Mr. BERA of California. Mr. Speaker, I rise today to caution again about the dangers of sequestration.
In a few short weeks, automatic across-the-board spending cuts will take place. If allowed, they could forestall our economic recovery. Not only will these cuts cripple many effective programs, but across-the-board cuts on top of already large budget reductions will impact the Department of Defense.
Yes, we need to make strategic budget reductions, eliminate or reduce ineffective programs, and begin to bring our budget under control. But we need to do this in a responsible way, and automatic sequestration cuts are irresponsible.
In my community, we will feel an immediate impact. If sequestration hits, programs that are essential to keeping our community safe and secure would face an automatic 8.2 percent cut. The COPS program in Sacramento would lose over $1.5 million in funding, which would hurt local law enforcement and impact our community safety.
Yes, we need to get our budget under control. We need to reduce our deficit and begin paying down our debt. But irresponsible across-the-board sequestration cuts are not the way to do it.