking us to take cuts? PLEASE!
2) Cut ALL Foreign Aid until we get back on our feet.
3) Cut ALL entitlements to ALL illegal immigrants. Follow up and cut all waste, fraud and abuse.
I am a 60 year old women, self employed and have worked since I was 16. I have never been on welfare or any kind of government help. Knock on wood! My husband and I can’t afford the $1,200.00 a month payment for medical insurance so we don’t have it. We do not expect any one else to have to pay for my medical expenses either. I see illegal immigrants every day in food stores, doctors offices, dental offices, etc. They don’t pay a penny for any of these services or food and this is because they have entitlement cards, welfare, medicare and food stamps. They get better service than I do because I don’t have insurance. They even get to move to the front of the line. Who is paying for all of this…Oh ya, the American tax payer. It comes out of our taxes that continue to go up along with every hard working American out there. God help me if I should ever get really sick and end up in the hospital. The government would probably take my home and everything else I own to pay for my medical. The illegal immigrants get to live here for free. They get help with food stamps, medical, dental, schooling, and housing.
I think sending all illegal immigrants back to their own country because it’s the right thing to do for the American people, this would save the government enough money to fix at least half of our counties debt alone. I’m tired of paying taxes out of my hard earned money to help illegal immigrants get the best medical care, dental care, food and housing. I need to be able to pay for my own medical insurance, not someone else’s that is here for a free ride. If I didn’t have to pay so much in taxes maybe I could afford my own health insurance…..what a concept!
Mr. President! The right thing to do is to take care of the American people! Cut what really needs to be cut.
PLEASE do not cut National Security. For anyone to even suggest that is out of their mind and not thinking of America’s best interest.

Helen V. Boro - February 27, 2013

Why not cut government sponsored TV and radio, as well as the National Endowment for the Arts? This is not the court of Louis XIV. Govenrment doesn’t need to fund the arts.

Michael Hayes - February 27, 2013

Budget cuts – FREEZE all government civilian hiring – until congress passes a balanced budget – no replacements for retirements, quitting or death – reduces the gov. personnell costs as well as retirement costs in out years.

Also reduces the out_of-control regulatory agencies ability to implement new burdensome regulations on businesses

Lee & JoAnn Estabrook - February 27, 2013

We’re in Minden, LA 71055
We may be overly simplistic, I do not know the exact percent, but a 5% / year “real” cut, that is a decrease iin spending from the prior year, accross the board (excluding so called entitlements) should bring spending within the revenue received wthin about 10 years.
“Entitlements” should be structured to pay out income, then a studied decision as to how much to add from general revenues. President Bush (W) had a good plan to overhaul Social Security. Unfortunate politics intervened and it was not enacted. President Clinton had a good plan from the committee headed by Senator Breaugx (sp probably not correct). Clinton did not “push” it, it was not enacted.
We just had our first grand-child, now < 2. We don't want him and all of the others like him to have a "Bill" for the Country's poor fiscal management..

If we were "dictators" we would direct EVERY department in the government to do a line item review of their part of the budget. They would be directed to justify the expenditure with the test of , Why is this expenditure required to protect us (citizens & Country) from enemies, Foreign and Domestic? Using this criteria, all "unmanditory" items would be deleted and placed on a "like to do" list. The cost of "manditory" items would be calculated, subtracted from anticipated revenue. A % of the difference (say 80%) would then be allocated to the "like to do" items. Someone would have to rank order them.
All of this is the way reasonable households, companies, state governments down to municipal governments should also develop budgets. We live in a "balanced budget" state. Yes we know there are "tricks" our Govenor & Legislature use to "over spend" but compaired to the Federal Government (who has the "printing press") it is nothing.
Yes, a small amount of inflation 2 or 3% is probably "good". But we are afraid the current trend will lead to Carter era inflation.

Thank you for the opportunity to share our views. I would be happy to take $1 / year + expences to come to Washington, if our efforts are needed to make these needed changes.

