As Deep Cuts Loom, Continued Appeals For A Deal, Finger-Pointing | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

NPR : News

Filed Under:

As Deep Cuts Loom, Continued Appeals For A Deal, Finger-Pointing

With less than a week before the across-the-board-spending cuts and tax hikes go into effect, Republicans and Democrats are sounding off about the sequestration.

"There's easy ways [sic] to cut this money that the American people will never feel," Rep. Tom Coburn, R-Okla., said on Fox News Sunday. "What you hear is an outrage because nobody wants to cut spending ... and it will be somewhat painful, but not cutting spending is going to be disastrous for our country."

But Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood warned of the consequences of the cuts as a result of sequestration.

"We're not making this up to put pain on the American people," he said on NBC's Meet the Press. "We are required to cut a billion dollars and we're going to do that unless congress gets together and works together."

The nation's governors, meeting in Washington, called for a last-minute deal to stave off the cuts.

"There can't be any question. This is something that nobody wants," said Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper, a Democrat. "It's not a balanced, thoughtful compromise or a set of choices."

Pat McCrory, North Carolina's Republican governor, said President Obama and Congress must work together to fix the budget.

"We want Washington to fix its problem and right now I want to ask the president, along with congressional leaders, to get in a room and do what governors are doing across this nation and start reading their budgets and making the tough decisions as opposed to across-the-board cuts," he said.

The cuts could have far-reaching effects. As NPR's Tom Bowman reported last week, Pentagon officials have notified Congress that they will furlough some 800,000 civilian defense contractors for one day per week should sequestration kick in on March 1.

Speaking on CNN's State of the Union, Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., said across-the-board cuts "are the worst and most cowardly way to approach this situation."

He added: "Republican leaders should be saying to the president along with Democratic leaders, let's sit down and work this out. That's the way we've avoided crises in the past."

News of the sequester is also dominating the newspapers. The Washington Post has a timeline on its website that details the sequester's origins. And The New York Times is reporting on the blame game both sides are playing for bringing the country to this point.

Copyright 2013 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

NPR

Picasso, Nazis And A Daring Escape In 'My Grandfather's Gallery'

As a little girl, Anne Sinclair knew Pablo Picasso. She talks with NPR's Scott Simon about why she didn't want the master to paint her picture, and her new memoir, My Grandfather's Gallery.
NPR

Syrup Induces Pumpkin-Spiced Fever Dreams

Hugh Merwin, an editor at Grub Street, bought a 63-ounce jug of pumpkin spice syrup and put it in just about everything he ate for four days. As he tells NPR's Scott Simon, it did not go well.
NPR

Texas Gubernatorial Candidates Go The Border To Court Voters

Republicans have won every statewide office in Texas for 20 years, but the growing Hispanic population tends to vote Democrat, and the GOP's survival may depend on recruiting Hispanic supporters.
NPR

Tech Week: Smartphone Privacy, Cyberstalking, Alibaba's Big Debut

Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba makes the biggest debut on the NYSE ever. The details, and the other tech stories that piqued our interest, are in this week's roundup.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.