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Democrats Make Last-Minute Attempt to Avert Sequester Cuts

Local representatives are calling on Republicans to avoid cuts they say will dramatically impact the low income and middle class in California.

As California faces another budget crisis when sequestration is expected to go into effect, local Democrat government representatives are urging House Republicans to take action in creating a balanced plan that would avert massive cuts.

Rep. Judy Chu of the 27th District said California will suffer drastic cuts, including services for children, seniors, small businesses, and military men and women.   

“There is no other way to describe sequestration than a self inflicted wound to our economy, our credibility, and the American people,” said Chu in a written statement. “These cuts will take food from the mouths of hungry children and first responders off our streets. No corner of the country will be untouched by their impact, and this report shows that is particularly true for California.”

Chu called on Republicans to “do the right thing and join Democrats in seeking a responsible way to address our debt.”

But that might be a hard sell for tax-weary Republicans.  Republicans, including House Speaker John A. Boehner of Ohio and Republican Minority Leader Senator Mitch McConnell of Kentucky don’t appear to give in to tax increases before the March 1 deadline, according to the Washington Post.

Republicans believe Democrats are doing their best to create public anxiety over sequestration cuts to pressure Republicans into bending from their no-tax stance.

McConnell told the Washington Post:

“With a $16.6 trillion national debt, and a promise to the American people to address it, one thing is perfectly clear: We will cut Washington spending. We can either secure those reductions more intelligently, or we can do it the president’s way with across-the board cuts. But one thing Americans simply will not accept is another tax increase to replace spending reductions we already agreed to.”

Some of the highlighted cuts in the Democratic campaign include:

  • 87.6 million in funding for primary and secondary education, which could layoff up to 1,210 teacher aide jobs. Head Start and Early Head Start programs could also be at risk.
  • U.S. Customs and Border Protection would have to layoff more than 7,000 officers and agents. The Department of Justice would also be forced lay off approximately 1,000 federal agents and 1,300 Bureau of Prisons correctional officers.
  • $12.4 million in environmental funding for clean water and air quality and $2.6 million in funds to cover responses to natural disasters, infectious diseases and chemical, biological and nuclear events. Another $12.4 million can be cut to substance abuse programs.
  • Cuts to nutritional assistance for seniors, and medical research grants for diseases such as cancer, diabetes and Alzheimer’s.
  • Around 9,600 fewer low income students in California would receive college financial aid and around 3,690 fewer students will get work-study jobs
  • $1.6 million cut to public safety and law enforcement funds.

Still, Democrats believe sequestration will only put more burden on the low income and middle class while the rich enjoy more tax breaks.

“Hardworking people from my district have lost their jobs, and we need to ensure critical services that support them and their families will not be cut. We must reduce spending, but forcing the middle class to bear the burden is not the solution,” said Rep. Grace Napolitano of the 32nd District. “Ending tax breaks for millionaires and corporations will ensure that they also pay their fair share.”

Rep. Judy Chu represents the 27th Congressional District, including Glendora, Arcadia, Claremont, Monrovia, Pasadena, South Pasadena, and unincorporated Altadena. Rep. Grace Napolitano represents the 32nd Congressional District, including Glendora, Monrovia, Baldwin Park, Azusa, La Verne and San Dimas.

SteveB March 02, 2013 at 05:33 PM
Marty, take a look at William Korn's post at 12:39 pm on Thursday, February 21, 2013 in that thread. I am pretty much in agreement with his take, there, as well as in the rest of the thread.
SteveB March 02, 2013 at 05:41 PM
"The truth will likely fall somewhere in between". Now that's something I can agree with. Not quite the take given in your post, now, is it? Impeachment. Seriously.
Bill C. March 02, 2013 at 10:54 PM
The AARP? When did the AARP start deciding what budgets congress would pass, what about the NFL or WWE or the YMCA, seriously the AARP? There you are again shilling for the Democrat dominated Senate who has done nothing Obama's entire tenure and .1% growth is something you're ok with? Obama is a class and race dividing socialist whose policies are doing nothing, not anything Gayle to get the country moving. All your comments mean zero in the face of what this country is experiencing under his incredibly lame leadership. Post any link you want but the bottom line is Obama got his tax increase and now wants more, no surprise there and to defend his failures shows just how little you care about what goes in the pcoket of the middle class. I'm a part of that and where time and again Obama said we wouldn't see one penny in additional taxes he lied and you and your pals are ok with that. Why are you ok with his lies Gayle, when are you going to call him out on then. Oh, and when he said the other day criminals would walk and cases dropped at the federal level because of the sequester, not happening, just another lie to further demonize the right. We are living under the rule of the worst president of modern times and he needs to be obstructed at every wrong turn he takes.
not Carl Peterson lll March 03, 2013 at 04:44 AM
Oh Patch......Heaven forbid you allow comments to be posted in the comment section. People might exchange thoughts or something. So Patch puts on the brakes till we see no more cheese here, and move on.......
Stamford Bridge March 03, 2013 at 04:20 PM
@ Gayle - I didn't expect you to answer the obvious "elephant in the middle of the room" question.

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