House Republicans tried hard during their week off to label the huge March 1 cuts as “the President’s sequester”, but was President Obama really the cause? We go back to August 1, 2011, the day sequester was born, to see who was celebrating the cuts and how they passed the House.
August 1, 2011: The House of Representatives passed the Budget Control Act.
The Budget Control Act:
- Raised the debt ceiling for 18 months, allowing the United States to pay its bills until the fiscal cliff crisis in January 2013.
- Mandated a vote on the Tea Party’s Balanced Budget Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.
- Enacted spending caps until 2021 designed to reduce the debt by $1.2 trillion.
- Stopped graduate students from getting student loans from the government.
- Created the SuperCommittee tasked with agreeing on $1.2 trillion of additional government cuts.
- Created across-the-board, percentage based cuts – 50% to discretionary spending and 50% to defense spending- to take a effect if the SuperCommittee failed. This is “sequester”.
So far, we know that if if the sequester goes into effect on March 1…
- Air traffic controller offices will be closed across the country. See the list.
- Defense Department will furlough civilian workers. Active duty members are protected from cuts. Contractors are also going to be shielded from cuts, not by law but by choice.
- Unemployed people can expect a 9.4% cut to their benefits.
- 700,000+ people will lose their jobs.
People mentioned in the podcast:
- @BillTaylor2: Came up with “sequester finger-pointing week”. Funny Boston dude. Follow him.
- Political DisContent: A conversational, educational, and funny podcast I just discovered and enjoy. Give ’em a try.
New episode next week! Congress comes back from vacation. Will they stop the sequester?