This week, the House passed H.R. 5872, the Sequestration Transparency Act of 2012, 412 to 2. The bill would require the President to detail his plans for the $1.2 trillion across-the-board defense and discretionary cuts, known as sequestration, mandated by the Budget Control Act.
At a time when our government is over $15 trillion in debt, cuts must be made. I do not believe the Defense Department should be spared from this reality. However, the across-the-board approach is drastic, arbitrary, and will weaken our military. The President's own Secretary of Defense has said the cuts would "devastate" our national security. If nothing changes, America will be left with its smallest ground force since 1940, the smallest number of ships since 1915 and the smallest tactical fighter force in the history of the Air Force.
The President has strongly opposed all of our efforts to replace sequestration, but has not put forward any plans of his own. To make matters worse, his Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has refused to tell Congress how it is going to implement the cuts.
While much work is left to be done, I am encouraged by the overwhelming bipartisan vote this week and I hope that it will lead to a more sensible solution to our spending-driven debt crisis.