Sincerely, and God Save America, Lee & JoAnn Estabrook

William Beal - February 27, 2013

President Clinton had a good idea when he tightened requirements on Food Stamps. That idea cut a lot of people off food stamps and saved considerable taxpaper dollars. That’s my suggestion; Now to blow off steam. All of you in d.c. took an oath. Let me remind you.
“… to support and defend the constitution against all enemies, foreign AND domestic. Get to work.
Signed- THE BOSS

Shannon Roe - February 27, 2013

We need a budget. A zero-based budget. It needs to reflect serious reductions in waste and graft (starting with a dialing back of the imperial lifestyle of the Obamas). It’s probably safe to say there isn’t a single budget item that isn’t bloated with accumulated corruption. And a slight reduction in the rate of growth is a pitiful start. But it IS a start. A (Constitution-mandated) budget is the next step. Then the next step is “draconian cuts”—and lots of them!

Paul - February 27, 2013

Yes… Begin with Cuts in pay…. like Congress… reduction in staff..& Perks.. Then movve on to the White House…… Thier health care should come under OboomCare..

Glenn7 - February 27, 2013

OBAMA SHOULD BE ASHAMED OF HIMSELF if he cannot manage a 2.4% reduction in spending. When he talks the way he does, Obama is admitting that he is INCAPABLE of being president of the USA. Being the 3rd grader that he is, Obama will seek ways to maximize his revenge on the American Citizenry since he did not get his way. There is not a small business owner or CEO in this nation that would make a chirp about such a miniscule reduction.

Pat - February 28, 2013

This is more of Obama’s insanity, raising a ruckus about a 2% cut in budgets that have grown by 20% or more in the past few years. Our government should be run like a business, not a giveaway program for “entitlement dependents”, special interests and countries who hate us but love our money.

Lori T Cramer - February 28, 2013

Not once did I hear of a cut to Congressional salaries, cuts to presidential salary, cuts to Mrs. Obama’s staff, cuts to foreign aid. Fewer trips on Air Force One and more bus trips. Fewer tax payer vacations. Whatever happened to the application of “charity begins at home?” If we cannot afford to support ourselves why are we pretending to be able to support others. why do we let our people go hungry and spend millions feeding others? Cutting staffing for Washington bureaucrats would be another way to decrease spending. We live in dangerous times. How can a President of this country possibly cut defense spending? How can Democrats, Republicans, anyone in their right and sane minds even consider such a thing? Do we need thousands of people being paid more than us with the power to rob us of our hard earned pay checks? IRS? I don’t think so. Dept. of Interior? EPA? Secret Service for Life? Education? Look around Wash, DC. Look at government. Get rid of that wasteful spending first. We are not stupid Washington. Republicans and Democrats as well, had better start listening. We are speaking and we are DEMANDING to be heard.

Bob Chalmers - February 28, 2013

Cuts, I’ll give you cuts.

*Cut the Department of Energy – which has not produced one Kw of energy.
*Cut the Department of Education – which has not educated one student.
*Reduce the EPA to it’s Dec 2008 size.
*Cut out all subsidies

And that’s just to start.

Rick Greb - February 28, 2013

The Obama adminstration should top giving Planned Parenthood hundreds of millions of our tax dollars. Senator Coburn has addressed millions of dollars the government wastes on projects and senseless studies. There are several duplicate departments that should be closed. There are billions of dollars worth of federal buildings that are sitting empty that should be sold. There are far too many people on government entitlement programs that could be working. I believe we are at a point of no return and America we will have to wait and see what will happen when this all comes crashing down on us. May God have mercy on this nation.

Florida Jim - February 28, 2013

The federal budget goes up every year for 50 years and whenever anyone questions why the government dolts whine like children Now we have a President who whines like a child as he can’t even submit a budget or pass a budget , the Republicans have given him one every year which he does sign. For 2013 the sequester simply makes to increased budget slightly less than asked by Obama, slightly less still more than last year and still more than any year in history but slightly less. What a joke from this joke of a President.

John A. Thompson - February 28, 2013

Budget cuts are needed and DOD is no exception. That being said the Military chiefs need the discretion to make cuts that make sense and have less impact on operations. Daily conferences and seminars are being held that could easily be done away with or conducted via video rather than trips and hotels. This amounts to 10s of million each year alone. We also need to look at our foreigh aid……..giving Egypt planes and munitions are not free and many other countries receive large amounts but offer nothing in return. Millions are spent on illegal immigration support in the form of welfare ad free medical and food stamps. Need to be smart.

