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Public Statements

Harmful Effects of Sequestration

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC

Ms. EDDIE BERNICE JOHNSON of Texas. Mr. Speaker, it has now been more than 7 weeks since the sequestration cuts were enacted, and we are in new and unprecedented territory. Furlough notices have already been sent to thousands of Federal employees and contractors, and many services are beginning to slow. While many of the worst consequences of the sequester have not yet been realized, the truth is that the wheels have been set in motion, and we are on a course that will have real impacts for millions of Americans.

As a result of employee furloughs, more than 1,200 flights were delayed yesterday because 1,500 air traffic controllers were laid off the job. Because of the Republican majority's refusal to address the effects of sequester sensibly, the FAA estimates that a third of the passengers will face delays during the furloughs, with up to 6,700 flights arriving late at more than a dozen major airports each day.

Beyond crippling our government's ability to provide critical services, the Republican sequestration plan is slowing the economic growth that our country so desperately needs.

In short, Republicans are putting the ability of our government to fully perform basic government functions that we need to keep us safe at risk.

We need to work on an approach that will fix sequestration while reducing our deficit sensibly.

We need to come to a compromise that will prevent these indiscriminate cuts, and keep our economy on track and growing.

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