Mr. RUPPERSBERGER. Mr. Speaker, I rise to voice strong opposition to the sequester, which was designed to be so severe and so catastrophic that we would be compelled to make the necessary compromises to avoid it, and yet we have done nothing.
The Second District is the home to Fort Meade, NSA, Aberdeen Proving Ground, the Port of Baltimore, and hundreds of contractors reliant on these institutions. We're neighbors to the Social Security Administration, the National Institute for Health, and BWI Airport.
Nearly 140,000 workers at these facilities would be furloughed. Maryland will lose about $14.4 million in funding education, putting the jobs of 200 teachers at risk. We'll lose nearly $50 million in funding for medical research, which supports thousands of jobs in Maryland.
Maryland can't afford this approach to deficit reduction and neither can any of the other States in this Nation. We have to put forward serious alternatives to avert sequestration, and I encourage leadership to either allow a vote on one of these alternatives or to propose one for themselves.
We are in this most ridiculous situation and we must resolve this problem now.
Mr. Speaker, I ask unanimous consent to bring up H.R. 699, a balanced bill to replace the sequester with spending cuts and revenues.