Today, Senate Finance Committee Ranking Member Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) blasted Senate Democrats' legislation (S. 388) to replace the President's sequester with more tax hikes on the American people and called for a vote on his Motion to Commit which would direct the Finance Committee to replace the tax increases in the legislation with a series of reasonable, spending cuts.
"The President and the Democratic Leadership's solution to this problem is more tax hikes, which makes these claims about the impact of sequestration all the more transparent. Indeed, it appears that the President's current campaign on the sequester is less about reaching an agreement to replace the sequester than it is about satisfying his drive to once again raise Americans' taxes while also serving his desire to vilify Republicans, no matter what the costs to the American people," said Hatch. "I don't want to minimize the negative impact the sequester may have in some areas. But, there are numerous other places where we can cut spending immediately. Instead of pursuing the Democrats' tax hike strategy or the President's indiscriminate sequester, we should instead sensibly restrain spending."
Yesterday, Hatch filed a Motion to Commit S. 388, the Democrats' Sequester replacement bill, back to the Finance Committee to strike the bill's tax increases and replace that revenue with spending cuts. Hatch pointed to a series of reasonable spending reductions totaling $142.2 billion drawn from U.S. Senator Tom Coburn's report, Back in Black: A Deficit Reduction Plan, July 2011 that could be used to replace the sequester for more than a year.
Senate Democrats blocked consideration of Hatch's legislation. If Congress does not act, the President's across-the-board sequester spending cuts will take place on Friday.