Mr. DELANEY. Mr. Speaker, the sequester is bad way to deal with deficit reduction and will likely have a negative effect on our economy, particularly Maryland's economy, which I have been saying for years is unusually vulnerable to reductions in government spending. We are faced with the sequester because our government has failed to act in a bi-partisan way for the good of the country. The cost of doing nothing is not nothing. Because we failed to take the necessary steps to deal with our deficit in a balanced way--and because special interests were uncompromising in the face of any proposals that affected them--we find ourselves facing a mini-doomsday machine in the sequester.
Unless Congress acts, sequestration would have a serious and disproportionate impact on job creation and economic growth in Maryland. The 60 non-military federal facilities and 17 military facilities in Maryland would see their ability to conduct operations significantly erode; nearly 140,000 federal civilian employees who work in Maryland would face furloughs and potential pay cuts; and thousands of jobs in Maryland would be put at risk. Our students, small businesses, families, and first-responders would also be affected by devastating cuts to investments in education, law enforcement, infrastructure, innovation, research, and other areas that are critical to building a strong middle class.
Our focus should be on avoiding the sequester and passing a grand budget deal along the lines of Simpson-Bowles that reduces the deficit in a balanced way. We should do our job, which is to come together, negotiate in good faith, and find a solution.