In addition to the $487 billion of proposed defense cuts contained in President Obama’s fiscal year 2013 budget, on January 2, 2013, $492 billion of defense cuts will go into effect. Sequestration and its consequences therefore hang like a shadow over America’s military and defense industrial base.
At a Defending Defense event on Wednesday, Sen. Kelly Ayotte (R-N.H.) urged the U.S. Congress to stop delaying finding a solution to sequestration. Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) then called on presidential leadership to reverse these damaging defense cuts. House Armed Services Committee Chairman Buck McKeon (R-Calif.) felt that Congress should be ashamed if it does not pass a deal to avoid sequestration, arguing that if a final deal is not reached before the November presidential elections, the prospects for resolution will become increasingly slim during the “lame duck” period.
The lawmakers agreed that delay is no longer an option. Sequestration’s effects have already arrived, and Congress has a very limited window of opportunity before these cuts fundamentally alter America’s role in the world.