Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL) voted today to require the Administration to detail the specific cuts it would make to the Defense Department and discretionary spending to fulfill the terms of the sequester. The Sequestration Transparency Act, H.R. 5872, was approved by an overwhelming bipartisan majority of 414 to 2.
Under last year's Budget Control Act, an automatic across the board $1.2 trillion cut would take effect on January 1, 2013, to comply with spending reductions required by the law. Half of the cuts would come from our armed forces and the other half would come from non defense discretionary spending that are federal programs not related to Medicare and Social Security.
Said Ros-Lehtinen, "Last year's budget deal required an across the board cut of $1.2 trillion on defense spending and on non entitlement programs. Passage of this legislation would require the Obama Administration to detail where it would make these cuts and by how much. Obama's own Defense Secretary and our former Congressional colleague, Leon Panetta, has already said that these proposed cuts, known as sequestration, would have a dramatic and negative effect on our nation's ability to defend itself. Further, if these cuts are carried out, they would weaken our armed forces at a time our nation faces multiple overseas threats.
But our armed services won't be the only ones who feel the pain of this sequester. The economic impact of these arbitrary cuts will be felt far and wide, with Americans once again forced to bear the brunt of the burden for the unchecked, profligate spending of their government. These cuts will cost our state of Florida nearly 80,000 jobs, most of which are private sector jobs, and cost us billions of dollars in lost revenue.
While the House continues to work on a resolution to avoid the looming sequestration cuts, some of our colleagues in the Senate, and the Administration, remain content with inaction -- and the debilitating consequences of the sequester that will ensue. We can do better and we must."