Karen Newton - February 28, 2013

We need to pass a law that says no ,NO!!! increase in spending on anything no increase in any government program. No salary increases, recind the recent pay raises, no new programs. The only exception should be if war breaks out. Then start to dismantal things like Obama Care, Green energy, and government aid to foreign governments and lets start with Pakistan. Stop the assistance to Syria! that ought to give us a good start….
Karen

Carlos R. Garcia - February 28, 2013

If we were serious about cutting unnecessary agencies and departments: Combine essential functions of Energy, Commerce and Interior Departments, move essential functions (if there are any) of HUD under HHS and scale them back by at least half, and do away with Transportation and Education Departments (not federal functions). Eliminate the Council of Economic Advisors (their track record hasn’t been too good) and the Surgeon General’s Office (we need more health information like a hole in the head). Cut foreign aid budgets to zero etc. etc. These are just the start…

Lula T Moehrbach - February 28, 2013

The total cuts in the sequester represent such a small portion of the president’s grand spending plan for this year. While some spending cuts are surely needed, I do not believe our Defense Budget should be touched! The way the cuts are proposed, the Pentagon does not even have a say re: what is cut. The people running the Pentagon surely would know where the cuts could be made on less important matters vs.our critical $’s for our national defense. Applying cuts across the board equally in all areas makes no sense. In this dangerous world & all our enemies…defense of our nation is the LAST PLACE CUTS SHOULD BE MADE!

David - February 28, 2013

Notice how despite the “cuts” from the sequester, federal spending not only keeps on growing, but nearly doubles?!

Holly Chapo - February 28, 2013

Of course we need budget cuts – providing the Senate actually contributes to the budget process by offering one. The president needs to get real about this matter also. We need to reform all entitlements which should include cutting the waste and fraud. The tax code has to be reformed preferably with a flat tax which should eliminate the excess of IRS workers. We have unconstitutional departments that could have their budgets cut dramatically, a few of them to 0. Cut foreign aid to all those who hate and oppose us. Don’t fill government jobs for those left vacant by retirees and those who leave. Start repairing the pay and pensions for civil servce workers who taxpayers pay for. Get rid of useless programs as well as those that are duplicative. How’s this for starters?

Howard Woods - February 28, 2013

The non-defense discretionary cuts amount to about 1.1% for the next year. By way of comparison, for an average American earning $50,000. per year this cut would amount to about $11. per week. And when you factor in that it’s not a real cut since he got a $12. per week raise over last year, sure makes our beloved president look like a lying, dictatorial sob when he cries and wails about how draconian these cuts are and how the mean republicans are trying to starve the widows and orphans. And cause planes to crash. And cause poison spoiled food to kill us all.

Cheryl - February 28, 2013

This overall sequester thing is going to be good for us! It forces us to look at how we do business, cut waste (not corners), and focus on major concerns first. All of the waste amounts to about 10% I believe. So, sharpen your pencils folks and lets get this thing under control! QUIT BELLYACHING , suck it up. Stop Whining and get busy.

Jeff Yetter - March 1, 2013

It should be immutable that shrinking the federal government is inseparable from cutting the budget. Until EVERY program is reduced, and every recipient of federal largesse suffers (and here I unconditionally exclude those who paid into the Ponzi/ Social Security Scam), we will, to quote Merle Haggard, “keep rolling downhill like a snowball headed for hell”.

Dave - March 4, 2013

Two of the most effective cuts would be to eliminate the Energy Department (they haven’t helped reduce our dependency on foreign oil – their mandate) and the Education Department (the Feds don’t know better than the local people how to educate our kids). Those would be better than decimating our Defense Department. There are probably some savings in the Defense Department that could be made but in today’s world we need them.

Phil F - March 4, 2013

Where to start, shut down all foreign military bases overseas in Japan, Korea, Germany, England, Iceland and bring our troops home from Iraq and Afghanistan. Shut down the Departments of Energy, Commerce, Education and the EPA. Stop all foreign aid to any nation that doesn’t support America completely and totally. Defund the UN. Stop funding PBS, the National Endowment for the Arts and Head Start. Defund and eliminate Obamacare. The list is endless but Obama and the Democrats don’t want to defund anything.

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