Congressman Markwayne Mullin (OK-02) issued the following statement about automatic spending cuts, known as "sequestration", due to take effect on March 1.
"Dysfunction in the federal government and the "us vs. them" mentality has brought us close to the sequestration deadline. Resorting to these types of cuts is government at its worst.
Implemented in 2011 under the Budget Control Act, as what was to be a last resort if all else failed, sequestration is an across the board cut to federal spending. Exempt from cuts are the safety net programs like Social Security, Medicaid, military and civilian retirement, food stamps, most low-income and veterans programs.
Anyone with a dysfunctional family can tell you that Thanksgiving dinners can quickly melt down into shouting matches between family members blaming one another for bad things that have happened. I can tell you politics on Capitol Hill are a lot like eating Thanksgiving dinner with a dysfunctional family every single day.
Nobody has had the backbone to closely examine which programs are working and which are wasteful so we can responsibly cut spending. Instead, those in Washington are unwilling to make tough decisions so their answer is to cut everyone in an effort to seem fair. That is not good government.
In the real world that Oklahomans live in, particularly those of us in business, we look for what is working and we keep it. If we see things that are not working, we cut them because we cannot afford to keep things around that waste money. A store owner will not continue to stock something that doesn't sell. The real world does not work that way.
Few in government are willing to look at any part of government for waste or inefficiency. They're afraid of upsetting any group that may be important to their next election.
It is time politicians quit looking toward their next election and stopped the dysfunction. We would not be facing sequestration if there was true leadership on both sides of the aisle in Washington. All else hasn't failed -- leadership has failed to stop the shouting and start trying.
Reigning in federal spending and balancing our budget isn't about Republicans or Democrats -- it's about America."