Mr. CICILLINE. Mr. Speaker, yesterday I visited Core Composites, a company located in Bristol in my home State of Rhode Island. Because of sequestration, this small business has been notified that funding for a government contract will be reduced by hundreds of thousands of dollars.
I also recently met with Alexion, a pharmaceutical manufacturer in Rhode Island, whose FDA approval of a lifesaving drug will likely be delayed because of sequestration. Countless other small businesses across our country are facing these same challenges today because Washington failed to take action to avoid sequestration.
Sequestration isn't a solution to our Federal deficit; it's a penalty that goes into effect because Republicans and Democrats failed to work together to responsibly reduce the deficit. And it's a penalty that will place a heavy toll on hardworking men and women across our country.
We spend a lot of time fighting in Washington. Now it's time for us to work together to reach a commonsense solution on this issue. Congressman Chris Van Hollen has offered a very detailed alternative to sequestration that I'm proud to cosponsor that would cut spending responsibly, repeal subsidies to Big Oil, adopt the Buffett rule, and preserve the Medicare guarantee for seniors. Rather than pointing fingers, we should be looking at this and other reasonable alternatives that would provide critical relief for working families right now.