Today, President Obama released the long-awaited “sequestration report,” detailing the cuts the White House would make to the budget under last year’s Budget Control Act if no deal is reached in Congress.
And there, buried on page 136, is the White House’s proposed cuts to “Embassy Security, Construction, and Maintenance.” $129 million. That’s a full 8.2 percent of the possible sequestrable amount. It’s a massive slash of the budget for our embassies, consulates, and security abroad.
That’s just part of the White House’s ridiculously destructive sequester proposal, which takes a chainsaw to the defense budget. Most defense programs would get a 9.4 percent cut, and a 10 percent cut to other Pentagon accounts. Medicare, by contrast, would take only a 2 percent hit. “No amount of planning can mitigate the effect of these cuts,” wrote the Office of Management and Budget. “It is not the responsible way for our nation to achieve deficit reduction. The report leaves no question that the sequestration would be deeply destructive to national security, domestic investments and core government function.”
President Obama brought about this sequestration himself when he refused to cut the budget, and his Democratic allies in Congress did the same. Republicans didn’t want to tie cuts to tax increases; Obama did. Democrats’ default position was that cuts had to come from defense. And thus we ended up with the Budget Control Act, which left Congress in the position of watching President Obama slash the military budget if they couldn’t reach some sort of arrangement.
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